See Australia Month-by-Month Part One: January to June Travel Teasers!

Beach in Ballina, North Coast, New South Wales

Beach in Ballina, North Coast, New South Wales

I’d be able to fund my Aussie travel ’til the end of time if I had a buck for every time I’ve heard someone say ‘I wish I could see as much of Australia as you have’.

‘But you CAN,’ I generally reply.

Yes, I get that slow travelling to obscure parts of OZ in an el cheapo 1983 camper trailer like I do these days isn’t for everyone. But what I DON’T get is why people think that’s the only way to do it. Or that it’s the only way I’VE done it!

So I stick to my original reply.

Balls Pyramid, via Lord Howe Island

Classic view of Balls Pyramid, via Lord Howe Island

You CAN.

Yes, that’s right. You CAN see a LOT of Australia. And you don’t need an expensive rig, a massive overdraft or a year off work to do it.

Here’s HOW!

All you need is a week (or two) and my easy-as-pie 3-step plan to see Australia month by month!

  1. Choose a region you haven’t been to yet.
  2. Find cheap flights, borrow the old man’s caravan, hop in the car, or outsource the driving and take a tour.
  3. Just GO!

Then next time you’ve got a week (or two) off, do it all again.

Little by little is how I saw a LOT of Australia before I started the slow travel/el cheapo camper trailer thing.

And here’s where you get lucky.

Because my See Australia Month-by-Month Travel Teasers are my HOT picks for some COOL places to go whatever time of year you get a break. Look and see which Travel Teasers take your fancy – then take the links for a LOT more information!

You CAN get started on seeing Australia – do it right here with Part 1: January to June!

January: Summer Highs and Lows

View over Lake Cootapatamba, Australia's highest lake, Kosciuszko Track

View over Lake Cootapatamba, Australia’s highest lake, Kosciuszko Track

#1 Mt Kosciuszko, NSW

Beat the summer heat, climb a ‘Seven Summits’ peak AND visit Australia’s highest public loo! All this and more makes Kosciuszko National Park the coolest summer holiday destination in OZ – you don’t need snow to explore the Alpine Region in summer where the average maximum temperature is around 22°C!

And what better way to start the year than to see Australia from its highest point?

MORE about Mt Kosciuszko HERE

#2 North Coast, New South Wales

Looking north from Skennars Head on a clear day, Ballina, New South Wales

View from Skennars Head, Ballina, New South Wales

But if summer isn’t summer for you without a beach or two or 22, you’ll find a LOT more than that on the New South Wales North Coast.

If surfing/backpacker mecca Byron Bay is too crowded, head south to Ballina for the same great beaches and stunning coastline – and when you’re sick of all that sand, head for the hinterland with hippy-inspired markets, produce and pristine rainforests.

MORE about the New South Wales North Coast HERE

February: Cool Summer Hot Spots

#3 Tasmania

Woolmers Estate, Longford, Tasmania

Woolmers Estate, Longford, Tasmania

See out summer’s hottest month in Australia’s coolest state. Tasmania puts the ‘wild’ back into ‘wilderness’ with a side order of World Heritage convict sites, an extravaganza of natural produce and (arguably) Australia’s best art museum!

BUT … don’t make the mistake of thinking you can see it all in a week – pick two or three highlights and put the rest back on the list for next time!

MORE about Tasmania HERE

#4 Limestone Coast, South Australia

Cape Buffon, Canunda National Park via Southend, Limestone Coast

Cape Buffon, Limestone Coast

Or find one of the mainland’s coolest coastal hot spots where a wild and rugged coastline scattered with brilliant beaches and jewel-like lakes meets an intriguing blend of volcanoes, caves and sink holes.

Tired of coastal activities like swimming, fishing and checking out lighthouses? No problem! Head inland for the caves, lakes and hiking trails, then wrap it up with some of the finest seafood in OZ!

MORE about the Limestone Coast HERE

March: Island Paradise

Looking South from Kims Lookout, Lord Howe Island

Looking South from Kims Lookout, Lord Howe Island

How DO you decide which tropical island paradise to pick??

#5 Lord Howe Island

If you’re up for cruises to the world’s highest volcanic stack or round the island; hiking some of Australia’s most scenic trails; snorkelling Australia’s southernmost tropical reef; or cycling to a semi-deserted beach for the day, then you’re probably going to love Lord Howe Island.

MORE about Lord Howe Island HERE

#6 Norfolk Island

Phillip Island offshore from Norfolk Island

Phillip Island offshore from Norfolk Island

But if a unique culture with its own language and delightful local cuisine with a fascinating background of World Heritage listed historic sites all laid out on a spectacularly scenic Pacific Island location interests you more, then you’ll probably love Norfolk Island.

MORE about Norfolk Island HERE

But if you can’t decide then go for both! And no, the Island tourism boards are NOT paying me!!

Unfortunately.

April: High Country

#7 Atherton Tableland, Far North Queensland

Millaa Millaa Falls, Atherton Tablelands, Far North Queensland

Millaa Millaa Falls, Atherton Tablelands, Far North Queensland

Sweeping panoramas to Queensland’s highest mountain, magnificent rainforests, volcanic lakes and more waterfalls than you can poke a stick at are a good start.

But add fantastic local produce, charming small towns, bakeries, cafes and markets to the mix and there’s enough things to do and see without even thinking about Cairns, only an hour or so away!

MORE about the Atherton Tableland HERE

#8 Bright and Mt Buffalo National Park, Victoria

The road to the Horn, from the Horn lookout, Mt Buffalo National Park

The road to the Horn, Mt Buffalo National Park

On the western edge of the Victorian High Country, spend your days climbing Mt Buffalo’s Horn, touring its historic chalet, picnicking by its lakes or hiking its many walks before returning to the stunning autumn colours AND the fine collection of eateries in Bright.

It’s a great base from which to explore other parts of the Victorian Alpine Region – but don’t forget your winter woollies!

More about Bright and Mt Buffalo HERE

May: The River and The Rim

#9 Scenic Rim, Queensland

Lake Moogerah Sunset, Scenic Rim

Lake Moogerah Sunset, Scenic Rim

Just an hour west of the Gold Coast and an hour south-west of Brisbane and you’re in the Scenic Rim wonderland – an amazing array of natural attractions scattered with interesting villages and eateries surrounded by staggering views. So if you’re up for a holiday involving action, adventure, relaxation, fresh produce, fishing, hiking or sightseeing, then this is the place for you!

MORE about the Scenic Rim Region HERE

#10 The River Murray Riverland

Big Bend, Murray River via Swan Reach, South Australia

Big Bend, Murray River via Swan Reach, South Australia

From its headwaters in the Australian Alps, the Murray River flows for 2500 km (1560 miles) through three states.

Don’t have time to explore the whole thing? Pick out some highlights like the historic paddlesteamers at the port of Echuca (Vic); where the Darling meets the Murray to form Australia’s largest river system at Wentworth (NSW); or the Murray Mouth where the river meets the Great Southern Ocean at Goolwa (SA).

MORE about the Murray River HERE

June: The Territory

#11 Darwin, Northern Territory

Jumping Croc

Jumping Croc,

Australia’s northernmost – and therefore hottest – capital city is an unusual blend of diverse cultures, deadly wildlife and lush tropical scenery. But if it’s hotter, that means a LOT more reasons to relax with a drink, right?!

Take a sightseeing break for the Darwin Museum, World War II memorabilia, a cruise on the harbour, the Mindil Beach markets and a whole lot of fine regional produce involving seafood. And see Australia’s largest predators up REAL close on a Jumping Crocs Cruise!

MORE about Darwin HERE

#12 Uluru and Central Australia

Glen Helen Gorge, West MacDonnell Ranges, Central Australia

Glen Helen Gorge, West MacDonnell Ranges, Central Australia

If you haven’t been to Uluru, Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) or Kings Canyon, June is the time to do it! But when you’re done with those Big Ticket items, head back to Alice Springs for the Alice Springs Desert Park, Standley Chasm and Olive Pink Botanic Gardens, then head out to the spectacular gorges of the East and West MacDonnell Ranges, around the Mereenie loop, south to Rainbow Valley or along the Larapinta Trail.

MORE about Central Australia Attractions HERE

If you’ve got the time, take a Road Trip from Adelaide to Darwin and see it all in one go!

Well, that’s how to see Australia month by month for the first six months of the year! Want the last half of the year?  Click HERE for Part Two: July to December for more HOT Aussie Travel Teasers!

PS – Here’s a hint about where to go in the second half of the year!!

Rocks at twilight, Gantheaume Point, Broome, Western Australia

Rocks at twilight, Gantheaume Point, Broome, Western Australia

Disclosure:  This post contains a sponsored link for cheap flights

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68 comments

  • I’m in love with Australia! There are so many amazing beaches I would love to visit some day 😀 Hopefully next year i can make a trip down there.

  • These month-by-month recommendations are definietly helpful to me, as I am already planning the first holiday breaks for 2018.
    The Three-Step-Plan is not really sophisticated and reads rather simple, however, point number 3 is the most difficult for many people, I guess. Therefore, I can only reconfirm: Just GO!

  • Your first half of the year seems fulfilling. I envy your exploring adventures. And all these are in Australia!! My love for Aussie growing day by day. I’m sure you are proud of Australia right now.

  • Australia is a huge gaping hole in my travel history, and one I’ll need to remedy soon I think. This is a super helpful guide of where to go (for those of us who just have no idea where to start), especially with regards to weather, which is completely opposite for us. Haha…hot in January? SO WEIRD. 😉 But totally agree with you about just getting out there and DOING IT. Travel is really not as difficult or expensive as people seem to think it is…

    • Weird? A cold Xmas is weird to me, haha!! And I’ve only seen snow about 4 times in my whole life!! But seriously, I hope you get to do a lot of cool stuff downunder, Shelley – and not just the touristy things everyone else does 😀

  • What a cool idea to go month by month like that! The beaches look amazing. I really hope to make it to Australia soon. There really seems to be so much to see and do.

  • I had read many posts on Australia and had been to the country as well. But this is such a unique way to write a post about a country. Often we ignore the timing of our visit. This guide is perfect to plan an Aussie holiday.

  • Wow, what a great rundown of destinations around Australia. Love your advice too about seeing more of Australia. Like anything, if you dedicate some time, it is amazing what you can accomplish. By the way, Lord Howe is calling my name. Hiking and snorkelling in that setting? Works for me!

  • I love it. It is such a great way the see Australia. You highlighted some really interesting places that I personally would love to visit. I love how you matched each month with the best places to visit during that month.

    • These places are some of my faves, TW2OU! But you CAN actually visit most them at other times of the year – I’m just trying to inspire people to go somewhere no matter what month they have to take their leave in!

  • Great guide on where to go and what months to visit in. Love the response to the reasons why people just don’t go out and explore. As you say just chose a region, get in a car and get going. Plus you’ve provided a fantastic list of road trips you can take.

    • I’m actually going to do a separate blog post one day, Kat – 10 reasons why you probably won’t travel in Australia this year!!! JFDI is the best advice I can give 😀

  • Oh wow, you have now given me a lot more ideas when I go back to Australia. I really want to get out there and do it on a budget but see it as well. Fantastic read.

  • That article is a great help as it’s telling me which region is best to be visited in which month. It’s such a huge country so especially for first time visitors it can be overwhelming to chose where to go.

    • A lot of visitors make the mistake of thinking of Australia as one country that can be ‘done’ in a week, Wiebke! My advice is if you’ve only got a week, then pick one or two of my suggestions and explore them thoroughly! You’re right though – it CAN be overwhelming, so I hope my guide helps narrow the choices down!

  • There is so much gorgeous landscape to see here, I love your highlight tour and want to see it all. What a fun way to see things, I only wish I had all that time to actually do a grand tour like this.

    • Haha, you can do it all a lot more quickly than this, Noel – this is just a way to try a ‘sampler’ of Australian destinations by taking a short break whenever you can. But there’s a lot to be said for the grand tour 😀

  • I have never been to Austrailia, mainly because the long flight to the UK puts me off. It’s such a fabulous country though, I will have to make an effort to fly there with a stop over. Love your guide for newbies like me

  • I have never been to Australia at all but I think you have just inspired me! Some of these places look amazing! We always like to get a car and explore when we go away.

  • Cue for a song I reckon: “Get on the road Jack,” and if I didn’t have to come home I’d also stay on the road. I agree, you don’t need expensive rigs, 5 star hotels, big 4 x 4s to see Australia and it’s best to do it one chunk at a time. My daughter and her boyfriend are heading off in a converted 1976 old school bus next month to do the big loop – hello Gumtree!

  • A great selection of places. I’ve been to all of them except the top of Australia, which I hope to do at the end of this year. There are still heaps of things I could see if I could do all those places again. My problem is easing the old boy out of his comfort zone.

  • I totally agree that Australia is a bottomless pit of fantastic travel destinations all year round. If you time it right you can go all the way around and not experience a winter. How good is that! We are hoping to head off again next year in our el cheapo caravan to see more of what we missed last time!

    • Everyone keeps asking me when I’ll be ‘finished’ Australia, Kathy – but I keep telling them the more I look, the more I find! I bet you’re really looking forward to discovering more of OZ!

  • This is just perfect. I want to visit Australia. And I want to explore as much of it as possible. Your monthly options are just perfect to let me choose something whenever I am ready to go there. Beautiful places!

    • I hope you get to try out a few of my suggestions, Neha!! There’s so much to see that it’s best to pace yourself and not try to see everything in one trip!

  • Australia is breathtaking and fascinating! Love your post!

  • I loved your part two so much I went back for part one and it didn’t disappoint. After some giggling over Lord Howe’s Island being an upgrade of his time spent with Gilligan, I got down to business. So many good ideas here. Love bagging a “seven summit” but Australia’s best snorkeling sounds pretty good too. Maybe I’ll have to buy a camper van and stay as long as my visa will allow.

    • Wow, I’m flattered Jenn & Ed! If it’s inspired you, then my work is done! Really, travelling around with your own accommodation (ie camper trailer, tent, van etc) is the best way to see everything IMHO – but if you can’t do that, then choose a few places you REALLY want to see and focus on those instead of trying to see everything. Hope you get to do it one day 😀

  • Australia has so much to offer, and I’m dying to visit sometime! I’ve actually been travelling around Asia for the past month and a half now, and the original plan was to stop by Australia at the end – but I decided against it. I want to spend as much time as I possibly can in Oz – and hopefully stop by New Zealand afterwards – so I thought it might make more sense to make a separate trip out of it. Fingers crossed I can visit sometime next year! (Your recommendations will definitely come in handy, thanks! :))

    • In my opinion you made the right decision, Vicky! So I’ll be interested to see/hear whether you agree once you’ve made the trip! It’s too big a country to spend just a few days in – and I hope you get to see all the good bits 😀 Stay tuned for Part 2.

  • Great Details and planning for Traveling around Australia, we visited Uluru in March / April and somehow it worked out fine: https://knycxjourneying.com/2016/10/30/outback-the-belly-button-of-the-earth/.

    And it’s definitely a magical experience for us to be staying the wild and get to know the Native’s culture, too! @ knycx.journeying

  • Really great guide by the month – Australia really is one of those countrys you need a full year to see, especially since there is such a diversity of landscapes which are better at different times of the year. You could even take in Darwin as early as may – it’s exactly the same weather as June, but doesn’t have the incredible crowds … school holidays here in Aus align then so it’s always a hectic time of year 🙂

    • A lot of the places I’ve suggested can also be seen at other times of the year, Megan – you’re right about Darwin, although we encountered temperatures in the mid to high 30’s (C) during our May visit some years ago! I always tell people to think of Australia as a continent to be explored rather than a country – that way you tend to plan a longer visit and see all the different bits rather than fitting it all into a week or two!

  • This is a great and very useful post about Australia! I’m loving the January itinerary but I’ll have to wait for part 2, for the July and August itinerary because it’s when our daughter is out of school. Looking forward to reading the next one.

  • Such a great post! Makes me realise how little of our country I have seen. I especially like the sound of March – Norfolk and Lord Howe!
    Kristie – you.theworld.wandering

    • So far EVERYONE I speak to finds the sound of Norfolk and Lord Howe Islands appealing, Kristie! Hope you can make it there one day! Stick around for July-Dec and you might find even more places to check out 😀

  • Very interesting post. I have been Australlia four times.

  • Australia has so much on offer. The sheer natural beauty and the varied landscape is really irresistible. It would be great to travel across this lovely country month on month and visit all the places suggested. Nice guide that helps to plan an itinerary for Australia, especially for first time travelers to the country.

    • You’re right – there’s SO much to see it’s always hard to narrow it down to just a few places with a post like this, Sandy & Vyjay! The monthly suggestions are a good starting point – but there’s a LOT more!

  • I definitely think there’s a WHOLE lot of ‘grass is greener’ thing there. I think if I were to be posted to Australia for a bit, I’d have my travel itch well occupied just going through all the landscapes of Australia.

    But it seems Australians are all over the place (well, mostly Bali, but then everywhere else) waxing lyrical about somewhere or other – but honestly speaking as an impartial observer, a lot of those places aren’t more incredible than Australia. It’s just not-home, that’s all. :p

    • Yep, us Aussies sure get around, Nuraini! And there’s still a bit of a cultural cringe happening. But I’m a loud & proud Aussie traveller and I think what we’ve got to offer, particularly the natural attractions, can match anything! That’s actually one of the reasons I started my blog!!

  • Australia is definitely on my to go to list! I know January-June aren’t really tourist seasons so it must be great to really indulge and have fun during this time. I’d personally love a visit to Norfolk Island for the unique culture and beautiful scenery. That lake is absolutely amazing!

  • There’s so much to see in Australia! I haven’t visited yet but it’s always been a dream of mine. I want to check out the Gold Coast and the Territory with Uluru!

    • They’re both great places to go – and they’ve both got hidden gems around them once you’ve seen the main attraction, Linda! Hope you get to visit one day soon 😀

  • There is still LOTS of Australia that I am yet to visit but we have done a LOT of Western Australia. The eastern half is on the agenda. WA is such a long way away from everywhere it takes us a week to get to the beginning! Happy travels Red. Keep the great travel destinations coming.

    • I had misgivings about splitting this post in two, Jill – because all the WA places are in the second half!! Yes, the distance from east to west DOES put a lot of people off – but it’s so rewarding to make the jump!

  • I agree Red. I think Aussies use any excuse for not seeing their own gorgeous country. A lot of people I know say it’s cheaper to travel to Bali for holidays. They really don’t know what they’re missing out on! There’s so much to see and your seasonal guide gives me itchy feet. 🙂

    • Kathy, one of the other ones I hear a lot is ‘I’ll go travelling overseas while I still can, then ‘do’ Australia when I’m older’. That’s fair enough … but seeing Australia properly isn’t for the faint-hearted! But it all depends on the type of holiday you want too. I get that what I do isn’t for everyone – but I’m glad I’ve given you itchy feet!!

  • It’s amazing there are still many beaches I don’t know only in NSW. Australia is so large – places I haven’t been to yet can be close to the cities I have been to.

  • I’d love to go wandering around Australia, but I’ll happily settle for going along with you via the internet.

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