My Big Australian Bucket List

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You've probably heard that “Canada is Really Big.” There's even about it and everything.

But I think there should also be an “Australia is Really Big” song. Because the Land Down Under IS, in fact, huge — and full of things I dream of one day doing.

My one and only trip to Australia lasted only 8 days. It was a brief trip during a semester break when I was studying abroad in New Zealand. I headed over to Perth to visit my uncle, adding in a quick 36-hour stopover in Sydney. This, of course, was not long enough, and ever since I've dreamed of returning to Australia and “doing it right.” If only getting there wasn't so difficult and expensive…

One of these days, though, I hope to cross all of these things off my Big Australian Bucket List:

Drive the Great Ocean Road

I love road tripping, and one road trip I'm dying to tick off my life list is driving the Great Ocean Road. Even though it's only 150 miles long, it ranks up there as one of my top dream road trips to take. I want to see the beaches, the waterfalls, and, of course, the Twelve Apostles.

Photo by Rob Deutscher on Flickr

Dive the Great Barrier Reef

This item is actually a two-parter. I would actually need to learn how to SCUBA dive first before diving the Great Barrier Reef — but I can't think of a better place to learn!

Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge

I've seen the Harbour Bridge and Opera House from the ground (and the water), but I would love to conquer the bridge and climb to the very top for a different perspective on Sydney. (And I'd also love to stay somewhere with a view of the bridge, like maybe the — it's in one of my favorite parts of the city!)

Surf on the Gold Coast

Australia has loads of great surf beaches. But I know I'd want to get up on a board in the famous Gold Coast, where I could enjoy the waves AND the atmosphere. Surfers Paradise, here I come.

Swim at Whitehaven Beach

The Whitsundays. Even just typing the phrase conjures up images of white beaches and impossibly blue waters. Along with sailing through the Whitsunday Islands, I want to spend an afternoon doing absolutely nothing on Whitehaven Beach.

Photo by glynniqua on Flickr

Take the Ghan through the Red Center

I love train journeys — especially epic ones. And the Ghan, which runs between Darwin and Adelaide through Australia's Red Center, definitely sounds epic. Not only would this item allow me to visit Darwin (somewhere I've always had an interest in after watching ), but would also help me tick off a few of the other items on this list.

See the sun set on Uluru

A UNESCO World Heritage Site and an area important to the Aboriginal people of Australia, I want to see Uluru for myself. I want to learn about its history and legends, and see it glowing red at sunset.

Photo by Richard Fisher on Flickr

Sleep underground in Coober Pedy

Have you heard of Coober Pedy? It's basically an underground town in the Australian Outback. Of COURSE I want to visit and sleep underground! Coober Pedy is also known as “the Opal Capital of the World,” and opal just happens to be my birthstone. It's like I'm meant to go there.

See the Bungle Bungles

Because, seriously, who doesn't want to be able to say that they've seen the Bungle Bungles? I would especially love to fly over them along with the rest of Purnululu National Park.

Photo by NeilsPhotography on Flickr

Watch the sun set over the Indian Ocean

I've actually already crossed this one off, having seen a beautiful winter sunset from Cottesloe Beach in Perth. But you can never see too many sunsets.

Celebrate New Year's Eve in Sydney

I'm still not sure that any New Year's Eve celebration can top the Hogmanay experience I had two years ago in Scotland. But, if any NYE festivity has a chance, it's probably the fireworks over the Sydney Harbour Bridge. One of these years, I want to be sure to see them for myself.

Photo by Rob Chandler on Flickr

Rent a car and drive around Tasmania

Believe it or not, Tassie is, in fact, an island state of Australia. After reading so many great things about this island (from Hobart to Wineglass Bay), getting here is definitely on my list.

Live in Melbourne

Lastly, even though I've never been there before, I would love to base myself in Melbourne for a while. I have a handful of friends who call the second-largest city in Australia home, and everything I've heard about it makes me think I would love living there. Plus, Melbourne is consistently listed as one of the most livable cities in the world — that's gotta count for something, right??


I could easily double this list; probably even triple it. There are SO many things to do and see in Australia. But these 13 items are the ones that I want to experience the most. Hopefully one day I'll get the chance to!


Which items are on YOUR Australian bucket list?


*Note: This post was written by me, but brought to you by a third party.

"It's a dangerous business, going out your door. You step onto the road, and, if you don't keep your feet, there's no telling where you might get swept off to." - JRR Tolkien

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