Location: Australia is a country located in Oceania between the Indian Ocean and the South Pacific Ocean. It is the biggest part of the continent with the same name. Australia is an island country, with no land boundary. Timor and Arafura Seas separate Australia from Asia and Tasman Sea separates it from New Zealand. Papua New Guinea and Indonesia are its maritime neighbours in the north.

Climate: Greater part of Australia is semi-arid. Only the south-east and south-west regions of the country experience temperate climate. The northern regions have a tropical climate and experience warm weather much of the time. The southern regions experience cooler winters. December to February is summer; March to May is autumn; June to August is winter; and September to November is spring.
Rainfall patterns over the country are highly seasonal, even though it remains one of the driest continents on earth with an average annual rainfall of less than 600 millimetres. This is supposed to be caused in part by the El Niño-Southern Oscillation.
Winter in Australia is relatively mild, and there is not much contrast between summer and winter temperatures in the northern parts. However, in many parts of the country, considerable seasonal highs and lows are seen. Temperatures can range from above 50 °C to well below zero, despite the fact that minimum temperatures are generally moderated.

Cuisine: Present day Australia is quite a cosmopolitan country with people from different countries inhabiting there. The modern Australian cuisine can be described as Fusion cuisine which combines elements of different culinary traditions – Indian, Chinese, British and traditional Australian styles. Most of the restaurants since 1970s have mostly been based on serving fusion cuisines.
British traditions continue in domestic cooking in Australia in varying degrees. This can also be seen in the takeaway food sector. Main items with British traditions which are quite popular include roasted dinners, Australian meat pie and fish and chips. Meat is a core food in Australian traditional cuisines. Roasted Lamb can be seen all over Australia and can virtually be referred to as the national dish.
Barbecues are quite popular among the Australians. This includes liberal use of snags and tomato sauce. Snags can be in the form of the traditional pork or beef, often flavoured with herbs and spices from around the world.

Currency of Australia is Australian dollar and currency symbol is AUD.
$1 = AUD1.37
AUD1= Rs48.69 (Indian Rupee)

Things to do: There are just so many things in Australia, which is among one of the most developed countries in the world. Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart, Perth, Canberra and Brisbane are some of the famous cities of Australia. There is the famous Great Barrier Reef – a must see in Australia. Sydney harbour, Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge along with Royal Botanical Garden are places you must see on a tour to Australia. Melbourne has the famous Melbourne Cricket Ground, Zoo and City Tram to attract tourists. One should also not miss Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne. Canberra’s Australian War Memorial is something tourists must visit to have a better understanding how
Australia being an island country has a number of stunning beaches. Some most unique spectacular beaches are Whitehaven Beach in Whitsunday Island and Bondi and Coogee beaches in Sydney. A walk from Bondi to Coogee beach can be spectacular experience.
There are some forest reserves in Australia for someone interested in wildlife. Flinders Chase National Park, Kangaroo Island and Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary, Brighton are two such places.
If you are in southern part of Australia, do not forget to visit Mount Wellington in Hobart. Lake Mackenzie in Fraser Island is also a place worthwhile to visit.

Visa: For Australian tourist visa, applicants must fill the Australia Tourist visa form with utmost care and vigilance. For applying for Australia Visa for Indians application has to be sent to Australian High Commission New Delhi. This is processed through VFS now.
Following conditions need to be fulfilled for this:
• The Australian High Commission accepts two formats of passport copies:
 Notarised copies of ALL pages, blank or otherwise; or
 Copies witnessed by VFS.
• Clients are strongly recommended to carry their original passports with them when they visit VFS center for VFS to copy and witness. Unacceptable copies – missing pages or un-witnessed/un-notarised pages – can lead to adverse visa decisions.
• Two recent passport size photos for each person included in the application.
• Biometrics will be collected using a quick, discreet and non-intrusive process that captures a facial image with a digital camera and a 10-digit fingerprint scan with a digital finger scanner.
• Visa fee need to be submitted via Demand Draft along with the application

Flights: There are connecting flights from all major Indian international airports to major Australian cities like Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth. These flights are mainly through Singapore, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta.


Vacations Beyond