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Top attractions in Australia

Exciting adventure activities, absorbing museums, vast empty landscapes, and indigenous culture – here, at a glance, are our top recommendations of things to see in Australia.

1. The Great Barrier Reef

More than 2,000km (1,240 miles) of mostly pristine coral gardens and rich aquatic life, the Reef rewards divers, snorkellers or those who simply gaze through glass-bottomed boats. Read more about the Great Barrier Reef...

2. Sydney Harbour

The Opera House is deservedly on everyone’s list as a must-see attraction in Australia – it’s on the Unesco World Heritage list, after all – and when you combine it with the iron bulk of Sydney Harbour Bridge, you have one of the great vistas of the world.

3. Uluru

Rising out of the parched red centre of the country, Uluru (Ayers Rock) is the dramatic touchstone of this ancient continent. It’s a sacred site to its Aboriginal custodians, and worth travelling thousands of kilometres to see. Read more about Uluru...

4. Canberra’s museums and galleries

Gathered around Lake Burleigh Griffin is what collectively amounts to the most impressive collection of educational and cultural showpieces in Australia. Read more about Canberra...

5. Port Arthur

Tasmania’s grim penal settlement provides something of a crash course in Australia’s colonial history. The setting, ironically, is stunning. Read more about Port Arthur...

6. Australia’s wineries

In a nation rich in high-class, picturesque wineries, the Barossa, Hunter and Margaret River regions stand out as some of the finest.

7. The Great Ocean Road

International car companies regularly shoot their television commercials on Victoria’s stupendously scenic coastal drive. Read more about the Great Ocean Road...

8. Kakadu National Park

Of the numerous National Parks, this one is unmissable with its mixture of indigenous flora and fauna along with ancient Aboriginal culture. Read more about Kakadu National Park...

9. Wildflowers in Western Australia

Springtime, beginning in September, is when the countryside around Perth and southern West Australia is awash with technicolour blooms.

10. Mindil Beach Sunset Market

Feel the pulse of tropical Darwin while eating, drinking and shopping at this outdoor market. Read more about Mindil Beach Sunset Market...

Read more about Australia

Read more about attractions in Australia in Insight Guides: Australia

Insight Guides: Australia

Insight Guide Australia is a comprehensive full-colour guide to the culture, history and people of this ancient and spectacular land. Our inspirational Best Of Australia section illustrates the coun...

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