Places to See on the East Coast of Australia
Australia is an amazingly beautiful country that everyone should have the privilege of visiting. I recently visited the East Coast of Australia and here are the places I find to be the most interesting. All of the photos are my own. I am 20 years old and from America, so my experiences and opinions may be different than other travelers. (Learn about the differences between America and Australia here).
One of the most popular cities to visit in Australia is Sydney. From personal experience, I would best describe Sydney as New York City meets China Town. The heart of Sydney is busy and exciting, filled with buses and subways. The buildings are tall and beautiful. Many of their restaurants are asian-inspired, too.
Sydney, of course, is also home to the iconic Sydney Opera House. This monument is really worth seeing up close and personal. Downtown Sydney is also known to have a firework show every Saturday.
Sydney is filled with many international travelers and to get the full Australian culture immersion, I would recommend traveling a little more North as well.
There is a stunning contrast between Sydney and Katoomba. Katoomba is much more outdoorsy and nature-oriented than Sydney. It isn't quite the "Australian Outback", but it's definitely worth checking out. It is highly recommended you take a hike while here. The flora and fauna will really shock you, as it may be entirely different than what you are used to (It was to me!).
Bryon Bay has that very California/hippy feel to it. Surf shops like Billibong and Quiksilver line the streets. Many people are seen longboarding or skateboarding around town if they are taking a break from surfing. If you were ever planning to learn how to surf, this would be the place to do it. Many shops offer lessons.
There are also many great places here to hit up if you are looking for an exciting night life. Bars and clubs are plentiful and very accommodating with travel to and from them.
Fraser Island is the worlds largest all-sand island. You have to take a ferry to get there and once you're there, only FWD trucks can be used. Driving around there is quite an adventure, as some of the roads are quite twisty and bumpy. You also have the option of driving right on the beach. Just make you realize when the tide starts coming in!
There is only one hotel on the whole island and a slew of other little camps for tour groups. The tour guides will take you on hikes and teach you about the history of the island. The hikes will really whip you into shape since sand is harder to walk in. There are also many large sand dunes to climb.
Fraser Island also has a large Dingo population. Some can be dangerous, most are not. For people who are not used to seeing Dingoes, you might find them very fascinating.
The final, and possibly most recommended place, you should visit is Whitsunday Islands. The scenery is something straight out of a movie. Actually, it might be better. The sand is pure white and the water is bright blue. There are many speed boat and ocean rafting groups that provide tours around the island and the guides are usually pretty good at spotting whales in the distance. The picture below should be convincing enough to visit this beautiful place.