Are these Australia’s best holiday destinations?
Australia is home to such a diverse array of urban and rural tourism hotspots for every type of traveller. Why not give your passport a break and try to explore the stunning nooks and crannies of your homeland before your next overseas trip?
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Australia’s favourite places to holiday
Interesting domestic travel trends were uncovered by the National Visitor Survey by Tourism Research Australia. Spending and numbers of visitors increased in all Australian states, but Tasmania and Western Australia had the biggest increases.
Did you know? Aussies spent a whopping $55.7 billion on domestic travel in the past year. That’s a six per cent increase on the previous year.
While NSW remained the top destination state, Tasmania has an increase of 22% for overnight visitors, and expenditure grew by a whopping 34%. In the Northern Territory, there were 14% more overnight visitors and they spent a lot more money!
Little Mertens Falls in the north Kimberly region of Western Australia
On a city-by-city basis, Sydney lost visitors to Melbourne, while Gold Coast travellers redirected their wallets to the Sunshine Coast. The Gold Coast dropped from the fifth most popular region down to the seventh, overtaken by Perth and New South Wales’ South Coast. New South Wales’ North Coast retained its coveted place in fourth position.
Despite so many rare and unique locations, Australian travellers often overlook exploring the incredible sites and undertaking the exciting and varied activities within our own backyard. It seems that regional tourism, particularly in New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia is also on the rise, as more of us are exploring the heart of Australian culture.
Did you know? Australian travellers spent an amazing 312 million nights away from home over the past year! Nearly two thirds of all overnight expenditure in Australia was generated by domestic visitors.
Want some quick ideas about amazing places to visit (or revisit) next? Here is a list of some of Australia’s fastest growing tourist destinations among domestic travellers and great ideas about how to spend your holiday time there. The best news? You can put together a holiday fast and be enjoying an amazing holiday destination this time next month, without breaking the bank!
North Coast, New South Wales
The NSW North Coast has always been a treasure trove of outdoor activities and authentic ‘hippie culture’. Byron Bay and the stunning surrounding areas of Kingscliff and Bangalow have long been revered for their touristic value among locals. But it has only been in more recent decades that the sun, surf, markets, laneways and cute beachside coffee shops been discovered by the rest of us. It is still a wonderful area to get some much needed R&R in a beautiful location. Want to spot a humpback whale in the wild? Byron Bay is also a fantastic spot to go whale watching between June and November.
Wave after wave - Byron Bay looking enticing on a sunny day
Perth, Western Australia
Western Australia is often overshadowed by a national focus on the East Coast, yet it has begun to emerge from the shadows and prove its appeal to national and international visitors alike. Perth has the illustrious Art Gallery of Western Australian which was founded in 1895 and the WA Museum (for those who are more culturally aware), a phenomenal aquarium and Adventure World for the kids, as well as a whole suite of nearby locations including John Forrest National Park, Heirisson Island and of course the brewery capital of Australia, Fremantle (or Freo as it is known by the locals) is a quick 30 minute drive from the city.
The view from Kings Park in Perth
Australia’s North West, Western Australia
If you’re heading to the West Coast, then why not combine a trip to Perth with a voyage to the increasingly popular North West? As far as rural and outdoor Australia goes, this area has it all - lush rainforests, stunning coastlines, true blue outback areas, phenomenal landmarks, natural formations, historic settlements and idyllic country towns. What’s not to love? Download a North West Outback Drive Trail here.
Enjoy the scenery while riding on a camel in Broome
Melbourne has an eclectic mix of interesting venues, exciting events and myriad of cultural offerings. A trip to Melbourne is not complete without a visit to the beachside suburb of St Kilda and the picturesque landscapes Wilsons Promontory, a shop and a stroll through the city’s bustling Chapel street precinct, a coffee in the hipster suburb of Fitzroy, an enlightening visit to the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art or an AFL game at the buzzing Melbourne Cricket Ground. Did you know the MCG is the oldest sporting club in Australia and you can do a fantastic behind the scenes tour? Find out more here.
The Melbourne CBD reflecting city lights on the Yarra River
Sunshine Coast, Queensland
The Sunshine Coast has a natural allure with a smorgasbord of charming coastal towns. The best way to experience the Sunshine Coast is to rent a holiday home and act like a local by visiting the huge offering of hidden beach locations and quaint local cafes and restaurants. The Sunshine Coast is ideal for family holidays, groups of friends looking for a fun and simple getaway, or as a romantic couple’s escape. A diverse array of water sports, natural attractions and adventure activities also make it the perfect location for adrenaline and nature-junkies. Once you discover your favourite spot on ‘the coast’ you’ll go back again and again.
The stunning sunrise at Point Cartwright, Sunshine Coast, Queensland
Deciding which part of Tassie to visit is like choosing a favourite child! Do yourself a favour and give yourself plenty of time to explore all of the Southern Isle’s beautiful spots.
Hobart is, of course, a must-visit area, offering the renowned Salamanca Markets, Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), brewery tours and the scenic Mt Wellington. Outside of the capital, be sure to explore Freycinet Peninsula, Cradle Mountain, Bruny Island, Port Arthur and the Franklin River. Plus, if your itinerary allows for it, visit the towns of Strahan and Launceston.
Hikers on Overland Trail in Tasmania
Have you visited any of these stunning locations? Are they on your bucket list? Share your experiences below…