I can’t wait to get back to Australia to head off on more adventures like these:
But in the meantime, I’ll have to settle for planning the trips I’ll take when I do! Thanks to everyone who joined me for my initial Australian bucket list (if you haven’t read that yet, you can find it here!) but there’s still a whole chunk of the country I didn’t have time to mention. Occupying almost a third of Australia’s land mass, Western Australia is the country’s largest state, which means there’s bound to be a hell of a lot of exciting places to visit there. Read on for my top picks!
as ‘Australia’s hidden gem’, Broome sounds like somewhere quite unlike anywhere
else in the rest of the country. Far away from the hustle and bustle of any
cities – with the nearest cities, Darwin and Perth, both over 2,000km away – I
like the idea that Broome might just be the place to go to get away from it
all, and no better place to do that than at one of Australia’s most beautiful
beaches, Cable Beach. Between sunbathing on its white sandy shores by day, or
riding along it atop a native camel by night, I’m pretty sure I could spend my
whole time in Broome without leaving that one spot, but there’s even more to
see, including red cliffs and dinosaur footprints at Gantheaume Point, the
stunning Horizontal Falls, and plenty of other untouched areas across the
Dampier Peninsula and Kimberley Region. Why can’t I be there already?
Two words: whale sharks. If you read the last entry of my Australian bucket list, you’ll know I have big plans to do Down Under’s best dives, and have already dived the Great Barrier Reef. As such, I will most certainly be making my way to Exmouth. Located along the Ningaloo Reef, Exmouth is home to one of the longest fringing reefs on the planet, and one of the few places that you can get up close and personal with whale sharks. So cool! And when your hands have turned wrinkly from the water, there’s a great opportunity to hop out and explore Cape Range National Park with its gorgeous canyons and habitats for 630 species of plants and wildflowers, along with heaps of wildlife like wallaroos, echidnas, and emus.
This place might just be top of my Aussie bucket list, and for good reason. Quokkas. Rottnest is home to a whole herd of this ridiculously adorable animal, so you’d bet I’ll be making a special trip just to see them. Just look at them! And when I’m not fawning over these little angels, the island gives me the perfect opportunity to test out the cycling skills I’ve gained from a year living in the Netherlands (read about my experiences here) as Rottnest is perhaps Australia’s most bike-friendly location. As such, it’s the perfect place to cruise around for the day, checking out its 60 beaches and bays, snorkelling and swimming in the turquoise sea, and visiting Wadjemup Lighthouse for some spectacular views.
I won’t lie to you – the minute I read that Margaret River has chocolate makers, cheese factors, gourmet food, wineries, and breweries galore, I was sold. Whilst I wouldn’t class it as one of my main personality traits, I do really like good food (probably one of the reasons I fell in love with Melbourne so much) so I honestly would probably go to Margaret River just to do some food tours. But wait, there’s so much more! Margaret River has plenty of natural beauty too, including being world renowned for its caves, full of mirror reflections and stalactites. Apparently you can go caving in them too, although whether I’d be able to squeeze through after the amount of food I’m planning to eat there is another story…
Darwin, check. Cairns, check. Brisbane, check. Sydney, check. Canberra, check. Melbourne, check. Adelaide, (half) check (darn you Covid, for cutting my trip short!) Anyway, my point is, I’ve had the privilege of seeing what I would consider most of Australia’s main cities, bar one – Perth. Well, I say city, but I’ve heard that Perth is actually more like a big country town, which might be good to readjust myself after being away from cities for so long! I’ve read that highlights include Kings Park which, bigger than New York’s Central Park, is home to a huge number of native plants, fungi, and bird species; almost twenty of Australia’s most beautiful beaches; heaps of culture and heritage; stunning sunsets; and a launch pad for places like Fremantle and Rottnest Island. Now just to get back to Australia as soon as I can!
I just know this list will keep growing and growing the more I learn about Australia! What places have or would you like to visit in Australia (or indeed the world!)? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter @CiarasCountry. Stay tuned for plenty more travel content coming soon to this blog... thanks so much for reading!