Saturday March 16, 2013
For some of the world’s best and truly unique experiences, you should head down to Australia.
THE combination of breathtaking landscapes, friendly locals and amazing food is something Australia can deliver to every traveller. Here are some enjoyable ideas for your Australian holiday!
While you may be lucky enough to see Australian wildlife in the wild, there are some places where you are guaranteed to get up close with some of their famous “locals”.
At one of the many theme parks on the Gold Coast, for example, you can cuddle a koala or swim with sharks and dolphins in a safe environment.
On the Sunshine Coast, you might want to feed the crocodiles at the world-famous Australia Zoo, home of The Crocodile Hunter. Visit Kangaroo Island in South Australia, and see many of Australia’s famous wildlife in their natural playground.
Also, every year in March, just after the full moon, the waters of Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia come alive as more than 200 species of coral spawn, causing the ocean to glow. Simply amazing!
People from some 200 different countries have made Australia their home, bringing with them their cuisine and traditions, so it’s no surprise that fashionable as well as cheap-eat restaurants serve up everything from North African to Vietnamese in Sydney.
Shopaholics, make your way to Oxford Street – it’s chic and alternative. And the fashionable suburb of Paddington is well known for its weekend market. In Melbourne, you can catch a tram from the city centre to check out the bohemian suburb of St Kilda.
The St Kilda Esplanade, which nudges up to a beach and a historic pier, is popular by day, while the restaurant and bar strips really come alive at night.
Travelling in Australia is not about getting from here-to-there, but discovering amazing things along the way.
In Tasmania, you can head north from Hobart to Freycinet National Park and take the walk to Wineglass Bay – a regular on the list of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Hire a sea kayak and explore the coastline, where pink granite mountains contrast with pearly-white beaches and clear turquoise waters.
Continue anti-clockwise towards the Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park for some of the best hiking in Australia. You can clamber to the top of Cradle Mountain and back in a day – and from the top, you can see most of northwest Tasmania. From there, continue to Strahan and the west coast, loop back to Hobart, and you’ve taken a sizeable bite of the Apple Isle.
Food, wine and lifestyle are the articulation of Australian culture. Go behind the scenes of the wine industry and discover for yourself why Australia is one of the world’s greatest wine nations.
Savour a glass or two in their cellar or over a meal in one of the many world-class restaurants, wine bars or cafes. Take a food trail and talk to the local purveyors who will share with you their boutique beers, cheeses, chocolate, smoked fish or organic fruit and vegetables, and also secrets behind what makes their produce so special.
Join one of the many food and wine festivals that take place for a flavourful and unique Australian cuisine experience.
From international food and wine festivals and art exhibitions to action-packed cycling and running marathons, Australia hosts many world class events. Here’s what’s coming up:
> Opera on the Harbour (March 22–April 12) – Sydney, New South Wales.
> Adelaide Food & Wine Festival (April 6–14) – Adelaide, South Australia.
> Noosa International Food & Wine Festival (May 16–19) – Noosa, Queensland
> Vivid Sydney (May 24–June 10) – Sydney.
> Melbourne Winter Masterpieces (June–October) – Melbourne, Victoria.
> Gold Coast Airport Marathon (July 6–7) – Gold Coast, Queensland
> Ceduna Oysterfest (September) – Eyre Peninsula, South Australia.
> Margaret River Gourmet Escape (Nov 22–25) – Margaret River, Western Australia
> The Taste Festival (Dec 28–Jan 3, 2014) – Hobart, Tasmania
Travelling to Australia is not a problem at all as Singapore Airlines (SIA) operates 108 flights a week to five Australian cities, namely Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney, while subsidiary SilkAir serves Darwin with four weekly flights.
Services between Singapore and Adelaide were recently increased to 10 flights per week from seven, while a fourth daily service has been introduced to Perth, up from three. SIA has signed agreements with six tourism organisations in Australia in line with the Airline’s ongoing efforts to promote tourism to the country. – Source: Tourism Australia/Singapore Airlines