Australia Tourism

Written by Patricia Tunstall
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Australian tourism grows by leaps and bounds every year, as more and more travelers learn about the wonders of this island-continent. With a stable, democratic government and a people who are open and friendly, this nation is one of the most inviting locations on earth. Consisting of six states and two territories in a nation that is some 2,500 miles east to west and 2,000 miles north to south, Australia regales its visitors with everything from fusion cuisine to bandicoots to Aboriginal art to spectacular barrier reefs.

When planning a tour of Australia, tourists should remember that the island's seasons are the reverse of those in the Northern Hemisphere, such as the United States. This makes it ideal for winter journeys, since Australia's summer starts in December. Autumn begins in March, winter in June, and spring in September.

Some Rivers Don't Reach the Ocean

Australia is sparsely populated, and its geography is responsible. Of about 20 million people, roughly 84 percent live near the coast where a temperate climate and stunning beaches and surf create a pleasant lifestyle. The huge interior of the country consists of the famous Outback, which has its own beauty with its desert-like terrain filled with dry salt lakes, surprising rocky outcrops, and savannas.

Known as the Dry Continent, Australia's interior has little rainfall, so some rivers dry up before they reach the ocean. Most tourists, like the Australians, travel along the coasts, and fly over the Outback to reach other points. New South Wales has the most Australians and the most visitors, which isn't surprising considering the world-famous city of Sydney is located here. The Great Barrier Reef off Queensland is one of the most visited areas in Australia. Down in the south lies Kangaroo Island, 70 miles southwest of Adelaide, and is one of the best places to observe native animals of Australia.

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