Coronavirus has changed the way we live, work and travel. When travel resumes, coronavirus is likely to continue to have an impact on our holiday choices.
Social distancing appears likely to be a feature of life for some time to come and will no doubt impact holiday planning. Additionally, the global spread of photos showing the benefits to the environment of less travel, may have some people reconsidering their global footprint. This has led to many tourism industry commentators suggesting there will be a trend for both eco-tourism and wilderness trips as a result.
Although coronavirus travel bans mean we can’t leave Australia for the time being, the good news is we live in one of the best countries on earth for a socially distanced holiday. According to the ABS, our population density is just 3.3 people per square kilometre. So, there’s plenty of space to get off the beaten track and away from the crowds. If a socially distanced or wilderness holiday is what you’re after, here are 5 of Australia’s best.
1. Hike the Three Capes track in Tasmania
Tasmania is one of the most untouched corners of Australia and the perfect place to get away from it all. Whether it’s hiking Cradle Mountain, kayaking in the Freycinet national park or sampling local cheeses on Bruny Island, there is something for everyone.
If hiking is your thing, the Three Capes track could be the perfect holiday in this new socially-distanced era. Over 4 days, you’ll walk 48kms of rugged Tasmanian coastline atop soaring sea cliffs – with nothing between you and Antarctica. For now, Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service has reduced the number of walkers allowed on the track to 18 per day, with 2 people per room.
Our marketing manager hired cooking equipment and bought food from Three Capes Gear & Gourmet to avoid extra weight in her luggage… They’ll deliver to hotels in Hobart and their food is superb. Pick the beef cheeks in shiraz for your first night and you’ll be the envy of all the other walkers!
2. Support the bushfire recovery on Kangaroo Island
Beautiful Kangaroo Island made headlines when it was badly affected by the devastating 2019-20 bushfire season. A recent survey by the Tourism & Transport Forum Australia showed 1 in 5 of us want to support bushfire-affected communities through travel. If you’re one of those people, a trip to Kangaroo Island could be a great choice. The bush is already starting to recover as seen here.
Known as Australia’s answer to the Galapagos Islands, Kangaroo Island boasts 509km of coastline, bushland, and wildlife to explore. In recent years, it has become well known for eco-tourism and offers everything from campgrounds to luxury lodges. If you’re feeling energetic and enjoy camping, you could even take on the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail – a 61km, five day trek through beautiful and botanically unique landscapes.
Whatever you do, don’t leave without swimming at Vivonne Bay – even in peak season you probably won’t have to share this stunning beach.
Do take advantage of the outdoor activities on Kangaroo Island – from snorkelling to sandboarding, quad biking to hiking, they’ve got it all. But don’t take part without double checking what’s covered by your travel insurance. Some policies may not cover you for riskier activities such as quad biking or may require you to purchase additional cover. Your policy should include a section listing activities that are automatically covered.
3. Take a road trip along the Grampians Way
The winding 332km Grampians Way is a great way to explore this incredibly diverse region. Its variety makes it ideal for families where everyone has a different definition of the ‘perfect’ holiday. With Victoria’s largest waterfalls, ancient rock art, horse riding tours, gold-mining towns and a zoo, there should be something to keep even the most hard-to-please teenager happy. Especially if you take them to The Balconies for a stunning, Instagram-worthy sunset. It’s an easy 1.1km walk from Reed Lookout just remember to take a torch for the way back.
If you’re hiring a car for your road trip, domestic travel insurance could cover you for the rental vehicle insurance excess – and is another option if you prefer not to buy excess cover as an add-on from the rental company.
4. Dive at Ningaloo Reef
Want to tick something off the bucket list but prefer to avoid the crowds at the Great Barrier Reef? You could consider the seriously underrated Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia instead. This World Heritage-listed site on the Coral Coast is one of the longest near-shore reefs in the world. It’s also just over 1,000km from Perth. But that don’t let that put you off – embrace another predicted coronavirus travel trend and make a road trip of it.
Make sure you check out our Top 6 Things To Do In Perth before you hit the road. Around 4-5 hours into the trip, stop in Geraldton to stock up on supplies that will become scarce as you travel north.
5. Experience country life on a farm stay
This is a great way to get away from the crowds and support Australian farmers in the process. There are options all over Australia, so whatever your tastes or budget you should be able to find something to suit. If it’s a farm-to-fork experience you’re after, check out Tommerup’s Dairy Farm in Queensland’s stunning Scenic Rim. Or to experience life on a working cattle station, check out Bullo River Station in the Northern Territory. For more ideas and farm stay inspiration, check out Tourism Australia.
There’s no need for social distancing with farm animals, choose a farm stay where you can get among the chooks and collect your eggs for breakfast, pick some herbs for dinner or order a hamper to satisfy your tastebuds. Perhaps pick up some local produce at the farmers market and support our farmers
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