Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

Muralist bringing much needed attention to small Aussie towns

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">As Guido van Helten pulled into Brim, a remote town in Victoria of less than 200 people, he had a plan.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Brisbane-born artist has garnered international fame throughout the art world for some of the works he has done across the globe.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">However, some of his favourites are in Australia.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">His personal favourite is a 30-metre-high mural that’s been painted on a collection of run-down murals.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Helten specialises in photorealistic murals, which pop up in odd locations.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Helten revealed to the ABC that a lot of work and research goes into the mural locations before he’s even picked up a spray paint can.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“These sort of towns, I often drove around, but I would just drive straight past,” he explained.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Helten had often driven past Brim and had some unanswered questions.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I’ve often wondered, what’s it like? What are the people like? Who lives here?”</span></p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/Bu-AC_oBcn5/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/Bu-AC_oBcn5/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by ⚡S T E P H A N I E - L E I G H (@steph.the.knowing)</a> on Mar 13, 2019 at 5:33pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Helten’s next project is on the Southern Cross University, which has campuses in Lismore and the Gold Coast.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Gold Coast campus is the one to score an exclusive from Helten, and he’s looking to start painting on March 6</span> <span style="font-weight: 400;">on a 43-metre high canvas.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The painting will take about two weeks to complete, but it’s nothing that Helten can’t handle.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">He’s just spent the colder months of 2018 painting in Iowa, USA.</span></p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/Bt30WMTAekE/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/Bt30WMTAekE/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by Guido van Helten (@guidovanhelten)</a> on Feb 14, 2019 at 10:24am PST</p> </div> </blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Are you a fan of Helten’s work? Let us know in the comments.</span></p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

The top 5 most relaxing destinations around the world

<p>It can be hard to get away from it all, especially when you don’t know where to start. <a href="https://www.lastminute.com/en/discover/most-chilled-out-countries-in-the-world.html">Lastminute.com</a> has ranked a variety of locations from around the world in order of noise, light pollution and the number of green spaces available to make this easier for you.</p> <p>The top 5 most chilled out destinations worldwide are:</p> <p><strong>1. Indonesia</strong><a href="https://www.gettyimages.com.au/detail/photo/ohoililir-beach-kei-island-royalty-free-image/1012860334"></a></p> <p>Indonesia is well known for relaxing by the ocean, as well as connecting with Mother Nature. With 88,000 of coastline, a beach isn’t too far away from you no matter where you are in Indonesia.</p> <p><strong>2. Australia</strong><a href="https://www.gettyimages.com.au/detail/photo/helicopter-view-of-the-white-sands-turquoise-ocean-royalty-free-image/952973680"></a></p> <p>Australia is known for their abundance of wildlife, as well as the variety of natural beauty that occurs. Whether you’re along the Great Barrier Reef or journeying into the red-hot centre of the nation, there’s something for everyone.</p> <p><strong>3. Iceland</strong><a href="https://www.gettyimages.com.au/detail/photo/cascata-di-gulfoss-di-notte-con-aurora-boreale-royalty-free-image/932194018"></a></p> <p>Iceland is ideal for stargazing, as it’s near the top of the Arctic Circle. This is where you can see the Northern Lights. However, with an average temperature of 1.75 degrees Celsius, don’t forget to bring your thermals.</p> <p><strong>4. New Zealand</strong></p> <p>With landscapes that can make you believe you’re in another world, it’s no surprise that New Zealand was chosen to be <em>Middle Earth</em> in the Lord of the Ring franchise. You’re also never too far from the sea, but if you’re not a fan of the waves, lakes are nearby as well.</p> <p><strong>5. Sri Lanka</strong></p> <p>With lush rainforests covering the landscape and a solid average temperature of nearly 27 degrees celsius, this is bound to have you feeling more relaxed as soon as you step off the plane.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see what these relaxing destinations look like.</p> <p>Have you been to any of these destinations? Are they really as relaxing as this list claims? Let us know in the comments below.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

The natural phenomenon you must see in Australia this year

<p><span><a href="https://www.outbackspirittours.com.au/destinations/kati-thanda-lake-eyre/">Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre</a></span> is the largest salt-lake in Australia. This vast, dry expanse of glittering salt is part of the extensive Lake Eyre basin – one of the largest internally draining river systems in the world. On clear, cloudless days the land can appear to merge with the sky in a pink and blue mirage that crosses the horizon. Most of the time the Lake is dry, but on rare occasions it fills and becomes home to huge flocks of migratory water birds and gives life to a carpet of wildflowers.</p> <p>This phenomenon is imminent as an enormous body of water is now flowing into the lake after extraordinary rainfall in the northern reaches of the Diamantina Catchment. Floodwaters inundated Birdsville and cut access to the town for six weeks. From there they crossed into South Australia and have travelled southwest into Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre, creating a vast and shimmering spectacle.</p> <p>But if you still need further convincing, here is why you need to take a trip to the magical Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre:</p> <p><strong>The phenomenon only occurs once every few years</strong></p> <p>Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre is vast in size, spanning 144 kilometres long and 77 kilometres wide. The show stopper is never one to disappoint, with the lake featuring a stunning pink hue caused by pigment found within a specific type of salt-loving algae when the water level is at its lowest. But despite the lake glistening year-round, the best time to pay a visit is after the Outback has received a downpour of rain, flooding the lake with water.</p> <p>Lake Eyre has filled to capacity only three times in recorded history, the last time in 1974. However, general floods happen more frequently and are just as spectacular. The last significant flood was in 2011 at the height of the La Nina weather pattern that brought flooding rains to more of Eastern Australia. The site also carries a deep and rich history for the Arabunna and other Aboriginal people, spanning over thousands of years. Seeing Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre in flood is a unique experience. The best way to appreciate the floodwaters and enjoy a bird’s-eye view, is by plane; followed by a 4WD adventure to the upper reaches of the Lake and the surrounding dunes and river systems.</p> <p><span><a href="https://www.outbackspirittours.com.au/tours/lake-eyre-spectacular/">Outback Spirit</a></span> is Lake Eyre’s Number one tour operator. Their award-winning adventures have showcased the wonder of Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre to nearly 10,000 guests since 2009.  In 2012, they took home South Australia’s premier tourism award for Major Tour Operators after the 2011 flooding of Lake Eyre. Outback Spirit is offering <span><a href="https://www.outbackspirittours.com.au/tours/lake-eyre-wilpena-pound-discovery/">6 and 7-day adventures</a></span> from Adelaide to showcase this phenomenal natural event. Their tours include three scenic flights aboard state-of-the-art turbine aircraft, giving a stunning perspective of the region in flood.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img style="text-align: center; width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7824957/birdlife-on-lake-eyre-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/c1f651a25007487c8184212abd51bfce" /></p> <p>Guests of Outback Spirit have exclusive access to visit Kalamurina Wildlife Sanctuary on the banks of the Warburton Creek. The sanctuary’s manager provides a fascinating explanation of the desert transformation following the arrival of the faraway floodwaters.</p> <p>Kalamurina is owned and operated by the Australian Wildlife Conservancy and is a property of exceptional conservation values. It encompasses a remarkable 1.7 million acres at the junction of the Munga-Thirri-Simpson Desert, the Tirari Desert and Sturt’s Stony Desert. The sanctuary is characterised by rolling dunefields, freshwater and saline lakes and is a refuge for unique desert wildlife.</p> <p>Travelling with an experienced and knowledgeable touring crew brings the landscape to life. Enthusiasm is infectious and Outback Spirit recruits and employ the best in the industry, requiring a minimum 10 years of heavy vehicle driving experience.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7824958/kalamurina-wildlife-sanctuary-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/3ec3b1ef96db4bbc807c2f570529b310" /></p> <p>The rugged landscapes of this remote region can be travelled in comfort, aboard Outback Spirit’s 5-star All Terrain Mercedes Benz tour vehicles. With generous legroom, an on-board restroom, satellite communication system, a state-of-the-art P.A. system and on-board refreshment station, this is the most comfortable way to see outback South Australia and the wonders of Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre.</p> <p>To find out more about the tours Outback Spirit has on offer to Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre, click <span><a href="https://www.outbackspirittours.com.au/destinations/kati-thanda-lake-eyre/">here</a></span>.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to take a look at the beauty of Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre.</p> <p><em>This is sponsored content brought to you in conjunction with <span><a href="https://www.outbackspirittours.com.au/destinations/kati-thanda-lake-eyre/">Outback Spirit</a></span>. </em></p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

The top 5 towns across Australia for 2019

<p><a href="https://travel.nine.com.au/2019/01/16/10/16/wotif-aussie-town-of-the-year-2019"><em>Wotif</em></a>, a website that provides reservation services for hotels in Australia and worldwide, has crunched the data to discover what the top 10 Australian towns are across the nation.</p> <p>The way that the data has been crunched is that <a href="https://travel.nine.com.au/2019/01/16/10/16/wotif-aussie-town-of-the-year-2019"><em>Wotif</em></a> have built a data index that examines each destinations affordability, demand, accommodation details and traveller reviews that have been left on the site.</p> <p>With smaller Aussie towns taking the top spots, you’ve got some new travel destinations in mind for 2019.</p> <p><strong>1. Port Fairy, Victoria </strong></p> <p>Port Fairy is a sweet and undiscovered fishing village at the end of the Great Ocean Road. However, the Port Fairy Folk Festival puts it on the map, as well as the local art scene. Visiting this town will immediately take you back to old Australia.</p> <p><strong>2. Albany, Western Australia</strong></p> <p>Head to the other side of the nation and you’ll discover Albany in Western Australia. This is as close as you’ll get to a historic European city within Australia, as it’s WA’s oldest European settlement. With a range of beautiful heritage buildings, museums and hiking trails to explore, you’re bound to enjoy yourself in Albany. Don’t forget to check out the wind turbines.</p> <p><strong>3. Port Augusta, South Australia</strong></p> <p>Port Augusta is the gateway to the Flinders Range and is located on the relaxing waterways of the Spencer Gulf. If natural beauty is what you’re after, look no further as the breathtaking sunsets that hit the town are a sight to be seen.</p> <p><strong>4. Bendigo, Victoria</strong></p> <p>Victoria has snagged the first and fourth spot on this list, as Bendigo is known as the biggest regional arts hub within the nation. Being home to the country’s largest regional art gallery, people travel from far and wide to see the creative work that is on display. The historical buildings that are littered throughout the old mining town aren’t bad to look at either.</p> <p><strong>5. Forster, NSW</strong></p> <p>If you’re interested in watching whales, look no further than the tiny NSW town of Forster. Whales trail up and down the coastline (sometimes with their new calves) during mid-September and late November. With almost untouched beaches and a variety of wildlife to look at, Forster is the place to be if you’re ever in NSW and want a relaxing escape from the daily grind.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see what the small towns look like.</p> <p>Did your town make the list? Let us know in the comments below.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

NSW and Queensland pummelled by severe thunderstorms

<p>NSW and Queensland have been pummelled by severe thunderstorms, and it doesn’t look like the weather is going to ease up over the weekend.    </p> <p>The NSW State Emergency Service (SES) responded to more than 620 calls for help overnight as the weather system made its way over the greater Sydney region and the South Coast.</p> <p>At one point during the storm, up to 25,000 homes were without power in Sydney.</p> <p>More than 20,000 lightning strikes were recorded across the greater Sydney area.</p> <p>With 60mm of rain falling in the west and just 10mm in the CBD, the impacts of the storm were felt across the Sydney region.</p> <p>Some houses were hit by large chunks of hail.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">It’s snowing in Sydney <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sydneystorm?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sydneystorm</a> <a href="https://t.co/xqqGxkz7hk">pic.twitter.com/xqqGxkz7hk</a></p> — Lexi McLeod (@lexi_mcleod) <a href="https://twitter.com/lexi_mcleod/status/1106087680683663360?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 14, 2019</a></blockquote> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">Hail in glenbrook. Not a lot of it but that which did fall was huge. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sydneystorms?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sydneystorms</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SydneyStorm?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SydneyStorm</a> <a href="https://t.co/1Ft2SIaYDH">pic.twitter.com/1Ft2SIaYDH</a></p> — John 🔴⚫⚽⚫🔴 (@sqljohn) <a href="https://twitter.com/sqljohn/status/1106098768775016448?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 14, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Some people were in awe at the natural thunderstorm that was happening in front of their eyes.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sydneylightening?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sydneylightening</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SydneyStorm?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SydneyStorm</a> from <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/freshwater?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#freshwater</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/poweroutsydney?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#poweroutsydney</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/northernbeaches?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#northernbeaches</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/Ausgrid?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Ausgrid</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/smh?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@smh</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/abcnews?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@abcnews</a> <a href="https://t.co/QVHC0tJMop">pic.twitter.com/QVHC0tJMop</a></p> — Remy Jansons (@RemyJansons) <a href="https://twitter.com/RemyJansons/status/1106160622239047680?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 14, 2019</a></blockquote> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">The burgers must be better.<br />This dude still wants his <a href="https://twitter.com/HungryJacksAU?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@HungryJacksAU</a> 😂😂 flood or no flood <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sydneystorm?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sydneystorm</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/storms?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#storms</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/weather?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#weather</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sydneystorm?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sydneystorm</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/funny?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#funny</a> <a href="https://t.co/eo7YVBWALi">pic.twitter.com/eo7YVBWALi</a></p> — Jim (@RealBoganJim) <a href="https://twitter.com/RealBoganJim/status/1106070591646228480?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 14, 2019</a></blockquote> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">Calm before the storm. Green clouds full of hail! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sydneystorm?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sydneystorm</a> <a href="https://t.co/7pWQCIl9FV">pic.twitter.com/7pWQCIl9FV</a></p> — Marky (@summitone77) <a href="https://twitter.com/summitone77/status/1106098986459361280?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 14, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Greg Murphy, the NSW SES deputy operations controller warned people that the Sydney storm isn’t over. He told <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.9news.com.au/2019/03/15/06/02/australia-weather-news-nsw-queensland-thunderstorms-rain-hail-winds-warnings-national-forecast" target="_blank"><em>9news</em></a>:</p> <p>"As a total, (we received) about 630 calls for assistance, which is not too bad considering the ferocity of the storm.</p> <p>"The outlook is for more storms perhaps tonight and into the weekend, so we may have more to come."</p> <p>Queensland didn’t get off easy either, with a completely separate heavy storm system making its way through south-east Queensland.</p> <p>With the Bureau of Meteorology warning Queenslanders of the “very dangerous cell” that was crossing areas from Warwick to Rainbow Beach, people did their best to stay out of the dangerous weather.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">Another active <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/QldStorm?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#QldStorm</a> day tomorrow. ⛈ Severe storms with damaging winds and heavy rainfall for the southern Central Highlands and <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SEQld?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SEQld</a>. Large hail possible over inland areas. ⚡️ Stay up to date with forecasts at <a href="https://t.co/xGN9MeK7sh">https://t.co/xGN9MeK7sh</a> <a href="https://t.co/B0aJNkxFH7">pic.twitter.com/B0aJNkxFH7</a></p> — Bureau of Meteorology, Queensland (@BOM_Qld) <a href="https://twitter.com/BOM_Qld/status/1106089796286451712?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 14, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Did you manage to stay dry during this wild weather? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

The one souvenir you should never take from Uluru

<p>Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park is in the red, hot centre of Australia and has been a World Heritage listed site since 1987 for its natural beauty and spectacular geological rock formation.</p> <p>It’s therefore unsurprising that people want to take a piece of this natural beauty home with them. There are many ways you can do this, whether it be through a stubby holder or through a sweet painting.</p> <p>However, some people opt for a more, er, interesting method.</p> <p><br />They take a piece of Uluru home with them. That’s right. Some tourists are opting to take rocks, pebbles, sand and twigs from Uluru.</p> <p>Sammy Wilson, a traditional owner of Aboriginal land, has said that the curse is unsurprising. He explains in a <a href="https://www.news.com.au/travel/australian-holidays/northern-territory/the-souvenir-from-uluru-you-should-never-take/news-story/31345382f651611f088775ae0eb16e5f">news.com.au</a> video:</p> <p>“Many people come to this place [Uluru] and often, they think it’s just a place. A site in the landscape.</p> <p>“What they don’t realise is that it’s full of Tjukurpa, our ancient traditional law.”</p> <p>People are realising that there are consequences when they take unsolicited souvenirs from Uluru.</p> <p>Parks Australia have said that they’re becoming overwhelmed with the number of letters and packages they receive from people around the world experiencing bad luck.</p> <p>“The practice of taking the rocks in the first place must stop. We can’t actually do anything with the returned materials,” a spokeswoman from Parks Australia said.</p> <p>An Australian author, Tim the Yowie Man, has recognised this phenomenon in his new book, <em>Haunted: Mysterious Australia.</em></p> <p>“Hundreds of visitors from all over the world are returning their illegal caches of rock and sand … often after experiencing bad luck attributed to their souvenirs – the curse of Uluru,” the book has said.</p> <p>Under Anangu law governing life and land, there are consequences for disrespecting the land. This has been confirmed by Parks Australia.</p> <p>There are also fines in place. Tourists who are caught trying to take rocks or sand from the park can expect to receive a fine of up to $8500.</p> <p>Have you ever visited Uluru? Let us know in the comments below.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

This stunning property has been named the best rental in Australia

<p>A country retreat located along the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria will set you back $1,000 a night. There’s a minimum two-night stay, and the retreat has been voted the best luxury rental in Australia.</p> <p>It’s called Orchard Keepers and has taken first place in the Indulgence category of the 2018 HomeAway Holiday Rental Awards.</p> <p>With a collection of hand-picked vintage and antique furniture pieces throughout the house, as well as being nestled between the vines and the orchards, this is a luxurious escape from the daily grind.</p> <p>With five bedrooms, three bathrooms and wood-burning fireplaces, it’s easy to see why this rental took out the first spot.</p> <p>The second-place silver winner is located in Gerringong, which is along the NSW South Coast. It’s called Jerrymara and is a luxurious rural home and estate that has had a lot of work put into it. Staying here costs $1,750 per night for a minimum of two nights.</p> <p>“We were looking for a year to find a property to call home, as well as run a business, when we found Jerrymara. It took us six months to make the final decision however, as there was a lot of work this property needed, and it was daunting,” Kate Edis told <a href="https://www.news.com.au/travel/travel-ideas/luxury/2018-homeaway-holiday-rental-awards/news-story/6f799be02e9399748720e9df136eac72">news.com.au.</a></p> <p>The third-place bronze winner was awarded to Copperstone KI, which is located in South Australia’s Kangaroo Island. The location offers views of the hinterland and Emu Bay Beach. Staying here costs $755 per night on average.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see the top three winners and why they took out the top spots.</p> <p>Which one would you stay at? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

Do you think this is Australia’s best beach?

<p>Aussies are proud of their beaches. As a whopping <a href="https://blog.id.com.au/2014/population/demographic-trends/how-centralised-is-australias-population/">85 per cent of Australians</a> have decided to live around the coastline, or at least living within 50km of the coastline, going to the beach is a welcome Aussie pastime.</p> <p>TripAdvisor has released their list of <a href="https://www.tripadvisor.com.au/TravelersChoice-Beaches">Best Beaches</a> around the world and have ruffled a few feathers in the process. The company compiles a list of the top 25 beaches based off reviews and star rankings from the millions of reviews that are on the site at any given day.</p> <p>Therefore, the list of TripAdvisor’s top 10 beaches worldwide is as follows:</p> <ol> <li>Baia do Sancho — Fernando de Noronha, Brazil</li> <li>Varadero Beach — Varadero, Cuba</li> <li>Eagle Beach — Palm — Eagle Beach, Aruba</li> <li>La Concha Beach — San Sebastian — Donostia, Spain</li> <li>Grace Bay Beach — Providenciales, Turks and Caicos</li> <li>Clearwater Beach — Clearwater, Florida</li> <li>Spiaggia dei Conigli — Sicily, Italy</li> <li>Seven Mile Beach — Seven Mile Beach, Cayman Islands</li> <li>Playa Norte — Isla Mujeres, Mexico</li> <li>Seven Mile Beach — Negril, Jamaica.</li> </ol> <p>Notice a glaring omission from that list?</p> <p>That’s right. No Australian beaches even cracked the top 10 of the world’s best beaches. The beach that did make the list? Manly Beach at no. 18.</p> <p>Many Aussies were furious that the beach that made the list was Manly Beach.</p> <p>“Has ‘TripAdvisor’ actually visited any of these beaches??” someone wrote on Facebook.</p> <p>“By NO MEANS is Manly the best beach in Sydney, possibly one of the easiest to get to but … it’s commercial / concrete / being destroyed by tourists who don’t seem to understand litter kills sea life. Personally I would say Tamarama is by far more pretty,” Someone wrote on Facebook.</p> <p>“Sydney beaches are always cold and dirty,” someone else wrote. “Queensland leave all Sydney beaches for dead.”</p> <p>And another person, commented, “Sydney beaches have nothing on Newcastle beaches.”</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see what the TripAdvisor best beaches winners look like.</p> <p>Do you think they are they better than Australian beaches? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

Lisa Wilkinson’s “forever home” is for sale

<p>The gorgeous Mosman residence in NSW once owned by Lisa Wilkinson and her husband Peter Fitzsimons with Harbour Bridge and Opera House views has hit the market.</p> <p>It’s got a lot of more modern features since the beloved couple first moved out, but it houses a lot of memories for the couple and their three children, Jake, Louis and Billi Fitzsimons.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7824526/gettyimages-819086378.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/01d427a6228f4a589d1f9a08d740dad9" /></p> <p>The five-bedroom, three-bathroom home – with a market value of $7.5 million – hosts gorgeous harbourside views as well as a healthy mix of informal and formal living spaces so everyone in the family has a place to call their own.</p> <p>The property spans over 1143spm, just a jump, hop and a skip away from Australia’s beloved Taronga Zoo, Balmoral Beach and a number of parks by the Harbour.</p> <p>The prime real estate is one of the largest freestanding properties located close to Mosman village, and is not too far from where Wilkinson’s former <em>Today </em>colleagues, Karl Stefanovic and Georgie Gardner reside.</p> <p>With high ornate ceilings and leadlight window, it's hard to understand just why Wilkinson and her husband let this home go.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BugDf2xFqhp/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BugDf2xFqhp/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by Lisa Wilkinson (@lisa_wilkinson)</a> on Mar 2, 2019 at 1:26am PST</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>In an article she wrote for <a href="https://10daily.com.au/lifestyle/homes/a190303lxr/lisa-wilkinson-why-our-first-house-will-forever-be-our-home-20190303">Ten Daily,</a> the TV show host explained the importance of her and Fitzsimons very first property together.  </p> <p>“What our house did have… was a warm hug for us from the moment we walked through that front door,” she wrote.</p> <p>“Like that great philosopher from <em>The Castle</em>, Darryl Kerrigan, always said, it was about ‘the vibe’.</p> <p>“…All the bones of the home we loved so much were all still there.</p> <p>“The memories too: from the tyre that used to hang in the gnarly old camphor laurel tree in the backyard, sleepless nights spent with newborns, tooth fairies, scraped knees, Easter egg hunts, birthday parties and fairy bread... they all came flooding back.”</p> <p>Wilkinson and Fitzsimons sold the Mosman home in 1998 for AUD$1.655 million after purchasing the property for AUD$875,000 five years before in 1993.</p> <p>Swipe through the gallery above to see the stunning Federation home.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

Australia’s "worst house" back on the market after incredible makeover

<p>The property that was declared “Australia’s worst house” in 2015 is back on the market with a brand new look.</p> <p>The original cottage was put on the market in 2015 and was deemed unsafe, unliveable and was literally falling to pieces.</p> <p>However, due to the location of the property, which is in Brisbane’s most sought-after inner-city suburbs in Dutton Park, bidders weren’t put off by the look of the <span>dilapidated </span><span>home</span><span>.</span></p> <p>The house was sold for $668,000, which was a whopping $170,000 over the reserve price.</p> <p>Ray White Stones Corner agent Gunther Behrendt sold the house to new owners Rina and Ryan Zlatkin. Behrendt said:</p> <p>“As you can appreciate, just to get the property off the land was a hell of a process.</p> <p>“It’s been an amazing journey for the owners and what they’ve been able to create is something to be very proud of.”</p> <p>Mother-and-son duo Rina and Ryan Zlatkin said that they had a vision for the property and wouldn’t stop until it was completed.</p> <p>“My son and I were stood outside this completely unliveable shack, with all its collapsed ceilings and termite infestation, but all we could see was our vision of a beautiful family home in its place.”</p> <p>The finished product is a Hamptons-style house, which Rina worked on with a local architect to ensure that the home suited their lifestyle but still complimented the character of the street.</p> <p>The house features five bedrooms, three bathrooms and two car spaces.</p> <p>“We put blood, sweat and tears in to building something that makes us feel genuinely warm and happy on the inside. It was worth every minute we spent on it.”</p> <p>However, as the Zlatkin's youngest son was accepted into a university in Melbourne, the whole family are moving and unfortunately don’t get to enjoy the work they put into their new home.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see the incredible before and after transformation of the home.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

The affordable way to see the Whitsunday Islands

<p>Over the last 60 years, Airlie Beach has captured people’s attention as the more modest part of the Queensland coast. As the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands, it receives a lot of attention.</p> <p>It’s been touted as more affordable for any wannabe island hoppers.However, Cyclone Debbie changed that. Residents mark time as “before Debbie” and “after Debbie”.</p> <p>Regeneration efforts are working hard within the area, as some islands are closed due to renovations.</p> <p>This has given tourists an opportunity to explore what else is around the Whitsundays. Bowen, which is 45 minutes north of Airlie Beach, is an old-style coastal town that even the local tourism body is trying to keep a secret.</p> <p>Bowen is known for the Big Mango, but that’s not the best thing that Bowen has to offer. With three vastly empty white sand beaches of Grays, Horseshoe and Coral Bay on offer, it wouldn’t be surprising if you’re reminded of South-east Asia instead of Australia.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BuWOwKkgoNz/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BuWOwKkgoNz/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by KASPER ANDERSEN (@kasperassenholt)</a> on Feb 26, 2019 at 5:52am PST</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>If you’ve already seen Bowen, maybe head on over to Paradise Cove. The Cove has hosted celebrities and foreign dignitaries as an exclusive getaway but is now offered to the public as a hideaway for those on a budget.</p> <p>There are guided tours from Airlie Beach that skirt up along Paradise Cove if you’re not looking to stay there.</p> <p>Long Island is also another hidden gem within the Whitsunday Islands. There are only two resorts nestled amongst palm trees and you won’t be able to arrive via the jetty as there isn’t one. Water taxi is the way to go as it’ll allow you to glide up on the sandy shoreline.</p> <p>You’re able to stay here for under $250 a night in a tropical bungalow that’s right along the water. The only downside for some is that the island is self-catered, which means you have to provide your own food.</p> <p>You’ll also be sharing the island with 60 other guests, which means there’s little to no chance of running into someone whilst you’re snorkelling, kayaking or relaxing on the sand.</p> <p>Have you been to the Whitsundays? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

How to see Hobart on any budget

<p>Tasmania is quickly becoming the foodie capital of Australia, as a wave of hotel development and direct flights from the Gold Coast and Adelaide make it easier to get to that end of Australia.</p> <p>For a city of 211,566, that’s not a bad thing at all.</p> <p>Destination Southern Tasmania chief executive Melinda Anderson says that Tasmania is full of unexpected discoveries.</p> <p>She told <a href="https://www.escape.com.au/australia/tasmania/hobart-tasmania-best-hotels-for-budget-midrange-luxury/news-story/eae76d82a42348697fc93f5e0e8b763e"><em>Escape</em></a><em>:</em></p> <p>“Foodies are flocking here, and drink producers are finding innovative ways to develop their craft. New eateries such as Atmosphere by Frogmore, Landscape, Pearl and Co and The Glasshouse are exciting new developments on Hobart’s waterfront.</p> <p>“Just a hop step and jump away you will find the Agrarian Kitchen and Eatery, and Fat Pig Farm showcasing our regional produce, not to mention award-winning distilleries including Grandvewe, Shene, Redlands and McHenry.”</p> <p>If your tastebuds are tempted, there are a few hotels available to suit your budget.</p> <p><strong>Affordable: Ibis Styles, Hobart</strong></p> <p>With 10 floors and 296 rooms to choose from, the Ibis Styles hotel in Hobart is bound to suit your needs. There’s an indoor pool, two saunas as well as an Asian restaurant within the hotel and as it’s located within the city, you’re never too far away from the action.</p> <p>A night here starts from $136.</p> <p><strong>Mid-range: The Old Woolstore Apartment Hotel</strong><a href="https://www.oldwoolstore.com.au/stay-in-hobart-cbd-v2.html"></a></p> <p>This four-star hotel is right within the centre of Hobart and just a six-minute walk from the Tasmanian Museum. You’ll feel right at home staying at a National Trust listed building that offers a balance of timeless charm and modern comfort.</p> <p>A night here starts from $263.</p> <p><strong>Luxury: Henry Jones Art Hotel</strong></p> <p>This five-star hotel is the first hotel in Australia to be completely dedicated to art. As it’s located within the Hunter Street precinct along Hobart, the hotel combines a modern feel with an industrial past.</p> <p>With 500 contemporary Tasmanian artworks along the hotel walls, the hotel is a mix of indulgence and discovery.</p> <p>A night here starts from $320.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to see what these hotels look like.</p> <p>Have you stayed in any of these hotels? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

You’ll never guess what the next ‘big’ thing is in Australia!

<p>Aussies love big things, according to data from Wotif. 40 per cent of us want to see more big things while we’re travelling. We’ve already got the Big Banana in Coffs Harbour, NSW and the Big Mango in Queensland – and there’s more than 150 to choose from across the nation.</p> <p>However, this clearly isn’t enough for Aussies. With 90 per cent of Australians having visited a ‘big thing’ in their lifetime and 39 per cent of people going out of their way to see a big thing, it’s clear that Aussies are surprisingly sentimental about largely shaped foods, vegetables, fruits and animals.</p> <p>It appears that the love has spread to the small town of Chinchilla. The town is only 300km west from Brisbane, Queensland and that’s the new home of the Big Melon.</p> <p>The Big Melon is nothing to sneeze at. It’s almost 9 metres wide, 3 metres tall and weighs four tonnes. You can’t miss it.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BqIeedkh9o6/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BqIeedkh9o6/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_medium=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by Wotif (@wotifcom)</a> on Nov 13, 2018 at 11:35am PST</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The Big Melon is an idea put forward by Australians who participated in the Wotif campaign, where the company was searching for the ‘Next Big Thing’ to celebrate its 18<sup>th</sup> birthday.</p> <p>Wotif managing director Daniel Finch was surprised by the amount of responses from participants, with final voting equating to 70 per cent of the Australian population.</p> <p>“It goes to show the significance of big things in Australia and how sentimental Aussies are about them,” Finch explained.</p> <p>“We know from our research that 40 per cent of Australians wish there were more big things to visit,” he says.</p> <p>“We are excited to be able to put not just the big cities, but also regional areas on the map, to create excitement within these communities and a new reason to visit, helping to boost local economies,” Finch added.</p> <p>“With the town now officially on the Aussie Big Things tourist map, we hope the Big Melon provides travellers with fruitful experiences for years to come, and we encourage all Aussies to consider a road trip to the region.”</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see some of the other ‘big things' within Australia.</p> <p>Are you going to see the Big Melon? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

Summer’s not over yet! Hot weather and heatwave warnings across Australia

<p>Summer has technically ended for Australia, but the hot weather is here to stay for at least another week.</p> <p>Much of Australia's south and south-east will feel the heat in the coming week, thanks to the “blocking high” wind on the Tasman Sea that is bringing funnel desert heat down.</p> <p>South Australia, Victoria and Tasmania could expect to swelter through a hot weekend as the Bureau of Meteorology predicted severe heatwaves until Saturday, and for longer in some areas.</p> <p>"Weather records could be broken over the next week," said Tom Saunders, meteorologist at <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.news.com.au/technology/environment/severe-heatwave-forecast-for-south-australia-victoria-and-tasmania/news-story/a1056095bec72f6889c9ae4f3004361c" target="_blank">Sky News Weather</a>.</p> <p>Melbourne is predicted to hit 37C on Friday, while Hobart could reach 37C on Saturday. Adelaide might fare worse, with the potential to hit 40C on Friday and Saturday, and 37C on Sunday.</p> <p>The South Australian State Emergency Service has released an extreme heatwave emergency warning for Adelaide and the state, encouraging people to keep cool and stay hydrated throughout the period.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en-gb"> <p dir="ltr">⚠ Extreme Heatwave Emergency Warning for <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Adelaide?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Adelaide</a> &amp; <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SouthAus?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SouthAus</a> Take action to make sure you and your family stay well during this heat event <a href="https://t.co/L7fvDg2ZpT">https://t.co/L7fvDg2ZpT</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BeathTheHeat?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#BeathTheHeat</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Heatwave?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Heatwave</a> <a href="https://t.co/aFGUdVOv74">pic.twitter.com/aFGUdVOv74</a></p> — SA SES (@SA_SES) <a href="https://twitter.com/SA_SES/status/1100524317115277313?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">26 February 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Total Fire Bans have been placed on seven districts around South Australia that are at a "Severe" risk, including the Mount Lofty Ranges and the Lower South East.</p> <p>A Total Fire Ban has also been placed on Victoria's south-west region for today, which is also at the "Severe" level of risk.</p> <p>Canberra is expected to be in the 30s until Wednesday, while Penrith in New South Wales could get as hot as 39C next week. In the north, Darwin will hit 33C on Friday and Saturday.</p> <p>Perth remains mostly temperate, with 23C forecasted for today and an expected return to the low-30s on Sunday. However, Kalgoorlie reached 45.3C yesterday, hitting a record high for a February day in 80 years. Emergency WA has enforced Total Fire Bans for 10 regions in the state's south-east.</p> <p>How will the weather be in your city for the next week and how are you planning to stay cool? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

6 natural Aussie wonders everyone should see once in their lifetime

<p>Australia is known as the land of natural beauty. With natural wonders such as the Great Barrier Reef and Uluru, it’s hard not to see why.</p> <p>There are some beautiful spots around the country that get overlooked, as they’re simply unheard of. Scroll through the gallery above to see our top six Australian natural wonders across the nation.</p> <p><strong>1. Painted desert, South Australia</strong><a href="https://www.gettyimages.com.au/detail/news-photo/the-ochre-hued-terrain-of-the-painted-desert-rises-above-news-photo/97395849"></a></p> <p>There are hundreds of cone-like structures that scatter across the landscape in ranges of different colours. Getting here is no easy task though. You’re going to have to drive 150km past Arckaringa Station, which is near Coober Pedy.</p> <p>However, once you’re here, you simply climb up the path that leads to the top of the ridge. Make sure to bring plenty of water to stay hydrated.</p> <p><strong>2. East MacDonnell Ranges, Northern Territory</strong></p> <p>The East MacDonnell Ranges in the Northern Territory has a lot to offer. With great scenery, walking tracks and seasonal swimming holes, there’s plenty to do. Drive along the sealed Ross Highway from Alice Springs for 83km to get here. Beware though: Some of the walks available are a steep climb.</p> <p><strong>3. Karinjini National Park, Western Australia</strong></p> <p>This national park showcases a range of colours in the deep and rocky outcrops of Pilbara. As it’s 320km inland from Port Hedland, it’s not an easy journey, but swimming in cold pools at the base of cavernous gorges makes it all worth it.</p> <p><strong>4. Daintree National Park, Queensland</strong></p> <p>Daintree National Park is a World Heritage listed site. However, as you’re in the rainforest, it’s important to be aware of crocodiles, jellyfish and cassowaries, as you’re in their home.</p> <p>Enjoy the rainforest-filled slopes that meet the sandy beaches and relax. There are extensive walking tracks available, as well as fascinating wildlife to see.</p> <p><strong>5. Cradle Mountain, Tasmania</strong></p> <p>Tasmania can often be forgotten about as it’s down the bottom of Australia, but Cradle Mountain can remind you of what you’re missing. With a wild landscape, waterfalls and a wealth of wildlife to discover, including the Tasmanian Devil, this is not one to be missed.</p> <p><strong>6. Jervis Bay, New South Wales</strong><a href="https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/hyams-beach-jervis-bay-national-park-304611575"></a></p> <p>Jervis Bay is a natural wonderland and the perfect escape for a weekend, as it’s less than three hours away from Sydney and Canberra. Explore Jervis Bay Marine Park, which is a haven for bottlenose dolphins, fur seals and migrating whales. You’re also able to stroll on some of the whitest sand in the world on the White Sands Walk.</p> <p>Did we miss one of your favourite spots in Australia? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

Inside Olivia Newton-John's $5.5 million Aussie mansion: "Selling with a heavy heart"

<p>After owning the extravagant home for 40 years, it’s with a heavy heart that Olivia Newton-John has decided to sell her home in Ballina, in northern NSW. Newton-John has trusted her longtime friend and now real estate agent Jillian McGrath with the sale of her 187-acre home, which has an asking price of $5.5 million.</p> <p>“We flew up to the area during her 1980<span> </span><em>Grease</em>-era as she wanted somewhere she would have extreme privacy,” McGrath explained.</p> <p>“Since then she bought up adjoining properties, had over 4000 trees planted and has created a beautiful sanctuary.</p> <p>“She hopes that the person who buys this will live here full-time or a family will enjoy it; she wants someone to love it as much as she has.”</p> <p>McGrath made a point to mention that the decision to sell the beloved home has nothing to do with Newton-John’s health, as she has recently been diagnosed with cancer for the third time.</p> <p>“This decision is nothing to do with her health," the real estate agent noted. </p> <p>“It’s an ideal residence or maybe for someone who wants it as a holiday escape, as it has been this to her.”</p> <p>The luxury escape has four bedrooms, three bathrooms, a creek, two dams and a tennis court.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to see inside Newton-John's magnificent property. </p> <p><em>Photo credits: Domain.com.au</em></p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

Enjoy Adelaide on any budget with these hotels

<p>Adelaide often gets neglected when it comes to concert lineups and tourists, but that doesn’t need to be the case for you. If you’re looking to give the state that hosts the Great Australian Bight some love, that’s easy to do no matter what budget you’ve got.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to check out the hotels that are listed below.</p> <p><strong>Affordable</strong><a href="https://www.accorhotels.com/gb/hotel-8822-ibis-adelaide/index.shtml#section-rooms"></a></p> <p>The Ibis in Adelaide is in a location that’s central to everything that Adelaide has to offer, whether that’s Rundle Mall or the casino (depending on what you like doing!). With each of the Ibis’ 311 rooms showing off the Adelaide Hills, it’s easy to relax and kick your feet up in this hotel. There are a variety of room types available, which include a choice between a Standard room or a Superior room.</p> <p>Depending on when you go, this room can set you back $100 a night depending on the room type you choose.</p> <p><strong>Mid-range</strong></p> <p>The Majestic Hotel Roof Garden in Adelaide offers a central city location as well as a surprise on the rooftop. The 4.5-star hotel offers a roof garden filled with plant walls whilst showing off the skyline of Adelaide.</p> <p>Each room has unlimited Wi-Fi and reverse cycle air conditioning. If you really want to treat yourself though, splurge on a superior or balcony room, as these are the rooms that come with bathtubs. There’s an award-winning onsite restaurant that sources wines from all around the state.</p> <p>A room here will cost about $120 overnight, but this price varies depending on room type, length of stay and time of year you go.</p> <p><strong>Luxury</strong></p> <p>With 10 different room types to choose from, you’re spoilt for choice at the Mayfair Hotel in Adelaide. The hotel was built in 1934 and opened as a boutique hotel in 2015, which makes it Adelaide’s latest five-star hotel available for the public.</p> <p>The central location of the hotel makes it easy to walk to Hindley, Rundle Mall and more. If you’re feeling adventurous, head to the River Torrens.</p> <p>However, if you enjoy the finer things in life, head to the hotel’s restaurant The Mayflower and enjoy some high tea. There’s also another restaurant within the hotel called The Den, which offers high-quality bistro food in stunning surrounds. There’s an enticing cake display available too if you’re looking to indulge your sweet tooth.</p> <p>Have you been to Adelaide before? Did you enjoy it? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

The votes are in! Melbourne beats Sydney in top 10 cities around the world

<p>Can you hear that? It’s the cheering of Melbourne residents who finally have proof that where they live is better than Sydney.</p> <p>According to <a href="https://www.cntraveler.com/galleries/2014-10-20/top-25-cities-in-the-world-readers-choice-awards-2014"><em>Conde Nast Traveler</em></a>, the top 10 cities around the world have been decided by millions of voters. In news that will shock Sydneysiders, Melbourne has beaten Sydney.</p> <p>The top 10 big cities, according to <em>Conde Nast Traveler,</em> are:</p> <ol> <li>Tokyo, Japan</li> <li>Kyoto, Japan</li> <li>Melbourne, Australia</li> <li>Vienna, Austria</li> <li>Hamburg, Germany</li> <li>Sydney, Australia</li> <li>Singapore</li> <li>Paris, France</li> <li>Barcelona, Spain</li> <li>Vancouver, B.C., Canada</li> </ol> <p>With Melbourne coming in third on the list of around-the-world cities, it’s easy to see why:</p> <p>“At once sophisticated, stylish and seemingly free-spirited, Melbourne has all of the traits you'd want in a friend – and an incredible arts scene. Visit Gertrude Contemporary for eye-popping installations by emerging Australian artists; take an Urban Scrawl street tour; and drive 20 minutes to the world-renowned Heide Museum of Modern Art. In this city, each morning should start with a flat white.”</p> <p>For contemporary and modern art fans, travelling to Melbourne is ideal, especially with places like the Gertrude Contemporary available, which is free to the public.</p> <p>However, Sydney isn’t too far behind, ranking in at number six. The magazine couldn’t forget to mention Australia’s largest city:</p> <p>“Australia’s biggest city is an ideal getaway no matter the season. Dine alfresco, swim like a Sydneysider in rock pools, and head to Bondi and Redleaf beaches in the summer (remember, that’s during US winter); in winter, explore the city’s vibrant arts and culture calendar through Vivid Sydney and make time to eat out in Paddington, check out the cool-kid 'hood of Surry Hills, and ferry over to Manly, Australia’s answer to Montauk.”</p> <p>The first city in the list was Tokyo, Japan, which is the first-place holder for the second year in a row. With ultramodern neon-lit skyscrapers as well as temples and centuries old etiquette, it’s hard to beat.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to discover what the top 10 world cities look like.</p> <p>What’s your favourite city from this list? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel

Placeholder Content Image

TripAdvisor reveals Australia’s best hotels for 2019

<p>TripAdvisor has recently announced the winners of its Travellers’ Choice Awards for Australian hotels in 2019.</p> <p>If it sounds like an impressive feat, that’s because it is. The top winners have been judged by the millions of reviews and opinions collected in one year from users on TripAdvisor. You don’t even have to be Australian-based to vote, as many were visitors from around the world.</p> <p>These are the top five places as voted by millions of TripAdvisor users. Click through the gallery to see what they look like!</p> <p><strong>1. Ovolo Woolloomooloo, Sydney NSW </strong></p> <p>This hotel boasts modern luxury, but also adds a sense of history as it’s right along the Woolloomooloo Wharf in Sydney. It’s a stone’s throw away from the Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge and has accessible rooms as well as free wi-fi.</p> <p><strong>2. Pinetrees Lodge, Lord Howe Island  </strong></p> <p>Reviewers couldn’t be happier with this secluded lodge in Lord Howe Island, as the hotel is a nice escape from everyday life. With snorkelling, surfing and much more on offer, as well as spectacular rooms, it’s easy to see why reviewers keep coming back.</p> <p><strong>3. Ovolo 1888, Darling Harbour, Sydney NSW </strong></p> <p>This hotel caught people’s attention for its location and the unique history that surrounds the hotel, as it was originally constructed as a wool store and factory in 1888. The hotel, whilst still remaining modern, brings together the charm of olden days Sydney whilst still providing a level of comfort.</p> <p><strong>4. Peninsula Boutique Hotel, Port Douglas, QLD </strong></p> <p>This hotel overlooks the famous Four Mile Beach and is exceptionally close to Macrossan Street, where there are a variety of shops and restaurants to choose from. With a tiered heated pool as well as being close to the beach, you can’t ask for much more than that.</p> <p><strong>5. Korte’s Resort, Rockhampton, QLD </strong></p> <p>Located at the beautiful location of Rockhampton, Queensland, guests were very pleased with the tropical oasis on offer from Korte’s Resort. Reviewers were a fan of the reasonable rates, as well as the cleanliness and modern stylings within the rooms.</p> <p>Have you stayed at any of these places? Which one was your favourite? Let us know in the comments.</p>

Domestic Travel