Visiting Australia is always a good idea because this is not just a country but also a vast continent to explore. There are beautiful beaches and mountains as well as numerous landmarks and historical sites. Also, do not forget that there are 50,000 of years of history in Australia, not just modern towns and sites to visit.
First of all, you will need a visa to get to Australia, as the country is not part of any free-travel agreement like the European Union. You can apply online for a visitor visa if you are travelling to Australia as a tourist. Longer stays require a different type of visas, however. Check what visa is most suitable for you with the Australian Government's Department of Home Affairs.
What other things you need to know before visiting Australia?
As we said, Australia is a continent and therefore the distances you need to cover are huge. Even travelling between towns that look close on the map takes more time than in most countries outside Australia.
Plan for a two or three-week trip to Australia if you want to see more of the country and its landmarks.
You Might Experience Geo-blocking
Also, you need to know that selected online services and websites you use on a regular basis might be unavailable in Australia.
Taking pictures and sharing them is a good thing but you should be aware that geo-restrictions are in place in Australia. Some gambling sites, financial platforms and other services are geo-blocked in Australia, so checking which is the best VPN for Australia beforehand is a good idea. A VPN service allows you to bypass geo-restrictions and have access to restricted websites.
How it works? A VPN works by hiding your current IP address and thus telling a server that you are in, say, Australia, instead of your home country. It enables you to get access to geo-restricted services such as Netflix, Hulu, Pandora Radio or any other web-service that might happen to restrict access due to your location.
Installing a VPN will let you will enjoy your stay in Australia to the fullest while protecting your privacy.
The seasons in the south part of Australia are reversed compared to the countries in the Northern Hemisphere. Hence, if you are planning to visit Sydney and see the famous Sydney Opera House, the best time for visiting is November to April when the weather is sunny and warm.
Northern Australia, however, has reverse seasons. Hence, visiting the Great Barrier Reef and the Top End is not a good idea during the same period when the weather is wet and soggy.
Also, bear in mind that visiting Tasmania during the winter is a chilling experience.
Must See Places in Australia
Whitsunday Islands, Queensland
Kakadu National Park, Northern Territory
Margaret River, Western Australia
Broome, Western Australia
Byron Bay, NSW
Freycinet National Park, Tasmania
Uluru, Northern Territory
Great Barrier Reef, Queensland
Daintree Rainforest, Queensland
Fraser Island, Queensland
Great Ocean Road, Victoria
Rottnest Island, Western Australia
Barossa Valley, South Australia
Karijini National Park, Western Australia
Gold Coast, Queensland
Wilsons Promontory National Park, Victoria
Kangaroo Island, South Australia
Do not be afraid that you will not see the bush while in Australia. Due to the large distances between any two given towns, you enter a massive wilderness you cannot find in Europe or the United States.
Nonetheless, the bush is not a desert and there is plenty of life creatures around. Avoid driving at night if you are newcomer as there is a good chance to hit kangaroos or wallabies. You can see much more wildlife species in the bush, of course.
The Power of Sun
Unfortunately, there are several ozone layer holes just above Australia, which in turn makes the sun extremely powerful. Visitors from colder regions should always bear that in mind as this sun can cause severe burns.
Drink more fluids during the day and avoid direct exposure to sunlight while there in the sunny season.
Local Pubs and Restaurants
Do not expect to receive your bill on the table when eating in Australian restaurants. All bills are paid at the frontend, just finish your meals and get there to pay the bill.
Also, most Australian pubs have poker machines and a sports betting section, which is uncommon in other countries.
No one expects you to give a tip in Australia. A tip of no more than 10 percent is acceptable if you get exceptional service.
Australians have a number of distinctive foods such as vegemite and witchetty grub you will find nowhere else.
Vegemite is a mix of various vegetables to make a dark brown paste that also has yeast extract and spice additives inside. Many foreigners find it a challenging food when vegemite is put on their bread or toast with butter.
Aboriginal Australians can offer you to dine with the larvae of the gypsy moth, which is called witchetty grub. They have lots of protein in them and taste like chicken.
You do not want to be near an angry red kangaroo as most males can cover 8-9 m in one leap and jump up to 1.8-3 m in height. A large male kangaroo can be as tall as 2 meters and weigh some 90 kg.
Their grey kangaroo cousins are smaller in size but the largest grey kangaroos grow to about the same size as the red kangaroo.
Visiting Australia is an exciting experience, especially when you can hear words such as "thong" for sandals or "arvo" for afternoon. And do not be ashamed to ask for a "cuppa" in a restaurant as it simply means a cup of tea.
Other important things to know when visiting Australia include that you can drive for three months using your foreign driving license (they drive on the left-hand of the road) and that you might need a VPN to access some of your favorite websites. Obtaining a visa is the first thing you should, of course.