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17 Things You Can Only Do In Australia

There are some things so special they're worth going halfway around the world for. Jump on a plane to Australia and try them for yourself with STA Travel.

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1. Visit a town that is entirely underground.

Werner Bayer (CC BY http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

The weather is so hot in Coober Pedy, a mining town in South Australia, that everyone moved underground to avoid it. The town has almost 2,000 people, and not one of them has an air conditioner.

2. Conduct scientific experiments as to what magpies will and will not swoop at.

Lyndi & Jason (CC BY-SA http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

Walk or ride your bike under a nesting magpie's tree, and she's going to try and kill you. Stick branches in your bicycle helmet or draw a face on the top. See what works best, and report back with your scientific findings.

3. Be in the rainforest one second, and on a sandy beach the next.

John W Banagan / Getty Images / Via gettyimages.co.uk

Cape Tribulation is the place where two World Heritage-listed areas meet — the Daintree Rainforest and the world's largest coral reef system, the Great Barrier Reef.

4. Attempt to rip a fiver in half and fail.

Will (CC BY-SA http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

It's made of plastic! Australia may have gorgeous scenery and insanely unique animals, but it's the plastic money with its plastic window that you'll always remember.

5. Learn to fear all spiders — even the little ones.

nick ta (CC BY-SA http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

The northern tree funnel-web spider is aggressive AND one of the most venomous spiders in the world. It's something to be proud of.

6. Drink wine among the oldest grape vines in the world.

Stefano Lubiana (CC BY http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

After disease wiped out most of Europe's vineyards, some of Australia's vines became the oldest in the world, as they came over with the First Fleet in 1788 with the settlers.

7. Go on the straightest and longest train journey of your life.

Amanda Slater (CC BY-SA http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

Across the Nullarbor Plain in southern Australia is the straightest and longest stretch of railroad in the world, clocking in at 487km. It's part of the Indian-Pacific journey, which takes you from Perth to Sydney, taking three nights in total to travel. If you look out the window, you'll see unique landscapes like nowhere else.

8. Go head-to-head with one of Australia's greatest enemies.

Phil Whitehouse (CC BY http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

Cane toads were never supposed to be in Australia, and were introduced by Europeans as an old-woman-who-swallowed-the-fly way of dealing with sugarcane pests. It didn't work, their population is now somewhere around 200 million, and they continue to be a threat to both the environment and the native wildlife. Consequently, volunteer toad-busters collect them in their thousands and euthanise them. It's a fun night out if you're into that sort of thing.

10. Hang out in the same place as the largest collection of kangaroo species in the world.

JoshBerglund19 (CC BY http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

You probably think there's just one species of kangaroo. You're wrong! At the Rainforest Habitat Wildlife Sanctuary in Port Douglas, Queensland, you'll see more kinds of kangaroo under one roof than anywhere else.

11. Dive with dwarf minke whales.

Wade Lehmann (CC BY-ND http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

Anyone can go whale watching in a boat, but there's only one place in the world where you can actually swim with them. Your best time to see them is the Australian winter (July/August) when they pass through the Great Barrier Reef while migrating north.

12. Watch the Devil eat his tea in Tasmania.

S J Bennett (CC BY http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

The Tasmanian devil is a bit like a hyena, feasting mostly on carrion and possessing a terrifying jaw strength of a dog four times its size. At the Tasmanian Devil Conservation Park, you can watch them destroy their dinner. You'll feel a lot better about your own table manners.

13. Play a musical fence.

Stonestreet's Coaches - The Extra Mile (CC BY-ND http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

No, listen, a musical fence is totally a thing. It was designed by Australian composer Graeme Leak, and can be played like a violin. You can find it in Winton, Queensland.

14. Pose in front of a huge pineapple.

Adam Campbell (CC BY-ND http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

Australia has this thing where they like to make big versions of regular things. The Big Pineapple, the Big Potato, the Big Ant, the Big Banana, the Big Merino, and the Big Prawn. There is a whole Wikipedia entry of these ridiculous constructions, and your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to pose in front of them all.

15. See the world's only recorded evidence of a dinosaur stampede.

The 3,300 dinosaur tracks tell the story of a herd of small dinosaurs who were drinking on the shore of a muddy lake about 95 million years ago, before being disturbed by a large meat-eating dinosaur. You can see evidence of their panic at the Lark Quarry Dinosaur Tracks 120km southwest of the musical fence in Winton.

16. See the world's only known white whale.

Migaloo has been around since the early 90s, and the places you're most likely to see him are Byron Bay, Cape Tribulation, and Hervey Bay. A white whale!

17. Visit a town whose name is nothing but a number.

rewindyourtime (CC BY-ND http://2.0) / Via flic.kr

Sure, Devon's Westward Ho! has an exclamation mark, but at least it has words. The Queensland town of 1770 has no words and was named in honour of the year Lieutenant Cook landed on its shore.

STA Travel can get you to Australia for the most unique experience of your life. Go now!