02 April, 2018
Last updated on 13 November, 2021
Posted by Spaceships Crew
If there’s one thing we’ve learnt from road-tripping Down Under in our trusty Spaceship campers, it’s that in Australia, there’s never a dull moment. Everything in Oz is exciting, exhilarating, sometimes even life-changing. Here are 37 incredible things that you just have to check out whilst driving through Australia
1. Drive the Great Ocean Road
If you’re looking for the ultimate road trip, we would definitely recommend the Great Ocean Road. It’s a famous stretch of stunning coastline (passing the Twelve Apostles) and it’s also one of our favourite drives.
This has to be one of the most famous, most incredible things you can do in Oz. Apparently, the Great Barrier Reef is so big that it can even be seen from space! It’s made up of over 600 types of hard and soft coral and is home to countless species of fish, molluscs, turtles, dolphins and sharks.
3. See The Pinnacles in Nambung
These incredible limestone formations will make you feel like you’ve landed on another planet – plus they’re a photographer’s dream so be sure to pack your camera. In addition to The Pinnacles, believed to be made from broken down seashells blown inland, Nambung is also known for its beautiful beaches (Kangaroo Point and Hangover Bay) so you can combine a desert and beach experience and enjoy a few days of exploration in this coastal region.
4. See Uluru at sunset
This huge sandstone monolith is located in the Red Centre of the Northern Territory. Adventure addicts love to climb to the top – although the locals will tell you that it’s a very strenuous ascend, sometimes even dangerous. If you don’t like heights, simply enjoy the views from the ground and bring your camera for the golden sunset. It’s so beautiful.
5. Have a “Barbie” at Burleigh Point
There are so many wonderful places to enjoy a classic Aussie BBQ but one of our favourite barbie spots has to be Burleigh Point. The BBQ area has plenty of space and great facilities, grassy areas for relaxing on, and it gives you direct access to the unspoilt beach.
6. Take a Sydney-Brisbane Road Trip
Ride the Legendary Pacific Coast with your windows down from Sydney to Brisbane (a serious surfer and backpacker paradise) and enjoy some awesome beaches, amazing waves, great food and drink and a lively party atmosphere along the way. Don’t miss the unspoiled waters of Port Stephens and be sure to chase the waves at Gold Coast.
7. Go Camping at Kakadu National Park
You can pitch up a tent or simply park up your Spaceship at Kakadu National Park, an incredible area of natural beauty near Darwin in Australia's tropical north. There are a number of waterfall walks and you can even take a dip in the water. But please beware and look out for the signposts – as some areas are teeming with crocs!
8. Swim in Fraser Island’s Champagne Pools
This has got to be one of the most spectacular experiences when it comes to exploring Australia’s beautiful Fraser Island. The Champagne Pools by Waddy Point Bypass form natural Jacuzzi pools which have been created by the volcanic rocks. Wind down, relax, enjoy the views and let the warm bubbling water soothe your soul (and your muscles).
9. Climb Mount Gower at Lord Howe Island
Mount Gower is rated as one of Australia’s best walks year after year, by numerous publications and review sites. This iconic peak on the island of Lord Howe offers mind-blowing views plus some of the rarest wildlife and plant life in the world, and costs around $70 per person for a guided walk.
10. Visit Sydney Harbour Bridge at Night
Some sights in Sydney will always make our bucket list, and Sydney Harbour Bridge is one of them. But don’t just see it in the day in all its metallic glory. Rock up at night with a decent camera to capture all the pretty lights and the reflections of the city in the water.
11. Try Bush Tucker Grub
Oz travel isn’t authentic without a Bush Tucker meal. This Aboriginal food includes everything from nuts, seeds and fruits to wild game and fish including Emu, Kangaroo and other unique Aussie dishes. Join a tour with an Aboriginal guide for a comprehensive and immersive experience which involves learning how to cook and prepare the food, and enjoying it around a traditional campfire at night. It’s a fun, hands-on way to learn about Aboriginal culture.
12. Explore the Jenolan Caves
These limestone caves are located at the foothills of the Blue Mountains within the Jenolan Karst Conservation Reserve. Choose from self-guided or guided tours and make the most of the on-site facilities such as the restaurant, bar, bistro and accommodation options. These caves are suitable for kids too so you can bring the whole family along.
13. Go Whale Watching at Hervey Bay
Hervey Bay is the perfect place to be if you want to spot whales, dolphins or even sharks. Tours leave daily during the months from July to November and sightings are almost always guaranteed during viewing season.
14. Bungee Jump in Cairns
If you’re looking for an adrenaline rush, opt for the backpacker favourite and go bungee jumping in Cairns. This tropical city is known for its extreme activities and some operators will combine skydiving and bungee in one day for the ultimate adrenaline-filled experience.
15. Swim with Sharks at Ningaloo Reef
For an experience of a lifetime, head to Ningaloo Reef and take a dive with Whale Sharks. It’s one of the few areas in the world where they congregate regularly in coastal waters so you’ll have guaranteed sightings of these incredible animals.
16. Party Like a Local at Bondi Beach
Locals, tourists and backpackers alike love the vibe at Bondi Beach. Beach festivals and events take place all year round and it’s an awesome place to enjoy an ice-cold beer whilst dancing into the sunset to great beats.
17. Drive Across The Savannah Way
Take your trusty Spaceship across this interesting and surprising route, which actually appears pretty dry and barren at first glance. But the Savannah Gulf is a wonderful area thriving with different wildlife and amazing landscapes that will blow your mind – and there’s so much to do for all age groups. Don’t miss Atherton Tablelands, Undara Lava Tubes or Cobbold Gorge.
18. Have a Pint in an Outback Pub
Outback pubs are pretty interesting places to rehydrate. If you love the idea of drinking in a rustic watering hole with home-cooked food and time-honoured interiors that reflect Australia’s gold-mining era, make sure you go on a good old fashioned Aussie pub crawl in the Outback.
19. Get Some Serious Retail Therapy in Melbourne
For shopaholics, there’s no better place than Melbourne. This city is known for its countless malls and shopping centres. Head to Bourke Street Mall for big brands, GPO for high street names, Block Arcade for chic boutiques, and Melbourne Central for a great mix of shopping and entertainment.
20. Sunbathe at Tallebudgera Creek
You’ll be spoilt for choice for cool bathing spots in Oz but we particularly love Tallebudgera Creek. It’s a well-managed tourist park area with gorgeously pristine waters, and it’s extremely safe for swimming. Bring your snorkel and flippers too as visibility is great.
21. Catch the Sunrise at Sydney Opera House
The Opera House is a must when you’re in Sydney but the best time to see it is at sunset. Perfect photo opps plus tours are available throughout the day with backstage access and culinary tasting experiences from the Opera Kitchen.
22. See Kangaroos in their Hundreds at Murramarang
If you want to see kangaroos, skip Sydney’s famous Taronga Zoo and head to Murramarang National Park. You’ll see hundreds of kangaroos roaming freely in their wild, natural environment and they’re pretty friendly too – so you don’t need to worry about getting too close.
23. Board a Boat Party at Airlie Beach
Day party boats or overnight party boats are a fantastic idea if you’re travelling in a group. Airlie Beach is a party town in its own right and is hugely popular with backpackers, so you’ll meet loads of great people in this part of Oz. But nothing beats a lively boat cruise around the beautiful Whitsunday Islands, so make sure you book and join the pumping party.
24. Experience the Tjungu Festival
The fantastic Tjungu Festival has had sell-out success three years in a row now and although it’s a pretty new gig here in Oz, we think it’s such an important part of our history and gives visitors a true taste of Australian Indigenous culture. Music, films, dance and the arts bring together an exciting event at Ayers Rock Resort and there are a number of different accommodation packages available to groups, couples or families.
25. Explore the Great Alpine Road
We love this drive. And you will too if you appreciate the beauty of snow-capped peaks and the thrill of a challenging mountain road. We recommend this only to experienced, confident drivers – just take it slow in the Spaceship camper and take plenty of breaks to soak up the panoramic mountain vistas.
26. Enjoy a Farm Stay in The Outback
Another quintessential Oz experience is sticking it out a few nights in the incredible Outback. Farm stays or station stays are so much fun, and they’re great for families with children too. Enjoy a rustic Aussie setting with authentically cooked food, farmyard animals and top bush walks.
27. Tee Off at Coober Pedy
Coober Pedy Opal Fields Golf Club is the driest golf course in the world, so just for the novelty factor it’s worth a visit. But the actual town of Coober Pedy is worth checking out too. Go “Down Under” into a dugout home made by mining families, enjoy a mock noodling or mining experience, or explore the Breakaways Reserve.
28. Guzzle wine at Barossa Valley
Barossa Valley is a wine-producing region near Adelaide and there are a number of great wine tours that will have connoisseurs going crazy for the famous local tipple of Barossa Shiraz and Riesling. Barossans are known for their hospitality too so feel free to stick around a while. You’ll be well looked after here!
29. Visit Narana Aboriginal Cultural Centre
This is Geelong’s award-winning cultural centre for Aboriginal history and information. There are free visitor programs too so it’s great if you’re road-tripping on a budget.
30. Go to the Full Moon Party on Magnetic Island
Thailand may be famous for the original Full Moon Party but Magnetic Island in Australia also has its own version of the event. Come and enjoy the cool beach vibes, the lively backpacker crowds, the best international DJs and the endless body paint which makes this event so iconic.
31. Track Koalas at You Yangs
The You Yangs offers a unique koala-viewing experience, one where you can enjoy the sight of these adorable animals in their natural habitat. Whole families can be observed and there’s even a famous Koala named Clancy who has become the resident favourite.
32. Go White Water Rafting Down Franklin River
Can’t get enough of the local thrills here in Oz? Why not try white water rafting down the Franklin River? It’s one of the most pristine rivers in the Tasmania area, and rafting here is one of the best rafting experiences in the world.
33. See the Sand Dunes in Lancelin
The Lancelin Sand Dunes are a must-see but it’s not just a sight to behold – you can also get involved in the exciting sport of sand boarding, dirt bikes of 4 wheel drives. Some of the best views are at dawn and dusk so set off in good time and stick around to watch the sun go down with your pals.
34. Take a Quokka Selfie on Rottnest Island
Getting a Quokka selfie has become a bit of a social media trend, and when you see these impossibly cute fur balls for yourself, you’ll want to get one too. These small macro pod animals are about the size of a domestic cat and they can be found on Rottnest Island. With their contagious “smiling” faces, they’ve been dubbed the friendliest animal in the world. But although they’re adapted to having humans around, their claws are pretty sharp so always be careful – and don’t forget to ask them for permission to take a selfie. ;)
35. Pan for Gold at Ballarat
If you want a true “Down Under” experience, why not try your hand at panning for gold at Ballarat? It’s a gimmicky activity that is superb for kids and just as great for big kids. The city of Ballarat is located in Victoria, by the Yarrowee River.
36. Try Flyboaring at St. Kilda Beach
For something completely different, sign yourself up to the new extreme sport of flyboarding. Soar through the air on high-pressure water jets and get as high as 15 metres into the air. It’s a thrilling experience with beautiful ocean views at Melbourne’s St. Kilda Beach.
37. Go Snorkelling at Point Danger
Snorkelling at Point Danger is one of our all-time favourite bucket list activities, and it’s just down the road from central Torquay. Point Danger Marine Sanctuary is just off the beach so there’s no need for boats and at low tide, you can wander out to the reef zone. Fish life is abundant but there are also more than 90 recorded species of sea slugs to look out for.