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The Great Outback

By Jennideep Hayre

Posted: 23rd November 2012 16:46

The Australian Outback is a large area of remote and wild land which covers three quarters of the continent with dry deserts, dramatic rock formations, sand dunes, gorges, plants and varied native Australian animals.  The true essence of Aboriginal culture and heritage can be experienced at its best here in the Outback and it proves to be an escape from the hustle and bustle of the cities.

From camels, koalas, dingoes, wallaroos and numbats to unusual reptiles like the thorny devil and frilled lizard are among the eclectic range of wildlife that can be found dotted around the Outback.  They have adapted well to the harsh dry climate of their surroundings unlike humans.  There are less than 60, 000 people living in the Outback.

The Outback – also known as the last frontier of Australia, back of beyond or beyond the black stump – is divided into different territories such as Ayers Rock, Alice Springs, Palm Valley, King Canyon, The Olgas and West MacDonnell Ranges.  Ayers Rock – also known as Uluru – is an enormous sandstone rock formation standing 1,142 feet tall, which the Aborigines considered to be sacred.  It is a popular attraction and natural wonder that travellers visit when coming to the Outback.  Alice Springs is right bang in the middle of Australia and has a botanic garden, zoo, Aboriginal culture centre and environmental conservation institute. 

Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve Park has round, red granite rocks that range from twenty inches to twenty feet in size.  According to Aboriginal folklore, these rocks are the eggs of the rainbow serpent.  Kakadu National Park consists of miles and miles of rainforest and a vast wetland system teaming with wildlife and ancient rock sites to discover.  Litchfield National Park has termite mounds, waterfalls and tropical forests and also has the Lost City, a group of unusually shaped sandstone, formed over millions of years through wind and rain erosion. 

Tours are available for those who wish to explore every bit of the Outback with the guidance and knowledge of a qualified tour guide.  Just make sure you bring plenty of water and snacks and dress appropriately as the Outback tends to get extremely hot and the last thing you want is to be stranded.

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