The Seven Wonders of Australia

Australia is among the wealthiest countries in the world, and it’s the sixth-largest country by land size. Don’t be fooled by the size, though, as the interior is sparsely populated, and most of the life is lived along the eastern and southern rim of the continent. That means when you’re planning a trip to Australia, you might need to cover a lot of space to see the wonders of Australia.

And boy, are there wonders! Australia is a country bursting with incredible wonders of the world: areas filled with one-of-a-kind biodiversity, scenic drives bursting with natural beauty, man-made wonders soaring into the sky.

As the latest in our series of the Wonders of the World, we’ll dive deep into seven unmissable spots in the Seven Wonders of Australia.

Kakadu National Park

Sunset at Kakadu
Sunset at Kakadu National Park—easily one of the seven natural wonders of Australia for its natural beauty, diverse wildlife, and early aboriginal artwork.

Kakadu is the premier national park in Australia and offers some of the most stunning displays of wildlife you can find on the continent.

You can find a number of incredible animals, marsupials, and reptiles all over the park. Plan on spotting saltwater crocodiles, kangaroos and wallabies, flying foxes, flatback turtles, river sharks, termites (which are supremely cool in person!), and any number of the parks 280 bird species.

Now let’s talk about the natural beauty in Australia’s Kakadu National Park. All of this wildlife abundance has to life somewhere, and that’s in large floodplains, estuaries and tidal flats, stone country, and so much more.

To top it all off, in addition to stunning rock outcrops and wildlife, Kakadu has some of the oldest aboriginal artwork in Australia. Many of the rock drawings date back over 20,000 years. Bonus: Kakadu was the location for many of the scenes from the movie Crocodile Dundee.

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Uluru at Sunset
Taking in the beauty of Uluru at sunset is one of those memories that just imprints itself in your brain—it’s beautiful.

Uluru (Ayers Rock) is probably the best known natural icon in Australia, and no list of the Seven Wonders of Australia could be complete without it.

Why does this incredible rock have that magnificent color? The iron content in the rock makes its colors change through the course of a day from bright to dark red. Sacred to the local aboriginal Pitjantjatjara people, Uluru is of great cultural significance, as well as natural significance.

Often overlooked, nearby Kata Tjuta is a natural wonder with visiting as well. It’s actually higher than Uluru, but has been eroded into several pieces.

Sydney Harbor

Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge
Sail through Sydney Harbor for the best views of the Opera House and Bridge.

What says “Australia” more than Sydney Harbor?

Maybe a kangaroo holding a boomerang and beer in the outback, but that’s about it.

The center of Australia’s largest city, Sydney Harbor, is home to the Sydney Opera House and the Harbor Bridge. You can take a ferry across the harbor, walk across the top of the Harbor Bridge, have tea in the Opera House, and take a stroll in the nearby Royal Botanical Gardens. Each of these activities will give you interesting vantages on the stunning architectural feat of those iconic sails gleaming on the Opera House.

Bungle Bungles/Purnululu National Park

Bee Hive Domes. Purnululu National Park.
Purnululu National Park, home of the Bungle Bungle mountains (known as the Beehive Domes), is most easily visited if you decide to road trip from Darwin to Perth in Western Australia.

Had this Seven Wonders list been created 30 years ago, the Bungle Bungles might not have been listed. Having come to the world’s attention only in the mid-1980s, the beehive domes of the Bungles make Purnululu National Park the premier attraction in the Kimberley region of Western Australia.

It’s difficult to actually get to the Bungles, but the unique erosional features here make the Bungles fascinating—it’s unlike anything else in the world and thus safely has a spot on our list of true Aussie wonders.

Great Barrier Reef

Heart Reef. Great Barrier Reef
No list of Australian wonders is complete without the Great Barrier Reef, seen from above with views of the tiny Heart Reef.

The Great Barrier Reef is so big that the scope of it can really only be appreciated from the air—or even better, from orbit.

By far the largest coral reef system in the world, Australia’s Great Barrier Reef extends over 2,600 km (1,600 miles)—almost the entire length of the coast of Queensland. It’s usually on any shortlist of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, let alone the ones in Australia.

There are plenty of places from which you can experience the reef, the most common of which are Cairns and the Whitsunday Islands.

Giant Eucalyptus Trees of Tasmania

Formerly known as Eucalyptus Regnans, the giant eucalyptus tree is one of the natural wonders of the Tasmanian wilderness.

Tasmania holds the most unspoiled wilderness in Australia. In addition to its pristine beauty, it’s home to many unique species of plant and animal, including the endangered Tasmanian Devil.

The most dramatic of all the things in Tasmania is the Eucalyptus Regnans, the giant eucalyptus tree. Also known as the Swamp Gum, Mountain Ash or Tasmanian Oak, it is the largest flowering plant and hardwood tree in the world, and is second only to the redwood tree in height.

I’m not the only one impressed with the Tasmanian Wilderness—this natural attraction is so important it was named one of Australia’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The Great Ocean Road

Twelve Apostles, Great Ocean Road
Easily one of the world’s most beautiful road trips, Great Ocean Road drive was inspired by America’s Highway 1 down the coast of California. The Twelve Apostles is a real highlight of this drive.

One of the greatest drives in the world is the Great Ocean Road on the southern coast of Victoria. Carved by thousands of years of battering by the Great Southern Ocean, the sandstone formations of the Great Ocean Road are truly stunning.

The Twelve Apostles, London Bridge, and Loch Ard Gorge are just some of the significant erosional features near the town of Port Campbell, which you can witness no matter how you plan your drive of the Great Ocean Road.

7 Wonders Honorable Mentions:

It’s impossible for any list to contain all that makes Australia unique and beautiful. From natural wonders to symbols of the continent’s long history, these honorable mentions are truly special and deserve a spot on your bucket list as well.

Read Next: 19 Images of Lord Howe Island That Will Blow You Away

Discover the other articles in Wonders of the World series—including the Seven Wonders of Japan.

37 thoughts on “The Seven Wonders of Australia”

  1. I LOVE AUSTRALIA!!! I live in it and really awesome web gave me some ideas for my homework!! :p thanks a lot guys (whoever created the website) :D thanks a lot especially for giving me some ideas for my homework oops need to get back to it. ;) I have to find main attractions of Australia and I’m NOT Australian but I live here :) :3

  2. awesome stuff…. love every single word in it… pitures r jst beautiful… jst for u to know… i choose dis topic to b my research task becoz it is very interestin…. i believe….gud work… bravo…

  3. Cool list! I’ve never heard about Giant Eucalyptus Trees of Tasmania. I’d love to see them (and other wonders in Australia as well). And I’m surely going to do it soon! Thanks for this article.

  4. Once again thank you :) I’d already planned to see most of these places while making my way through Australia, I’ll be adding all of them to my list.

  5. The best place for fun in Australia is the Gold Coast and the next best place is Cairns and the Great barrier reef islands. the climate is warm and people are friendly.

  6. Fantastic list! I just got back from Australia. Unfortunately, i didn’t make it to all these wonderful places (it was a VERY short trip). Down Under Answers has incredible deals on vacations to Sydney right now, so I thought, what the heck!
    I didn’t climb the harbor bridge, but walked it and went out to Bondi Beach which is another fantastic place to go.
    Hopefully one day I’ll make it back there to see more : )

  7. Great list, Gary. I’m not sure how you whittled it down to just 7 though! Being local, I’d have to say the Great Ocean Road is my favourite – not just the coast, but the Otways on the other side of the road, too.

  8. Anyone who makes it to Coober Pedy shouldnt miss the North Flinders Ranges – or Cactus Beach, on the west coast, south of Coober Pedy.

  9. The Pinnacles – they are amazing to visit, really weird landscape that makes for a great set of photos :-)

  10. Lord Howe Island (no ‘s for Howe), Coober Pedy (no a in Pedy)

    Also, cchiovitti, it’s the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Since it’s the name of the place, the localised spelling remains when referred to outside of places using British English.

  11. Cairns is the best place to see the great barrier reef (i live there) been there a million times and it never gets old, cairns is the ultimate australia destimation

  12. Thanks for the great article. Australia is the priority target place to go. I will use this info before i’m going to Australia.

    • Yes – I live in Tasmania!!
      The best place in the world.
      It’s just incredible.
      It’s nice that our trees got mentioned :) fantastic.

  13. The Great Ocean Road is one of the great drives of the world. Make sure you take your time driving it. There are koalas near the Cape Otway Light House. The rainforest walks along the way and just off the Great Ocean Road are beautiful. The Aire River mouth and beach at Hordern Vale in the Otways is a beautiful area. Great for fishing and usually completely deserted. Don’t forget the area past the 12 Apostles, The Bay of Islands and the Bay of Martyrs. This part of the coast is often forgotten but is possibly more spectacular than the 12 Apostles.

  14. G’day Gary,

    Had I known you’d be nearby earlier I would have invited you to dinner at our place in the Blue Mountains, one of your Honorable Mentions for the Seven Wonders of Australia. What a wonderful adventure you are experiencing! I stumbled upon your blog while searching for pics of Port Vila, Vanuatu. I’m thinking to take my family there in 2009. Can’t wait to do some scuba diving there.

    Best of luck to you in the new year and I hope you have a safe return to your home.

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