Your Guide to Australia’s Cities


Your Guide to Australia’s Cities

Australia is the 6th biggest country in the world. The massive size can be overlooked by first time visitors when planning their trip. If you are visiting Australia for the first time, one of the first things you need to decide is where to go during your trip. Read this guide about the major cities in Australia to help you plan where you want to visit.


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Australia’s biggest city, Sydney has approximately 4.4 million people and is built around one of the world’s most spectacular natural harbors, that has shaped the city since it’s settlement. Sydney boasts other major attractions including its Opera House, Harbor Bridge, the historic Rocks area, and excellent beaches and national parks.


Sydney is full of sophisticated spots to eat, tons of cafes and bars,  while golden sandy beaches yield to the lapping water of the Tasman Sea. There are fun and often free festivals throughout the year that celebrate Australia’s rich cultural diversity.


To the north is the Hunter Valley, Australia’s oldest wine region.  To the west is The Blue Mountains, home to dramatic scenery, bushwalks, caves and enticing spots to eat and shop. Down south there is the rugged beauty of the Royal National Park and long stretches of unspoiled coastline.


You just can’t beat Sydney in summer, their summer is our winter; (December-February), the beaches are amazing during this time although Prices do rise in December and January, so if you are trying to keep costs down choose to come in February and March, these are the months following peak season. The water and the people stay warm long after party season has settled.


May and June is  festival season – Sydney literally lights up for the Vivid Sydney festival, and there’s Riesling at The Sydney Writers’ Festival followed by the Sydney Film Festival and the Darling Harbor Jazz and Blues Festival.


In spring (September-November), the first signs of magnolias and cherry blossoms appear on the suburban streets and the mesmerizing lilac of jacaranda trees are in bloom.




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Melbourne is the second largest city, with a population of approximately 3.89 million. Melbourne is a vibrant multicultural city, passionate about arts, food, wine and sport. One of the few cities in the world with complete tramway systems, which have become a celebrated tourist attraction in Australia and a popular means of transport. The temperamental climate forced this booming city to look indoors and inward which created a place obsessed with art, food and coffee, packed with  galleries, architectural flourishes, independent bookshops, cafés, and iconic music venues.


Melbourne boasts prized wineries and sophisticated spas, millennia-old rainforests, snow-dusted mountains, and a wild, rugged coastline that will steal both your breath away.


Summer is the most popular season with visitors, with the longest days and good beach weather (especially from January to mid-March). The Australian Open (January) draws huge crowds to Melbourne, as does LGBT cultural festival mid-summer (January-February) and White Night (February). Autumn is the best season when days are warm and festival season begins.

Winters are a bit colder in July – August. Spring offers spring blooms and festival weather.


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Brisbane, the capital of Queensland, has a  population of around 1.95 million people, and is the third largest of Australian cities. Surrounded by the misty blue hills on Australia’s east coast, and the third largest city in Australia, Brisbane is the gateway to Australia’s favorite holiday destinations of the Gold and Sunshine coasts, especially during the colder winter months in the south. Brisbane is a popular tourism destination due to its close proximity to the beautiful cities of the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast. A great way to get to see Brisbane is to jump on one of the ferries. After your cruise, stroll through the Southbank area and relax in one of the many open-air cafés and restaurants that abound


You can drive the 1,700-odd km from Brisbane to Cairns, for access to the Great Barrier Reef from several towns along the northern half of the Queensland coastline. The beaches – north and south of Brisbane and right along the coastal strip – are uncrowded and clean.


Brisbane is warm and tropical all year round. December and February gets a lot of visitors. The Great Barrier Reef attracts most people between mid-April and mid-August. Cairns is warm in winter, and hot and often very wet, with the chance of cyclones – in summer (December to February). The more north you go the warmer it gets. Also, Australian schools are out for 6 – 8 weeks in December – January, so hotel rates may be at higher rates during this time.


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Perth is full of personality, shaped by its outdoor-loving residents,  glittering coastline (and plenty of Australia’s best beaches),  little eateries and slick wine bars.  Perth is also home to the highest number of self-made millionaires in the world, per capita and has 3,000 of sunshine a year which is the most of any Australian city.


In Western Australia, it is always warm and sunny somewhere. While most people visit during summer and stick to the south, if you are there in winter, try travel northward during its dry season.


Summer in West Australia is lazy days at the beach, balmy nights, cold beers, holidays and Christmas. Autumn, which is March through May is a magical time in Perth. The summer party is over, weather is still gorgeous enough for beach-going, yet the crowds have departed the holiday hotspots. Starting in April, temperatures become more pleasant as you head to northern parts of the state, such as Pinnacles Desert, and Exmouth, where whale sharks visit until July.


During winter, many people flock north to blue skies and warmer climates. it’s the best time to explore the miraculous Kimberley region, land of billions of years old rock formations, waterfalls and Aboriginal rock art.  Spring comes in September, when thousands of wildflower species bloom across the state, a perfect time for road trips and hikes.


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Darwin’s proximity to Asia and its immersion in aboriginal culture make for an interesting city with one of the most youthful populations in Australia. Darwin offers a wonderful winter climate, relaxed, outdoorsy lifestyle and easy access to well-known sites and spectacular wilderness areas like Uluru and Kakadu National Park, Australia’s Northern Territory is an adventurer’s paradise.


You have to visit Uluru, one of Australia’s most unforgettable attractions, is only 4 1/2 hours’ drive away. The Northern Territory also has a large Aboriginal population, and a trip to Darwin or Alice Springs is a chance to experience indigenous Australia.


Go during Australian winter, which is May to early September. In Darwin and the Top End, this season is known as The Dry, a time of gorgeous weather. A visit during the monsoon months of the Top End’s wet season (January to April) brings vivid green landscapes, electrifying afternoon storms and the chance to explore with fewer visitors.


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Adelaide is the capital of South Australia, which has a population of almost 1.2 million . The charming city of Adelaide in South Australia combines European heritage with Australian modernity. The city is one of the best planned in the world and its elegant architecture and generous boulevards.  Thirty minutes away, and the magnificent Mt Lofty Ranges, are the Adelaide Hills. In addition to the beauty of the hills themselves with their huge gum trees and their picturesque landscapes, there are more than 1000 km of bushwalking trails and many fascinating townships to explore.


Adelaide has a huge arts community, and is also known for producing some of the finest wines in Australia, from delicate Rieslings to the robust Shiraz.


The best time to visit Adelaide is from March to May and September through November, during the city’s fall and spring. During these shoulder seasons, rainfall is rare and daytime temperatures sit in the 60s and 70s. You’ll also avoid the crowds and higher prices associated with the area’s peak season, which coincides with the summer holidays and Adelaide’s festival season


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The island state of Tasmania has a population of 507,600 making it the least populated state in Australia. Its capital, Hobart, has a population of 214,700 and is Australia’s second oldest city and its southern most capital. Beginning in 1804 as a collection of tents and huts populated by a mixture of convicts, military men and civil servants, Hobart soon developed into Australia’s most southerly city.  It straddles the mouth of the Derwent River and is backed by the towering Mt Wellington.


Hobart combines the benefits of a modern city with a rich colonial heritage. With beautiful Georgian buildings, the busy harbor and the easy going atmosphere make the city one of the most enjoyable and engaging in Australia.


The tourist season in Tasmania runs from about October through to the end of April. The best weather is in February and the months either side of that. Hobart itself has a steady stream of tourists all year – especially on weekends.  Hobart’s main festivals for the year are between Christmas and New Year.


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