Australia, also known by a variety of amusing sobriquets such as Down Under, is an extremely popular destination for tourists. This is somewhat ironic as the country is also one of the most remote in the world.
In many other ways, Australia is a land of contrasts. The continent holds both vast areas of natural beauty and large modern cities such as Sydney. Aboriginal tribes, such as the Maori, live side-by-side with the descendants of the British that colonized the island.
The Great Barrier Reef is one of the most famous barrier reefs in the world. This reef is known for its beautiful sea life and vibrant coral. The Great Barrier Reef is large enough to spend several days exploring. Most divers leave from Cairns, but if you leave from the lesser-known Port Douglas, you can find dive spots that are less crowded.
Also known as Ayer's Rock, Uluru is one of the oldest rocks in the world, and it is also one of Australia's most iconic attractions. The best time to view Uluru is during sunrise or sunset as the sky looks as though the sun exploded into a burst of breathtaking shades of red and orange. The aborigines of this area consider the rock to be sacred, but they do allow visitors to scale the rock.
Australia has over 50,000 kilometers of coastline. The east coast tends to be busier than the western coast, but both coasts are gorgeous. And with so much coastline, it's easy to find a spot to relax by yourself.
While Australia didn't invent surfing, the sport is deeply ingrained in Australian culture. The east coast is considered by many to be one of the best surf experiences in the country. Beginners and professional surfers alike may find that Noosa beach is a great place to surf together.
Although France may be more well known for its wine, Australia has its own wine regions, and it produces fine wines. One such region is Margaret River near Perth. A trip to the vineyards is usually a simple day trip from nearby major cities.
Another iconic site in Australia is the Sydney Opera House in Sydney Harbor. This large city is filled with great sites such as the Chinese Garden. There are also some excellent parks and surf spots in Sydney as well.