Top Things To Do in Australia in 2020
There has never been a better time to visit Australia. We’re sharing all the best attractions, the most popular regions and the best ways to travel across this impressive and vast country. The travel ideas included here come directly from our specialist Australia team, all inspired by local festivals and celebrations taking place in 2020 and the recent trends we’ve seen towards certain regions and activities Down Under.
If you are planning on visiting soon, read on to uncover our top things to do in Australia in 2020.
All Aboard Australia’s Newest Train – The Great Southern
Travelling between Adelaide and Brisbane, the Great Southern train covers 2,500 kilometres of rural Australia, easily connecting visitors to the South and East coasts. Joining the line up of iconic Australian trains, like The Ghan and Indian Pacific, we are already seeing huge interest in Great Southern.
Rail journey popularity is set to sour in 2020, with the old way to travel receiving modern interest across the world. On a train holiday, you can enjoy luxurious comfort and first class service whilst also seeing more of the country you are visiting in an eco-friendly way. There really aren’t many window seat views out there that are quite as magnificently untouched as those you’ll discover in Australia.
Our 2020 Holiday Pick: The 4 Day Great Southern Rail Journey from Brisbane to Adelaide
Climb Down & Do More At Uluru (Ayers Rock)
Whether you’re a first timer to Australia or you know it well, until you have visited its vast and baron red centre to admire the wonder of Uluru, you’ll be missing a piece to the Australia travel puzzle. Quite unlike anywhere else on earth, this special place has to be visited to be felt and understood.
A holiday to Ayers Rock will be very different now to what it’s been in recent years. October 2019 saw the Ayers Rock climb close for good, making 2020 the first year to see no climbers at this sacred monolith. With something for everyone, our Australia Experts recommend below their top three alternative ways to enjoy the magic of Uluru, whilst respecting the local Anangu people and their culture:
- The Field of Light Exhibition will now remain indefinitely at Uluru and it’s a great excuse for second time visitors to return to the area.
- Helicopter views of Uluru are far better than those of an Ayers Rock climb, with no exertion needed in the intense heat from the desert sun.
- Photographs of Uluru are best taken at sunrise and sunset with the colours and light constantly changing. For ease, choose the Ayers Rock Sunset or Sunrise Tour.
Did you know? The Ghan train easily connects you to Australia’s red centre, meaning you can see the vibrant sand of the desert without getting covered in it. Plus, there’s a new stop option available on The Ghan in 2020 that allows for more time around Uluru and Alice Springs to do all the things you want to do un-rushed.
Our 2020 Holiday Pick: The Ghan Expedition
Tasmania – The Road Less Travelled
Tasmania really is the undiscovered state of Australia. Predicted as the up and coming destination for travellers to the country, Tasmania offers beaches on par with the Whitsundays and national parks to rival those on the southern coast. For us, Tassie offers a typically Australian warm welcome, a modern coffee culture in its towns and open roads that you’ll likely have all to yourself.
Our Australia Experts recommend an Escorted Tasmania Tour for first timers or a self drive holiday for travellers looking to go their own way at their own pace. Don’t forget to ask your Australia Travel Consultant to add on extra nights in your favourite places or get a motorhome quote for Tasmania instead. Tasmania definitely has the feel of the ‘road less travelled.’
Our 2020 Holiday Pick: Tasmania Self Drive Holiday
See More Than Just Sydney in New South Wales
We’re huge fans of Australia’s beloved Sydney. With its iconic harbour, perfect balance of city with beach and well connected ferry system, it’s arguably one of the easiest cities in the world to enjoy as a visitor. But just beyond the city of Sydney, the region of New South Wales deserves your time and attention too.
From the city centre, it’s easy to get out into the local region with either a popular small group tour or exciting self drive itinerary. You could visit the Blue Mountains for walks and aboriginal stories or Hunter Valley for world class wining and dining. There’s plenty to take advantage of so don’t limit yourself to the city border.
If you are planning to visit Sydney in 2020, it’s worth timing your trip with Vivid Sydney Festival. Watch the city come to life in a spectrum of colour and lights between the dates of 22nd May and 13th June 2020.
Our 2020 Holiday Pick: Sydney Mountains & Wineries Self Drive.
Visit Northern Queensland 250 Years On
2020 marks 250 years since Captain James Cook arrived in Australia. In April 1770, his ship first touched land at Point Hicks in Victoria before moving onto Botany Bay in Sydney, New South Wales. From here, he travelled north along the east coast, narrowly avoiding being shipwrecked on the Great Barrier Reef. The Endeavour ship was then beached for repairs for seven weeks in Cooktown, North Queensland, the Australian town named after Captain Cook. It was here in Cooktown that Europeans first sighted the kangaroo and the first recorded reconciliation between aboriginal people and Europeans happened.
There are many places along Australia’s east coast to visit if you are keen to learn more about the 1770 voyage to Australia and the subsequent history that followed. You could take a walking tour of Sydney Cove and Port Jackson or visit Cooktown, the Daintree National Park and North Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef on an Australia Road Trip designed for you. Alternatively, see Australia and New Zealand from the water, as Cook would have done 250 years ago, with an Australia Cruise.
Our 2020 Holiday Pick: Australia, New Zealand & Fiji Cruise
A Melbourne Exclusive for Harry Potter Fans
A worldwide first, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the first Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. Tickets are now on sale for the performance at Melbourne’s Princess Theatre and our Australia Destination Experts have access to special packages for our customers.
Harry Potter fan or not, the critically acclaimed play has won 24 major theatre awards including Best New Play and Best Director, making it an excellent choice for any holiday to Melbourne in 2020.
Combine theatre fun with other excellent things to do in Melbourne like the Penguin Parade at nearby Phillip Island or a Melbourne Walking Tour of its famous laneways. We also recommend you take the time to explore more of Victoria during your 2020 holiday to Melbourne.
Our 2020 Holiday Pick: Victoria’s Hidden Gems Small Group Tour.
Fly Direct to Perth – The Fastest Route To Australia
Currently the only direct route between the U.K. and Australia, the London to Perth flight with Qantas is the fastest way to travel to Australia. The nearly 15,000 km route that doesn’t involve having to stop anywhere else to re-fuel, is proving to be a very popular one indeed.
We are seeing more and more customers take advantage of the direct Qantas flight, either choosing to holiday in Western Australia with its beautiful city of Perth and surrounding beaches, or use Perth as a stopover en route to other Australian favourites like Sydney or Brisbane.
Perth is up there with one of the most isolated cities in the world, giving it a unique mix of urban life and luxury combined with natural beauty and local wildlife. The most popular attraction for visitors to the area has to be a trip to nearby Rottnest Island to see firsthand the photogenic quokka, a marsupial native to WA.
Our 2020 Holiday Pick: 2 Week West is Best Holiday
South Australia – A Growing Favourite
In the past year, Freedom Destinations (previously known as Freedom Australia) has seen growing popularity in the lesser known state of South Australia. Home to the university city of Adelaide and offering an abundance of exciting things to do, South Australia is the place to be in 2020. According to our Destination Experts, the best ways to include it in your 2020 holiday itinerary include:
- Board the Great Southern train on your way to or from Adelaide and see the vast wilderness between here and Brisbane.
- Pick the famous Great Ocean Road Self Drive, starting or finishing in Adelaide and connecting you to the popular city of Melbourne.
- Travel with like-minded travellers aboard the Murray River Cruise, a traditional paddlewheeler that gets you even further into the region of South Australia.
From Escorted Tours that guide you to the best places to be, motorhome adventures that give you the freedom to deviate from a pre-planned route, or the luxury and growing popularity of train travel, we can help you pack in all the most current and exciting things to do in Australia.
Whether you’re heading to Australia’s east coast for a 2020 celebration or flying direct to its stunning west coast for your very own quokka selfie, get in touch with an Australia Expert today to plan the finer details of your 2020 Australia holiday.
Karen joined the Marketing Team at Freedom Destinations after spending an incredible year in Australia, New Zealand and Bali, campervan road trippin’ into the wild Outback, enjoying eco tours on beautiful islands and making friends for life.