Top National Parks
Australia has an abundance of beautiful national parks, packed full of wildlife. HomeAway.com.au features some of our favourites with guides on all you need to know about what do to when you get there.
With its dense, lustrous bushland and intriguing regional wildlife, it's no wonder that Australia is home to some of the best national parks in the world. Travellers looking to explore the gorgeous nature of the country may be hard pressed to select which conservation reserve they want to visit, but rest assured that, no matter what destination you choose, there's a lush landscape nearby waiting to be explored. Be sure to check out one of these top national parks on your next holiday:
Daintree National Park
Located in Far North Queensland, Daintree National Park is one of the country's most-visited landscapes. One of the reasons is because it contains two of the most popular natural attractions: the Mossman Gorge and Cape Tribulation. Visitors can sneak peeks at the sparkling Mossman River waters that pour out over the gorge's beautiful granite rocks. You'll also be able to explore the lush greenery coating the mountaintops of Cape Tribulation, which is home to one of the world's most diverse collection of plants and animals in the world.
Kakadu National Park
For an exploration of the largest national park in Australia, head to Kakadu. This landscape has a unique ethnological importance - it has been continuously inhabited for the past 40,000 years by the indigenous Bininj/Mungguy people. Along with a stunning display of nature and wildlife, from dense monsoon forests to exotic waterbirds, the site is home to an array of ancient sites that contain cave paintings and rock carvings created by prehistoric hunter-gatherers who are ancestors to the tribes that still reside here.
Kosciuszko National Park
This beloved national park, which is named after the 2,000-metre-high Mount Kosciuszko, attracts more than 3 million people every year. It has a rich history - Aboriginal people survived off this land for tens of thousands of years - but its biggest draw is its opportunities for outdoor adventures. The 690,000-hectare park is the place to go snowboarding, snowshoeing and skiing, among other cold-weather sports. But in summertime, it offers ideal conditions for hiking through winding trails, rock-climbing, mountain biking and simply trekking the alpine landscape.
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park is a nature-lovers playground filled with picturesque geological formations laid out over red-sand plains. It's named after its main feature, which the locals are familiar with, Ayers Rock: Uluru. To the west of Uluru, you'll find Kata Tjuta, or Mount Olga, large dome-shaped rocks that are the source of many Dreamtime legends. These formations and other sandstone features of the site are the effect of a unique process of erosion, folding and faulting that took place over hundreds of thousands of years.
Great Sandy National Park
Spanning over 655 hectares, this verdant green landscape is a tropical rainforest encompassing Fraser Island, which is the most expansive sand island on earth and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here, visitors can enjoy pristine beaches and rolling dunes alongside clarion freshwater lakes and delightful creeks. Those seeking an adventure will especially enjoy this national park - you can canoe or kayak along the waterways, explore coastal cliffs and navigate a four-wheeler through the rugged terrain. Fishing is also big here, whether you want to angle from shorefront or out on the water in a boat rental.
Bay of Fires Conservation Park
Make your way to the eastern coast of Tasmania to visit the Bay of Fires Conservation Park. This exquisite landscape stretches from the northern Eddystone Point all the way down to Binalong Bay, providing a breathtaking view of the harbour as well as The Gardens. Its unusual name may throw some people off, but there's no need to worry about fires at this locale - it got its name back in the late 1700s, when explorer Captain Tobias Furneaux notices fires along lining the coast, which were built and controlled by the Aboriginal people that resided here.
Purnululu National Park
If you're visiting the state of Western Australia, be sure to take an afternoon to explore Purnululu National Park, which covers nearly 240,000 hectares of the Kimberley region. Among its abundant flora and fauna, you'll come across unusual geological features such as the Bungle Bungle Range. This assembly of quartz sandstone that date back to the Devonian Period and came to their current beehive shape thanks to some 20 million years of erosion. In fact, they're of great interest to geologists around the globe thanks to the rare single-cell photosynthetic organisms, known as cyanobacteria, that keep the sandstone formations preserved.