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Hamish And Zoë Foster-Blake Share The Aussie Destinations At The Top Of Their Bucket Lists

As we’ve all heard. by now, international travel has been more or less pushed back until the end of next year (with an exception for New Zealand, it seems). Yes, it’s a bummer, but looking on the bright side, we can now explore all those epic Aussie places we keep putting off.

As if we needed the extra motivation, but now travel restrictions are beginning to ease, a fun holiday for us also helps support many communities and operators who rely on tourism to get back on their feet (thanks Covid).

To help you narrow down your endless options, everyone’s favourite funny-man, Hamish Blake, has been kind enough to shared the top five destinations on his Australian travel bucket list.

#1 Bay of Fires, TAS

 

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“I have had mates who’ve raved about the natural beauty. I also love that it’s a little tricky to get to, so it’s quieter. I think those spots are always worth it” – Hamish Blake.

Crystal-clear waters, white sandy beaches and eye-catching orange lichen-covered boulders all await you in Tassie’s Bay Of Fires. You can take a four-day guided tour along this section of coastline stretching from Binalong Bay to Eddystone Point, or take an afternoon cruise to catch the whales, fur seals, sea lions and dolphins that call this place home at different times of the year.

#2 Great Barrier Reef, QLD

 

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If you’ve never been to the largest coral reef system in the world, now is absolutely the time. It’s 2,300 kilometres long, so there are plenty of locations to pick from if you want to swim, snorkel, dive or sail this natural world wonder. Join Dreamtime Dive & Snorkel for tours led by Aboriginal guides from the region and a rare chance to discover the traditional ownership and significance of the reef. Spend the night in luxe accomodation like Orpheus Island Lodge or Elysian Retreat.

#3 The Kimberley, WA

 

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“I have never been and simply can’t wait. My wife is big on finding an oasis to swim in. I know her dream waterhole is out there” – Hamish Blake.

You can’t go passed two billion years of history — from ochre rock formations created during intense movements of the earth to a rich Indigenous heritage. Hamish isn’t wrong about the stunning waterfalls and natural swimming holes that can be found here either. A cruise boat is one of the most popular ways to take in the sights, with multi-day tours departing from Broome, Wyndham and sometimes Darwin.

#4 Karijini National Park, WA

 

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On this trip described by travellers as a journey to ‘the centre of the earth’, you’ll find some of the world’s most impressive freshwater pools in remote, natural surrounds. Set yourself up at Karijini eco-retreat then spend your time exploring the many trails through the park. A popular one is the hike through the Hancock Gorge trail to the private watering hole named Kermits Pool, nestled between narrow passages and rugged rock faces.

#5 Bruny Island, TAS

 

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“I love a bit of rugged coast and Bruny does rugged well from what I hear and my intensive googling” – Hamish Blake.

On the other side of an easy ferry ride from Hobart, lies the wilderness oasis of Bruny Island. This rugged and relatively untouched landscape draws many people for weekend day trips, but it’s worth staying longer to explore the many walking tracks and pristine beaches that are perfect for swimming, surfing and fishing. Not to mention it’s a bit of a wine and cheese haven.

#6 Ningaloo Reef, WA

 

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Australia’s ‘other’ reef, is Ningaloo. It may be less famous, but it’s just as breathtaking. Here you can get up close with the worlds biggest fish, whale shark, turtles, tropical fish, dolphins and more — all calling this colourful coral garden home. Go it alone or join a tour in Exmouth or Coral Bay. It’s recommended to pick a boat with its own spotter plane for best results.

#7 Kangaroo Island, SA

 

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“I have always wanted to visit, and after the bushfires I’m even more motivated to go and show some love to a very special part of Australia as they recover” – Hamish Blake.

It’s been a tough year for Kangaroo Island, with almost half of it affected by bushfires, and then travel restrictions. None of this, however, has ruined its beauty. In fact, ecotourism group, Exceptional Kangaroo Island, has partnered with local charity Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife to take tours around the largest part of untouched bushland on the western end of the island so you can actively take part in conservation efforts to regenerate the island’s vast wilderness.

#8 Uluru, NT

 

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Recently placed in the top three of Lonely Planet’sbest places to see in the world‘, Uluru is the most unique rock you’ll ever come across. Everyone who visits talks about the powerful presence they feel upon arrival, so it’s no wonder it’s such a scared site. Take it all in with the four-hour dining experience at the Sounds of Silence, served on a viewing platform overlooking the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

#9 Lord Howe Island, NSW

 

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“I guess I’m just collecting islands now? But Lord Howe must be visited. Again, I’m going heavily off mates and Google but I love trying to find pristine environments and from what I gather, it does not get much more pristine” – Hamish Blake.

This World Heritage-listed island is a natural and laidback paradise only an hour’s flight from Sydney or Brisbane. Only 400 visitors are allowed on the island at one time, and there are only 300 permanent residents, so the place is kept pristine.  Swim with turtles, take a snorkelling tour, join a glass bottom boat tour or take an trek up Mount Gower, which is considered to be one of the Great Walks of Australia.

(Lead Image: Provided / Tourism Australia)