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Travel the world without leaving Australia

From visiting Melbourne to hitting the many beaches, there are many things to do in Australia without ever leaving the country's vast and wonderful borders. | By Jeremy Wilbur and Valerie Yeo | January 26, 2022

It's an island. It's a country. It's a continent. Australia has it all — and then some. The hardest part of traveling in Australia is narrowing down what to see next, but no need to bounce around like a kangaroo — we’ve got you covered. Without ever having to leave the continent, you can travel the world and find a plethora of things to do in Australia, including:

  • Foodie finds: Please your palate with coffee, wine and vegetarian fare in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide

  • Go wild: Seek world-class wilderness and culture in your outdoor adventures

  • Live aquatic: Decompress or surf the beautiful stretches of beach

Transport your tastebuds

When looking for things to do in Australia, and food is your driving force, then you'll be well-satiated in gastronomically diverse Australia. Melbourne is known for its cosmopolitan elegance and artistic flare. For the foodie, you'll want to visit as many of its urban cafes as possible. Local baristas spend years perfecting their pull of espresso and creating coffees that will make you an Australian coffee culture fanatic for life.

The Adelaide Hills in South Australia is a rugged wine wonderland boasting over 60 wineries and is just 20 minutes outside of Adelaide. Whether you're a chardonnay or a shiraz, this area rivals the wine regions of France and California--its lush landscape creates cool conditions for characterful grape flavors.

All it takes is a short meander through Sydney's Inner West neighborhoods to enjoy a global spectrum of food options. We love the vegan and vegetarian vibes in Newtown, from the Golden Lotus’s Vietnamese laksa to Suzy Spoon's vegetarian fish or schnitzels. In Surry Hills, you’ll find South America at Porteno (try the Argentinian barbecue) and small Scandinavian bites at Bar Suze. You can walk any direction from Sydney's CBD and find something deliciously international.

Find a local escape

You don't have to travel far from any major city in Australia to find yourself perfectly surrounded by nature and outdoor adventure. You’ll feel like you’ve escaped to the great American West when you drive an hour from Sydney to The Blue Mountains. As you explore the area, you explore its indigenous history: consider taking a culture tour to learn about Aboriginal culture at this World Heritage site.

For those closer to Australia’s middle, you’ll find the Kings Canyon in the Red Centre of Australia. It’s a 3.5-hour drive from Alice Springs, but you’ll feel like you've driven all the way to The Grand Canyon.

Just 90 minutes outside Darwin, Litchfield National Park is a paradise of waterfalls and waterholes to rival the Philippines' Visayas. Kakadu National Park is further away at three hours, but it has an extensive, biodiverse ecosystem and is the largest national park in Australia.

You’ll time-travel to prehistoric times at the Dandenong Ranges. Just an hour outside of Melbourne, its full of gorgeously green fern tree forests once roamed by dinosaurs.

Always wanted to see The Congo? The Daintree outside of Cairns is one of the largest rainforests in the world and an incredible 165 million years old. Its trees can grow to 164 feet (50 meters) high, and some of the plants even glow-in-the-dark.

Under, near or on the sea

Adventure seekers looking for things to do in Australia should look no further than it’s beautiful beaches to create the ultimate itinerary. Whether you want to get wet or just enjoy the sound of the waves from the comfort of your towel, Australia is world-renowned for its endless beaches and fabulous opportunities to dip beneath the ocean surface.

Move over, San Diego: Perth is the sunniest capital city in Australia and has limitless beach options. It's an incredible starting point in Western Australia for relaxed, isolated beach time unlike anywhere else on the planet.

If scuba diving and snorkeling are your sports-of-choice, you don't need travel to The Maldives or The Red Sea to get your fix. Using Cairns as your home base, you've got a variety of options to go explore The Great Barrier Reef. You’ll enjoy an almost unparalleled diversity of marine life and coral gardens.

If surfing is your game, Bondi Beach should be on your must-visit list. Bondi Beach lives up to its name—it's an aboriginal term meaning "surf" in English—as it's an incredibly popular and iconic stretch of sand just outside Sydney.

If you prefer a beach vibe with easy access to day-time-play-time and nightlife galore, you'll want to be in Brisbane or Surfers Paradise on The Gold Coast. It's the perfect playground for adults and kids alike.

Make your travel memory in Australia

Sun, sand, delicious food and unique wildlife are only some of the top things to do in Australia. You will love spending your one-of-a-kind vacation in this country, and you'll create lasting memories no matter where you choose to explore.

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Jeremy Wilbur is part of the Marketing team in APAC, based in Melbourne, Australia.

Valerie Yeo is part of the Hilton Marketing team, based in Singapore.

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