As far as budget accommodation goes in Sydney, you can’t find a hostel with a better reputation than the Sydney Harbour YHA.
With a killer location, killer facilities, and that million dollar view (think sushi from a rooftop terrace directly overlooking the Bridge and Opera House), booking a room is the best choice you’ll make.
But not only is the hostel clean, affordable, friendly, with spacious, stylish communal areas and all the amenities you’d expect from a modern hostel, it also wraps around the archaeological remains of colonial Sydney.
The Big Dig Archaeological Site is an area of land with archaeological remains from the late 18th century, the time of Australia’s first European settlement. The excavations are part of the hostel itself, and this remains one of the largest urban archaeological dig sites in Australia.
With rooms built around the excavated foundations of over 30 homes and shops from 1795, and artifacts on display throughout it’s halls, this is one of few opportunities in the world to spend the night on an archaeological dig site.read more
Last year, international travel became much harder. Barred from landing in many countries, you may have found yourself in a situation where you’re stuck inside with nothing to do and had to cancel your long-planned dream vacation. Luckily, there are still places that are waiting patiently for you to come and explore!
With Telportus, you can now engage in a virtual guided tour. These live experiences are just digital versions of guided tours that you’re used to receiving when you travel, but now they’re happening right in your living room.
You can pose questions to local experts in real-time, pointing out what strikes your curiosity. Check out this video, and below for some of the most epic tours!read more
In addition to Byron being transformed by the new groups of people flocking here, severe coastal erosion has begun taking its toll on some of the area’s beaches. The fear is that climate change may make this more prevalent or at least more difficult to predict.
Australia’s most hashtagable holiday destination is definitely under threat both by an overcrowding of influencers and Mother Nature herself, leaving many to wonder how much longer Byron Bay will keep its appeal.
You may want to check out this beautiful coastal gem sooner rather than later before it loses its shine. Here are just some of the reasons people can’t seem to get enough of beloved Byron.read more
Tasmania is a wild island, packed with powerful landscapes both tranquil and pure, yet at the same time untamed. And it’s one of the safest places in the world to travel right now.
Set in the peaceful Huon Valley atop a hill overlooking Southern Tasmania, Villa Talia is a stunning holiday home which presents as an unassuming Australian homestead, though is packed with treasure in the form of opulent furnishings, contemporary fixtures, and tempting adult luxuries.
It’s an adult kinder surprise, and it’s best to be warned that no matter how much you love your own home, from the moment you step through the door, Villa Talia will forever become the home of your dreams.
It’s like running into the celebrity crush you have a free pass for, and discovering they’re just as eager…
You no doubt love your own home and understand the reality of needing to return, but a few nights with Villa Talia is the ultimate fantasy escape; a home you’ll never want to leave.read more
Tasmania is world famous for its pure air, clean water, and crisp climate. And if you landed here without context, to our ‘lush crisp landscape battered by chilly seas’, pulled up to an imposing 19th century Coaching Inn, and were handed a single malt whisky, we’d forgive you for drawing parallels to Scotland.
After-all, you need a very stable, cool climate to brew the perfect malt whisky (not even modern climate controlled warehouses are as good as brewing in the perfect natural climate), and some of the purest air and water in the world.
Which is why Scottish Whisky has become so famous.
While both superb locations for making whisky, the difference of Scotland and Tasmania is that the distilling of spirits was outlawed here from 1838 to 1991. Though since the law was overturned Tasmania has experienced a craft malt Whisky revival, and the artisanal Whisky movement has earned the reputation of ‘Scotland Down Under’.
150 years was a long time for Tasmanians to wait between drinks, but the State’s pure ingredients and passionate distillers have more than made up for it since.
And that 19th century Coaching Inn? It exists! It sits at 26 Main St Kempton. 40 minutes from Hobart, the Coaching Inn is now a cellar door, with a distillery you can tour in the convict brick stables.read more
Australia has a long history of sheep farming, and within 50 years of their arrival in 1788, sheep had become the main source of income for Australian industry.
29 sheep arrived in Australia with the British First Fleet. 230 years later, wool markets around the world are dominated by Australian exports, and our country has more than 27 million sheep; raised largely for wool over meat.
Humble farming has defined Australia for centuries, and sheep are considered the iconic Aussie flock; farmers continue to work sheep stations throughout the country to feed and clothe the nation.
A true-blue producing nation, there are now 85,681 farms across Australia, and many sheep properties invite you to stay; to swap those white sneakers for gumboots and experience country life in a real and authentic way.
One such property is Rathmore, an hour from Hobart in Tasmania’s Central Highlands; a historic sheep property settled in 1828, which is unique in offering a choice of accommodation.
Choose to stay in the beautiful sandstone homestead with the land owners, with grand bedrooms and period furniture, or in the historic shearers’ quarters, recently revived to offer a country experience that is rustic chic.read more
Restricted to Tasmania during the pandemic, Mike and I have made an effort to explore our home state. Though being ‘confined’ to such a naturally beautiful island with a number of world famous wilderness destinations free of crowds and chaos is far from limiting!
Our experience in the Huon Valley was the perfect balance of wild exploration, while still being able to relax in luxury after days full of dramatic adventure; a balance made possible by checking into the ultra modern Cygnet Retreat.
Nestled in Southern Tasmania just a short drive from Hobart, Cygnet is now known as the place to escape the fast-paced stresses of our modern day to day.read more
Growing up in Hobart, I have many fond memories of heading to our family shack along the coast of Southern Tasmania. It had been years since I had returned to this southernmost part of Australia and I was eager to share the area with my American husband.
Basing ourselves in Dover, this region is defined by a culture of holiday homes; you won’t find high-rise cookie-cutter hotels here; it’s authentic living in seaside towns, from cosy waterfront studios, to beach-side bungalows, and locally owned villas in forested surrounds.
Surrounded by wilderness and relaxation, we were fortunate to stay at what must be Dover’s most unique and stunning property, a turn of the 20th century farmhouse that has been very much renovated into a luxury holiday home.
Known as the Peninsula Experience, this unique and secluded property actually boasts two separate houses which includes The Cape House and The Boat House. This is our experience at The Cape House.read more
The Huon Valley has long been a popular day trip option from Hobart. After-all, just a 30 minute drive south of the city and you’ll be at the source of some of the finest food and freshest ingredients in the country.
Apple growers, craft cider makers, boutique winemakers, salmon producers, and other homegrown produce means even many locals make the drive just for lunch.
But this is a region defined by more than just its food excellence, and if you’re visiting the State, the traditional day trip from Hobart won’t even come close to doing the region justice.
Because on top of the apple cider, salmon sushi, and mouthwatering apple pie (trust me, you’ll order two servings), the Huon Valley also serves up incredible natural beauty, and a huge range of adventure. And they serve it to you on a platter!
The Huon Valley is full of beaches, caves, thermal springs, and is the gateway to the southern forests and World Heritage Wilderness Walks. You can explore by jet boat, hang glider, foot, or car, and if you’re hungry inbetween, fuel up on produce from local roadside stalls.
The Huon Valley is not a day trip destination. It’s worthy of far more time. We recommend at least four to five days for exploring the region.read more
In 1798, European explorers Bass and Flinders sailed along the northern coast of Van Dieman’s Land, known today as Tasmania. They took a colonial sloop and proved that it was indeed an island, separated from mainland Australia by a strait (today called the Bass Strait).
Rowing up the Tamar River to where Launceston is today, their exploration laid the groundwork for some of the first European settlements in the country, and in 1806 Launceston became a township.
It’s easy to first think of Hobart or Sydney when seeking out colonial heritage in Australia, though Launceston has a rich and vibrant heritage, and one of the finest early cityscapes in the country.
Defined by Georgian buildings and Victorian gardens, Australia’s third oldest city is today a shining example of adaptive reuse; with fashion boutiques, bars, banks, and high-tech offices sitting inside colonial churches, town halls, and towers.
And as far as historic hotels? The Leisure Inn Penny Royal is a boutique, family-friendly apartment hotel, set in an 1840’s corn mill.read more