From The Good Tourist

Red Earth


In the Dreaming, creator ancestors made the material world as well as the people…Every physical feature has a spirit ancestor. In this sense, the landscape is a book full of stories, which can be read by the people whose country you are in. It is the largest living text in the world.[1]

Holidays in Australia remain hugely popular – in 2006 tourists exceeded 5 million[2] – and whether you are a student or retired is immaterial, for the promise is still the same whatever your age:  “the experience of a lifetime”. Looking at some of the travel literature dedicated to Australia it’s hard not to be tempted by the stunning images and evocative descriptions. Whether it’s the Great Barrier reef and beaches of Queensland, or the world-class food and wine in southern Australia; a Blue Mountains Ecotour, exploring Aboriginal sites and the various plants and wildlife of the region[3] or a trek through the Daintree rainforest;[4] the iconic buildings, stunning harbour and opera house of Sydney or the dramatic landscape of the Northern Territories where you can visit Australia’s famous landmark, the Aboriginal sacred site known as Uluru (Ayers Rock);[5] Australia genuinely does seem to offer something for everyone.

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[1] Morgan, Sally from a speech she gave at PEN’s 62nd world congress at Freemantle, Australia, October 1995: Freedom of Speech, published in PEN International magazine vol.46. No. 1 1996

[2] UNWTO World Tourism Barometer Vol. 6.No 1 January 2008



[5] is an Aborginal-owned company who arrange tours around the rock. It is considered a mark of disrespect to climb the sacred site. Having lived as a part of this environment for many thousands of years, they have developed an intricate knowledge of the area which they are happy to share with tourists.

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