“Mountains are calling and I must go” This quote seems to describe the beauty of mountains aptly. Australian Alps are even more luring for the tourists not just for its sheer beauty but also for the fact that, the ranges are snow -capped in Australia which is known for its dry climate!! While the mesmerizing scenery will render you speechless, Australian Alps are full of history, adventure, and thrill and wild lives as well.
This mountain range is located in southeastern Australia stretching in the eastern Victoria, southeastern New South Wales, and Australian Capital Territory.
The Aboriginals were the first to occupy the region like the most parts of Australia. The Aboriginals were believed to gather in the summer time to embark their annual pilgrimage to the Bogong and snow capped mountains where they enjoyed the special feast of Bogong moths. Later, in 1860 the grazing potential of the land attracted Europeans. But it was in 1859, the discovery of gold at Kiandra, NSW led to the euphoric gold rush, also bringing along Chinese miners.
Australian Alps by CSIRO / CC BY-SA 3.0
Things to do
While you can dig your own gold in the region nowadays, there are huge and different activities you can enjoy here like nowhere else in Australia, like skiing! Each region occupied by the mountain range has something different to offer such as –
- Australian Alps are neither very high nor steep like Europeans Alps and hence one can easily go up to the peaks and see the gorgeous surroundings. If you love skiing, which you must do especially near Mount Kosciuszko which is also the highest peak. It also boasts UNESCO biosphere reserve with rare species of plants.
- In New South Wales, Tumut is hugely popular because of stalactites- the different shapes formed because of deposition of calcium carbonates hanging in the Yarrangobilly Caves. The caves also have a thermal pool to visit.
- Show your stamina and walk through 650 km long Australian Alps Walking Track, a major attraction in the region, which starts from Victoria and ends at Australian Capital Territory.
- Besides New South Wales, Victoria is also popular for skiing. But, the most interesting place to visit will be the Beechworth , a town associated with the famous gold rush. Hiking, cycling caving, rafting, horse riding and fishing, bird watching are some of the activities you can enjoy in the abundance in the Alps.
- Namadgi National Park, (there are number of national parks in the region) of Booroomba Rocks are famous for rock climbing and for Australian wild lives such as Kangaroos, wallabies and if you are into history, there are several campsites and cultural heritage of Ngunnawal people.
- The alpine resort of Mount Hotham and the Rutherglen wine region are major tourist attractions. Enjoy the wine and local cuisine there.
- The enchanting Alpine way through New South Wales and Victoria and Alpine National Park should not be missed owing to the postcard view and rare flora and fauna in the area.
The Alps are filled with the opportunities to explore. It really depends on you to explore and visit the region hidden beneath the trails and ranges.
The Alps region is worldwide famous for the ecological conservation. No wonder there are several large national parks dedicated for the cause. Alpine National Park, Kosciuszko National Park, Snowy River National Park are some of the popular national parks famous for their beauty and conservation.
The Australian Alps forest area is known for the frequent bushfires.
In the Tidbinbilla Natural reserve, you can visit Bogong Cave, where the Aboriginal people feasted on bogong moths.
We cannot actually list the all the places and activities in this article really because there is so much to see and explore and enjoy. But you, of course, can share your experiences and photographs of the Australian Alps tour and tell about the places not mentioned even in this article here.