With more than 500 national parks, Australia is the country with the most national parks in the world. Unsurprisingly, many travellers that plan to visit some of these national parks quickly become overwhelmed by the sheer number of choices available to them. This article lists some of the most beautiful national parks in the country to help make deciding easier. In addition, some useful tips are given for a trip to Australia, such as applying for an Australia visa.
Most famous national park in Australiaʼs outback
Most of Australiaʼs national parks are located on the outskirts of the country, towards the coast. The interior of Australia - the outback - is characterised by vast deserts that are dry and sparsely vegetated. Yet one of Australiaʼs most famous national parks - Uluru Kata Tjuta - lies in an area in the centre of the country known as the Red Centre. Uluru Kata Tjuta is located in the middle of the outback, about 460 kilometres from Alice Springs. The national park is known for its large red sandstone rock formations, of which "Ayers Rock" is the most photographed and can be seen on many photos and posters.
The gigantic rock Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, is one of the best-known sights in Australia and attracts large amounts of visitors every year. The rock is no less than 348 metres high and has a circumference of 3.6 kilometres. Climbing the rock has been prohibited since 2019, due to its sacred status to Aboriginal people. In 1985, the Australian government returned the entire Uluru - Kata Tjuta area to the original inhabitants, the Anangu Aborigines. Some 27 kilometres from Uluru are the rock domes of Kata Tjuta, also known as the Olgas.
Tropical wetlands and rainforest in the north of Australia
The north of Australia is known for its unspoilt nature, for example in the far north near Darwin in Kakadu National Park, which is managed by the indigenous people in cooperation with the Australian authorities. With an area of almost 20,000 km², Kakadu National Park is the largest national park in the country. Partly because of its enormous size, the park has highly varied landscapes: from rugged rock formations to lakes, swamps and savannahs. As parts of the park have been inhabited by Aborigines for 50,000 years, you can also see Aboriginal rock paintings that are thousands of years old.
Another national park in the north of the country (near Cairns) is Daintree, one of the oldest rainforests in the world. Crocodiles, among other things, can be spotted in this national park. Off the coast of Daintree lies the Great Barrier Reef. The national park is therefore also visited by lovers of the underwater world.
Mountains in the south-east of the country
Mountain lovers can visit one of the many national parks in the south-east of Australia, for example the Blue Mountains in New South Wales. This mountain range is less than 100 kilometres from Sydney and can therefore be easily combined with a visit to Australiaʼs largest city. The national park is known for the 92 different types of eucalyptus trees that grow there and the beautiful waterfalls and valleys that are carved deep into the sandstone. There are several hiking trails through the national park, both for trips of a few hours or several days. A second national park in New South Wales near Canberra is Kosciuszko. This national park contains Australiaʼs highest mountain, Mount Kosciuszko. Although you can also hike here, the park is especially popular with winter sports enthusiasts because of the many ski resorts.
Western Australia: gorges and rock formations
Some of the most beautiful national parks can be found in Western Australia, including Karijini, Australiaʼs second largest national park. The park is about 1,000 kilometres from Perth and is particularly well known for its impressive gorges and meandering rivers that plunge into gorges up to a hundred metres deep. Closer to Perth is Nambung National Park. In the middle of this park lies the Pinnacles Desert, a field where thousands of limestone columns rise from the ground.
To visit Australiaʼs beautiful national parks, a visa is required. The eVisitor visa Australia can be applied for easily online and is granted within 5 working days on average. This visa is valid for one year and can be used for several stays of up to 3 months each. The visa allows you to travel to Australia several times within one year.
This is appealing for travellers who want to visit national parks in different parts of the country. Because Australia is such a large country, the distances between the national parks are enormous. For example, the journey from the Blue Mountains National Park near Sydney to Karijini in the west can easily take 47 hours. As travellers with an eVisitor visa Australia can stay in the country for up to 3 consecutive months, they have enough time to visit national parks that are further apart without having to worry about the validity of their visa.