Virginia, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Australia, New Zealand, Auckland, Taupo, Queenstown, Koala, Kangaroo, Crocodile, Parrot, Waterfalls, rainforest, reef, ocean, Great Barrier Reef, Daniel Boone, Great Falls National Park, Natural Land Bridge, parasailing, jet boating, aussie, Multnomah, Wahkeenah, Frankfort, tomanawas, overlook, dragon’s tooth, Huka Falls, geothermal, Milford Sound, Bay of Islands, dolphins, fur seals, rafting, skytower, jefferson, Floral, clock, forest, national park, falls, cascade, longwood gardens, garden, rickett’s glen, state park, Western Australia, Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Z-Bend Gorge, Wave Rock, Perth’s Oldest Building, Western Australia’s oldest grapevine, Nature’s Window, King’s Park, Pinnacles Desert, Hutt River Province, Eagle’s Bluff, Castle Cove, Natural Bridge, Hawk’s Head, Serpentine Falls, Shell Beach, Sixty Foot Falls, Bells Rapids, Bicentennial Tree Lookout, Diamond Tree Lookout, Super Pit, Colonel William Light, Beauchamp Falls, Hopetoun Falls, Karijini National Park, Mt Barney National Park, Mt Maroon, Mt May, Mt Lindesay, Mt Ernest, Mt Ballow, Mt Clunie, Brisbane Botanical Gardens, Brisbane Parklands, Mt Coot-tha,Mt Gravatt, Whitsunday Islands, Roma Street Parkland, Bundaberg Rum, Currumbin Sanctuary, Captain Cook Memorial, University of Queensland, Australia Zoo, Crocodile Hunter, Rialto Towers, Byron Bay, Hangliding, Jet Boating, Parasailing, Auckland, Queenstown, Wellington, Bowen Falls, Lake Ohau Falls, Thundercreek Falls, Whangarei Falls, South Australia, Riesling Trail, Clare Valley, Flinders Ranges, Wilpena Pound, Port Germein, Arkaroola, 4WD, Siller’s Lookout, Wallaby, Yellow Tailed, Tasmania, Tessellated Pavement, Tasman Arch, Devil’s Kitchen, Blowhole, Tall Trees Walk, Tahune Airwalk, St Columba Falls, Halls Falls, Russell Falls, Horseshoe Falls, Lady Baron Falls, Port Arthur, Mt. Amos, Wineglass Bay, Cradle Mountain, Dove Lake, Marion’s Lookout, Carnarvon Gorge, Whitsunday Island, Lamington National Park, Wild Horse Mountain Lookout, Border Ranges National Park, Mount Warning, Tweed Valley Lookout, The Pinnacle Lookout, Blackbutt Lookout, Bar Mountain Lookout, Palm Forest Walk, Brushbox Falls, Red Cedar Loop, Sheepstation Creek campsite, Mount Warning, Outback Dunnies, Otway Fly Treetop Walk, Remarkable Rocks, Kangaroo Island, Great Australian Bight, Nullarbor Plain, Great Ocean Road, Memorial Arch, London Bridge, The Arch, Lock and Ard, The Razorback, 12 Apostles, Twelve Apostles, Northern Territory, Ayers Rock, Uluru, Palm Valley, Red Cabbage Palms, Finke River, Finke Gorge National Park, Gloucester Tree, Pemberton, King’s Canyon, Garden of Eden, King’s Creek, Watarrka National Park, Springbrook National Park, Springbrook Mountain, Purlingbrook Falls, Litchfield National Park, Buley Rockhole, Florence Falls, Gunlom Falls, Alligator River, Kakadu National Park, Motorcar, motor, car, moline, rockhole, Edith Falls, Leliyn, Bemang, Nitmiluk National Park, Jawoyn, Katherine Gorge, Pat’s Lookout, Butterfly Gorge, butterfly, gorge, lookout, Windolf Walk, Southern Rockhole, Eagles View, Hovea Falls, National Park Falls, John Forrest National Park, Sydney Tower and many more!
!– New South Wales —
Byron Bay, about 4 hours south of Brisbane, is Australia’s most easterly point.
A lighthouse guards the entrance to the bay.
The actual most eastern point is the tiny strip of land which darts out from the bay
(photo – bottom left) and marked at the end of the path (photo – bottom right).
During the month of October people from all over gather to watch whales. Dolphins can be seen swimming among the waves just about all year long.
Border Ranges National Park forms part of the caldera of the Mount Warning shield volcano – the largest caldera in the southern hemisphere.
Recommended stops are the Tweed Valley, The Pinnacle, Blackbutt, and Bar Mountain Lookouts; Palm Forest Walk, Brushbox Falls, and Red Cedar Loop located in the Sheepstation Creek campsite area.
Mount Warning is the central core of the Southern Hemisphere’s largest extinct shield volcano.
The towering, cone-shaped peak of Mount Warning and its two “shoulders” have become the trademark of the
Tweed Valley as the mountain dominates the landscape. It is the first place on Australia’s mainland to be touched by the morning sun during the winter months.
The reward for climbing to the summit (1157m) is a 360° panorama of the enormous eroded bowl of the caldera landform and rim.
Sydney’s Tower is the tallest building in Sydney, the second tallest in Australia, and the second tallest in the southern hemisphere.
The elevators will take you to the top in 40 seconds for a 360-degree view of the city and up to 55km’s in any direction.
The tower is stabilized by 56 cables weighing 7 tons each. If laid end to end they would reach from Sydney to New Zealand.
A 162,000 liter water tank at the top of the turret acts as an enormous stabilizer.
Enjoy the views!
!– Northern Territory —
One of the oldest rocks in the world and also one of Australia’s most recognizeable icons, Ayers Rock (Uluru)
is located on a major planetary grid point much like the Great Pyramid in Egypt. It is the second-largest monolith in the
world after Mount Augustus in Western Australia. The drive to the rock is a looooong one. I strongly recommend going with a tour group. If not, unless you plan
to live off of Witchetty Grubs pack plenty of water and some food as the closest McDonald’s is 465 km (290 miles) away!
The Buley Rockhole in Litchfield National Park is comprised of several small cascades and rock pools that offer a fantastic, refreshing swim. The water originates from freshwater springs and is good enough for drinking. It’s open all year round, 2WD accessible, and never has any crocodiles to worry about.
Leliyn is the Jawoyn name for Edith Falls in Nitmiluk National Park. Leliyn Walk is made up of a series of pools and waterfalls, some of which are perfect for swimming! Several lookouts along the walk provide excellent views.
From the map in the second photo, photo #1) map of the area; #2) start of Leliyn Track; #3) from Leliyn Lookout; #4) in the Upper Pool; #5) crossing between upper and middle pools; #6) from Bemang Lookout; #7) crossing the creek; #8) in the lower pool.
Florence Falls in Litchfield National Park is a double waterfall set amid the monsoon forest cascades into a swimming hole.
Guests can swim all year free from worrying about crocodiles as there’s none here.
However, people need to be careful during the wet season with strong undertoes and water currents.
There is a lookout which provides a panoramic view from up above of the surrounding valley and pool below.
The easy climb down the stairs takes you straight to the crystal clear pool where you can go swimming.
Gunlom Falls in Kakadu National Park is part of Waterfall Creek — a major tributary of the
South Alligator River which is the only large tropical river system to be entirely protected by a national park.
The bottom pool, with a white sandy beach, surrounded by high cliffs and palms, topped off by the 150 meter cascading waterfall was made famous by the movie Crocodile Dundee.
Katherine Gorge in Nitmulik National Park is actually 13 separate gorges carved out by the Katherine River as it passes through the Arnhem Land Plateau. This land is owned by the Jawoyn people.
There are over 100km of walking trails throughout the park which offer a haven for nature lovers, with its rugged landscapes, fantastic views, dramatic waterfalls and lush gorges providing an abundance of flora and fauna.
Pat’s Lookout is at the end of the Windolf Walk, providing views of the lower gorge. There’s a seasonal waterfall in the Southern Rockhole which offers a refreshing relief from the heat!
Butterfly Gorge is a shaded gorge with butterflies and rainforest leading into Katherine Gorge. Both Pat’s Lookout and Butterfly Gorge are easy walks requiring no more than half a day.
One can spend a full day hiking in and around King’s Canyon. During wetter months King’s Creek flows through the canyon. A lookout 2/3 the way into the canyon is a great spot to have lunch.
The rigorous rim walk will provide views from magnificent lookouts and pass by the Garden of Eden.
Along the rim there is no shady shelter nor a fence to keep you from falling!
Moline Rockhole is one of the nice little secrets in Kakadu National Park. A beautiful place that has no sign to keep visitor numbers low. Watch your head during the walk to the rockhole because there are several large spiders who have constructed large webs just asbove head-height along the trail!
Motorcar Falls along the Yurmikmik walk in Kakadu National Park is a 25 meter waterfall which drops into an amazing rock pool which is ideal for swimming!
The marked walk to Motorcar Falls is one of the most popular wet season destinations in Kakadu. It follows an historic vehicle track where, in 1946, the first motorcar entered the region. An impassable creek marked the end of the journey. Ever since, that creek has been called Motorcar.
The Olgas consists of 36 rounded domes or heads, separated by narrow valleys. The tallest is Mt Olga.
They are located a short distance from Ayers Rock (Uluru), and approximately 4.5 hours if driving from Alice Springs.
Kata Tjuta means “many heads”. It is sacred to Anangu Men with the Traditional Law still learnt and passed on today.
Under Kata Tjuta Law, detailed knowledge of the area is restricted to certain people only. It is forbidden to pass this information on to the wrong people.
Approximately 2 hours west of Alice Springs, Palm Valley is located in Finke Gorge National Park. The valley is actually a gorge with high red cliffs, astonishing rock formations, waterholes, and easy walks with some great views.
The 10,000 year old oasis is home to lots of rare flora from a period in history when Australia enjoyed a much wetter climate.
Fun facts regarding Finke Gorge National Park & Palm Valley:it is the only place in the world Red Cabbage Palms grow;the Finke River is supposedly the oldest river in the world;
!– Queensland —
The best way to explore Queensland is to take a road trip. From the Gold Coast in southern Queensland, through Brisbane, past the Sunshine Coast, up through the Capricorn Coast, piercing Rockhampton and out to Great Keppel Island, there are hundreds of places to visit; thousands of activities to try. The photos below are just a few highlights.
Brisbane is Australia’s third largest city and the Capital of Queensland. Situated on the Brisbane River, Brisbane is named after Sir Thomas Brisbane, the 1823 Governor of New South Wales. The streets follow a grid and are named after British Royalty: queens and princesses run north-south, kings and princes run east-west.
Brisbane is an awesome city. City Hall with its Italian
Renaissance clock tower is located across from the Queen Street shopping district;
Brisbane Parklands is a great place to relax;
the University of Queensland finds its campus along the Brisbane River;
the city’s botanical gardens is nestled within the U-shaped loop of the Brisbane River; during the month of October, Jacorandas are in full bloom.
Lamington National Park contains densely forested valleys and ranges rising over 1100m on the crest of the McPherson Range.
It is 20,200 hectares of varying forest types, from temperate Antarctic Beech forest high on
the border ranges to sub-tropical rainforests to the northern escarpment’s dry eucalypt forest.
Python Rock Lookout, Box Forest Circuit, Bunyip Falls, Nunguru Falls, Wajinya Falls, Caboolya Falls,
Darragumai Falls, Boxlog Falls, Elbana Falls, Toolona Creek Circuit, Triple Falls,
Burraboomba Falls, Buungwing Falls, Gwongurai Falls, Konumboola Falls, Chalahn Falls,
Yilghan Falls, Toolona Falls, Eerigingboola Falls, Kadjagong Falls, Wingboola Falls,
Emerald Falls, Poojabinya Falls, Wanungara Lookout
The Tree Top Walk consists of 9 suspension bridges up to 15 meters (approximately 48 feet) above ground. This walk is fully accessible to everyone, including those who are handicapped.
Because of weight restrictions, only two people are allowed on each suspension bridge at one time. Not for the feint hearted! These bridges squeak, shake, and move with the wind!
Along the walk, a bird’s eye view is obtained from a deck 30 meters (approximately 95 feet) above ground in a fig tree over the walkway. The best time to climb this deck is early morning or late day to capture absolutely gorgeous sunrises and sunsets!
Multiple wildlife photos Dave has taken while travelling around Queensland. More photos of marine wildlife from the Great Barrier Reef can be found with Dave’s SCUBA photos.
The oldest surviving building in Queensland, the Windmill was constructed in 1828 to grind maize
into meal for convicts. It didn’t work well for various reasons, so the jailers replaced wind power with convict power by attaching a giant treadmill to the grinders.
In 1861 it was converted to a signal station, also being used as a look-out for bush-fires.
In its third role, it served as a clock in which a cannon would fire at 1pm every day.
Carnarvon Gorge National Park is a lush oasis hidden amongst rugged ranges.
Carved by the flowing waters of Carnarvon Creek, the sandstone gorge meanders through the park. Explore creeks, mossy gorges and cool rainforests on 21 kilometres of walking track.
Mt Coot-tha supports 1,500 hectares of open eucalypt forest, offering sweeping view of the city, Moreton Bay, and the southern and western ranges. Explore the open forests via the walking tracks. In many places the only sounds are running water, birds chirping, and wind in the trees.
Mt Gravatt, named after Lt. George Gravatt, is part of the Toohey Forest and Brisbane’s eastern skyline.
The mountain offers views of the Moreton Moreton Bay Islands, the D’Anguilar Range, and even the Glasshouse Mountains on clear days.
Bordered by the Great Barrier Reef and the Coral Sea, the Whitsundays lie midway along the Queensland coast. The region spans from the beaches of Bowen in the north to the golf greens of Laguna Whitsundays in the south.
The 74 Islands, of which only 8 are inhabited, form the largest offshore island chain along Australia’s coastline.
Whether you choose to bush walk, scuba dive, or sail, there are a myriad of ways to experience the Whitsundays.
Island and coastal accommodation options range from camp sites in National Parks to luxury resorts.
The peaks in Mt Barney National Park reach 1359 meters, the 2nd highest in Queensland. They are: Mount Barney, Maroon, May, Lindesay, Ernest, Ballow, and Clunie. They are NOT easy climbs and require good fitness.
The park is the result of several national parks being amalgamated in 1980.
The park covers 17,659ha of some of Queensland’s most rugged terrain. It is also one of the largest areas of undisturbed vegetation remaining in southeast Queensland. There are many rare and significantly endangered plant & animal species, especially on the higher peaks.
Wild Horse Mountain Lookout is named for the brumbies that once roamed the area. It stands 123 meters above sea level and is in Beerburrum State Forest, east of the Bruce Highway. Turn off at the Mobil Service Station and drive along Johnston Road to the lookout.
Wild Horse Mountain offers a steep, paved track to the lookout from the carpark. Enjoy 360-degree views of Pumicestone Passage, coastal plains, the Glass House Mountains, and forestry plantations from the sheltered fire tower platform.
The lookout is provided by Telstra and the Department of Primary Industries (Forestry).
It serves as a mobile telephone transmitting station, a working fire tower, and excellent public viewing platform.
The Roma Street Parkland is the world’s largest sub tropical garden found in a city center.
Spread over 16 hectares the parkland is a collection of themed and interlinked gardens with plenty of recreational areas.
There are plenty of maps to help you navigate the web of pathways and boardwalks traversing the parkland’s cascading waterways, rocky outcrops, subtropical forests, unique artworks and spectacular vistas.
The magnificent Purlingbrook Falls located in Springbrook National Park. The falls plunge more than 100 metres and are the highest in Queensland.
The lookouts are an easy 10 minute hike from the family picnic area and are literally right at the cliffs’ edge.
One trek will find you walking across the very top of the falls! If you continue around the circuit, it will bring you to the pool at the base of the falls.
!– South Australia —
The Riesling Trail is a 27km pathway ideal for cyclists. It’s built on the old railway line between Clare and Auburn, and provides a link between the many villages of Clare Valley. It operates in both directions with gentle gradients. The best part? Several wineries located in the Clare Valley are accessible directly from the trail. It’s perfect for wine tasting as you don’t have to worry about having a designated driver — only being able to keep your balance on the bike after a few drinks.
The jewel of the Flinders Ranges, it’s a huge “crater rim” rising out of the plains; a vast natural amphitheatre, ringed with sheer cliffs and jagged rocks that change color according to the light.
Wilpena Pound consists of a resort and caravan/camping park. The resort is partly powered by the largest solar-powered system in the Southern Hemisphere.
The visitor center has information on all the nearby walks, including this one up to the top of the pound.
Spectacular views reward those willing to embark on them.
Port Germein is home to Australia’s longest wooden jetty. The jetty was used for the loading of grain onto sailing ships from all over the world. Bagged wheat came from the local area, the eastern side of the Southern Flinders Ranges via Port Germein Gorge, and from the West Coast in smaller boats.
Also along the jetty be sure to take note of the lighthouse and the clockface tide guage, which was originally near the entrance to the Port Pirie shipping channel.
Arkaroola is set in an incredible landscape of ranges locaed with precious minerals and waterholes nestled inside tall gorges. As remote as it is, Arkaroola protects endangered species such as the yellow-tailed rock wallaby. It’s signature attraction is a 4WD tour along an insanely steep track atop the Flinders Ranges culminating at Siller’s Lookout.
Colonel William Light was the first Surveyor General of Adelaide. He fixed the site and laid out the city of Adelaide in 1836, before there were any people. Being a great forward thinker, he laid out Adelaide such that:
the center is exactly 1 square mile;
the streets were wide enough so carriages could make a U-turn;
learning from the London Fire, the blocks were separate far enough so that if one portion of the city caught fire, it wouldn’t be able to spread;
there were to be no dark places (sunlight everywhere) to prevent slums from forming.
The Australian Outback is a harsh, unforgiving environment. Boiling hot days, chilly nights, and dry, dry conditions. It’s hard to survive out here.
Yet some Australians, have come up with creative ways to attract adventure seekers, tourists, and the just plain curious year after year.
With settlements few and far between and little vegetation for privacy, it’s easy to see why such dunnies are favored by visitors to the desert.
So next time you’re traveling through the Australian Outback and see a toilet stop, pull over.
Who knows what you might find? Either way, you’ll appreciate it.
Who would have thought Mother Nature to be an abstract artist? The Remarkable Rocks on Kangaroo Island’s southwest coast proves she is. These granite beauties, located on top of a granite dome, not only offer great views of the ocean, but are plenty of fun to climb on! They are one of Kangaroo Island’s best known icons, and a must see for visitors!
The best time to visit is early morning or late evening with the sunrise/sunset to bring out the rock’s awesome red tint. As a bonus, there’s a seal colony not a ten minute drive around the corner!
The Great Australian Bight, formed millions of years ago when Australia separated from Antarctica, is said to be the longest line of seacliffs in the world.
The Bight runs for more than 1,000 kilometers along the southern coast of Australia.
You stand at the top of cliff faces that descend 55 meters straight into the ocean making you truly feel like you’re literally at the end of the world! There are awesome views from the Bunda Cliffs, where the Nullarbor reaches the ocean.
It is of oceanographic importance because its waters are transitional between warm and cold – linking the Indian and Pacific oceans. It has the longest ice-free east-west extent of coastline in the Southern Hemisphere and it is adjacent to the only circumpolar ocean.
The Southern Right Whale (among other species) visits the south coast of Australia each year. The Head of the Bight is an important nursery area for these endangered giant mammals.
!– Tasmania —
Located on the Tasman Peninsula, the key attractions to Tasman National Park are the Blowhole, Devil’s Kitchen, and Tasman Arch, which occur in rocks that are about 250 million years old.
There are numerous walks going from Eaglehawk Neck to Fortescue Bay. Eaglehawk Neck is surrounded by magnificent formations, but the Tessellated Pavement is quite unique.
Tessellated Pavement are rocks that appear to have been neatly tiled, but the effect is entirely natural, caused by Earth movements.
It would be awesome to see how these formed using a time-lapsed camera!
Located near the town of New Norfolk in Mt. Field National Park is the Tall Trees Walk. In this area are the world’s tallest eucalypt forests. The main feature is the world’s tallest hardwood trees which are also the world’s tallest flowering plant: the magnificent swamp gum, which can grow to heights of 92 metres.
The Tall Trees Walk is an easy, 30 minute return walk. Interactive signs along the track tell part of the tall trees’ amazing stories.
The Tahune Airwalk is a walk in the treetops, approximately 37 meters high. The highlight of the walk is walking out onto the cantilever for a bird’s eye view of the Picton and Huon rivers. While on the walk, look out for the world’s tallest flowering plant — the swamp gum, which can live for 400 years and grow to 85 meters tall.
St. Columba Falls is one of the highest in Tasmania, and easiest to walk to — through a temperate Fern forest which feels like a Jurassic Park. The average volume of water flowing over is 42,000 litres/minute, exceeding 200,000 litres/minute during winter months. The falls have never been known to run dry.
Halls Falls and St Columba Falls are located near Pyengana, in northeast Tasmania. Both walks can easily be done in a day. Spend at least 30 minutes at the falls’ edges, listening to the sounds of gushing water, and becoming one with nature. On a hot day bring your bathers because the crystal clear water will be absolutely refreshing!
Located in Mount Field National Park, Russell Falls is one of the most popular falls in Tasmania.
The track to Russell Falls is level and mostly sealed. Ferns line the track edges while giant Eucalypts and Myrtles tower overhead.
Horseshoe Falls is part of the Russell/Horseshoe/Lady Baron Falls circuit. Surrounded by tall trees and lush ferns, sitting at the water’s edge feels like sitting at a water hole for dinosaurs to come drinking to.
At the end of the 2 hour circuit is Lady Baron Falls. All three falls can be easily walked in an afternoon. There is an awesome fallen tree next to the falls to allow for easy communing with nature while dipping your feet.
Tasmania’s #1 tourist attraction was dubbed “Hell on Earth”. This is where over 12,000 convicts arrived from Britain, living under threat of lashings and experimental measures that often drove the convicts to madness. Historic ruins illuminate their lives and that of their guards. Embark upon the cruise to visit the “Isle of the Dead”, the cemetery for the colony.
The onsite Memorial Garden is dedicated to victims of the 1996 tragedy where 35 people were killed by single gunman — the greatest anywhere in the world (not even in the USA).
Wineglass Bay, located in Freycinet National Park, became Tasmania’s most famous beach after it hosted an impromptu barbecue for the Queen on a royal visit. With its amazingly blue waters, Wineglass Bay beach has been voted in the top 10 beaches of the world.
The panoramic views of the Freycinet Peninsula from the summit of Mt. Amos rewards the experienced hiker willing to make the climb. The best views of Wineglass Bay (above) are from Mt. Amos.
This photo is looking down the Mt. Amos climb. Look how steep the climb can get! This is the track! The track also crosses rock slabs (quite a bit of granite), and can be difficult to follow. Do not attempt the Mt. Amos climb in wet or damp conditions!
Probably the most recognizable Tasmanian landmark, Cradle Mountain sits on the northern gateway to the Overland Track linking Cradle Mountain to Lake St. Clair.
The Dove Lake loop track, which takes about 2 hours to complete, is suitable for everyone. It starts from the eastern side of Dove Lake and passes through beautiful Ballroom Forest, which comprises a canopy of tall trees with a carpet of lush moss underfoot.
Marion’s Lookout is a moderate hike that rewards those who conquer it with fantastic panorama views of Dove Lake and a close up of Cradle Mountain.
!– Victoria —
John Batman, the son of a Sydney convict, arrived in what is now known as the Port
Phillip district in 1835. He chose the site for a new city and is generally credited
as being Melbourne’s colonial founder. Unfortunately, Dave hasn’t taken too many
pictures of Melbourne. It’s Australia’s second largest city and has the most elaborate
Victorian architecture of all Australian cities.
This Floral Clock is located by the Royal Botanic Gardens — a short walk from the Shrine of Rememberance.
The Melbourne Observation Deck is located 253 meters (830 feet) above the city on the 55th floor of the Rialto Towers — the tallest office building in the southern hemisphere. The deck offers spectacular 360-degree views of Melbourne.
A short drive from the Great Ocean Road, Beauchamp Falls is located in Otway National Park. It is an easy waterfall to hike to. Even though they say to allow 1.5 hours, it can easily be done in 45 minutes.
The hike is downhill with an easy return ascent.
If you’re traveling along and looking for a great spot to camp for free, the parking area for Beauchamp Falls provides excellent grass to pitch a tent. Toilets are a short 30 second walk away.
Hopetoun Falls is approximately 5km from Beauchamp Falls. When you arrive, you’ll hear the gushing water before even seeing the falls. A viewing platform at the top allows you to see the falls through the forest canopy. There’s a nice place to picnic, but none for camping.
It’s worth-while to hike to the base of the falls for a spectacular view.
The hike is downwards, the last half via a staircase. The return hike to Hopetoun Falls shouldn’t take more than 45 minutes.
Located in Otway National Park, the Otway Fly Treetop Walk is 20 to 33 meters high, with an awesome lookout tower visitors can climb to 47 meters! For a further adrenalin rush, abseil from one of towers along the way.
Some fun facts regarding the Otway Treetop Walk:
it is located in the most westerly rainforest in Australia;
the cantilever can supposedly hold 28 tonnes;
it’s the longest in the world at 600 meters in length;
it’s the tallest treetop walk in the world at 47 meters.
The Great Ocean Road was built by Australian soldiers who returned from World War I. It is the largest enduring war memorial in the world. The drive is absolutely gorgeous, and a must do for anyone. Make sure to visit all the beautiful, natural formations along the way!
!– Western Australia —
Perth, which lies on the Swan River, is the capital of Western Australia and the most isolated city in the world. It is closer to southeast Asia than to any other Australian city.
Below are photos from around the city. The first is Perth itself; the second is the “DNA Tower”; the third and fourth photos are sights within King’s Park.
Approximately 245 km north of Perth is Nambung National Park. Located on the Swan Coastal Plain is home to the Pinnacles Desert. Out of shifting yellow sands rise thousands of huge pillars, standing in stark contrast to the low heathlands. Some are jagged, sharp edged columns, rising to a point; others resemble tombstones.
The Pinnacles are only part of the 17,491 ha national park. Beautiful beaches, coastal dune systems, and trees and flowering plants are all part of this park. From September onwards the weather is still mild and all the glorious wild flowers start their blooming. This is the best time of year to explore the park.
The town of Agusta is where the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse stands guard over Australia’s Southwestern most point. The location is approximately 2 – 3 hours south of Perth.
It is here where the “two oceans meet” — the Southern and Indian oceans. The water is rough, but you are able to stand in both oceans at once.
Between Walpole and Denmark, Western Australia, you can explore a forest filled with enormous tingle-trees from over 40 meters (120 feet) high along the tree-top walk!
One of the biggest trees in Western Australia, the red tingle is known to live up to 400 years.
They can measure up to 16 meters around the base and grow over 60 meters tall. Large buttressed bases are a feature to support themselves as they have small root systems and grow in shallow soils.
Other types of tingle trees are the yellow tingle and Rate’s tingle. Today, the only occurrence is in the Walpole-Nornalup National Park and the surrounding high rainfall area where it rains the equivalent of 185 days each year.
Located in Hyden, Western Australia, Wave Rock is a 15 meter (approximately 48 feet) high granite cliff. Its 110 meters long shape has been caused by weathering and water erosion which have undercut the base. Water running down the rock during wetter months dissolves minerals adding to the color of the rock.
In the 1960s, crystals from the rock were dated as being 2700 million years old, amongst the oldest in Australia.
During Spring, over a dozen varieties of wildflowers and more than 40 different species of birds from the smallest wren to the large wedgetail eagle can be seen.
Nature’s Window is a wind-blown hollow that frames the view of the Murchison River on its ways towards Kalbarri. This hike is fantastic for people of all ages and abilities.
See the map of the area, then go for a walk. The entire loop is a relatively easy hike, and one worth taking.
Carry plenty of water and sun protection!
Not quite a bird’s eye view, but you can see the gorge, the path of the Murchison River, and the “bushwalking trail” to “Nature’s Window”.
It’s amazing to think this formed on its own! It provides a perfect view into the gorge.
The other side is a shear straight drop, so be careful not to fall off the window sill!
The hike into the Z-Bend Gorge is spectacular and well worth the effort! However, this is NOT a casual walk. Wear closed shoes, be able to navigate yourself over rocks, and carry plenty of water. Keep an eye out because there will be wildlife watching your every step!
Western Australia’s and Perth’s Oldest: Building and Grapevine
Perth’s Oldest Building is located next to Western Australia’s Supreme Court in the heart of the city. Currently used for offices, entry is free.
Nestled in with the Art Gallery and Museum of Western Australia, any wine lover will appreciate bearing witness to this amazing vine! As you marvel in its history, try to imagine the taste of the muscat wine from the grapes this vine produces.
Few people, and even fewer Australians, know that within Western Australia is an independent state: Hutt River Province. Prince Leonard welcomed Dave with a tour of the official government buildings, a chance to sit in the Prince’s Royal Chair, and entry/exit stamps within Dave’s passport.
Part of the Shark Bay World Heritage area, Eagle’s Bluff is a remote location where people can easily watch reef sharks swimming in the waters below, or just gaze out across the mini islands in the bay. There is a great boardwalk to take a stroll on, with plenty of plaques to learn about the area and its history.
King’s Park is located in Perth. Established in 1872, it overlooks the Swan River, and gives spectacular views of Perth. One of the most popular tourist destinations in Western Australia, a full day is needed to fully explore and appreciate all King’s Park has to offer!
Karijini National Park is situated just north of the Tropic of Capricorn. It’s climate is like a semi-tropical desert. The banded iron formations exposed in the gorges originated more than 2500 million years ago.
The Weano Recreational Area has several gorgeous pools ideal for swimming. These include Handrail Pool, Kermits Pool, and the waterway Spider Walk. Note that flash floods are not uncommon, and all hikers should immediately exit the gorges at the first sign of rain!
Oxer Lookout and Junction Pool Lookout both provide breath-taking views from atop the gorges.
Dales Recreational Area contains the magnificent Fern Pool, Fortescue Falls, and Circular Pool. Be warned that after a rainfall you will have to either walk through water or climb along narrow rock ledges along the Class 3 & 4 walkways! Make sure you have good walking shoes and clothes that can get wet!
The Joffre and Kalamina walks are an excellent introduction to the Karijini Gorge system. The walks are easy, but caution must still be taken.
No matter how many pictures are taken, they simply can’t do Karijini any justice. Relax quietly and enjoy these unique areas.
The Diamond Tree lookout is 52 meters tall serving as both a fire lookout tower and tourist attraction.
Built in 1939, the wooden viewing platform is the oldest in the world still in use. It provides awesome panoramic views of the area around Manjimup.
Not tall enough for you?
Compare with the Bicentennial Tree Lookout.
At over 60 meters high, the Bicentennial Tree lookout is the tallest in the world. Previously used as a wildfire lookout. The first platform is about 25 meters high.
Make it to the top, and you will be rewarded with spectacular views across southwestern Australia.
Compare with the Diamond Tree Lookout a short distance away.
Located in Kalgoorlie, the SUPER Pit measured 3.5 kilometers long, 1.5 kilometers wide, and 360 meters deep as of January 2009! The SUPER Pit has been producing gold since 1893. Currently, it is mined 24 hours a day, every day of the year.
Affectionately known as the “Golden Mile”, it is probably the richest square mile of land in the world, producing up to 850,000 ounces of gold every year.
It ensures Australia remains the
3rd biggest gold producer in the world behind South Africa and the USA.
Just 50 kilometers north east of Perth is a sweet little picnic area just past the town of Gidgegannup and opposite the Noble Falls Tavern on Toodyay Road. The walk adjoins a reserve, which is home to many birds and other wildlife.
There’s plenty of wildflowers during the spring months; the waterfall is most stunning during the later winter months.
The falls themselves aren’t huge, but awfully refreshing. Best of all, it’s easy to navigate your way into the stream for a nice cool down during the summer months! Lay across the rocks and have the water whisk around you. Ahhhh… so nice!
The Nullarbor is one of Australia’s essential touring experiences! People don’t cross the Nullarbor to prove they can, but for the experience of doing so. The 250,000 square kilometer treeless limestone slab is riddled with sinkholes, caverns, and caves (including one of the longest underwater caves in the world at Cocklebiddy).
Even though it can seem featureless, it’s far from monotonous, especially when Australia’s longest, straightest road veers towards the dramatic cliffs of the Great Australian Bight.
The Gloucester Tree lookout, located near Pemberton in Gloucester National Park, is over 60 meters tall.
To get to the top involves climbing approximately 150 spikes that spiral the tree — most visitors don’t make it. Plenty of wild parrots will be around to watch and laugh at the spectacle.
Hawk’s Head Lookout is a spectacular vantage point located within the Kalbarri National Park.
It provides stunning views of the Kalbarri Gorges and Murchison River. Named in honor of a hawk shaped rock formation visible from the lookout!
Shell Beach is lined with endless coquina shells which are soft to walk on. Water is clear, pristine, and blue. If you’re looking for a private beach to spend the day, this is it!
Castle Cove & Natural Bridge are located within Kalbarri National Park. They provide awesome views to the multitude of coastal gorges carved away by the constant hammering of the Indian Ocean.
An easy walk from the carpark, The Gap and The Natural Bridge are the results of wind and wave erosion from when Australia was once connected to Antarctica.
These two awe inspiring natural features are located in Torndirrup National Park – the first in Western Australia. Note with sudden wind gusts and unexpected waves, this coastline is dangerous!
John Forrest National Park was the first national park in Western Australia and the second in Australia after Royal National Park. A 30 minute drive from Perth City, it makes for a great day trip with plenty of hiking trails, picnic areas, fauna, and wildlife. Hovea Falls is one of the many natural attractions.
Best time to visit is winter to early spring when there’s plenty of water running through the park and Perth’s temperatures are more conducive for day long hikes.
The Eagle View Walk Trail is a 15 kilometer bushwalking circuit through John Forrest National Park. It takes about 4-5 hours to complete. The hike isn’t difficult, but there are some rough spots. Reigstration is required at the Ranger Station before starting and after completing the hike.
There are a variety of habitats along the trail, with a pristine lookout in which Perth City is visible!
If you’re lucky you may also see Australia’s largest bird of prey, the Wedge Tailed Eagle, soaring high over the park as you make your way along the trail.
Hovea Falls is one of the many natural attractions within the park. It is very easy to walk to, and even easier to climb down to and walk over/through. The falls themselves seem more like a gigantic amusement park waterslide — just sit in the middle and be prepared to be whisked away!
National Park Falls is another major attraction within the park. It’s an easy walk to get to. Climbing down to the base of the falls requires a bit more effort, but on a warm day, is well worth it! Best time to visit is winter through to early spring before the falls dries to a trickle with the lack of rain.
Lesmurdie Falls is located in Lesmurdie Falls National Park. Approximately 22km east of Perth in the Perth Hills, the falls are a spectacular attraction. For a 30 minute drive there, you have easy walking trails, great picnic areas, and a fantastic variety of scenery and fauna.
The best part of the park though is the waterfall and sweeping view of the city and beyond! The easiest and most popular walk in the park is to the head of the falls. It’s mostly paved and can even be done in flip-flops, so not even the most lazy have an excuse.
Continuing on, the main trail passes numerous lookout points with amazing views westward, lush vegetation, and seasonal wildflowers.
The best time to visit is late winter / easily spring fresh after the rainy season — the falls will be gushing, temperatures will be cool, the landscape will be green, and you’ll also enjoy the beauty of thousands of wildflowers. In the middle of summer the falls will be reduced to a trickle and the landscape a bit more brown.
Serpentine Falls is located in Serpentine National Park. The park, established in the late 1800’s, has half-a-dozen waterfalls and multiple rock pools, which provide great locations to cool off during Perth’s hot summer months.
There are 3 main trails in the park: the Serpentine Falls trail, Kitty Gorge Trail, and Baldwin’s Bluff. Anyone can access Serpentine Falls as the entrance is paved and is easily graded. Kitty Gorge trail is a 7km one way hike (14km return) along the Serpentine River. This is where you will find numerous other falls, great picnic locations, and private areas to reconnect with your inner zen.
If you plan to walk the entirety of Kitty Gorge trail return, it’s best to arrive at the park by 10am, giving you plenty of time to casually hike and return before the park’s gate promptly closes at 5pm.
Ellis Brook is home to Sixty Foot Falls — a neighborhood’s hidden gem. Along with the falls, there are a few lookouts with amazing views across a valley, and another un-named falls that flows into the abandoned quarry after Perth’s winter rains.
The hike up to the falls is steep and a bit challenging as there’s rocky steps and loose gravel. There are at least two lookouts along the way where you can rest and take in the valley’s scenery.
Once at the top, it’s a gradual descent back down an easy walking path. There’s plenty of room to sit atop the falls as well, enjoying one of the many views to Perth and beyond.
Walkers paying attention will notice distinct changes in the vegetation along the Sixty Foot Falls trail. That’s because the Ellis Brook Valley is part of one of only two international biodiversity hotspots in Australia; 1 of 35 in the world.
There are over 550 species of flowering plants, of which the majority probably come out after the winter rains. So put on some sturdy walking shoes and enjoy nature at its finest!
Bells Rapids is a hidden gem located in Perth’s Swan Valley. It’s a great place to get in touch with nature, share a picnic with family/friends, let your dogs run loose, and (if you have any) to let the kids play in the water. There’s good walking trails on either side of the river, with plenty of vegetation and wildlife around.
!– New Zealand —
View from Auckland’s highest point: Mount Eden.
The southern hemisphere’s tallest structure, the “Sky Tower”, is in the background.
One of the top viewing decks has floors made out of 38mm thick glass.
Supposedly, they’re as strong as concrete.
The left photo shows Wellington, the capital of New Zealand, taken from the Mount Victoria look-out. The city sits on a fault line, and a huge earthquake is expected within the next 100 years.
The right photo is Queenstown taken from the “Sky Line” restaurant. The restaurant is nestled into the cliffs overlooking Queenstown in its entirety.
Queenstown has Tandem Hangliding. The main launch site is at Coronet Peak at 3100 feet.
The 1st photo shows the valley from the launching point.
The 2nd is Dave flying the hanglider.
The last two photos are Dave parasailing over Lake Taupo at 450 feet.
The Huka Jet runs from Wairakei Park in Taupo and goes right up to the world renowned Huka Falls. The Shot Over Jet is located
in Queenstown. Jet boats go ultra FAST in water as shallow as 6 inches.
The last photo: a picture is worth a thousand words.
Whangarei Falls is located on the northern island by the town of Whangarei.
You can walk across the top of the falls and choose to take the path which leads you down to the base, where this photo was taken.
Thundercreek Falls is located on the southern island in Mount Aspiring National Park between Fox Glacier and Queenstown.
You can’t miss it as there’s only one major road going over the mountains and through the park.
Bowen Falls is located in Milford Sound, which is part of Fiordland National Park accounting for 10% of NZ’s land mass.
This falls is named after the first wife
of one of NZ’s earliest Governors: Lady Elizabeth Bowen.
It drops 162 meters from a hanging valley in the Darren Ranges.
!– Kentucky —
Built in 1961, Kentucky’s Floral Clock is of the largest in the world.
It is planted with 13,000 Alternanthera and Santolina foliage plants. The planter alone is 34 feet in diameter and weighs 200,000 pounds. The base is faced with native Kentucky Field Stone. The minute hand is 20-1/2 feet long and weighs 530 pounds.
The hour hand is 15-1/2 feet long and weighs 420 pounds.
Daniel Boone was an American frontier settler of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. He is best known for his exploration and settlement of Kentucky.
!– Oregon —
A long time ago there were hundreds of Native Americans living in the Columbia-River Gorge. This tribe became very ill and members started to die – old, young, weak, strong, men, women, children… it didn’t seem to have a pattern. So the medicine man spoke to the Ancient Ones, and they told him that a brave soul must leap from the top of Multnomah Falls to their death in order to save the rest of the tribe. The chief asked throughout his tribe for one strong man to leap, but those who actually considered the request became frightened when looking down from the top of the falls.
Then the chief took very ill. He had a daughter who walked to the falls, and without turning her head or stopping her step, lept.
The tribe, including her father, began to get well just as soon as her body fell against the rocks.
The gods were so touched and pleased with her sacrifice that they carved her face into the waterfall. If you look about a third of the way down, and if the water is falling just right, you can see her face. The water streams down creating her hair.
During the late 1990s, a rock, loosened by ice and water, tumbled down the falls. The park was closed until the stability of the falls could be determined. The shape of the falls has changed from this photo.
Multnomah falls is one of the most frequently pictured Oregon falls for postcards, tour books, calendars, and gift items.
Tomanawas Falls was “lost” at one point in time and a group of civilians (including one of my friend’s parents) decided to make a trail to it. They started the trail project which was subsequently adopted and completed by the forest service.
Tomanawas is well-hiked due to the fairly easy climb, good trail, and the friendly chipmunks who are quite happy that you packed an extra bit of food for them in your lunch.
!– Pennsylvania —
Ricketts Glenn State park is located 30 miles north of Bloomsburg on Pennsylvania Route 487.
The “Glens” Natural Area, a Registered National Natural Landmark since
October 12, 1969, is the park’s main scenic attraction. Two branches
of Kitchen Creek cut through the deep gorges of Ganoga Glen and Glen Leigh,
uniting at “Waters Meet”. Several trees in this area are over
500 years old and on some, ring counts have dated trees as old as 900 years!
Scroll down and click any numbered waterfall to view it.
!– Virginia —
The “Natural Bridge” is one of the “Seven Natural Wonders of the World”. The arch is composed of solid grey limestone. It is 215 feet high (55 feet higher than Niagara), 40 feet thick, 100 feet wide, and spans 90 feet between the walls.
The estimated weight of the limestone is 36,000 tons.
Other points of interest within the Natural Bridge Park are:
Ancient Arbor Vitae, otherwise known as
“Vires-Acquirit-Eundo”, is a 1600 year old vitae and is the oldest and
largest of its kind in the world. Its diameter measures 56 inches, and
increase by one inch every thirty years. The crooked boughs are characteristic
of the arbor vitae, also known as “the tree of life”.
Saltpetre Mine, mined in 1821 and 1864.
During the American Revolutionary War and the War of 1812, earth from this cave
was converted into saltpetre (potassium nitrate), which, in turn, was used to
make gunpowder and other explosives.
Lost River, whose source and outlet are unknown to this day.
Lace Waterfalls, a pattern of water lace 50 feet high.
Views from Great Falls National Park, located in Northern Virginia across the Maryland border. These falls are formed as a result of the Potomac River falling over a series of steep, jagged rocks while flowing through a narrow gorge. The river here was a popular trading place for Indians and early colonists.
Dragon’s Tooth is one HUGE rock formation which overlooks part of the Roanoke Valley! Located near
Blacksburg Virginia, the Dragon’s Tooth hike is right off the Applachian Trail.
Warning: Dragon’s Tooth is a rough hike, and involves some minor rock climbing! Not for those who are out of shape. Bring plenty of water to drink!
The Cascades, otherwise known as “Crabtree Falls”, is located in Jefferson National Forest near Blacksburg Virginia. Visitors are treated to an array of miniature waterfalls before coming upon the main falls. The trees and rocks are so HUGE they dwarf all humans.
A map of the park, showing the multiple trails you can take.
Dave strongly suggests hiking the “lower trail” up to the falls and then the “upper trail” on the return.
Bull Run National park, located in Fairfax, Virginia, has the biggest and densest natural bluebell wildflower fields in the United States.
These photos were taken in the middle of flowers’ peak blooming season, which generally occurs around mid-April.
Fun Videos from Dave’s Adventures:
- Dave Down Under!
Created in response to Queensland’s “Best Job in the World” campaign, which limited application videos to a length of 60 seconds. The bloopers reel turned out to be far more popular!
- His Parents Down Under!
This is what happens when you visit your children living on another continent you’ve never been to. Best watched in order from left-to-right. 🙂
- His Parents STILL Down Under!
The exciting sequel and conclusion. His parents will never look at Australia the same way again. 🙂