The Best Places To Visit In Australia Beyond Sydney, Melbourne And Brisbane – Forbes

Visit Florence Falls at Litchfield National Park the next time you’re in Australia’s Northern … [+] Territory.
On February 21, 2022, Australia reopened its borders for the first time since March 2020, with all states—except Western Australia, which officially reopens on March 3, 2022—welcoming back tourists and inviting fully vaccinated travelers around the world to come on down.
While most U.S. travelers will enter the country through Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane via nonstop flights from Los Angeles or San Francisco, there’s so much more going on outside the big cities. With interstate flights easily available once you reach the continent, there’s no better time to expand your Australian itinerary and really get to know this incredible country and its people—just remember to check each state’s Covid-19 restrictions, which vary by state and vaccination status. Here’s a look at some of the other locales you should visit beyond Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane on your next trip.
For smaller city vibes in the tropical Top End, head to Darwin for Indigenous culture and an international foodie scene that’s on full display at the Mindil Beach Sunset Markets, held Thursday and Sunday from late-April to late-October. It’s also the perfect base for day trips to Litchfield National Park (1.5 hours away), Kakadu National Park (2.5 hours away) or Nitmiluk National Park (3.5 hours away) if you’re up for a nature hike, camping trip or want to see some of the local wildlife up close.
Beyond Darwin, embark on an epic Outback road trip—or fly directly to Alice Springs or Yulara, home of Uluru Kata-Tjuta National Park—each located in the heart of the Red Centre, surrounded by incredible natural wonders and great places to learn more about Indigenous history and culture. For a real treat, visit Watarrka National Park, three hours from Yulara, and spend a few hours hiking along the scenic Kings Canyon Rim Walk.
Come visit the quokka on Rottnest Island on your next trip to Western Australia.
Start by spending some time in Perth—check out the rollicking nightlife scene, take a stroll through Kings Park and Botanic Garden or grab some fish ‘n chips and head to the nearest beach for a picnic—and neighboring Fremantle, an artsy city by the water where you can catch a ferry to Rottnest Island, home to what is quite possibly the most adorable marsupial on Earth, the quokka (pictured above). About an hour inland, the Swan Valley makes a great day trip with lots of local wineries, breweries, cideries and distilleries to choose from.
For a real off-the-beaten-path adventure, fly or drive north to Broome, gateway to The Kimberley region, where guided tours take visitors on an epic journey along the Gibb River Road to some of the most remote national parks in the country. While most guided trips are a great value, especially considering they include accommodations, meals and transportation, upscale glamping options and luxury multi-day cruises are also available if you’re looking to splurge.
Elsewhere in WA, head to Exmouth and Coral Bay for excellent snorkeling and diving opportunities along the Ningaloo Reef, Kalbarri National Park to experience the Kalbarri Skywalk, which opened in 2020, Margaret River for wineries and nature or Lucky Bay, where kangaroos lounge on the beach.
While the ferry from Melbourne to Tasmania is a fun way to travel if you’ve got the time, you can also hop a flight straight to Hobart and begin your Tassie adventure there. Enjoy views of the city from the top of Mount Wellington (it’s easier to take a bus from the city center than try and navigate the road yourself), do a day trip to Port Arthur (90 minutes away) to learn about Australia’s unique convict history—the Cascades Female Factory Historic Site closer to Hobart does a great job of explaining the role of Tasmania’s many female convicts as well—see Tasmanian Devils up close at the Boronong Wildlife Sanctuary (or Unzoo near Port Arthur) and shop for snacks and souvenirs at the Salamanca Market, held in Hobart each Saturday.
Try to plan your trip to Adelaide when the Fringe Festival is in town, typically mid-February to mid-March. Otherwise, it’s a short flight from most larger Australian cities or you can brave the overnight bus from Melbourne, which was a great option for my backpacker budget at the time. Pick up some fresh meat, cheese, produce and other sandwich-making materials of your choosing at Adelaide Central Market, then head to the botanic garden or any of the city’s surrounding green spaces for a picnic. Plan a day trip to the beach at Glenelg (15 minutes away) or venture out to some of South Australia’s best wineries in the McLaren Vale, about 40 minutes from the city center—the d’Arenberg vineyard and its famous cube make a particularly funky day trip.
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