Knowing overseas travel from Australia is closed for the foreseeable future doesn’t really help with quelling our wanderlust. After all, travel offers unique benefits that go beyond learning something new — whether it’s a different culture, an exotic island or a fascinating new language. But since travel restrictions remain in place, we need to find alternatives to overseas experiences.

Here, we explore three Aussie alternatives to a few overseas travel hotspots.

One-man art collections

Whether you’re a fine art dilettante or a true art aficionado, you would have heard of Glasgow, Scotland’s The Burrell Collection, located just a few kilometres outside the city centre.

Sir William Burrell’s eclectic collection of over 8,000 objects spanning five centuries includes medieval art, armour and weapons, Islamic art, Ancient Egyptian and Chinese artefacts, and some paintings of Degas and Cézanne, among others. But with the museum reopening still uncertain, fans of the collection have yet to wait.

If you’re looking for a local alternative that’s unique and exciting, perhaps you’ll find the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), located just outside the city centre of Hobart, Tasmania, quite appealing. Similar to The Burrell Collection, MONA houses an eclectic assemblage of 1,900 pieces of old and new art from the private collection of Tasmanian millionaire David Walsh.

The MONA collection is centred around the themes of sex and death, so prepare for the unexpected.

Glowworm tours and caves

If spelunking and entomology are your passions or if you simply love glow worms, you probably have the Waitomo Glowworm Caves in New Zealand on your bucket list. And we can’t blame you — Waitomo is ranked one of the top 10 amazing caves in the world.

But since overseas travel remains limited, why not use this time to explore and appreciate local alternatives? You can go on the various glow worm tours offered nearby in the Blue Mountains and Tamborine Mountain in Queensland. Here, you’ll have a chance to see glow worms up close and personal from a boat or while on foot. Sadly, the Bundanoon glow worm glen is closed due to fire damage from our disastrous 2019-2020 summer of fire.

Marine research islands

Whether you’re a naturalist or a simple nature lover, a trip to the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador would be the journey of a lifetime. This UNESCO World Heritage Site teems with a wide variety of flora and fauna, with some species endemic to the islands. Currently, however, a trip to the Galapagos would have to be scheduled for some years down the track.

Good thing Australia has its very own protected, ecologically diverse islands, such as Heron Island and Green Island in Queensland.

Aside from enjoying the amazing sunsets at Heron Island, you can go snorkelling there with sea turtles, tropical fish, sea cucumbers, reef sharks, stingrays, Christmas tree worms and many more. The University of Queensland’s marine research station on Heron Island offers live learning, too, with hands-on classes for students from years 11 and 12 to post-graduate groups.

Green Island, just off the coast of Cairns, is a haven for various land, sea and migratory birds passing through the Great Barrier Reef. In fact, it is home to 35 species of seabirds and 28 types of forest birds.

Give in to your travel bug.

While overseas travel from Australia remains restricted, we can use this time to explore our own rich, vast country. 

Australia has more than enough to offer everyone, from museums, caves and ecological gems to mountains, wineries, beaches and everything else in between. So, give in to your wanderlust, travel safely and start with the destinations listed here.

Looking for help selling your home or renting your investment property? Our team at Belle Property Balmain support homeowners across Balmain, Balmain East, Birchgrove, Rozelle and Lilyfield. Feel free to get in touch for a no-obligation discussion or property appraisal.

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