Guest post by Hayley Woodward

When thinking of Australia, perhaps at first you think of things like the Sydney Opera House, kangaroos or Crocodile Dundee; but, the country is so vast and rich in its culture and nature that it would be a real shame to reduce it to these symbols.

Australia has a lot to offer to almost anyone – the variety of climate, nature and wildlife can satisfy any interests and a traveler should probably try and stay for as long as possible, because there’s just so much to see.

But, out of the variety of different sights and activities, these five places stand out as truly must-see for anyone who visits the sunburnt country.

  1. Daintree Rainforest

Daintree Rainforest is special for many reasons, the obvious is its size – being the largest single rainforest in all of Australia, it naturally has enough to offer to deserve a vacation there on its own, but even if you visit just for a few days, it can really leave an impression.

It can serve as a natural museum of sorts – with its vast variety of animal and plant life, it encompasses in itself eight stages of the earth’s evolutionary history.

Being home to such iconic Australian animals like the southern cassowary or the musky rat kangaroo, the Daintree Rainforest has plenty to offer in terms of wildlife.

The amazing plant life can also leave travelers amazed, with its array of colors and forms, the Daintree Rainforest is home to some of the most exotic plants in the world.

Still, perhaps the best thing about Daintree is that you can feel and see the nature in its most natural state – the wildlife here is almost untouched, and many species reside in the area that were there like that millions of years ago.

  1. The Great Barrier Reef

Another pearl of Queensland is perhaps the most famous nature’s landmark in Australia. Being one of the natural wonders of the world, it’s truly a unique place for anyone looking to discover sea life at its best.

Great Barrier Reef

You can find an enormous range of exotic fish, plants and coral life thriving in the reef, which you can explore aboard one of the many great barrier reef tours or while diving.

There probably aren’t many places better suited to explore the exotic marine life, but you can also take trips to see whales and dolphins or loggerhead sea turtles.

  1. Uluru/Ayers Rock

Located in the Northern Territory of Australia, the Uluru is another iconic natural formation that Australia has to offer.

It’s a place that expresses the spirituality and rich folklore of the region – being the world’s largest monolith, or a single piece of stone, in the entire planet.

It was given the name Uluru by the local Pitjantjatjara people, who reside in the area, and it has always had a great spiritual significance to them.

  1. The Twelve Apostles

These massive structures, located in Victoria, are one of the most fascinating examples of erosion done by the ocean.

This collection of limestone stacks, up to an astounding 45 meters in height, is an amazing example of how the world is constantly changing, which, in a long time, can amount to amazing structures forming naturally.

Although there are only eight of the original twelve stacks remaining, they are still an incredible sight, truly worth visiting.

  1. Kangaroo Island

If you have a desire to discover the iconic nature of Australia, you must visit Kangaroo Island – with its vast sea life full of fish, sea horses and many other creatures.

You can even find a small penguin colony, which in itself is a unique site, which should definitely be visited.  If you visit during the migration season, you can stand on shore and witness migrating whales.

You don’t have to visit a zoo – simply go to Kangaroo Island and discover all kinds of birds, animals, and the world-famous kangaroos and koalas.

Australia is one of the most diverse places on earth – there’s just so much to discover in this vast, amazing country.

The wildlife alone is enough to keep anyone busy for a very long time. Add in the amazing natural wonders and spectacles and you’ve got yourself the trip of a lifetime.

Hayley Woodward is a Melbourne based travel writer. When Hayley is not busy writing or researching her work, she enjoys travelling with cairns hot air balloon company, Hot Air.

Photograph by Jan Derk – Wikipedia Commons