National Parks and Reserves in Australia
Australian nature is known for its beautiful beauty, so all tourists rush to admire its views. Its landscapes are delightful, and some animals and plants are found only on this continent. The national parks and reserves in Australia are particularly attractive to tourists. If you are planning a trip to the continent, it is advisable to visit the most popular of them.
Specially Protected Areas
Australia is known for its unusual flora and fauna. The government has created and approved a lot of laws on the protection of nature. Tourists even call Australia “the country of parks”. About 12 percent of the continent is protected. In the remaining parts and subjects special status has almost 55% of the area. The total number of parks is 500.
Locals are passionate about conserving nature. Australians are proud of the magnificent beauty of their continent and want to leave everything for posterity. With the advent of the twentieth century, many plants and animals disappeared because of people’s wrong attitude toward nature. But now both flora and fauna are carefully preserved. So were created national parks and nature reserves. It is in them that every tourist should visit, no matter what country he comes from.
Kakadu National Park.
It is located in the northern territory, near Darwin. The park has a special nature, valued for its archaeological and ethnographic aspects. It has been included in the UNESCO list. Thanks to the sloping cliffs, the scenery there is delightful. The variety of flora and fauna is amazing.
About ½ of the park is owned by aborigines who have lived there for thousands of years. Although now their life has changed a lot, but the traditions and beliefs of their ancestors are still of great importance in their culture.
Thanks to the tours, tourists can admire the exquisite nature and animals of the area. You should also visit the territory of ancient tribes and get acquainted with the attributes of their life.
Litchfield National Park.
It is located in the northern part of the country, near Betchelor. There are unique plants in the park: the forests have banksias, grevillea, terminals, and other exotics.
Animals are also of interest. It is home to:
- flying possums;
- marsupial martens;
- kunguru wallabies.
Birds are also found: Pacific cuckoo coel, oriole, and leafhopper. During a tour of Litchfield, you can see Wangi Falls, the largest waterfall, which is one of the most picturesque. It flows into a lake, bathing in which, according to local beliefs, will help revitalize the body and ensure longevity. There are also beautiful Tolmer Falls and Florence Falls.
Lamington National Park.
It is located near the border of Queensland and New South Wales. The park is unique because of the fact that it contains both jungle, heathland, and mountain passes. If you want to see truly unique scenery, you should definitely visit this place.
In the park grow beech trees, which are 1000 years old, as well as eucalyptus in 80 meters high. Growing are unusual trees – bull, blood and stinger. Interested travelers should definitely take a tour to Tweed Volcano, which is extinct.
The animal life is also diverse. There are flying foxes, platypuses, and possums. There are also unusual animals on the brink of extinction – the coxena, the butterfly bird, and the lyrebird.
Cleland Animal Park
Not far from Adelaide is a park, where you can not only look at the animals, but also touch and touch them. Also allowed to feed them. A visit to this place will give many wonderful experiences. At the entrance to the park for a small fee you can buy his cards and bags of food for the animals.
Cleland is home to koalas, Tasmanian devils, wombats, dingo dogs, and various species of birds. Many venomous snakes live on the grounds. The park is also known for its beautiful scenery.
Karrambin Nature Reserve
The park is located in the town of Gold Coast. This area is famous for being home to wild lorikeets, small rainbow birds of the parrot family. There is a veterinary clinic in the reserve, as well as a hospital where wild animals are treated.
To look at the beautiful flora and fauna is possible not only during the day, but also after sunset. That is when many other no less interesting animals get out. Therefore, for tourists organize excursions at night.
Royal National Park
It is located 29 km. from Sydney. The park is bounded by the Tasman Sea to the east and Port Hocking Bay and South Sydney to the north. Its area is over 15,000 hectares. This is a beautiful scenic park, established in 1879.
The uniqueness of this place is considered a diverse landscape. There are deep river valleys and high plateaus, as well as cliffs and bays. There are rivers flowing into the parquet and flowing into Port Hacking Bay.
Because there is a rich fauna there, every tourist can observe different animals in natural conditions. Near the rivers, there are a variety of birds such as laughing cockabarras, yellow-tailed cockatoos, golden whistlers, and honeycombs. You can see dingo dogs, mountain kangaroos wallaroos, koalas, and echidnas.
This park contains animals and plants that may disappear from the face of the earth in the future. On the slopes of the river valleys are pine trees, red bloodlines, peppermint, eucalyptus, banksia, and aralia. On the park’s shoreline you can find dewdrop, casuarina, rosemary, and other herbs. And high up on the sand dunes grows heather, large-fruited oak, and silver banksia. The rain forest area is home to the long-leaf lomander. The tea tree also grows there. Of the flowers in this park, wild lilies, orchids, and irises are found.
The nature of Australia is unique and beautiful. If you want to admire the fauna and flora, and see the scenery, then you should definitely go to these parks and reserves.
Australia’s 17 National Parks Worth Visiting
Australia is famous for its unique flora and fauna. The government and specialized organizations have developed and successfully implemented a number of environmental laws. No wonder travelers call this state “the land of parks. Just imagine, more than 11% of the territory is protected. In some regions, up to 55% of the area is under special status. Sometimes it seems that no matter where you turn, you’re bound to get into a nature reserve (a total of about 500 of them).
Environmental stewardship is instilled in Australians from childhood. Everyone on the continent is immensely proud of the beauty of their homeland and strives to preserve it for posterity in its pristine state. But this has not always been the case. At the beginning of the twentieth century, many species became extinct because of irrational and destructive human behavior. We will never see 24 species of birds, 78 species of frogs and 27 species of mammals again and I would prefer not to say anything about insects. Thank God, people have settled down and begun to take into account their influence on flora and fauna. Here’s a selection of Australia’s most scenic National Parks, which you should definitely visit alone or with the whole family.
1. Freycinet National Park, Tasmania
This national park is the most beautiful place in Tasmania and is one of the top three in the continental rankings. The reserve owes its name to the navigator and discoverer Louis de Freycinet. It was he who explored and mapped in detail the coastlines of Australia and neighboring islands. The park was founded in 1916, making it one of the oldest protected areas.
The main attraction is Weinglass Bay, which is shaped like a glass of wine. The resemblance is completed by the majestic pink cliffs, proudly towering above the white-sand beaches. Humpback whales and dolphins frequented the cove, and possums, echidnas, and wombats lurk among the shoreline trees. Despite the obvious advantages, the island has an outrageously low number of tourists. This is due to the remoteness of the area from civilization. It will take you 2 hours to get from the nearest port to the park.
2. Cradle Mountain Lake National Park, Tasmania
Cradle Mountain Lake National Park wraps around central Tasmania from the north and is a World Wildlife Heritage Site. The most popular with visitors is the six-day Overland Trek hike. It takes you around the vast expanse of the wilderness area. You’ll hike 65 kilometers through breathtaking valleys shaped millions of years ago by the movement of glaciers, through rainforests and admire the majestic mountains.
Since 2005, Tasmanian Parks has introduced a system of pre-booking passes and paid visits during the peak tourist season (October 1 to May 31). Currently, an adult ticket costs $200 and a children’s ticket (up to and including 17 years old) costs $160. The proceeds go to pay caretakers, maintain the maintenance of the paths and build new cultural facilities. Learn more about the latest news about the preserve here.
3. Franklin-Gordon-Wild Rivers National Park, Tasmania
Franklin-Gordon-Wilde Rivers Park is named after Tasmania’s two largest rivers. It’s divided into equal parts by the Lyell Highway, which makes access to the park a lot easier. The highest point is Fremen’s Cap Peak (1,443 meters above sea level). Speleologists and anthropologists are attracted to Kutikina Cave. First, it has a specific mineral composition. Secondly, artifacts dating back to the 20th millennium BC have been found here.
Most of the landscape was formed during the Ice Age. In the reserve there is vegetation characteristic of the subtropical and tropical zone. Some of the eucalyptus and pine trees are over 3000 years old. In the summer visitors are offered rafting on the river in kayaks, and in winter – hiking. Keep in mind, both kinds of recreation rather extreme and will require great stamina.
4. Wilsons Promontory National Park, Victoria
Located in the south of mainland Australia is a breathtaking place. Travelers can expect striking scenery and a variety of leisure activities. In Wilson’s Promontory National Park, granite mountain ranges sit alongside expansive beaches framed by lush green forests. Visitors can spend the night outdoors or rent small huts in a tourist town carefully built especially for visitors at the mouth of the Tidal River.
There are 130 km of hiking trails that crisscross the reserve. Be sure to walk the Squeaky Sands, amused by the sound that comes from beneath your shoes. Knock yourself out at Bass Strait, Australia’s answer to the Bermuda Triangle. If you decide to get married, join hundreds of couples in regularly scheduled open-air ceremonies.
5. Grampians National Park, Victoria
The region’s third largest reserve is famous for its gorges, sheer cliffs, and waterfalls. A ridge of five ridges extends from north to south. The landscape varies from steep rocky slopes to gentle valleys resembling alpine meadows. The rocks are the result of former tectonic activity. The aborigines have loved this area long before the arrival of civilized man. The caves contain about 80 per cent of Australia’s authentic rock art. The historical, social and cultural significance of the paintings is difficult to assess.
The best time to travel through the park is from August to October. Spring begins in the reserve and it bursts with hundreds of colors and thousands of hues. Herbivorous animals come out to munch on the lush greenery, and predators also don’t miss an opportunity to feast on the unscared young. So the fauna shows up even during daylight hours. You’ll see koalas, kangaroos, emus, long-tailed eagles and other members of the animal kingdom.
6. Otway National Park, Victoria
We’ve already mentioned this park in our articles, but its beauty could be talked about endlessly. Otway is a popular stop on the Great Ocean Road hiking trails. It was only declared a nature preserve in 2004, but in that time, the population of red-backed bristlecreepers and pink robins has greatly increased. This proves the effectiveness of the conservation measures implemented by the government.
The park is of interest to forest lovers. Only here you can walk in the shade of ferns that reach the size of average palm trees and touch the bark of centuries-old trees with a trunk girth up to 15 meters. The phenomenal size of the vegetation is explained by the active work of saprobiotic fungi that recycle fallen leaves and branches into nutritious humus. In rainy seasons, special excursions are offered to introduce visitors to the magical mushroom kingdom. Kangaroos often run onto the glades and fluffy koalas chew leaves among the eucalyptus branches.
7. Port Campbell National Park, Victoria
A real concentration of surrealistic landscapes. In addition to the well-known Twelve Apostles, I recommend visiting the Arch of London, a natural sandstone formation that is a tunnel located on the beach in Port Campbell National Park and washed on all sides by the warm waves of the ocean. The rock is approximately 20 million years old. The site was formerly referred to somewhat differently as London Bridge because it was connected to the shore by a stone passage. However, in 1990, the landmark was unable to withstand erosion and most of its part collapsed. Today, no less beautiful arch is left of the majestic bridge.
Another amazing formation is the Lorch Ard Gorge. Rocks from opposite shores come close together, forming a cozy cove protected from brutal winds. A must-see for all visitors to the park is Rattling Cave. The water flowing into its bosom shatters against the rocks with noise, the sound waves are repeatedly reflected from the walls, creating the impression of an oncoming aboriginal army, beating drums and rattles to intimidate opponents.
8. Kosciusko National Park, New South Wales
An integral part of the so-called Australian Alps, listed as a National Heritage Site. Each year the reserve is visited by about 3 million tourists. The thermal pools which are rich in mineral salts and have powerful healing effects draw them in like a magnet. The park is home to Mount Kosciuszko, the highest mountain in Australia. At 2,228 meters above sea level there is permanent snow, which is in stark contrast to the tropical forests at the foot. The peculiar flora of the reserve is found nowhere else in the world.
Tribes, far from the benefits of technological progress, still inhabit the territory, strictly observing the precepts of their ancestors. Only once in a while do they allow strangers to watch the ceremonies. In summer, you should climb Mount Kosciuszko via the Charlotte Pass. In winter, a ticket to the park costs almost twice as much, this is due to the opening of the ski season. The terrain is not inferior to popular European resorts. Experienced instructors teach beginners to stand on skis, and professionals boast their skills in front of crowds of spectators.
9. Jervis Bay Marine Park, New South Wales
Jervis Bay Marine Park falls into most of the northern and western territories of New South Wales. It was founded in 1998 and delineated according to the habitats of protected species. Seals, penguins and dolphins find a home here. From August to November there is a migration of whales. The giants come very close to the shoreline, letting out fountains of water. You can watch with your own eyes the scenes of life of the majestic mammals. It will never be like watching Discovery shows. During the migration period, access to the sea is restricted.
The rest of the time, travelers surf, dive and kayak. Jervis Bay’s unique offering is a steel cage shark dive. Where else can you get so close to the predators? Note that fishing and underwater hunting are not allowed everywhere. Poaching is punishable by hefty fines.