For an off-the-beaten track experience, consider Australia for your next vacation. With NEI, our low intensity adventures and cultural experiences offer a perfect balance of excitement and education. In honor of May Day in Australia (a local holiday in the Northern Territory commemorating the granting of the eight-hour working day for Australians dating back to the 1800’s), here are 5 amazing things to do in Australia.
Sip Jungle Juice in the Hunter Valley
Famous for wine tastings and its picturesque countryside, the Hunter Valley boasts 56 different wineries, some more than a century old. An icon of Hunter Valley is Dr. Jurd’s Jungle Juice, a boozy concoction of an adventurous local named Mel Jurd. Visit the Wollombi Tavern while you are in Hunter Valley to sample some of the juice – but know that all the the amazing wildlife you see after your wine tasting are indeed real – goannas and kangaroos wander the landscape.
Go sandboarding at Stockton Beach
Stockton Beach is famous for its picturesque harbor, wide pearly-white beaches, towering sand dunes, crystal clear water, and natural bushland. You’ll even have an opportunity to go sand-boarding (seated; very safe) down the dunes! Plus, you can enjoy an exciting, incredibly scenic 4WD “soft” adventure over the immense sand dunes of Stockton Beach, a wild and pristine 25-mile beach
After sandboarding, we suggest that an afternoon of sandboarding you relax and go dolphin watching. It’s almost guaranteed that you will see dolphins while in Port Stephens and Nelson Bay – an amazing 97% success rate of viewing these marvelous mammals. Closer to Port Stephens, the bottlenose dolphin is more commonly found, but if you cruise further out into Nelson Bay, pods of common dolphins can be seen splashing, jumping and diving through the sparkling blue water. Time your trip between June and August and you also have a chance to spot whales in Nelson Bay.
Explore Kata Tjuta
Sacred to the Aboriginals, Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) is a series of 28 gigantic rock domes hidden in a maze of gorges and crevices. You’ll be surprised to see that this arid part of Australia can be lush and green, with over 400 types of plants and flowers thriving here.
View Uluru from atop a camel
No visit to Australia can be complete without seeing Ayers Rock. Learn the importance of this landmark by taking a LIRU walk with Aboriginal guides, who will share with you the the stories of the Bluetongue Lizard Man and teach you ancient bush skills. Complete your visit to Ayers Rock with a camelback trek around the base of Uluru – it’s a memory which will stay with you for the rest of your life.
Hot air balloon over Alice Springs
Picture this: the early morning constellations of the Outback twinkling overhead as you drive out to Alice Springs, a region renowned for its wildlife and history. Boarding an enormous hot air balloon and drifting of the MacDonnell Ranges in the heart of the Australia, while the sun peeks over the horizon, lighting up the rugged landscape and revealing a brilliant red panorama. Hot air ballooning over Australia is the dream of many vacationers – NEI invites you to travel with us to make it a dream come true.