From Dinosaur Bones to the Bungle Bungles

Published: Thu 26 Oct 2006 09:58 AM
From Dinosaur Bones to the Bungle Bungles
From fossils and natural wonders to mystery, pure luxury and dining under the stars, the experiences available in Australia’s Outback are both diverse and truly inspiring.
Each year, 33,000 Kiwis head to the Outback to experience this uniquely Australian destination.
"The Outback is a must see for every Kiwi travelling to Australia," says New Zealand’s Regional Manager for Tourism Australia, Vito Anzelmi.
"Once you’ve experienced the unique culture of the Outback, from the almost 3.5 million square kilometers of red earth landscape to the manmade and natural wonders, you will never forget it," says Anzelmi.
Below are Tourism Australia’s suggestions for ten unique things to see and do in Australia’s Outback.
2. Dinosaur Bones in Winton, Queensland
3. Take a short flight from Brisbane to Winton, in Queensland’s Outback, where you can see the largest dinosaur skeleton found in Australia, a 20-30 tonne Sauropod nicknamed 'Elliot'. Hire a four-wheel-drive and travel the Dinosaur Trail, which takes you past the Marine Byway and through the town of Richmond where you will find the Kronosaurus Korner fossil centre. New bones are constantly being unearthed.
4. Mungo National Park, New South Wales
5. Located in the Willandra Lakes World Heritage area, Mungo National Park maintains a record of human occupation stretching back 40,000 years. Rain and wind has uncovered fireplaces and hearths giving visitors a glimpse into life as it was thousands of years ago in such a harsh environment. A 33 kilometre long crescent of sand and clay has created a wall known as the Wall of China. This dramatic formation is the result of erosion which has taken place over thousands of years.
6. The Red Centre, Northern Territory
7. The most famous Australian Outback adventure is experiencing the mystic of Uluru and Kata Tjuta. Located approximately 30km from Uluru, is Kata Tjuta (The Olgas), made up of 36 rounded domes with the tallest (Mt. Olga) standing at 457 metres in height. For a luxury experience, stay in the five-star resort nestled in the red sand of the Outback with your own private spectacular views of Uluru. Visitors can take one of two walking tracks around the formations to take in spectacular views of the beautiful formations.
8. The Pinnacles, Western Australia
9. Located in Nambung National Park, 245km north of Perth, is one of Australia’s most fascinating landscapes, the Pinnacles Desert. The landscape is dotted with limestone formations, some reaching five metres in height, which have been formed as a result of wind and sand movement.
10. Lake Eyre, South Australia
11. Located in the South Australian Outback, Lake Eyre is, when it fills, the largest salt lake in Australia and can harbour water nine times as salty as the sea. The lake is 144 kilometers long and 77 kilometers wide and one sixth of Australia’s land mass drains into it. It is interesting that a lake exists in one of the driest parts of the world. The best time to visit is during the wet season, and if you’re lucky, you’ll see the Lake Eyre Yacht Club’s eccentric members sailing their boats on the water.
12. Kings Canyon, Northern Territory
13. Kings Canyon is a mighty chasm in the middle of the Outback, cleaving the earth to a depth of 270 metres. At the bottom of the sheer red rock face is an oasis of dense forests of lush vegetation and waterholes. Visitors can choose from a number of walks providing views of the Canyon rim. Kings Canyon is located 300 kilometres north east of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park in the Watarrka National Park.
14. Wolf Creek Crater, Western Australia
15. Created as a result of a meteorite crashing into the desert thousands of years ago, Wolf Creek Crater was not discovered by Europeans till 1947. Aboriginal legend tells of two rainbow snakes who formed the nearby Sturt and Wolf Creeks as they crossed the desert. The crater is believed to be the place where one snake emerged from the ground. Visitors can walk around the crater’s edge and view the wildlife and scenery.
16. Broken Hill, New South Wales
17. Broken Hill, known as the ‘Silver City’ of New South Wales, is a small Outback town that is big in spirit. There is no shortage of things for visitors to see and do with a highlight being the Broken Hill Sculpture Symposium which stands in the Living Desert Reserve. Created in 1993, the 12 sandstone sculptures were created individually by sculptors who came to the inspirational site from around the world.
18. Marree Man, South Australia
19. The Marree Man, first discovered by air in 1998, is the largest manmade artwork in the world. The image depicts an Aboriginal hunter, with a stick raised above his head ready to strike. To this day its origins remain a mystery with experts believing it would have taken over a month to create the 4.2km high image. The best vantage point to see Marree Man is from the sky, where you can truly appreciate the sheer size and wonder of this mystery.
20. The Bungle Bungles, Western Australia
Located in Kimberley Western Australia, the Bungle Bungles National Park is something not to be missed. Kept a secret by locals till 1982, the area is rich in Aboriginal history with many burial sites. The huge black and orange striped domes, created through 20 million years of erosion and river movements, is a must see. Join a tour and explore the region on a four-wheel-drive safari.

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