This is a Guest Post by Ali Dempsey of Global Basecamps.

In Australia you can discover lush rainforests, beautiful deserts, rugged mountains, and of course white sand beaches.  It is an ideal location for everyone from outdoor enthusiasts and adrenaline junkies, to those looking to simply enjoy the scenery and relax on the beach.  No matter where your Australia tour takes you, you’re sure to discover the country’s natural beauty, laid back atmosphere and colorful locals.  With a variety of terrain and an abundance of activity Australia offers some truly unique off-the-beaten-path adventures.

Daintree Rainforest:

Located near Daintree, Queensland, Daintree Rainforest is one of the oldest rainforests in the world.  It includes approximately 1,2000 square kilometers from the Daintree River north to Cooktown and west to the Great Divide.  The Daintree region offers many natural landscapes to explore, including mountain ranges, streams and waterfalls, deep gorges, and dense rainforest.  One the coast you’ll find white sand beaches and fringing reefs. Daintree Eco Lodge and Spa is an ideal accommodation if visiting this incredible area.  The lodge consists of 15 tranquil rainforest cottages.  Ecotourism is essential for the lodge to help preserve the surrounding natural environment and culture.  Daintree offers Aboriginal guided rainforest walks as well as an Aboriginal art workshop, where guests can learn about traditional life and history.  In addition to lodge operations, including waste management, energy management, and environmental preservation, Daintree Eco Lodge formed a partnership with the Australian Greenhouse Office (AGO), focusing on reducing greenhouse emissions and energy management assessments.

Blackheath:

Blackheath is a small mountain town in New South Wales with an abundance of natural beauty and picturesque scenery.  It is the highest town above sea level in the Blue Mountains, which are just 90 minutes away from Sydney.  Explore the Blue Mountains National Park and the many lookout points at Blackheath, including Govett’s Leap, Evans Lookout, Grose Valley, and Hargreaves.  Venture into the Grose Valley to see Edenderry and Hilary Falls.  You can see some Aboriginal history off of Evans Lookout Road where you’ll discover caves believed to have been occupied over 10,000 years ago.  A unique resort located in Blackheath is Kanimbla View Clifftop Retreat.  This 12 acre retreat sits at the top of breathtaking cliffs and offers activities including tennis, walking tours, golf, yoga, hang-gliding, horse-back riding, rock climbing, and mountain biking.  All cottages are solar powered and furnished with natural and recyclable materials.

Cape Leveque:

Cape Leveque is on the tip of the Dampier Peninsula about 220 km north of Broome.  Though Cape Leveque can be difficult to get to, it is well worth the effort once you see the pristine beaches and red cliffs.  A 4WD vehicle is recommended for the drive and the road is not suitable for caravans.  During wet season, the road may be closed to traffic. Though Cape Leveque is very remote these is a unique Aboriginal owned eco lodge, offering safari tents, ensuite cabins, log cabins, mini safari tents, beach camping shelters, and campground units.  Cape Leveque offers great swimming, fishing, snorkeling, whale watching, bird spotting, and scenic tours.

Jervis Bay:

Jervis Bay is one of a few marine parks located in New South Wales, a few hours south of Sydney.  Jarvis was originally a small fishing town, and though it has grown considerably it seems to be more popular among locals and Australian tourists as opposed to international travelers.  The main town of Jervis Bay is Huskinsson, which has a variety of cafes and restaurants.  Jervis Bay has a wide variety of wildlife, both marine life and animals found in the nearby National parks.  You can see dolphins, whales, seals, penguins, sea eagles, pelicans, and kangaroos among other things.  Aboriginal tribes have been living in Jervis Bay area for over 20,000 years and there is plenty of history and culture to experience.   They continue to live in the Booderee National Park area, and there are a number of eco tours that showcase the lives of these native Australians.  Paperbark Camp is a unique luxury tented accommodation option in Jervis Bay, offering complimentary bikes and canoes to explore the local area.

Uluru Red Center:

Our in country partner in Australia specializes in creating an authentic bush experience, featuring small group tours that venture far way from the crowds, exploring bush tracks in 4WD, swimming in remote waterholes, cooking over an open fire, and sleeping under the stars in a swag (Aussie bush bed).  The Uluru tour begins by heading south to Erldunda, passing through the Waterhouse and James Rangers with a stop at a camel farm and Mt Ebenezer Roadhouse, where you can buy Aboriginal artifacts.  You will have the opportunity to learn about local Aboriginal law and religion on a guided walking tour at the base of Uluru. At sunset, you can observe the beautiful colors of Uluru and at sunrise you will be able to see Uluru and Kata Tjuta (The Olgas) from the campsite.  The third day will be spent exploring Watarrka (Kings Canyon), visiting the Amphitheatre and the Lost City, as well as enjoying a swim in the serene “Garden of Eden.”  Also available is a 2 day cultural safari that visits 4 Aboriginal communities surrounding Alice Springs.   Travelers have the opportunity to learn about the Aborigine’s art, history and relationship with the land, hunting style, and way of life.

-guest post by Global Basecamps

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