By Sophia Auld
By the age of 15, I had visited at least 12 countries. From New Caledonia to the Netherlands, I’d set foot on three continents and been to iconic destinations that many people only dream of. Don’t hate me! Having a Dad that worked for Qantas meant we got ultra-cheap airfares, so the whole family could travel for less than the cost of a single fare.
Those early experiences inspired a love for travel that has never waned. As much as I love overseas destinations, I haven’t departed from an international airport for more than 15 years. Instead, I’ve been exploring the wonders of my native land. Here’s why I’d rather holiday in Australia than overseas.
1. An enviable destination
People from all over the world dream of visiting Australia. I’m lucky enough to live here. No need for expensive and exhausting international flights—I can travel by road, rail, and short domestic flights to innumerable new destinations within my own country.
2. Incredible variety
As an active, outdoorsy person, Australia provides endless choice for me and my family. We have trekked around Dove Lake in Tasmania, climbed Mt Kosciuszko with our kids in backpacks, and swum the beaches of Yamba. We’ve hiked through snow-tipped eucalypt forests in Victoria, and along kilometres of New South Wales coastline. We’ve trawled through rock pools on the Sunshine Coast, and watched the sunset over Sydney Harbour.
My kids have hand-fed pademelons on a rainy beach in northern Tasmania, and spotted koalas in Noosa National Park. We’ve watched whales frolicking off the Coast at Victor Harbour, and the Fairy Penguin parade at Phillip Island.
From postcard perfect islands to snow-encrusted mountains, Australia has it all. Why would I need to go anywhere else?
3. Supporting local jobs
When people comment on how frequently we travel locally, my husband always quips that we are supporting domestic tourism. While I used to write this off as a corny “Dad joke”, I’ve realised it’s true. Whenever we interrupt a road trip for lunch at a beachside cafe, or fly into a regional airport, we’re bringing our tourist dollars into a community of Aussies. I feel good that we’re helping provide jobs for the young person at the rental car counter and the farmer who supplied the local produce.
4. Meet amazing people
Aussies are a diverse and fascinating bunch. Our history of immigration means you’ll meet people from all around the world right here. With them has come a wonderful array of cultures and cuisines. From moussaka to massaman curry, you’ll find it here. Yum!
5. Language and currency
With Aussie holidays, there’s no need for translation devices. No awkward moments when I accidentally ask my hostess about her bladder habits instead of where the toilets are. And I don’t have to strain my brain working out exchange rates.
These things add up to amazing holidays the whole family will always remember.