Australia is filled with some of this planet’s most stunning natural wonders that have stood the test of time. We can all play a part in keeping them this way – especially during ‘Keep Australia Beautiful’ Week (August 21-27). Here are six of the most gorgeous natural Aussie icons in the country that we should all be keeping clean and beautiful.
1. Katherine Gorge
One of the deepest in the country, Katherine Gorge was carved with the help of the mighty Katherine River. Made up of thirteen gorges and laced with rapids and waterfalls, this beauty sure is one to be proud of!
2. Shark Bay
World Heritage Site listed, Shark Bay boasts a number of unique natural features such as being one of the largest seagrass beds in the world. Shark Bay is also famous for its stromatolites, which are hardened microbial deposits that are said to be the oldest life forms on earth. These features help provide life for over 26 species of endangered animals, including dugongs, sea otters and turtles. During the months of April and May, when the full moon rises, the Whale Shark (also the biggest fish in the world!) gather in this clean and purified bay.
3. Pinnacles Desert
Want to know one of the world’s greatest natural mysteries? To this day, nobody knows how or when these gigantic dunes were formed! Hiding away in the Nambung National Park in Western Australia, these limestone formations were originally seashells in another life, which were then broken and blown inland to create what we see today.
4. Daintree Rainforest
The largest area of rainforest in Australia, the Daintree is protected by the Wet Tropics of Queensland World Heritage Site. With over 65% of Australia’s bat and butterfly species living inside this ecosystem, it’s the perfect tropical paradise for most of Australia’s flora and fauna. We hear that deep inside you’ll find some of the oldest plants in existence!
5. The Twelve Apostles
Acting like guards of the sea and shore, these twelve giant rock stacks were formed after they separated from the cliffs due to coastal erosion. In the beginning, they were caves, but due to extreme weather and harsh waves, the caves collapsed forming arches, which eventually became the sturdy pillars we have today.
Unfortunately, due to the rapid rate of erosion, only eight stand today and it is speculated that this number will reduce as time goes on. Check out our Great Ocean Road Trip guide here if you’re interested in visiting!
6. The Bungle Bungles
A UNESCO World Heritage site, the Bungle Bungles are odd looking orange and black rock formations found in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. Their strange appearance is due to clay absorbing in sandstone nutrients. This area is also one of the last remaining unexplored sections of the country, which is sacred Aboriginal land.