In the Australasia region, the majority of World Heritage sites are located in Australia, with a few in New Zealand and surrounding ocean islands such as Macquarie Island and Lord Howe Island.
Throughout Australia there are many listed sites including: the famous Kakadu in the Northern Territory, the Daintree in northern Queensland, Fraser Island and the spectacular Great Barrier Reef with its beautiful and massive coral atoll.
Kakadu, Australia: Kakadu National Park, situated in the Northern Territory is one of Australia’s spectacular natural areas teaming with wildlife over the vast wetlands and impressive escarpments. There are over 1,000 Aboriginal sites where ancient rock art can be seen. Accommodation ranges from four-star hotels and bush bungalows to caravan and camping sites. Great four wheel driving is available with many tour groups offering fun-filled days of adventurous activities and sightseeing.
Mount Cook, New Zealand: Positioned on the Southern Alps mountain range, which runs along the entire length of New Zealand’s south island, Mount Cook is the country’s highest peak. The spectacular beauty and amazing terrain is popular with adventurous travelers who enjoy snow skiing and rock climbing.
Daintree Forest, Australia: The beautiful Daintree is a spectacular display of tropical rainforests, filled with waterfalls, rivers and an array of native animals including tree kangaroos and the golden bowerbird. From Port Douglas or Cairns, many tour companies operate day tours which take you along the Daintree River and through bush trails of the magnificent surrounding landscape.
Lord Howe Island, South Pacific: Considered one of the most beautiful islands in the Pacific Ocean, Lord Howe is a spectacular piece of natural paradise. With untouched golden sand beaches, breathtaking lagoons and lush green fauna, the island is truly unforgettable.
Great Barrier Reef, Australia: Positioned on the northeastern corner of Australia, the amazing Great Barrier Reef is the largest of its kind in the world and can be seen from outer space. The reef and surrounding waters are alive with colorful fish and unique sea plants. Many large turtles, dolphins and humpback whales can be seen year round.
East Rennel, Solomon Islands: East Rennel, the southernmost island of the Solomons, is the home of the world’s largest coral atoll with over 37,000 hectares of marine area. The varied landscape is covered with dense forests, limestone cliffs and a spectacular lake. The area has many unique bird species and an array of colorful marine life.
Fraser Island, Australia: Fraser Island is the world’s largest sand island, at over 184,000 hectares. The island has beautiful rainforests, over 40 fresh-water lakes and an array of native animals including dingoes, possums, wallabies and echidnas. With a host of activities to enjoy from trekking to snorkeling, the island is a perfect family destination.
Te Wahipounamu, New Zealand: This area around the southwestern tip of New Zealand is truly spectacular with rocky coasts, towering waterfalls, dramatic cliffs, lakes and lush green mountains. It is home to many species, some of which are unique to the area such as the kea, the world’s only alpine parrot and the takahe, a large flightless bird that has recently become very rare and endangered.
Macquarie Island, South Pacific: Macquarie Island is a small oceanic island positioned in the southern Pacific Ocean, approximately 900 miles southeast of Tasmania. The island lies on the Indo-Australian tectonic plate and is the only place in the world where rocks from the four-mile underwater mantle are seen above sea level.
Shark Bay, Australia: Situated 420 miles north of Perth in Western Australia, Shark Bay is renowned for its amazing marine life. The area is where three major climatic regions meet, which creates perfect conditions for many unique animals including bottlenose dolphins, loggerhead turtles, manta rays, whales, many shark species and dugongs.