Australia Basic Information
Australia is there to be explored and is a country that appeals to any type of tourist. Sporting activities are by no means a rarity in Australia with hiking and biking along dirt trails, skiing in the southern mountain ranges, skydiving and barrier reef diving all available for visitors with a thirst for thrills. Lazy days on the beach are also welcome after a morning spent shopping and retiring at the end of it all in a hip cafe should not go amiss. But before adventuring off into the vast outback, check out the basics below first.
For citizens of Australia, you can explore to your heart’s content all year round with no limitations! For international tourists, a normal holiday visa (eVisitor) allows for 3 months' travel within Australia over a 12-month period. Some travellers from Commonwealth countries may also be eligible for a working holiday visa, which you'll need to apply for before you arrive. Please be aware this information is only a guideline. For up-to-the-minute visa information, contact your local Australian Embassy or Consulate.
The currency in Australia is the Australian Dollar. The exchange rate between the Australian Dollar and other currencies fluctuates constantly, so it's a good idea to monitor the rate before purchasing cash. For international visitors, safe spending is a high priority, so consider bringing a credit card or travel money card with you.
Australia's close geographic proximity to Asia been a direct influence in the number of takeaways and restaurants dedicated to a variety of tasty Asian cuisines where a sushi lunch is the norm in the capital cities. Out in the leafy suburbs, cafes offer a la carte menus, which may be a little bit pricey but provide the perfect place for a lunch in the sun with friends. Beef farming is huge in Australia and so steak houses are never far away. In some rural areas, it is even possible to eat at restaurants owned by a farm ensuring that only the best cuts are served. Australia also has a vast fishing zone of 11million square kilometres around its coast, which happens to be the third largest in the world. Over 600 species of fresh fish and seafood are brought into Australian ports for consumption, so it is worthwhile sampling the delightful produce on offer. Why not try some local faves such as kangaroo, Vegemite and the infamous TimTam chocolate biscuits?
Australia is enormous and culturally diverse meaning the nightlife follows suit. Areas such as Perth may appear to be isolated, however partygoers flock together and bring an almost a festive atmosphere to the night scene. In the middle of the outback, Alice Springs is host to many sports bars and Wild West-type venues. In Cairns, backpacker bars are often full from Thursday through to Sunday putting on excellent, albeit sometimes wacky, nights. The Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast are both coastal destinations with excellent places to visit to have a glitzy club experience or a laidback pub night in Oz. In Brisbane, The Valley is the city's dedicated entertainment precinct with clubs, bars and restaurants ranging from backpacker dives to high-end lounge bars and plenty to places to catch a live act. Sydney is non-stop at all times. As it is such a large city, generally the top clubs come with a higher entrance fee. Chilled-out bars serving meals can be found throughout the city, namely in Kings Cross and Darlinghurst, with the best views of the water near the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge at Darling Harbour. Melbourne in the south is renowned for its small bar scene. Hidden down alleyways and up on rooftops, when it comes to nightlife in Melbourne, it pays to be in the know. Some of the best bars in Australia lie behind an unassuming door in Melbourne’s CBD.