aus noosa beach
aus great barrier reef dive coral
Aus nullarbor plain outback road trip pl
Aus uluru
States and Territories

Where should you visit in Australia?

With an area of 7.692 square million kilometres, Australia is divided into 8 states and 2 territories. There is an endless array of diverse landscapes, wildlife, climates, towns, and cities to discover. Each place is unique with its own personality and characteristics and is waiting to be explored.

Are you planning to visit Australia?

With so many beautiful places to see, you may wonder where you should visit. To help you get inspired for your dream holiday, here are the highlights and hidden gems of each state and territory.

The States and Territories

With almost 12,000 beaches, Australia is an ideal holiday destination
© Tourism Australia


If you are a beach and nature lover, Queensland is an ideal place to visit in Australia. With an area of 1.853 million square kilometres, 1955 islands, 1711 beaches, and the only place on earth where the reef meets the rainforest, Queensland is a pure paradise.


The capital city, Brisbane is a vibrant and laid-back place to visit. Located in South East Queensland, approximately 1.5 hours north of the New South Wales border. The locals are friendly and are always eager to have a good chat. From South Bank Parklands to North Stradbroke Island, there are so many local attractions to discover in this chilled-out city.

Cool off at Southbank Parklands
© Romain Terpreau
Marvel at the night lights of the Story Bridge

Day trips from Brisbane

Surrounding Brisbane, there are plenty of opportunities for a day trip. Or if you prefer to stay away from the city, there are many charming Aussie towns to experience: The Glass House Mountains, Sunshine Coast, Tamborine Mountain, Noosa, and more.

Hike and discover the trails of The Glass House Mountains
© Waren Brasse
Noosa beach | Australia holiday
Feel the beach vibes in Noosa

Tropical North Queensland and its surroundings

Far North Queensland is a tropical oasis featuring the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. Cairns is an ideal base to explore all of the gems found in this region. Nearby, you can visit The Atherton Tablelands which features plunging waterfalls and a variety of unique Australian wildlife. Or a little further south, discover the natural beauty of Magnetic Island.

Beach Daintree | Australia holiday
Explore an ancient rainforest in Far North Queensland
Uncover the mysteries of The Great Barrier Reef
© Chad Taylor, Unsplash

From the Whitsunday Islands to Outback Queensland

If you travel a little further south, you will find the stunning Whitsunday Islands, Airlie Beach, and more. This region is the perfect place to enjoy activities in the water in a relaxed tropical atmosphere. At Airlie Beach, take a dip in the lagoon, stroll through boutiques and try some local fresh seafood at a bustling seafood cafe. Or, have a picnic at one of the family-friendly beaches and parks.

Set sail off into the Whitsundays, a massive stretch of coral reefs with an abundance of marine life. Visit the famous Whitehaven Beach, known for its white pearly sand and turquoise water. Or take a turn and discover a unique landscape of red earth, grass plains, and lava-formed rock formations in Outback Queensland.

Get a birds eye view of Heart Reef in the Whitsundays
An local Australian guide kissing a kangaroo
Conquer Outback Queensland with a local Aussie guide
© TravelEssence

New South Wales

With an area of 801, 150 square kilometres, world-class wineries, stunning country and seaside towns, 892 sublime beaches, peaking mountain ranges and 102 islands, New South Wales is a playground for holidaymakers.


The grand and famous, Sydney is the biggest city in Australia with plenty of things to see and do. The Sydney Harbour Bridge, Opera House and Bondi Beach are just a few of the attractions found here. Visit a variety of museums and galleries, go neighbourhood hopping or catch some waves at Manly Beach.

Did you know? Sydney is not Australia's capital city
Climb and conquer the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Day trips from Sydney and beyond

Would you like to take a day trip out of Sydney? Discover the fruitful vines of the Hunter Valley or explore the natural beauty of the Blue Mountains. If you would like to travel further, Jervis Bay, Port Stephens, and Lord Howe Island are great places to visit. Further north, Tenterfield is bursting with history, Lamington National Park is filled with natural wonders and Byron Bay is oozing with boho vibes.

Lord Howe Island's blue lagoon is filled with fish, coral and other marine life
© Dylan Shaw / Unsplash
Kangaroos in Blue Mountains | Australia wildlife
Spot kangaroos at The Blue Mountains


A melting pot of culture, world-class surf beaches, exclusive wineries, historical towns, spectacular scenic drives, and national parks, Victoria is a world of wonder. With a size of 227,244 square kilometres, you will find a unique array of fascinating places to discover including the ‘most livable city in the world’.


Melbourne, the capital city of Victoria is bursting with lively restaurants, bars, and cafes. Get lost in the City LaneWays or try some local produce at Queen Victoria Market. Grab an Aussie beer at St Kilda and feel the city beach vibes. Or visit an assortment of museums and galleries.

Street art Melbourne | Australia holiday
Explore the hidden laneways of Melbourne

Day trips from Melbourne

If you would like to take a trip outside of Melbourne, you won’t be disappointed. Phillip Island hosts a spectacle of nature, the famous penguin parade. Or if you are a wine lover, Mornington Peninsula has no less than 200 vineyards and over 50 wineries with cellar doors.

Go on a winery tour in Mornington Peninsula and sample local wine
Penguins group | Australia wildlife
Admire fairy penguins at Phillip Island
© TravelEssence

One of the world’s most famous scenic drives

The Great Ocean Road is a 240-kilometre stretch of road that takes you along the coast of the Indian Ocean, Victoria. Starting from the colourful surf town, Torquay, this road will lead you through ancient forests with the largest collection of eucalyptus trees in all of Australia.

Great Ocean Road | Australia road trip
Take a helicopter ride over the 12 Apostles
© TravelEssence
View Great Ocean Road | Australia road trip
Enjoy the view of endless coastal scenery

Are you a hiker and nature lover?

The Grampians feature world-class hiking trails set in the heart of nature. This pure gem is located 260 kilometres southwest of Melbourne, Victoria. An enticing mix of ancient culture, mountain forests with eucalyptus trees, and more than 200 species of birds. Or visit Wilsons Promontory National Park which is also known for its abundant wildlife.

Have close encounters with koalas


Tasmania is located at the southern tip of Australia, approximately 240 kilometres from the mainland. Well-known for the Tasmanian Devil, it is the 26th largest island in the world with an area covering 68,401 square kilometres. Here, you can discover 19 national parks, historical coastal towns, wineries, 1617 stunning beaches, and an assortment of hiking trails through nature.


The capital of Tasmania is Hobart, a place that is rich in history, heritage, and charm. Marvel at colonial-style architecture in a cosmopolitan setting and pop by the local galleries and cafes. Nearby, there are many small Aussie towns, food and wine trails, and activities to indulge in.

Be sure to visit the world-famous, Museum of Old and New Art
© TravelEssence
The Tasmanian Devil is only found on the island state of Tasmania
© TravelEssence

Launceston is Australia’s third oldest city

Renowned for food and wine, nature, and culture, Launceston is an ideal place to experience genuine Aussie friendliness and charm. Nearby, you will find the Tamar Valley wine trail, which has over 30 vineyards and wineries.

Discover Tasmania's nature

If you prefer nature and hiking, go to Freycinet National Park, Cradle Mountain, Bruny Island, Bay of Fires, or Coles Bay. Or if you are searching for the prettiest place in Tasmania, visit Little Blue Lake - it is postcard picture perfect.

Lake Cradle mountain NP | Australia holiday
There is an abundance of wildlife to be found at Cradle Mountain
© TravelEssence
Beautiful rocks | Australia holiday
Take a wander around the Bay of Fires
Nz kaikoura dolphins family header

Get inspired for your dream holiday to Australia

Join one of our live and informative presentations, hosted by one of our travel specialists. And find out how to travel to Australia in a uniquely local way. There are also plenty of opportunities to ask questions!

Register now

South Australia

With a large list of wonders, South Australia has the perfect mix of nature, the outback, quirky towns, islands, and historical villages. With a size of 983,482 square kilometres, you will find no less than 300 national parks, over 700 wineries, and almost 2000 beaches.


Uncover the capital city of Adelaide, a hip and colourful city oozing with laid-back vibes. The food and wine scene is alive and ready to be devoured. With 20 beaches, this city offers the quintessential Australian lifestyle. Visit the Adelaide Central Market and taste locally grown produce or indulge in some culture and explore the museums.

Experience Adelaide's lively food and wine scene
With 20 beaches, Adelaide is oozing with beach vibes

The best of South Australia

Outside of Adelaide, you will find Kangaroo Island, Flinders Ranges, and Port Lincoln. McLaren Vale and Barossa Valley are perfect for wine lovers and foodies. Or if you would like to get off the beaten track, go to Coorong National Park and try to spot a koala sleeping in the gum trees.

Go on a culinary journey in the Barossa Valley
Kangaroo Barossa Valley | Australia holiday
Roam around the fruitful vineyards and spot Australian wildlife
© TravelEssence

Western Australia

On the western side of Australia, you will find the largest state. With an area of 2.646 million square kilometres, there is an abundance of natural beauty found here. From pink lakes to coral reefs, vibrant and hip towns to rolling wineries, Western Australia has it all.

Perth, the sunniest capital city of Australia

Absorb the casual Aussie vibes while discovering pristine beaches, natural attractions and urban adventures. Perth City has perhaps the mildest climate in all of Australia with long, hot summers and mild, cool winters. Go for a stroll around Kings Park, pop into cosy cafes and restaurants or savour local produce on the Swan Valley Food and Wine Trail.

Nearby, you can find an array of farmland and vineyards to relish. Rottnest Island, just off the coast, is a popular recreational area where you can spot quokkas and marsupials. You will find penguins on nearby Penguin Island. In the colourful city of Fremantle, you will find a prison built in 1850, which is one of the most infamous prisons in the British Empire.

Soak up the tranquility of Rottnest Island
Meet the quokka!

Get off the grid in Western Australia

In the north, you will find natural treasures such as The Kimberley, Broome, and Gibb River Road. Here, you can get off the beaten path in a 4WD and discover the real Australia. Or explore the colours and beauty of Ningaloo Reef and if you dare, swim alongside whale sharks!

Where the red dirt meets the ocean
Fish in water | Australia wildlife
Swim with the biggest fish in the world
© TravelEssence

Observe one of Australia’s biggest waves, which is not found in the ocean!

Wave Rock is a well-known natural phenomenon. Located near the Wheatbelt town of Hyden, a charming 340-kilometre drive from Perth. This multicoloured granite rock was formed over 2,700 million years ago. The cliff is characterised by its shape, which remarkably resembles a massive wave about to crash into the bush.

An impressive 15 metres high and 110 metres wide, a spectacle of nature! Admire the wave from various vantage points, including from the top, where you will be rewarded with a fantastic view over the outback. Nearby, you can also visit a collection of ancient rock paintings. This artwork covers the walls of Mulka's Cave and tells the story of a local Aboriginal legend.

Wave Rock is a popular tourist destination

The gems of southern Western Australia

Further south, you will find the fruitful vines of Margaret River. Here, you can go on a culinary journey and savour local produce prepared by some of Australia’s leading chefs. Other attractions include the pink Lake Hillier, the port town of Albany, and Western Australia’s spectacular collection of wildflowers.

Marvel at the contrast of colours
Between July and October, the wildflowers of Western Australia are one of the most spectacular flower displays in the world

Australian Capital Territory

Welcome to Australia’s capital city in the Australian Capital Territory. Canberra, which means meeting place in the language of the Ngabri Aboriginal people of Australia, has no ordinary history. When the Australian states were merged in 1901, of course, a capital city had to be chosen.

To end the battle between Sydney and Melbourne, Canberra was declared the new capital. There was even an international design competition in 1911, won by the American architect Walter Burley Griffin. Thanks in part to his design, Canberra has become a green city with many parks, broad streets, and the man-made Lake Burley Griffin, the centre of the CBD.

The lake is the perfect setting for walking, cycling, and swimming. Canberra is home to many national monuments and institutions such as the Parliament Building, the Australian War Memorial, and the National Library - that are worth a visit.

National museum of Australia Canberra | Australia holiday
Visit the National Museum of Australia in Canberra

An adventure playground for sporting enthusiasts

The Snowy Mountains, known as ‘The Snowies’ by the locals, is a unique alpine wonderland. A place filled with dramatic summits, rivers, glacial lakes, caves, ski fields, and mountains. Would you like to experience one of Australia’s largest peaks? Australia’s highest mainland mountain, Mount Kosciuszko can be found at Kosciuszko National Park, which reaches an astonishing height of 2,228 metres, above sea level.

Spend your day's bushwalking and hiking and skiing or snowboarding. Stop into the charming small ski towns of Thredbo, Perisher, Charlotte Pass, and Mount Selwyn. And be sure to visit the local museums and galleries. Australia's high country is waiting to be explored.

Be enchanted by a fresh blanket of snow in The Snowy Mountains
© Destination NSW copyright
Watch in awe as the kids discover the snow
© Maxwell Ingham

Northern Territory

Be enchanted by one of mother earth’s greatest creations, The Northern Territory. Featuring the sacred Australian rock formation, Australia’s largest national park, natural pools, Indigneous culture, plunging waterfalls, friendly country towns and more.

Darwin and surroundings

Discover Darwin, the capital of the Northern Territory and the gateway to exploring the Top End of Australia. This friendly small town is the perfect base to discover Litchfield and Kakadu National Park. Visit the nearby Corroboree Billabong and marvel at the large assortment of native birds and crocodiles.

Take a cruise down Corroboree Billabong

Uncover the secrets of Katherine, where the outback meets the tropics!

Located 320 kilometres southeast of Darwin, on the banks of the Katherine River, this spectacular place is bursting with gorges, misty waterfalls, warm thermal springs, and ancient culture. Katherine Gorge can be found in the Nitmiluk National Park, a system of canyons that have been carved by the Katherine River over hundreds of years.

Kajak on river Katherine | Australia holiday
Kayak and spend the night sleeping in a traditional Australian swag on the banks of the river
© TravelEssence
Admire ancient rock art in Katherine

The Red Centre

Welcome to Alice Springs, the beating heart of the Red Centre! Located halfway between Darwin and Adelaide. This charming and remote town is the perfect launching pad to discover all the highlights of the Australian Outback.

Be captivated by Uluru (Ayers Rock)- a spiritual place rich with culture and history. Kata Tjuta (The Olga's) and Kings Canyon are nearby too. This desert region features red sand deserts, tropical rainforests, impressive rock formations, deep ravines, and waterfalls. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park is a must-visit!

Walk around the base of Uluru with an Indigenous guide and listen to ancient stories
© TravelEssence
Stunning Red Center | Australia nature holiday
Wander around Kata Tjuta and connect with the heart of Australia
© TravelEssence

Arnhem Land

In the northernmost part of the Northern Territory lies the Arnhem Land area. Nowhere else is the culture of the Indigenous people of Australia more alive and traces of the past more visible than here. This reserve is closed off from the outside world and you need entrance tickets to get there. Are you a bird watcher? More than 200 different species of birds live in Arnhem Land.

Incredible Arnhemland | Australia nature
Together with a local guide, discover the oldest living culture on the planet
© Bawaka Shaana
Arnhemland | Australia holiday
Marvel at ancient rock paintings in Arnhemland
© TravelEssence

Discover more

With an area of almost 7,700,000 square kilometres, it is no wonder that Australia’s climate is as diverse as the… read more

With over 500 national parks to explore, covering millions of hectares, Australia is truly a natural wonderland.… read more

Australia's border is open to international travel. Australia's border is now open to all international… read more

Aus blog - Things to do in Australia. 7 of the best activities

Things to do in Australia. 7 of the best activities

Australia is a country of contrasts, a place where you can do all kinds of things. With TravelEssence, you’ll get… read more

Why book with us?

  • A well-designed holiday, just for you
  • Small-scale accommodations run by friendly local hosts
  • Carefully recommended activities based on your interests
  • A travel tempo and driving distances that match your needs
  • Ingrained sustainability in all facets of your holiday
  • 30 years of experience in travel to Australia

Let's design your holiday together

We'll take the time to get to know you to match your fully bespoke holiday with your pace, your interests, and anything you desire. Combined with first-hand, local knowledge, you'll receive a mapped out itinerary from us - but the process isn't done until you are 100% satisfied. We take care of every detail, so you can focus on relaxing, rejuvenating and reconnecting with yourself and the world around you. Get in touch to get started now.

All the things you love

and none of the things you don't

Our local knowledge makes the difference for your bespoke holiday through New Zealand or Australia. Your journey Down Under starts here.