Australia is an exciting destination for travellers, with so much to explore. About 8.5 million tourists visit Australia each year. With so many exotic stories of the great land down under, visitors who plan a visit commonly have a lot of questions about what they need to travel to Australia and what to expect when they get here.

It’s a long way to travel to Australia and with so much to see, planning a trip of several weeks is the only way to pack in enough of this wonderful island continent. If you’ve never been to Australia, you’ll probably have some questions about what you need to travel to Australia, and the best times to visit. We’ve put together some answers to some common questions people ask when planning their trip.


Australia is a very BIG country. It is about the same size as the U.S.A, but the population is only about 7% of the size of the United States. The population hugs the coast, with only 2% of the population living in the central regions. Unless you live in Australia or have visited before, it is common to be surprised by the sheer size of the continent. Visual guides are often really helpful. Here’s a great visual comparison to help you get perspective.

Large Travel Distances. So why is it important to understand how large Australia is? Well its really about understanding the distances and how long it takes to travel from one city or region to another. For example, the distance between the two most popular cities, Sydney and Melbourne is 878 kilometres. Between Melbourne and Brisbane, 1,667 kilometres and between Melbourne and Perth, 3,405 kilometres. 

Different types of weather. Depending on where you are travelling in Australia, the weather across the continent is dramatically different. Melbourne and Tasmania have the coolest climate, while Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia are the hottest regions.

Transport. Getting around major cities and towns in Australia is reasonably easy using buses, trains and taxis. The major cities of Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Adelaide & Brisbane all have suburban train systems, which make booking accommodation in the suburbs easy for getting to where you need to be. Melbourne also has a very good tram system operating through the city and into the suburbs. There’s more helpful information on Melbourne’s public transport in our Melbourne long term accommodation guide. You can travel between cities and to some more remote regions by plane, bus or train. Buses and trains don’t always travel very frequent, so it’s a good idea to plan your trip well in advance. Travelling by train can be a lot of fun, and Australia has several long distance train lines that will take you to regional and remote locations, providing beautiful scenery along the way. Train travel can be more of an adventure and more comfortable than travelling by bus.

Long Distance Train Lines

  • Great Southern Rail
  • Queensland Rail
  • V/Line
  • NSW Train Line

Good To Know Facts About Australia

  • Australia is approximately the same size as the U.S.A
  • Australia has a population of 24.6 million people
  • The capital of Australia is Canberra
  • The weather in Australia varies between the temperate south, warm, tropical north and dry, hot inland

Common imperial to metric conversions

  • 1 mile = 1.6 kilometres
  • 68 degrees fahrenheit = 20 degrees celsius
  • 1 inch = 2.54 centimetres
  • 1 gallon = 3.8 litres


This isn’t a straightforward answer, because it depends on where you plan on travelling.

The southern states in Australia experience quite cold winters. For Melbourne, the coldest months are June, July and August. Summer is a popular time to visit Melbourne and southern Australia and there are always plenty of things to do on a family summer holiday. Summer is also the busiest time of year due to school holidays. Autumn and spring are generally good seasons for travelling. Summer is very, hot, humid and uncomfortable in northern Australia and is not recommended. June, July and August are preferable times to visit far north Australia. Below is a quick check list of the best times to visit popular destinations, and information on average temperatures.

Melbourne: The best time to visit Melbourne is March to May (autumn) or between September and November (spring). Average maximum autumn temperatures are around 20C/68F.

Sydney: The best time to visit Sydney is late February to May (late summer/autumn) or between September and November (spring). Average maximum temperatures for Spring are 21C/69F.

Brisbane: The best time to visit Brisbane is between March and May. The weather is sunny with low rainfall and an average highs of 24C/75C.

Adelaide: February and March are regarded as the ideal time to visit Adelaide, with average maximum temperatures of around 24C/75.2F.

Perth: August and September are regarded as the best time to visit Perth, with average daily highs of 19 to 23C/53 – 73.4C.

Darwin: Winter is regarded as the best time of the year to visit Darwin, with an average maximum temperature of 29C/84F.

Cairns: The best time to visit Cairns is August, with maximum temperatures of 26.5C/79.7F.

Northern Territory & Far North Queensland: There are two seasons in the Northern Territory – a wet and a dry season. The wet season (November – April) provides amazing waterfalls, wildlife and flower displays, but can also be hazardous due to road closures. The maximum temperature during the wet season averages 33C/91F. The dry season (May to October) has cooler nights and sunny days (23c/73f).


Below are some answers to common questions about the types of things you need when planning a trip to Australia

Do i need a visa to travel to australia?

Unless you are an Australian or New Zealand citizen, to enter Australia you will need to have a valid visa, as well as supporting documents, including a valid passport and a completed entry card. The type of visa you apply for will depend on the purpose of your visit and how long you intend to stay. A common visitor visa is eVisitor (subclass 651) and allows for multiple trips to Australia for travel and/or business. Find out more about visas.

Are there restrictions on things i can bring in to australia?

Australia is an island and has quite strict quarantine and biosecurity laws. You are not allowed to bring in any fresh fruit or plant materials, or uncanned animal products, such as eggs, beef and pork. Visitors who fail to declare prohibited items on entry to Australia may have their visas shortened or even cancelled. Make sure to check the list of prohibited items.

What happens if i get sick in australia?

When you travel it is always best to be on the safe side and get travel insurance. Some Australian visas make travel insurance mandatory. Australia also provides reciprocal health benefits for some countries, allowing people from those countries access to the Australian Medicare health system.

What type of power adaptor do i need to travel in australia?

When you travel to Australia, you’ll need to charge your phone and devices, so you’ll need to get an adaptor or two. Australia uses plug type I.


Australia is known for its beautiful beaches and sunshine, but also for crocodiles and sharks. Here’s some helpful information on a few more aspects of Australian life.

Driving in australia

If you have a drivers licence from an english speaking country, you can drive a car in Australia when you visit. You will need to get an International Drivers Permit (IDP) if your licnece is not in English. Australians drive on the left hand side of the road and rememebr to always keep left.

Is it safe to swim in australia?

There are about 10,0000 beaches in Australia, and Australians are a water loving culture. Whether you plan on swimming, snorkelling, surfing or just splashing about in the waves, it’s important to keep safe and observe water safety practices and signs. The safest beaches are those patrolled by life savers. Make sure only to swim between red and yellow flags and always look for warning signs located at the entrance to the beach. If you are not a strong or confident swimmer and not in a clearly marked area that is safe for swimming, you should not swim.

What about crocodiles and sharks?

Shark attacks are very rare in Australia. Shark nets are in operation at many Australian beaches to prevent sharks entering swimming areas. Always observe signs and avoid swimming at dusk, at the mouth of rivers or far out to sea. Crocodiles inhabit rivers in the Northern Territory. Never swim in areas unless you know it is safe and seek advice whenever camping or boating.

Protection from the sun

The Australian sun is very hot. Make sure to wear sunscreen, wear a hat and if you are swimming, wear a rash vest.


After securing your visa and tickets, it’s time to find accommodation. Australia has lots of different types of accommodation to suit all sorts of travellers. If you are planning a longer trip to Australia of several weeks or a month or two, self contained serviced accommodation or apartment is very popularWhen staying in the larger cities, accommodation that is located out of the city, but close to public transport provides much better value for money.

Melbourne accommodation

Park Avenue Serviced Apartments in Melbourne are located in the centrally located, eastern suburb of Glen Waverley. Choose from a range of serviced accommodation options, from small apartments up to large townhouses for families. All accommodation is stylishly decorated and provides fully equipped kitchens and lounge rooms, as well as linen. Secure car parking, and access to public transport, shopping and services is right at your front door. Park Avenue also provide discount rates for bookings for long term accommodation for more than 28 days. Browse Glen Waverley accommodation and Forest Hill town houses.

  • Stylish & modern, fully furnished apartments or townhouses
  • Fully equiped kitchens and laundries
  • Separate lounge areas with entertainment & Foxtel
  • Secure parking

Find out more about Park Avenue serviced apartments for your next holiday in Melbourne. Call 1800 727 528

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