Australia is dotted with remarkable finds.
Yet, remarkably, some of the best are unknown or only vaguely familiar to many.
So, we decided to lift the lid on various visual delights that often dodge crowds yet are truly ‘Instagrammable’ and, in most cases, reasonably reachable.
From natural gems to historical finds, put these attractions on your travel radar.
A profusion of gorgeous greenery greets visitors to Evercreech, but the highlight here is a cluster of the world's tallest white gums. Some reach upwards of 90m high, and various walking paths reveal the sprawling splendour.
Where: 35km west of St Helens.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 St Helens Holiday Park.
While the 248km-long road between Hobart and Strahan is a continual canvas of astounding sights, it’s the zig-zagging stretch into Queenstown where the eye candy is at its sweetest. Approaching Queenstown, the moonscape-like surrounds present a stark reminder of a harsh mining past, backdropped by towering mountains and more astounding scenery. And all this before you’ve even reached scenic Strahan!
Where: Queenstown is 42km northeast of Strahan.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Strahan Holiday Retreat.
With its massive collection of parks and gardens, Launceston is a relaxed place anyway, but to have this tranquil attraction on its doorstep simply adds to the city’s allure. The 7ha island is surrounded by the Tamar River and home to wetlands complete with an interpretation centre and access-friendly boardwalk for viewing various birdlife and other sights.
Where: 10km northeast of Launceston CBD.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Launceston Holiday Park.
This whopping big reserve epitomises the natural beauty of the Sunshine Coast hinterland. Be engrossed by swathes of subtropical rainforest that overlook the Glass House Mountains as well as a rich collection of flora and fauna. Elevated views are accessed via the rainforest discovery centre at Maleny.
Where: 30km west of Caloundra or 78km southwest of Noosa Heads.
There is plenty competing for attention in a pocket of Australia filled with world-famous attractions. And while not exactly a secret, these granite creations make a strong case for higher visitation. The combination of booming boulders, cascading streams, and lush rainforest make for excellent images, and the swimming hole is extremely inviting for a refreshing dip. This is a top picnic spot, too.
Where: 35km northwest of Innisfail or 65km south of Cairns.
It’s remoteness only that has to prevent this national park being more famous. But then again, that’s part of the appeal. The gorge is the headline act with its cloud-piercing walls and craggy features and is ably supported by ancient Aboriginal rock art, various wildlife that includes rock-wallabies and common bent-wing bats, and almost 100 different bird species.
Where: 230km west of Bundaberg.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Cania Gorge Holiday Park.
Following an 1870s gold-rush, Charters Towers absolutely bustled. While things have since quietened, the charming town hasn’t forgotten the vibrant past; its streetscape still dominated by opulent structures that make for fascinating viewing. And that’s just a small slice of Charters Towers’ rich appeal.
Where: 135km southwest of Townsville.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Aussie Outback Oasis Holiday Park.
Reaching a height just shy of 1100m, Bluff Knoll showcases stunning views from its summit. Rugged peaks of Stirling Range and moody cloud formations mix with the flat fields at ground level; the outlook heightened when seasonal wildflowers and canola fields are in full bloom. This climb is one of many rewarding walks within Stirling Range. Alternatively, ‘neighbouring’ Porongurup National Park bursts with gems, led by imposing Castle Rock.
Where: 77km north of Albany or 115km northwest of Denmark.
This humungous area is awash with eye-popping scenery and rich colours. This includes a massive gorge and its vibrant sandstone walls interspersed with the sight of Murchison River snaking below. Various funky formations led by Nature’s Window are essential photo subjects, and the newer addition of Kalbarri Skywalk gifts an elevated positioning just ripe for snapping that perfect pic.
Where: 155km north of Geraldton.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Geraldton Sunset Beach.
Photo ops are endless within this fabulous forest where soaring karri trees take centre stage. The big tip is to drive to Boranup Lookout where views stretch across the forest and extend to the sparkling waters of Hamelin Bay. From here, there are rewarding walking tracks or picnic spots where visitors can feast on more spectacular scenery.
Where: 32km south of Margaret River township to Boranup Lookout or 88km from Busselton.
The Eyre Peninsula abounds with Insta-worthy scenery, and this park alone is filled with visual treasures. There are dramatic cliffs and wild beaches alongside calm, sheltered bays and towering dunes, and a bevy of birds, wildlife, and wildflowers. Make sure that camera or phone is at full charge!
Where: 380km southeast of Ceduna.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Ceduna Tourist Park.
Carrickalinga would rarely be mentioned in the same sentences discussing Australia’s most famous beaches, and it’s an oversight. Then again, locals would probably prefer it that way. It means they can have these glorious white sands, gin-clear waters, rock pools, and secret little hideaways all to themselves.
Where: 32km southwest of Port Willunga or 35km northeast of Cape Jervis.
Most are aware of this attraction’s elder sibling, the Blue Lake. And while smaller than it, this little lake invites an activity that Blue Lake Snr forbids: Swimming. This is the perfect place for a refreshing dip within a scenic setting. For the record, swimming is disallowed in Blue Lake, as it’s the city’s water supply.
Where: 17km southwest of Mt Gambier CBD.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Blue Lake Holiday Park.
This is no secret with locals – Noreuil is one of Albury’s most popular parks. And with reason. The setting and scenery are glorious thanks to the ingredients of absolute riverside location, shade-giving trees, spacious lawned areas, and various amenities.
Where: 1km south of Albury CBD.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Albury Tourist Park.
A geological wonder known simply as The Rock is the centrepiece of this reserve, and the 364m-high creation and its support acts starkly contrast with the flat farmlands that surround it. Awe-inspiring panoramas are enjoyed from atop, showcasing the patchwork-like plains below and stretching to Mt Kosciuszko and the Victorian Alps on a clear day. More sedate pursuits to enjoy here include picnicking and birdwatching.
Where: 38km southwest of Wagga Wagga.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Wagga Wagga Holiday Park.
Albeit it’s not ‘just off the highway’, but Ellenborough deserves more eyeballs. This cascading creation is among the southern hemisphere’s longest single-drop waterfalls – with a 200m plunge – and it certainly roars like it’s crying out for attention. Enjoy ample vantage points to frame prized pics.
Where: 84km southwest of Port Macquarie.
Nearest BIG4 parks: BIG4 Ingenia Holidays Bonny Hills (Port Macquarie), BIG4 Colonial Holiday Park (Harrington), BIG4 River Myall Holiday Resort (Bulahdelah), and BIG4 Great Lakes at Forster-Tuncurry.
This peaceful pool screams aesthetic awesomeness gifting glittering coastal views juxtaposed by a backdrop of rugged, towering cliffs. Naturally, it’s well-suited to a relaxing swim.
Where: 9km south of Wallaga Lake.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Wallaga Lake Holiday Park.
Treasure abounds within this star-studded national park; all of it seriously Insta-worthy. And among the dazzling water holes and gorges, this culturally significant attraction is often overlooked. It’s a missed opportunity because the vibrant colours of the pits’ walls make for excellent photos among a peaceful setting.
Where: 110km west of Alice Springs.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 MacDonnell Range Holiday Park, Alice Springs.
Incredibly inviting. Berry Springs delivers a superb setting to cool off thanks to its swimming pools that are engulfed by greenery. For those who wish to explore before a refreshing swim can retrace World War II history within the park’s confines and spot abundant birdlife on walking trails.
Where: 50km south of Darwin or 35km from BIG4 Howard Springs.
Nearest BIG4 park: BIG4 Howard Springs Holiday Park.
When time ticks, it’s almost like Maldon is denied the memo. In 2006, the attractive town was named the 'most intact heritage streetscape' by the National Trust. Its collection of historical buildings is charming and evokes visions of what life would’ve been like in the heady gold-rush days. Other small Goldfields towns like Clunes and Creswick have similar appeal.
Where: 18km northwest of Castlemaine or 32km southwest of Bendigo.
Nearest BIG4 parks: Goldfields parks.
There’s something compelling about heritage bridges, and there’s a couple of great finds in Gippsland. The Bourne Creek Trestle Bridge – also known as the Kilcunda Bridge – and the Noojee Trestle Bridge were once important features of railway lines. Today, both bridges can be walked or cycled along and offer differing yet striking scenery.
Where: Bourne Creek: 25km west of Inverloch; Noojee: 35km north of Warragul.
Nearest BIG4 parks: Gippsland parks.
This coastal setting is home to the only mainland colony of Australasian gannets in Australia. An elevated viewing platform provides great viewing opportunities of the birds; when in flight, admire their massive wingspans.
Where: 8km southeast of Portland or 80km west of Port Fairy.