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When you book your experiences with Experience Oz, you're booking with a site which was named "Online Booking Website of the Year" for 2018 at the inaugural Australian Travel Awards in Sydney, Australia.

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10 Amazing Places in Australia you probably haven't been
Experience Oz Presents

10 Amazing Places in Australia you probably haven't been

by Experience Oz staff

Sure, you may have cruised Sydney Harbour, walked around Uluru, relaxed in the Whitsundays or had a coffee or two in Melbourne, yet Australia's diversity means that there's likely a handful of incredible places you've not yet visited.

Our massive and diverse country is home to an array of landscapes red, green and gold that are bound to produce interesting natural quirks ranging from incredible natural formations, striking and unusual colourations and landscapes that border on the otherworldly.

Here are 10 of the most amazing places you probably haven't been in Australia - but definitely should.


10. Shark Bay, WA

Shark Bay Western Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

This colourful section of Western Australia's Coral Coast is a World Heritage-listed area features a remarkable diversity of natural features all concentrated in one spot, including both interesting land and oceanscape offerings as well as distinctive animal and marine life.

Dotted with a mixture of peninsulas and islands, Shark Bay was heavily explored in the early days of European exploration off the coast of Australia, particularly by the Dutch, who gave it its name.

Shark Bay's striking turquoise waters serve as host to the world's largest bed of seagrass and, as a result, is home to the largest collection of dugongs who use the grass as their main dietary source.

Dolphins can also be found here in great numbers, with the majority gathering at its section of Monkey Mia where the dolphins are incredibly social and approach the shore of their own volition for a feed several times daily. Add to these the hundreds of species of birds and reptiles that populate the land and air and it's a veritable haven for zoological life of all kinds.

The islands of Shark Bay are also impressive in their own right, on Dirk Hartog Island in the bay WA's relatively unknown as the state's largest. This island is escapist isolation at its best, with vivid and sheer red cliffs clashing with the azure waters below to form a striking contrast while offering visitors the chance for relaxation on isolated, pristine beaches, some incredible snorkel and dive opportunities and world-class fishing.

Shark Bay Western Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Meanwhile on the mainland, the jaw-dropping Zuytdorp Cliffs form a ruggedly beautiful spectacle that stretches nearly 200km in total and are best seen from the water or the air.

So why haven't you heard of Shark Bay? It's relatively isolated, for one; reaching the Bay is quite a chore as you're looking at a roughly 10-hour drive from WA's capital Perth and the closest reasonably-sized settlement is Geraldton which still leaves you four-plus hour's drive away. If you're willing to splurge, your best bet is to book a flight from Perth Airport for a landing directly at Monkey Mia which has its own resort, visitor's centre and an array of shops and dining facilities

9. Wallaman Falls, QLD

Wallaman Falls Queensland 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Who'd have thought Australia's largest single-drop waterfall would be so unknown? Wallaman Falls, found within Queensland's Girringun National Park of the Wet Tropics region is a tumbling, cascading example of nature's power that flows near-continually throughout the year due to the regular heavy rainfall this part of the country experiences.

The falls form one of the key highlights on the Wet Tropics Great Walk, which is an epic and roughly 100 kilometre-long journey through the heart of ancient flora. While they drop their waters all year round, the wet season from November to April will showcase the falls at their most inspiring. The sheer volume of liquid being pumped down the dramatic 268m-high drop is a spectacular sight to behold and the surrounding rocky and greenery-draped gorge serves as a wonderful complement to the fall itself.

The overlook adjacent to Wallaman Falls has a purpose-built lookout that provides a great view of the falls in action and also comes equipped with BBQ's, tables, chairs and toilets. If there's a more epic picnic eExperience available than this, we'd like to know about it

The more energetic and daring amongst us can choose to brave the steep walk to the bottom of the falls (be sure to wear shoes with a solid grip, take things slowly and bring water along with you) by traversing a rough and rocky pathway, but the reward more than justifies the effort. As this part of Australia is known for its humidity, be prepared to sweat and rehydrate yourself accordingly.

Wallaman Falls Queensland 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

While Wallaman Falls is still quite highly visited with annual tourist numbers hovering around the 100,000 mark, its location requires travel to regional areas to access. Those wanting to visit the falls will likely initially start off in Townsville then head north-west to Ingham from which the falls can be reached after around a 45 minute to 1-hour drive along a decent quality road. The final portion can be slightly difficult to traverse, however, it is all dependent on weather.

If you're in the tropics and want a break from island goodness, Wallaman Falls is a postcard-perfect example of just that.

8. Tasman Island, TAS

Tasman Island Tasmania 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Looking like something that was taken out of the middle of an American desert and plonked into the waters off the south-east coast of Tasmania, Tasman Island is a distinctive sight given its flat, plateau-like shape that resembles a fortress of the sea.

Pock-marked with sea caves and perpetually battered by waves of this blustery part of the waters of the Tasman Peninsula, the island boasts a remarkably flat surface that is home to Australia's most isolated lighthouse which was constructed back in 1906.

The lighthouse sits on a cliff face around 280 metres above sea level, and due to its once-manned nature the island was largely cleared of forestry and replaced with grassland for farm animals.

Tasman Island is a haven for wildlife, with birds, in particular, featuring prominently here - it's a major protected nesting ground for Fairy Prions, while eagles, cormorants, gulls and even the mighty Albatross can be seen swooping from the skies to grab a feed in the waters below.

A mix of Australian and New Zealand Fur Seals also ply their trade near Tasman Island, with small colonies that use the island as a breeding ground also occasionally visible. Add to this the potential for spotting both Humpback and Right Whales during their annual migratory period and it's a veritable smorgasbord of animal life on offer.

In the modern day, Tasman Island is maintained by a volunteer group who oversee the restoration of its remaining heritage brick buildings, the control of weeds and the delicate balance of wildlife that exists on the island. As a result, the island has gradually been carefully re-vegetated and now stands in a promising overall condition for its future prospects.

Tasman Island Tasmania 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Image: Sean Scott via Tourism Tasmania

Accessing Tasman Island's surface itself is impossible for the travelling sightseer; in less technological times, staff and crew visiting the island had to be winched up from the often rough seas below - a precarious prospect.

Nowadays, air traffic is limited to a single helipad situated near the island's lighthouse and a special permit from government authorities is required in order to land, which is largely restricted to the staff who oversee the island's well-being. Those wanting to see the island from the water, however, can book a trip with Tasman Island Cruises (Pennicott Wilderness Journeys) who take guests aboard a purpose-built and stable boat to gape and gawk up at the impressive cliffs from sea level.

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7. Pink Lake, between Tailem Bend & Meningie, SA

Pink Lake, between Tailem Bend & Meningie South Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

No, this hasn't been photoshopped nor is it trick of the light, within the heart of rural South Australia lies a series of lakes in which the waters are a bright-pink colour that gives the impression of a massive pool of strawberry milk. The most prominent of these, dubbed simply the Pink Lake (but originally known as Hutt Lagoon) lies around halfway between the settlements of Tailem Bend and Meningie, derives its unusual colouration from the presence of a certain type of algae that is common in the region.

While the same phenomena can also be seen in several other locations around Australia, perhaps most notably on Western Australia's Middle Island's Lake Hillier, SA's Pink Lake benefits by being far more accessible.

The common theme amongst many of the destinations on this list is their isolation and the Pink Lake is no exception. Meningie is the largest point of the population of any note, and the drive out to the lake offers next to no signage along the way. As a result, you'll likely find yourselves the only ones there which lead to an atmosphere of silence that couples with the eerie atmosphere the lake's colour create to provide the sense of being in your own little world.

The lake itself is surprisingly large in size and visitors can walk right up to its edge where you'll see bubbles forming. The vibrancy of the pink hue will largely depend on the weather of the day of your visit, with clear skies, the colour is especially vivid.

Pink Lake, between Tailem Bend & Meningie South Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

It's a favourite spot for photographers in the region, and captured at just the right time of day and at the perfect angle, it'll provide you with the most unique of your travel photos with which to make all your friends jealous.

Just be sure to fight the urge to drink the water as the algae almost certainly won't be good for your system!

6. Peninsula Hot Springs, VIC

Peninsula Hot Springs Mornington Peninsula Victoria 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Fancy a spot of relaxation and pampering surrounded by a wonderful landscape all within easy reach of one of Australia's largest cities? You'll want to make the roughly 90-kilometre drive from Melbourne and head to the lovely Mornington Peninsula, one of Victoria's favourite getaway spots.

While its famed for its delightful waterfront areas and beaches, the peninsula is also home to a unique attraction of its own, the Peninsula Hot Springs thermal pools, which feature mineral-enriched waters implemented in a series of over 20 individual bathing experiences. It's an attraction that seems more like something you'd come across in the countryside of New Zealand or Japan (from which the springs were inspired) than Australia, yet the benefits are easily accessible to any interested Aussie.

The hot springs lie in a spot hidden amongst the rolling hills of the Mornington Peninsula that provide a lovely outlook surrounded by eucalyptus trees and open fields with 360-degree views that make for a wonderful complement to the water revitalising your body.

While it might sound like a fairly stock-standard experience the variation makes none of the two experiences alike; Turkish steam baths intermingle with massage showers, hydro jets and saunas, allowing for a pick-your-pleasure scenario that helps break things up. There's even a cold plunge pool designed to provide an immediate (and jolting) cool down should you find yourself in danger of overheating.

Peninsula Hot Springs Mornington Peninsula Victoria 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

The experience at the Peninsula Hot Springs varies by season, with Winter being perhaps the best time of year to visit as the clash of the outside air forms a welcome contrast to the temperature of the waters. It also tends to be less busy during this period as well, and if you're aiming for the most relaxing possible visit be sure to make it a priority to avoid either school holidays and - if feasible - weekends.

5. Esperance, WA

Esperance Western Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Western Australia is home to a number of beautiful little coastal towns each with their own individual character and charm, with the community of Esperance being one particular little shining gem in the state's crown

Originally discovered by the French, this is a coastal spot with vistas that are worthy of postcards that could compete with the offerings of the Whitsundays. Esperance features wonderful blue waters populated by an array of islands and an inland area that is blanketed by glorious national park with its township situated in an idyllic spot between the two.

If you're looking for a getaway from the crowds, the Esperance region truly delivers, boasting one of the lowest population densities of any habitable part of our country and offering the tantalising prospect of over 400 kilometres worth of coastline to explore and get lost in.

This vast coast comes replete with dozens of glorious beaches that you can have practically to yourself, simply push on further and you'll come across a pristine stretch of brilliantly white sand which you can call your own for the day.

Head offshore, and you'll come across the reason for the area being nicknamed the Bay of Isles with over 100 individual islands and islets that make up the Recherche Archipelago, each of which is a veritable nature sanctuary in its own right.

Turn your eyes east and the natural features continue to do the region justice as the vastness of the National Parks of the region come into focus. There's over 5,900 square kilometres worth of wilderness on display broken up into five individual national parks with the Cape Le Grand being both the most renowned and easiest to access. With a mixture of granite rock formations mixed with white sand beaches and a range of stunning lookout points to view them side by side, it's an ancient and ridiculously scenic landscape offering a series of wonderful panoramas.

Esperance Western Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Image: Tourism Western Australia

The park is overseen by rangers and boasts facilities such as barbeques, toilets and campsites as well as a number of walking trails where you will be able to immerse yourself in banksia trees and spot possums, kangaroos and more. While it's driveable from Perth, the distance makes flying to Esperance preferable, with daily flights available from Perth with Virgin Australia.

Throw in the fact that Esperance is a great spot for whale watching during migratory season and the friendly and down to earth attitudes of the locals and you've got an idyllic getaway destination that may not stay secret for long. Oh, and if you needed one last indicator of the region being a stress-free haven: there is not a single set of traffic lights to be found.

4. Umpherston Sinkhole, SA

Umpherston Sinkhole South Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

If there was ever any evidence in Australia that the pure randomness of nature sometimes conspires to produce some incredibly unique and magical occurrences, South Australia's Umpherston Sinkhole is a prime candidate. Formed as a result of a cave collapse, the sinkhole was naturally occupied by natural greenery then additionally cultivated by human hands to reach the state that it's viewable in today.

Located near the heart of Mt. Gambier, in its present state the sinkhole is a well-manicured sunken garden indented into the ground lined with a blend of shrubs, ferns, trees and vines that make for a visually delightful and vibrant hub of greenery.

Bordered by an expertly-groomed lawn with beds of lovely roses at the top, the hole contains a path that allows you to take a leisurely walk through its midsts. Although there are a lot of steps to get down into the centre, it's well worth the effort and strolling through such unique surrounds provides a lush vibe that stands out from the regular Australian bushland.

Depending on your timing, you'll also encounter a range of hydrangeas with their flowers that add an additional splash of colour to the proceedings, while there are even undercover areas with barbeque facilities should you choose to extend your stay and enjoy lunch here.

Umpherston Sinkhole is equally pleasant to visit at both day and night, but each offer entirely different settings. During the day, the gardens are at their most vivid with the sunlight beaming down into the hole creating a pleasant dappling effect, while at night the main area of the sinkhole is illuminated by floodlights and the area's resident possums come out to play. The possums are not only incredibly cute, but they're highly tame as well as decades of being fed by humans has made them highly approachable rather than their usually skittish nature, although guests are advised not to feed them.

Umpherston Sinkhole South Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Image: Adam Bruzzone via Tourism SA

Having been in around as gardens since the 1800's, Umpherston Sinkhole is an essential visit if you're in the Mt. Gambier region, which sits roughly at the halfway point between both Adelaide and Melbourne and is a lovely natural destination in and of itself. Expect to invest a 4.5-hour drive from Adelaide and 5 hours from Melbourne if you're travelling by car.

3. Lord Howe Island, NSW

Lord Howe Island New South Wales 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Just off the mainland lies the incredible Lord Howe Island that comes with a more than justified World heritage listing, a visitor cap of 400 people at any one time, and a volcano-and-reef structure that forms a true slice of paradise.

Reached via a 2-hour flight from Sydney or Brisbane, the island lies in the Tasman Sea between Australia and New Zealand around 600km directly to the east of Port Macquarie on the mainland and has all the stereotypical characteristics one could want in an island getaway. Think colourful reefs teeming with marine life, empty sandy beaches, magnificent volcanic peaks and a nearly unmatched sense of solitude.

Lord Howe Island's isolation from any other landmasses plays a large role in its individuality as there are a huge number of both plant and animal species on what is a relatively small chunk of land at only 10 kilometres long. This flora-heavy environment is what gives Lord Howe Island that amazing, prehistoric feeling. There are a series of incredible walks on offer that brings to mind the likes of Jurassic Park, particularly the main trek to the peak of the dominating Mount Gower and its 875m-some height.

The lookout from the top of this peak is the subject of some of the world's most beautiful photos, and the 360-degree panorama of rainforest-draped land and fringing reef is especially jaw-dropping.

The island has a permanent population and modern conveniences such as general stores, ATMs, bakeries and other necessities as well as several world-class accommodation facilities should you choose to splurge and go high-end. Luxury lodges oriented around pampering and more basic apartment and villas are there to choose from, and waking up in the morning being able to take a short walk or cycle to some of the most amazing waters or admire an incredible sunset in the evening make the monetary investment more than worthwhile.

Lord Howe Island New South Wales 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Image: Elizabeth Allnut via LHI Tourism

In terms of exclusivity, there are few places in Australia that compare with Lord Howe Island. Tourism to the island is highly controlled in order to preserve the delicate ecosystem that makes the island so stunning, and as a result, it's an extremely expensive, boutique destination for travel. The combination of limited traveller numbers and an infrequent volume of flights makes the prices scale upwards accordingly, and during peak season you're looking at an expensive investment for flights and several days' accommodation.

2. Horizontal Falls, WA

Horizontal Falls Western Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Western Australia's Kimberley region is home to a number of spectacles that you can't encounter anywhere else in Australia, and the Horizontal Falls near the town of Broome and north of Derby is one of the prime examples of this. Nicknamed the 'Horries' by locals, this majestic display of a combination of sheer aquatic power and the influence of the tides is one of the most impressive natural phenomena in the area that simulates the visual effect of a waterfall as water rushes between a narrow gap between two gorges of the McLarty Range.

The gap between the two land masses that create the falls effect can be found in two separate sections and both are remarkably narrow for this kind of landform.

The first of the two gaps is approximately 20 metres wide, while the second measures a mere 10 metres, and at high tide the pure volume of water pushing through creates a spectacular whitewash that renowned documentarian Sir David Attenborough once labelled "one of the world's greatest wonders".

Part of the inner reaches of the Buccaneer Archipelago, which is a striking collection of hundreds of tiny islands of bright and vivid colouration and a visually impressive destination in its own right, timing plays a key role in exactly how much you get out of your experience visiting here. Due to their dependence on the impact of the tides, tour operators who provide trips to the falls will aim to showcase them at their most active and provide the best possible photo opportunities for passengers.

Experiencing the falls can be done in a couple of ways, both air and water adventures take visitors to see the region on the way to the falls, and white aerial tours are far more expensive they provide a sense of context on just how dramatic and unique the colours of the region truly are.

Many trips combine both a scenic flight out to the falls and then a jet boat ride through the falls themselves. The journey begins by boarding a seaplane and ascending to the skies for some breathtaking views of the island-strewn Buccaneer Archipelago with its countless specks of land dotting the vivid waters below. After reaching the outskirts of the falls, a gentle landing on the waters of Talbot Bay is in order.

Horizontal Falls Western Australia 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Image: Horizontal Falls Adventures

The next step involves hopping on a high-powered jet boat and charting a course for the Horizontal Falls themselves, and it's an undeniable adrenaline rush approaching the onrush of water as the tides push through. The trip provides the chance to go through the falls a number of times inwards and outwards in accordance with their tides, with their height reaching an impressive peak of several metres at optimal times.

Getting up close with the myriad turbulent features of the water will provide you with firsthand views of whirlpools and the interactions of currents that churn up the emerald waters like a natural washing machine. If you're looking to take the plunge and visit the falls, Horizontal Falls Adventures provide a choice of several itineraries that depart from both Broome and Derby.

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1. Binalong Bay, TAS

Binalong Bay Tasmania 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

A quiet and laid-back slice of Tasmanian life that consists mainly of holiday homes, Tasmania's coastal area of Binalong Bay is a part of the state that shatters the stereotypical England-style imagery of Tassie as merely being blanketed by wet, green farmland in impressive fashion. Featuring wonderful blue sea and pristine white sands dotted with rocks covered in orange-red lichen that has become iconic of the region, Binalong Bay is the gateway to the wonderful Bay of Fires, the multi-day walk of which was ranked #3 on our list of Australia's 10 Most Epic Walks.

Benefitting from pleasant, temperate weather, this is a sunny part of Tasmania that is a favoured getaway for those elsewhere in the state, and can be reached within a 2.5-hour drive from the Tassie's second-largest city, Launceston. As the only fully-fledged town on the Bay of Fires coast, the town of Binalong Bay itself is oriented around tourism and providing visitors with a place to stay, and as a result, there is plenty of accommodation to choose from for those wanting an escape from the hustle and bustle of urban life.

Once you've arrived, you'll have plenty of opportunities for enjoying the outdoor lifestyle and excellent food that the area provides, with a nice mixture of both land and water-based activities to enjoy.

Surfing, fishing and marine exploration are all outstanding here, with diving, in particular, becoming increasingly popular as the area offers some excellent temperate-water diving. There is a range of different underwater highlights to be found within this diverse reef system that features numerous fish species as well as dolphins, sea dragons and colourful sponges nestled amongst thick kelp forests. Those wanting to stick closer to the surface can opt for some relaxed snorkelling instead, with scenic reefs and vibrant corals all available for viewing relatively close to the shoreline.

Adventures on land are not lacking here, either; other than the Bay of Fires Walk itself, the extensive Mount William National Park is a massive stretch of forested and grassed land broken up by sections of sweeping beach. A stunning outlook can be had from the top of Mount William itself which can be reached via a leisurely 90-minute walk and provides an overview of the town and the waters beyond. Other shorter walks are also available, and during the spring and summer the greenery is intermingled with the lovely colours of wildflowers while opportunities to spot grazing kangaroos and wallabies are also a possibility.

Binalong Bay Tasmania 10 places in Australia you haven't heard of

Image: Paul Fleming via Tourism Tasmania

While it was once merely a small fishing hamlet and still remains a tiny and escapist town to this day, its Binalong Bay's sparse population that will allow you to experience the whitest of white sandy beaches, sheltered lagoons and vivid rocks without any of the crowds or over-commercialisation of Australia's more famous getaway spots.

In addition, if you're looking for more things to do in Australia including some of the best tours, attractions and activities, be sure to check out our main experiences section to browse for more information online.

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