“Don’t worry about the world ending today. It’s already tomorrow in Australia.”
–Charles M. Schulz
Surrounded by the Indian and Pacific Oceans, Australia is a magical place filled with Indigenous peoples, sacred monoliths, and all types of landscapes—from the hot arid desert, outback, and bush to the Great Barrier Reef (one of the world’s largest ecosystems), and the architectural marvel, The Sydney Opera House. You may think of an outdoorsman with a delightful accent saying “G’day mate” or some of Australia’s most famous animals, such as koalas munching on bamboo or a mother kangaroo with a baby tucked in her pouch.
There’s the Murray River (Australia’s longest) in the Southeast, which is one of the most navigable in the world, and, of course, the Great Barrier Reef (the world’s largest coral reef system, complete with thousands of species of fish and mollusks).
Australia has an interesting history: Beginning in 1788, New South Wales, Australia, was used as a penal colony for convicts sent from England, Ireland, and Scotland. It is also a land known for extremes: severe heat and all sorts of rare, exotic animals. Some cultural highlights of Australia include the traditional music with instruments like the didgeridoo or “yidaki,” clapstick, bullroarer, and gum-leaf.
Animals of Australia
Koalas, wombats, crocodiles, and kangaroos all make up the exotic animal population in Australia. Some are cuddlier and cuter than others but remember, these are all wild creatures, and in the wild is exactly where they need to be: in their unbothered, natural habitat. Because of deforestation, many koalas lost their homes and ended up stranded in cities without food or shelter.
Most Spectacular Destinations
Come to a world of adventure and exploration with Spartan and the Green Egg! Our explorer pins illuminate some of the world’s most impressive landmarks and wonders to inspire education and curiosity.
“Uluru (also known as “Ayers Rock”) is found in the northern part of Australia. It is a gigantic sandstone formation that has great spiritual meaning to the Aboriginal tribes in the area. Uluru is filled with different springs, water holes, rock caves, and tons of ancient paintings. All of the branching paths give tourists plenty of locations to explore.”
This amazing monolith is a sacred monolith to the Anangu people; this means that it’s incredibly disrespectful to climb Uluru; it is not a tourist destination as much as a special site to be admired. It is a resting place for the past spirits and ancestors of Indigenous peoples, namely the Mala men who used it as a travel route. Because of these beliefs, Uluru is a UNESCO World Heritage site and protected by law. While base walks are still permitted, one cannot climb the rock. It is even frowned upon to take photographs of certain areas of the formation.
- “Lake Hillier is located on an island off Australia’s coast and its special color has been puzzling scientists for centuries. This lake is completely pink! Scientists believe that the pink color is caused by a type of red algae or by the presence of a high number of bacteria in the salt crusts. Unlike other pink lakes in the world, when you pour Lake Hillier’s water into a glass, it stays pink. Lake Hillier is only 250 meters wide and is an important place for many migrating and native birds.” The only living organisms in the lake are the red algae and microorganisms such as Dunaliella saline.
“The Great Barrier Reef is considered the largest living thing on earth, and the largest coral reef system. It’s even possible to see the reef from outer space. It stretches over fourteen hundred miles and is home to many types of aquatic species. It is located in the Coral Sea, right off the coast of Queensland, Australia.”
The Whitsunday Islands are found along the coast of the Great Barrier Reef and Queensland. With seventy-four islands in total, most remain uninhabited by people. Complete with rain forests and white sandy beaches, the islands are picturesque and ideal for snorkeling, diving, and observing marine wildlife.
To learn more about these sites mentioned, the animals that live there, and ways to help protect these precious environments, visit the UNESCO World Heritage website and the links below:
For more information about Spartan and the Green Egg and the destinations mentioned in this blog, check out the links below:
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