For 30,000 years the Yamatji people called it Ningaloo, which means ‘deepwater’ or ‘high land jutting out into the sea’. Pretty appropriate for Australia’s biggest fringing reef. Ningaloo sits way out on the western edge of Western Australia, just near the coastal town of Exmouth (aka the Gateway to Ningaloo).
A lot of places are spruiked as ‘remote’ or ‘un-mapped’, and it’s easy to get a little cynical. Yeah, yeah, we think, there’s probably a McDonalds on every corner and a herd of selfie snapping tourists beating a well-worn path to the gift shop.
No one quite knows why, but there’s a twist in the Australian psyche that has made countless Aussies dedicate their lives to the construction of Big Things. These aren’t big important things like skyscrapers, or big beautiful things like bridges or sculptures, they’re just everyday objects magnified to about 200 times their actual size.
American comedian Arj Barker once came up with an experiment to put the Australian vernacular to the test. Suspicious of what he was sure were just made-up words sprinkled into Aussie conversation for his benefit, he thought he’d try it himself. A store assistant came up to him one day and asked if he needed any help. Arj turned to him, looked him right in the eye and said, ‘No thanks, I’m just having a little squidjerididge’. To which the salesman replied, ‘No problem mate, let me know if you need anything.’
Far to the north of Melbourne’s laneway cafés and Sydney’s glittering waterfront, you’ll find Australia’s Wet Tropics World Heritage Area – 450 kilometres of steamy rainforest canopy, babbling creeks and lush mountain ridges.
You might have done so much planning and preparation that you already feel like you know a place before you visit. But as Debora Hoffman discovered when she left her United States homeland for a holiday in Oz, there are always bound to be a few things that you weren’t expecting Down Under…
“Thinking of Australia holidays? We found some surprises:
– It’s really, really far away. OK, this one wasn’t a surprise, but it is somewhat astonishing; it takes 30 hours to get to Melbourne. And that’s on Australia’s east coast. To get to Perth, on the west coast, takes another 4 hours. That is a brutal amount of time to be on airplanes, leaving you smelly, cranky and your brain on stun from the four movies you watched.
When a Perth-based friend recently decided to move back to Australia’s East Coast, the opportunity for an adventure was too good for Sophie Suelzle to pass up. Sophie and her boyfriend packed their bags, borrowed a tent and booked a one-way ticket to partake in what would be the most epic road trip of their young(ish) lives…
“It is a strange thing to have explored numerous places overseas, yet never the country you call home. Shamefully, until the beginning of this year, I could honestly say I had barely ventured out of Victorian borders, except for a solitary school camping trip.
Australia’s southernmost state of Tasmania is overflowing with reasons to visit. From World Heritage-listed Cradle Mountain to Wineglass Bay, voted one of the world’s top 10 best beaches, the island is a haven for nature lovers and foodies alike. There’s also a new star when it comes to Tassie must-sees and Intrepid’s Helen Stevens introduces us to this local gem that is much more than just another museum…
“Situated in Berridale, a working class suburb perhaps previously best known for its proximity to the Cadbury factory, the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) has become THE reason to visit Hobart. It boasts a world-class collection of all forms of art, from painting to sculpture and new media featuring Australian and international artists. But don’t expect the usual gallery experience.