AUSTRALIA

AUSTRALIA

AUSTRALIA

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Name: Sydney Opera House
Location: Sydney, Australia
The Sydney Opera House is a multi-venue performing arts centre at Sydney Harbour in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. It is one of the 20th century's most famous and distinctive buildings.

Designed by Danish architect Jørn Utzon, the building was formally opened on 20 October 1973 after a gestation beginning with Utzon's 1957 selection as winner of an international design competition. The Government of New South Wales, authorised work to begin in 1958 with Utzon directing construction. The government's decision to build Utzon's design is often overshadowed by circumstances that followed, including cost and scheduling overruns as well as the architect's ultimate resignation.

The building and its surrounds occupy the whole of Bennelong Point on Sydney Harbour, between Sydney Cove and Farm Cove, adjacent to the Sydney central business district and the Royal Botanic Gardens, and close by the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The building comprises multiple performance venues which together host well over 1,500 performances annually, attended by more than 1.2 million people.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sydney_Opera_House
Name: Great Barrier Reef
Location: Queensland, Australia
The Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef system composed of over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching for over 2,300 kilometres (1,400 mi) over an area of approximately 344,400 square kilometres (133,000 sq mi). The reef is located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of Queensland, Australia. The Great Barrier Reef can be seen from outer space and is the world's biggest single structure made by living organisms. This reef structure is composed of and built by billions of tiny organisms, known as coral polyps. It supports a wide diversity of life and was selected as a World Heritage Site in 1981.

A large part of the reef is protected by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, which helps to limit the impact of human use, such as fishing and tourism. Other environmental pressures on the reef and its ecosystem include runoff, climate change accompanied by mass coral bleaching, dumping of dredging sludge and cyclic population outbreaks of the crown-of-thorns starfish.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Barrier_Reef
Name: Uluru
Location: Northern Territory, Australia
Uluru is a large sandstone rock formation in the southern part of the Northern Territory in central Australia. It lies 335 km (208 mi) south west of the nearest large town, Alice Springs.

Uluru is sacred to the Pitjantjatjara Anangu, the Aboriginal people of the area. The area around the formation is home to an abundance of springs, waterholes, rock caves and ancient paintings. Uluru is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Uluru is one of Australia's most recognisable natural landmarks. The sandstone formation stands 348 m (1,142 ft) high, rising 863 m (2,831 ft) above sea level with most of its bulk lying underground, and has a total circumference of 9.4 km (5.8 mi). Both Uluru and the nearby Kata Tjuta formation have great cultural significance for the Aṉangu people, the traditional inhabitants of the area, who lead walking tours to inform visitors about the local flora and fauna, bush food and the Aboriginal dreamtime stories of the area. Uluru is notable for appearing to change colour at different times of the day and year, most notably when it glows red at dawn and sunset.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uluru
FLIGHT TIMES / MAJOR CITIES
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COUNTRY INFORMATION GUIDE
PLEASE SEE BELOW FACTS, USEFUL US GOVERNMENT TRAVEL LINKS AND BUSINESS VISITOR ACTIVITIES, FOR TRAVEL TO AUSTRALIA.
FACTS:
Official Languages: English
Currency: Australia Dollar (AUD)
Time zones: Various. For a specific city / region – please see the following timeanddate.com Australia weblink here
Drives on the right
Calling code: +61
Local / up-to-date weather in Sydney (and other regions): BBC global weather – click here
US GOVT TRAVEL LINKS:

For more useful information on safety & security, local laws / customs, health and more, please see the below official US travel.state.gov web link for Australia travel advice. NB: Entry requirements herein listed are for US nationals only, unless stated otherwise.

You can also find recommended information on vaccinations, malaria and other more detailed health considerations for travel to Australia, at the below official US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) weblink.

BUSINESS VISITOR ACTIVITIES*:
Activities you may undertake on a business visa / as a business visitor:
PERMISSIBLE
ATTENDING MEETINGS / DISCUSSIONS: TBC
ATTENDING A CONFERENCE: TBC
RECEIVING TRAINING (CLASSROOM-BASED): TBC
NON-PERMISSIBLE
AUDIT WORK: TBC
PROVIDING TRAINING: TBC
PROJECT WORK: TBC
*This information does not constitute legal advice and is not an exhaustive list. For a full legal assessment on business visitor activities, please revert to your internal company legal team / counsel.
TRAVEL INFORMATION**
It is highly recommenced that you access the above official US travel.state.gov web link and read all safety & security information prior to making your travel arrangements / planning your trip.
PLEASE CLICK / TOGGLE BELOW FOR USEFUL TRAVEL INFORMATION TO AUSTRALIA.

The Australian currency is known as the dollar, denoted by the symbol “$” or “A$” (ISO code: AUD). It is divided into 100 cents (¢). In this guide, the “$” sign denotes Australian dollars unless otherwise noted.

Coins come in denominations of 5¢, 10¢, 20¢, 50¢, $1 and the tiny $2. They are rather similar to the size and shape of coins issues in the United Kingdom. Notes come in denominations of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 (all in distinctive colours). $100 notes are rare and may be occasionally hard to use in shops. Australian notes are printed on plastic polymer rather than paper. If the total of a transaction is not a multiple of 5 cents the amount will be rounded to the nearest five cents if you are paying in cash. The exact amount will be charged if paying by card.

The dollar is not pegged to any other currency, and is highly traded on world foreign exchange markets, particularly by currency speculators. Its exchange value to other currencies can be quite volatile, and 1-2% changes in a day are reasonably regular occurrences.

CURRENCY EXCHANGE:

As the Australian dollar is considered to be a major world currency, it is widely available at money changers and banks throughout the world.

Money changers in Australia operate in a free market, and charge a range of flat commissions, percentage fees, undisclosed fees built into the exchange rate, or a combination of all three. You can avoid rip-off rates by using banks in major centres, and staying clear of airports and tourist centres. However, both the best and worst rates come from the small private sellers, and you can certainly save money over the banks by shopping around. Always get a quote before changing money. You’ll usually need to have photo identification with you, although you may be exempt if only changing a small amount.

Dedicated currency exchange outlets are widely available in major cities, and banks can also exchange most non-restricted currencies. These exchange outlets – especially the ones at the airport – can charge 10% over the best exchange that can be obtained from shopping around. Australian banks usually offer an exchange rate around 2.5% from the current exchange midpoint. A flat commission of $5–8 can be charged on top. Some outlets advertise commission free exchange, usually accompanied by a worse rate of exchange. Don’t assume every bank will offer the same exchange. A simple calculation will let you know what offers the best deal for amount you wish to exchange. There are vouchers for commission free exchange at American Express available in the tourist brochure at Sydney Airport.

International airport terminals will have teller machines that can dispense Australian currency with Cirrus, Maestro, MasterCard or Visa cards.

CREDIT CARDS:

Credit cards are widely accepted in Australia. Almost all large vendors such as supermarkets accept cards, as do many small stores. Australian debit cards can also be used via a system known as EFTPOS. Any card showing the Cirrus or Maestro logos can be used at any terminal displaying those logos. Visa or MasterCard are the most universally accepted cards, then American Express, then Diners Club with other cards either never or very rarely accepted. American Express and Diners Club are accepted at major supermarket and department store chains.

Smaller shops may have a minimum purchase amount to use a credit or debit card, due to the fixed transaction costs they have. Others may simply discourage use of cards for small purchases.

All Australian issued cards use a PIN for purchases. If you have an overseas issued card without a PIN you can still sign for purchases, however, shopkeepers unused to dealing with overseas cards may not be aware of this. If you can, try to have a PIN on your card if your bank allows it. If not, you may have to explain that you have an overseas card at places that expect you to have a PIN – and wait while they find a pen.

Contactless credit cards, Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay are accepted at virtually all terminals. If the purchase is over A$100, a PIN is required.

Credit card surcharges are imposed at all car rental agencies, travel agents, airlines, and at some discount retailers and service stations. Surcharges are far more common and higher for American Express and Diners Club (typically 2%-4%) than they are for Visa and MasterCard (typically 1.5%).

UnionPay credit cards are becoming more common in tourist shops and restaurants due to the rising number of Chinese visitors. It is difficult to use them in other businesses however.

Australia is huge but sparsely populated over much of its area, and you can sometimes travel many hours before finding the next trace of civilisation, especially once you leave the south-eastern coastal fringe.

Almost all modern Australian maps, including street directories, use the Geocentric Datum of Australia (GDA) as their grid reference, which is for all purposes identical to the WGS84 used by the GPS. You can locate most things on an Australian map or street directory if you just have the “GPS coordinates”.

BY CAR:

Australia has a generally well-maintained system of roads and highways, and cars are a commonly used method of transport. All the mainland state capitals are linked to each other by sealed highways. Some parts are dual carriageway but many sections are one lane each way. Roads linking minor centres (or what can look like short-cuts on the map) can be narrow or gravel roads.

Major hazards on Australian roads are wildlife and large trucks. Be sure to take extra care when driving at dusk or in the dark, as the risk of animal collisions increases significantly. Major regional areas have sealed (paved) dual-lane roads, but isolated areas may have poorly maintained dirt roads or even tracks. Distances and speeds are specified in kilometres and fuel is sold by the litre. There are no tolls on roads or bridges outside of the urban areas of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. While public transport is usable in the cities of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth, a car is handy, sometimes even essential, to get around anywhere else.

Australia drives on the left. Overseas visitors who are used to driving on the right should take care when they first drive, and again when they are driving on country roads with little traffic.

Generally, overseas licenses are valid for driving in Australia for three months after arrival. If the licence is not in English, an International Driving Permit (IDP) is required in addition to your licence. Licensing regulations and road rules vary slightly from state to state.

Australia’s low population density and large size makes for long driving times between major centres. Some indicative travel times, not including any rest periods, are:

  • Sydney to Melbourne by car: 9–10 hours (900 km / 560 mi)
  • Brisbane to Sydney: 12–13 hours (1,000 km / 620 mi)
  • Perth to Sydney: 45 hours (4,000 km / 2500 mi)
  • Sydney to Canberra: 3.5 hours (300 km / 185 mi)
  • Adelaide to Melbourne: 8–10 hours (750 km / 465 mi)
  • Brisbane to Melbourne: 19–20 hours (1,700 km / 1056 mi)
  • Melbourne to Perth: 40 hours (3,500 km / 2175 mi)
  • Perth to Adelaide: 32 hours (2,700 km / 1677 mi)
  • Brisbane to Cairns: 22–24 hours (1,700 km / 1,056 mi)
  • Adelaide to Sydney: 14-16 hours (1370 km / 850 mi)

It is almost impossible to predict your travel time just by knowing the distance. Seek local advice for the best route, and how much time to allow. The maximum speed limit on most rural Australian roads is 100 km/h. Sometimes this is increased to 110 km/h. Average speed is seldom above 80 km/h due to the poor road conditions and limited overtaking opportunities. On some national highways that traverse mountain ranges and travel through small towns, even averaging 60 km/h can be a challenge.

While major highways are well serviced, anyone leaving sealed (paved) roads in inland Australia is advised to take advice from local authorities, check weather and road conditions, and carry sufficient spare fuel, spare parts, spare tyres, matches, food and water. Some remote roads might see one car per month or less.

Cellular coverage is non-existent outside of major highways and towns and you should take some precautions in case of emergency. It is a good idea to advise a person you know and trust of your route and advise them to alert authorities if you do not contact them within a reasonable amount of time after your scheduled arrival at your destination. Carrying a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) or satellite phone should be considered when travelling in remote areas, especially where you may not be able to make contact for several days. Police will not automatically start looking for you if you don’t report in. Make sure you get one with a GPS built in. These can be borrowed from some local police stations, such as those in the Blue Mountains in New South Wales. If you want to hire one, sort it out before you leave a major city, as you won’t find hire places in small towns. Expect to pay around $100 to hire for a week, or $700 to buy one. Don’t expect an immediate rescue even if you trigger a PLB.

Heat and dehydration at any time of year can kill you. If stranded, stay with your vehicle and do what you can to improve your visibility from the air. Do not take this advice lightly; even local people die out there when their car breaks down and they are not reported missing. If you do have to abandon your car (say you break down and then get a lift), call in quickly to the local police station, to avoid the embarrassment and cost of a search being started for you.

CAMPERVANS:

A campervan is a vehicle, usually a minivan, converted into a motorhome (recreational vehicle), most often catering to the vast number of young European and American backpackers traversing the country. The East Coast from Sydney to Cairns is especially abundant with happy, hungover youths travelling around in these vehicles.

Britz and Maui tend to operate at the premium end of the campervan market, while the lower end of the market is fiercely competed: larger operators include Cruisin Motorhomes, Jucy Rentals, Hippie Camper, Motorhome Republic and Spaceships.

Campervans vary widely in fitting and quality, with some featuring showers, toilets, kitchens and more, while others have little more than mattresses in the back. They are generally suited for 2–6 travellers depending on the vehicle’s size. Check the extra charges very carefully and make sure that you are not paying the same or more for a lesser quality vehicle.

Don’t assume hiring a camper will be a cheaper way of seeing Australia. The cost of fuel varies greatly depending on where you are. Fuel costs in outback Australia are much higher than urban areas. Add on the cost of hire, etc., and staying in hostels will often be a cheaper and more comfortable option — but the freedom of having your own four wheels may make up for it.

Prices can change dramatically depending on the travel period. So don’t expect to find a cheap campervan rental over Christmas and new year’s eve for example. Suppliers also fix prices depending on availability. Like flight tickets, it’s always cheaper to book in advance.

BY TAXI:

Larger towns and cities have taxi services. Uber is available in major cities. There are several smartphone taxi booking applications such as myDriver, GoCatch that make finding a licensed taxi simple.

Outside of cities, towns may have a limited taxi service. Maybe one or two drivers who may be part time. Smaller or remote towns may have no service at all.

When travelling alone, it is customary for a passenger to sit in the front passenger seat, next to the driver, rather than in the back. However, if you prefer to sit in the back then it isn’t really a problem.

BY PLANE:

Due to the large distances involved, flying is a well-patronised form of travel in Australia. Services along the main business travel corridor (Melbourne-Sydney-Brisbane) are run almost like a bus service, with flights leaving every 15 minutes during the day.

The best fares are almost always available on the most competitive routes, whereas routes to remote destinations with fewer flights tend to be more expensive. Qantas actually do often offer competitive prices, so don’t ignore that option just because they are the national carrier. There are only a handful of main airlines in Australia, so it won’t take long to compare their prices on domestic routes:

  • Qantas, the full-service national carrier, flying to major cities and some larger regional towns;
  • Virgin Australia, a nationwide full-service airline, flying to major cities and a few larger regional towns;
  • Jetstar, Qantas’s discount arm with limited service and assigned seating.
  • Tigerair Australia, Virgin Australia’s low cost carrier with a hub in Melbourne and flying to Sydney, Gold Coast, Brisbane, Alice Springs, Hobart, Mackay, Perth and Canberra, prices are very competitive, but delays are frequent and chance of flight cancellation quite possible.

Several airlines service regional destinations. Expect discounts on these airlines to be harder to come by, and for standard airfares to be above what you would pay for the same distance between major centres.

  • Qantaslink, the regional arm of Qantas, covering the smaller cities in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and Western Australia;
  • Regional Express, covering larger towns & cities on the eastern seaboard and in country South Australia;
  • Skywest, covering regional Western Australia, Bali and Darwin;
  • Airnorth, covering the Northern Territory;
  • Skytrans Airlines, covering regional Queensland.
  • Sharp Airlines, covering several regional towns in Victoria and South Australia.

BY TRAIN:

Visitors from areas with well-developed long distance rail systems such as Europe and Japan may be surprised by the lack of high-speed, inter-city rail services in Australia. A historical lack of cooperation between the states, combined with sheer distances and a relatively small population to service, have left Australia with a national rail network that is relatively slow and used mainly for freight. Nevertheless, train travel between cities can be very scenic and present opportunities to see new aspects of the country, and can be a cost-effective way to get to regional towns and cities, which tend to have more expensive flights than those between the state capitals.

The long-distance rail services that do exist are mainly used to link regional townships with the state capital, such as Bendigo to Melbourne, or Cairns to Brisbane. In Queensland, a tilting train operates from Brisbane to Rockhampton and Brisbane to Cairns. Queensland also has passenger services to inland centres including Longreach (The Spirit of the Outback), Mount Isa (The Inlander), Charleville (The Westlander) and Forsayth (The Savannahlander). There are also inter-city train services operated by Great Southern Railways on the Melbourne-Adelaide (The Overland), Sydney-Adelaide-Perth (Indian Pacific) and Adelaide-Alice Springs-Darwin (The Ghan). However, these are not “high-speed” services and actually cost more than flying, so if you do not enjoy train travel as part of your holiday then this is probably not for you.

Tasmania has no passenger rail services. The Northern Territory has the rail line linking Darwin to Adelaide through Alice Springs only, and the Australian Capital Territory has a single railway station close to the centre of Canberra.

Long distance train operators:

  • Great Southern Railways – A private train operator running luxury tourist train services, The Ghan, The Indian Pacific and The Overland between Sydney, Broken Hill, Adelaide, Alice Springs, Darwin, Perth and Melbourne.
  • NSW Trainlink Regional – Links Sydney to Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra, and regional connections to most New South Wales towns, including Dubbo, Coffs Harbour, and Wagga Wagga.
  • V/Line – Train & coach services in Victoria, including combined Train and Coach services between Melbourne and Adelaide, Melbourne and Canberra.
  • Queensland Rail – Long distance passenger train services in Queensland, including its flagship Spirit of Queensland service between Brisbane and Cairns.
  • The Savannahlander – A privately-run train service that links Cairns with the outback town of Forsayth, using old heritage trains, and providing overnight accommodation and tours on the way.
  • TransWA – State government run, operating train services to Kalgoorlie and Bunbury. TransWA also operates coach services to much of the state where former rail services operated in the past, especially the South West of the state.

Rail passes:

No rail pass includes all train travel throughout Australia. However, if you are a train buff that intends travelling extensively by rail, there are some passes that may save you money. Plan your trip carefully before investing in a rail pass. Country train services are infrequent and can arrive at regional destinations at unsociable hours.

  • Discovery Pass. Use any NSW Trainlink services (trains and coaches). Get anywhere in NSW, and north to Brisbane and south to Melbourne.
  • Queensland Rail Coastal Pass and Queensland Rail Explorer Pass.

Local public transport:

Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Wollongong and Newcastle have train and bus services integrated into the city public transport, with trams also running in Melbourne, Adelaide, and Sydney, and ferries in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth. The remaining capital cities have bus services only. See those city guides articles for public transport details.

Some regional cities and towns have local bus services, but see the destination guides for service information, as frequency can be poor and weekend and evening services non-existent.

BY BUS:

Bus travel in Australia is cheap and convenient, although the distances involved for interstate connections are daunting. Greyhound has the largest bus route network. There are no bus services from the other capital cities to Perth.

  • Firefly Express, 1300 730 740 (local rate), +61 3 8318 0318 (international callers), enquiries@fireflyexpress.com.au. Firefly Express has services connecting Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney.
  • Greyhound, 1300 473 946 (local rate), info@greyhound.com.au. Greyhound travels to over 1100 destinations in Australia daily every day of the year. It has a variety of ticketing options allow you to travel at your own pace, hopping on and off as many times as your ticket allows.
  • Murrays, +61 13 22 51, reservations@murrays.com.au. Murrays has services connecting Canberra with Sydney, the NSW South Coast and snowfields.

BY BOAT:

Sydney, Brisbane, and Perth have ferries as part of their public transport system. Some smaller roads in the regional areas still have punts to carry cars across rivers and canals. The islands of the Barrier Reef have some scheduled services, and there are a few cruises that cross the top of Australia as well.

However, large inter city ferry services are not common.

  • The Spirit of Tasmania. The only long distance ferry route connects Tasmania to the mainland and carries cars and passengers on the route across Bass Strait daily between Melbourne and Devonport.
  • Sealink connects Kangaroo Island, Australia’s second largest southern island to mainland South Australia with regular car ferries.
  • Sea SA offers an short cut across the Spencer Gulf between Adelaide (Wallaroo) and the Lucky Bay on the Eyre Peninsula. The service has been suspended frequently, but is operating as of Dec 2018.

EAT:

Australian cuisine is mainly influenced by its British colonial heritage, but with a history of immigration from other parts of Europe like Germany, Italy, Greece and Poland, the influence of these cultures is evident in Australian cuisine too. The large influx of Asian migrants has also left its mark on Australian cuisine, with many Australian chefs incorporating Asian influences in nominally Western dishes.

The various Aboriginal tribes have their own distinctive cuisines, though due to the fact that they make extensive use of exotic ingredients, these have for the most part not become a part of mainstream Australian cuisine.

Native foods:

It may come as a disappointment that native foods are not actually available that much in Australian restaurants, nor consumed by Australians much themselves. It is available in supermarkets and in some of the remoter parts of the country. Traditional Aboriginal diets can include endangered species, the consumption of which is strictly regulated to specific communities and unlikely to be available to you.

  • Kangaroo, if you fancy some, it is available from many supermarkets and butchers shops. Barbecue it until medium rare, but best not to overcook as it may become quite tough. It tastes much like beef. It occasionally makes it onto the menu in restaurants, mostly in tourist areas. Kangaroos are abundant, do far less damage to the sensitive Australian environment than hoofed animals, and produce far fewer carbon emissions as well. Kangaroo is a great environmental statement to make whilst barbecuing.
  • Crocodile, meat from farms in the Northern Territory and Queensland is widely available around the top end, and occasionally elsewhere. At Rockhampton, the beef capital of Australia, you can see the ancient reptile on a farm while munching on a croc burger.
  • Emu, yes, you can eat the other half of the Australian Coat of Arms as well. Emu is low in fat and available in speciality butchers. Try the Coat of Arms in a pie in Maleny or on a pizza in The Rocks.
  • Bush tucker, many tours may give you an opportunity to try some bush tucker, the berries, nuts, roots, ants, and grubs from Australia’s native bush. Macadamia nuts are the only native plant to Australia that is grown for food commercially. Some of the other bush foods can be an acquired taste, though native seasonings are certainly worth trying. Bush tucker ice cream can sometimes be found at farmers’ markets and outdoor festivals.

Beyond cuisine:

Australia has a good deal of British inspired food that is not well known internationally. Definitely worth a try.

Vegemite, a salty yeast-based spread, best spread thinly on toast. If you aren’t up for buying a jar, any coffee shop will serve vegemite on toast at breakfast time. It may not even be on the menu, but the vegemite will be out the back in the jar next to the marmalade. If you do buy a jar, the secret is it to spread it very thin, and don’t forget the butter as well. It tastes similar to Marmite in the UK or Cenovis in Switzerland. Australians are quite used to the taste, and may spread the Vegemite very thick; but this is not recommended for first-timers.

The Tim-Tam is a chocolate fudge-filled sandwich of two chocolate biscuits, all dipped in chocolate. You can buy a packet (or two) from any supermarket or convenience store. Tim-Tams are required to perform the Tim-Tam Slam manoeuvre. This requires biting off both ends of the Tim-Tam, then using it as a straw to drink your favourite hot beverage, typically coffee. The hot drink melts the fudge centre and creates an experience hard to describe. Finesse is needed to suck the whole biscuit into your mouth in the microseconds between being fully saturated and dissolving. Tim-Tams are sold in packs of 11, so be sure to agree on the sharing arrangements before buying a packet with your travel partner, or onward travel arrangements may be disrupted. During summer Tim-Tams are often stored in the freezer and eaten ice cold.

The lamington is a cube of sponge cake covered in chocolate icing and dipped in desiccated coconut. It’s named after Lord Lamington, who served as Governor of Queensland from 1896 to 1901. The home-baked form can be found at a local Saturday morning market, or you can buy one from a bakery if you are desperate. Avoid at all costs the plastic wrapped varieties sold in supermarkets.

The pavlova is a meringue cake with a cream topping usually decorated with fresh fruit. Served on special occasions, or after a lunchtime barbecue. Often the source of dispute with New Zealand over the original source of the recipe.

ANZAC biscuits are a mix of coconut, oats, flour, sugar and golden syrup. They were reputedly sent by wives and care organisations to world war I soldiers in care packages, but the story is likely apocryphal. They are available from bakeries, cafes and supermarkets, and are popular in the lead up to ANZAC day (25 April).

Damper is a traditional soda bread that was baked by drovers and stockmen. It has basic ingredients (flour, water and perhaps salt) and usually cooked in the embers of a fire. It is not routinely available in bakeries and only commonly served to tourists on organised tours. Best eaten with butter and jam or golden syrup as it is dry and bland.

A Chiko roll is a deep-fried snack inspired by the egg roll or the spring roll. Despite the name, it contains no chicken. Its filling is boned mutton, vegetables, rice, barley, and seasonings. Its shell is thicker than an egg roll, meant to survive handling at football matches. Available anywhere you can buy fish and chips.

The Australian Meat Pie is considered to be the national dish by many. A variation is the pie floater from Adelaide which is a pie inverted in a bowl of thick mushy pea soup.

DRINK:

Beer:

Drinking beer is ingrained in Australian culture. Although Fosters is promoted as an Australian beer overseas, it is rarely consumed by Australians in Australia, and is almost impossible to find. Beers are strongly regional and every state has its own brews: Coopers and West End in South Australia, Carlton and VB in Victoria, Tooheys in NSW, XXXX (pronounced “fourex”) in Queensland, Boags and Cascade in Tasmania, and Swan in Western Australia. There are also local microbrew choices, which can be harder to find, but are often worth seeking out. A range of imported European and American bottled beers are available in all but the most basic pub.

Light (Lite) beer refers to lower alcoholic content, and not lower calories. It has around half the alcohol of full strength beer, and is taxed at a lower rate, meaning it is also cheaper than full strength beer. Low calorie beer is sold as low carb.

Because Australians like their beer to stay cold while they drink it, draft beer glasses come in a multitude of sizes, so that you can drink a whole glass before it warms up in the summer heat. The naming of beer glasses varies widely from state to state, often in confusing ways: a schooner is 425mL everywhere except South Australia, where it’s only 285mL, a size that’s known elsewhere as a middy or pot, except in Darwin where it’s a handle, but in Adelaide a “pot” means a 570mL full pint, and a pint means what a schooner does elsewhere, and… you get the idea. The local beers and the local descriptions are covered in detail in the state guides.

Bottle naming is a little easier: the standard sizes across Australia are the 375 ml stubby and the 750mL long neck, or tallie. Cans of beer are known as tinnies and 24 of them make up a slab, box, carton, or a case.

Wine:

Australia produces quality wine on a truly industrial scale, with large multinational brands supplying Australian bottleshops and exporting around the world. There are also a multitude of boutique wineries and smaller suppliers. Very good red and white wine can be bought very cheaply in Australia, often at less than $10 a bottle, and even the smallest shop could be expected to have 50 or more varieties to choose from.

The areas of the Barossa Valley, Hunter Valley, and Margaret River are particularly renowned for their wineries and opportunities for cellar door sampling, but northern Victoria and Mudgee also have a large variety. You are never too far from a wine trail anywhere in southern Australia.

Try the local wines wherever you can find them, and ask for local recommendations. Try not to get taken in by the label, or the price tag. The best wine is rarely the one with the best artwork, or the most expensive price. However, it is probably wise to avoid the house wine if it comes straight from a cask (4-litre container). Wines at the cellar door are almost invariably sold at around 20% premium to the same wine in the shops in the local town.

If you still prefer overseas wines, the Marlborough region of New Zealand is usually well represented on wine lists and in bottle shops in Australia.

Spirits:

Bundaberg Rum (Bundy) is an Australian dark rum particularly popular in Queensland and many Queenslanders will not touch any other brand of rum. It is probably the most famous Australian made spirit, mass-produced in Bundaberg and available everywhere.

You will have to search much harder to find other Australian distilled spirits, mostly from niche players, but there are distilleries in every state of Australia if you look hard enough. Drop into the Lark Distillery on the scenic Hobart waterfront precinct. Pick up a bottle of 151 East Vodka in Wollongong or after a few days in Kununurra you are definitely going to need an Ord River Rum.

Mixed drinks are also available, particularly vodka, scotch, bourbon and other whiskey mixers. Spirits are also available as pre-mixed bottles and cans but are subject to higher taxation in this form, so it is cheaper to mix them yourself. Spirits are served in all pubs and bars, but not in all restaurants. A basic spirit and mixer (vodka and orange juice for example) will cost you about $7 at a bar or nightclub, but can vary ~$5–12.

Accommodation is readily available in most Australian cities and tourist destinations. As with everything else in Australia it tends to be on the expensive side by international standards.

HOTELS:

All state capitals have a number of 4 or 5 star standard hotels, often with upmarket restaurants, bars, room-service, and other premium hospitality services. Other 2 or 3 star hotels are scattered around the inner-cities and inner suburbs. Best to check local guides and reviews to know what you are in for. Most hotels offer internet connectivity, occasionally for an inflated fee. Most hotels (distinct from the country pubs known as hotels) have private bathroom facilities. It isn’t unknown for all options to run out during major events in cities such as Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide.

CAMPING:

Camping is a popular pastime. Most caravan parks will rent camping sites by the night, where you can pitch a tent, and these are available in most towns and cities. The caravan park will provide showers and toilets, and sometimes washing and cooking facilities. Sometimes for an additional fee. Expect to pay around $20 for a tent site, and a few dollars per person. You can even find caravan parks right on the beach, with lagoon swimming pools and playgrounds all free for guests.

National parks often provide free camping sites, which expect you to be more self-sufficient. Often toilets are provided and sometimes cold showers. Camping permits are sometimes required at popular parks, with some popular spots filling up during the holidays in summer. In Australia it is common to be within an hours drive of a national park or recreation area that will permit some form of camping, even in the capital cities. Expect to pay around $5–10 per night per person for a camping permit, and national park admission fees in the more popular national parks (e.g.: Wilsons Promontory National Park, Kosciuszko National Park, etc.), however entry and camping is free in the majority of national parks further from population and tourist centres.

Some other camping areas are run by government or even local landowners. Expect around $10 per person per night, depending on the time of year.

You can try your luck sleeping on a beach or pitching a tent overnight in a highway rest area, or out in the bush for a free bed. Most rest areas and beaches prohibit camping and many even prohibit overnight parking to discourage this. Generally the closer you are to civilisation or a tourist area, the greater the chance of being hassled by the authorities.

Camping in state forests is often preferable to national parks if you’re after a camping experience over sightseeing, as collecting of your own fire wood is allowed (sometimes felling of trees is permissible dependent on the area) and camping is not restricted to camp sites. Some other activities that are generally allowed in state forests that are not allowed in national parks are: bringing in dogs/pets, open fires, motorbikes and four-wheel driving. State forests are generally free to stay in, although you will need to check locally if public access is allowed.

HOSTELS AND BACKPACKERS:

Budget hostel-style accommodation with shared bathrooms and often with dormitories is approximately $20–30 per person per night. Facilities usually include a fully equipped kitchen with adequate refrigeration and food storage areas. Most hostels also have living room areas equipped with couches, dining tables, and televisions.

There are several backpacker hostel chains in Australia. If you are staying many nights in the same brand of hostel, consider their discount cards, which usually offer a loyalty bonus on accommodation, and other attraction and tour discounts negotiated by the chain.

PUBS:

Most pubs in Australia offer some form of accommodation. It can vary from very basic shabby rooms, to newly renovated boutique accommodation. The price is usually a good reflection of what you are in for. It is still quite unusual to have a private bathroom, even in the nicer pubs.

Outside of the major centres, the pub is called a Hotel. A motel won’t have a public bar. A motel that does have a bar attached is called a Hotel/Motel.

In very small towns local pubs offer the only accommodation available to travellers. Accommodation in these pubs tends to be budget-style with shared bathrooms but private rooms.

Pub accommodation is even available in the centre of Sydney, making getting back to your room after a beer a simple endeavour.

If you travel as a single, and want a private room, pubs usually have single rooms at a discount over a double room. Most motels will charge the same price for one or two people sharing a room.

MOTELS:

Typically, motel-style accommodation will have a private room with a bed or number of beds, and a private shower and toilet. Many motels have family rooms, that will usually have a double bed and two single beds in the one room.

Motel rooms in the cities will generally cost upwards from $80. Usually the cost is the same for one or two adults, with any extra people charged an additional fee. Prices for additional children can range from free to $20 per child. During quiet times its not unusual for motels to offer standby discounts.

Most motels will serve a cooked or continental breakfast to your room in the morning, for an additional charge. Some may have a restaurant or serve an evening meal. Some may have a toaster in the room and kettles are widely provided.

CABINS:

Cabins are an economical way for families to stay while travelling. Sometimes built on private land, sometimes in caravan parks, cabins typically have a kitchen / lounge area, and one, two or three bedrooms.

BED AND BREAKFASTS:

Bed and Breakfasts tend to be a premium form of accommodation in Australia, often focused on weekend accommodation for couples. They certainly don’t offer the discount form of accommodation they do in part of the United Kingdom, and the local motel will usually be cheaper.

Sometimes extra rooms in a person’s home, but often a purpose built building. You should expect a cosy, well kept room, a common area, and a cooked breakfast. Possibly private facilities. Substantial discounts often apply for mid-week stays at bed and breakfasts.

RESORTS:

There are many true resorts around Australia. Many have lagoon pools, tennis, golf, kids clubs, and other arranged activities. The island of the Whitsundays have a choice of resorts, some occupying entire islands. Port Douglas also has many resorts of a world standard.

SERVICED APARTMENTS:

Serviced apartments are a very popular form of accommodation in Australia, with all capital and most regional cities having multiple such hotels. These often include hotels located in prime positions in the centre of town.

Guests are typically able to stay for as little as one night, and discounts are often available for bookings of a week and over. Rooms tend to be larger than in standard hotels, and amenities typically include a kitchen, washer and dryer, and separate bedrooms. Apartment hotels generally don’t offer breakfast or have a restaurant, but there are usually cafes located nearby (often next door) which cater to guests.

**All travel information has been sourced from wikivoyage. However like wikipedia, wikivoyage is an open platform editable by any member of the public. Therefore, although very useful, all above information IS INDICATIVE ONLY and must be verified prior to personal use. Moreover, if you wish to see more information please visit: https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Australia
TOP ATTRACTIONS
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Name: Sydney Opera House
Location: Sydney, Australia
The Sydney Opera House is a multi-venue performing arts centre at Sydney Harbour in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. It is one of the 20th century's most famous and distinctive buildings.

Designed by Danish architect Jørn Utzon, the building was formally opened on 20 October 1973 after a gestation beginning with Utzon's 1957 selection as winner of an international design competition. The Government of New South Wales, authorised work to begin in 1958 with Utzon directing construction. The government's decision to build Utzon's design is often overshadowed by circumstances that followed, including cost and scheduling overruns as well as the architect's ultimate resignation.

The building and its surrounds occupy the whole of Bennelong Point on Sydney Harbour, between Sydney Cove and Farm Cove, adjacent to the Sydney central business district and the Royal Botanic Gardens, and close by the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The building comprises multiple performance venues which together host well over 1,500 performances annually, attended by more than 1.2 million people.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sydney_Opera_House
Name: Great Barrier Reef
Location: Queensland, Australia
The Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef system composed of over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching for over 2,300 kilometres (1,400 mi) over an area of approximately 344,400 square kilometres (133,000 sq mi). The reef is located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of Queensland, Australia. The Great Barrier Reef can be seen from outer space and is the world's biggest single structure made by living organisms. This reef structure is composed of and built by billions of tiny organisms, known as coral polyps. It supports a wide diversity of life and was selected as a World Heritage Site in 1981.

A large part of the reef is protected by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, which helps to limit the impact of human use, such as fishing and tourism. Other environmental pressures on the reef and its ecosystem include runoff, climate change accompanied by mass coral bleaching, dumping of dredging sludge and cyclic population outbreaks of the crown-of-thorns starfish.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Barrier_Reef
Name: Uluru
Location: Northern Territory, Australia
Uluru is a large sandstone rock formation in the southern part of the Northern Territory in central Australia. It lies 335 km (208 mi) south west of the nearest large town, Alice Springs.

Uluru is sacred to the Pitjantjatjara Anangu, the Aboriginal people of the area. The area around the formation is home to an abundance of springs, waterholes, rock caves and ancient paintings. Uluru is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Uluru is one of Australia's most recognisable natural landmarks. The sandstone formation stands 348 m (1,142 ft) high, rising 863 m (2,831 ft) above sea level with most of its bulk lying underground, and has a total circumference of 9.4 km (5.8 mi). Both Uluru and the nearby Kata Tjuta formation have great cultural significance for the Aṉangu people, the traditional inhabitants of the area, who lead walking tours to inform visitors about the local flora and fauna, bush food and the Aboriginal dreamtime stories of the area. Uluru is notable for appearing to change colour at different times of the day and year, most notably when it glows red at dawn and sunset.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uluru
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...WHO ARE WE?

...WHO ARE WE?

…WHO ARE WE?
…WHO ARE WE?

My name is Manny and I would like to personally welcome you to Global Visas.

Our team is dedicated to providing a consular service which focuses on attention to detail, delivering a personal approach and with a high focus on compliance. Feedback is very important to us, therefore any comments you provide about our service are invaluable.

Our team is dedicated to providing a consular service which focuses on attention to detail, delivering a personal approach and with a high focus on compliance. Feedback is very important to us, therefore any comments you provide about our service are invaluableI have provided some of my own personal testimonials over my years in immigration below; working and leading on very large projects...

I have provided some of my own personal testimonials over my years in immigration below; working and leading on very large projects.

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We look forward to working with you and meeting all your expectations.

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