10 surreal natural wonders of Australia

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Kakadu national park, Northern Territory

This unique archaeological and ethnological reserve, located in the Northern Territory, has been inhabited continuously for more than 40,000 years. The cave paintings, rock carvings and archaeological sites record the skills and way of life of the region’s inhabitants, from the hunter-gatherers of prehistoric times to the Aboriginal people still living there.

It is a unique example of a complex of ecosystems, including tidal flats, floodplains, lowlands and plateaux, and provides a habitat for a wide range of rare or endemic species of plants and animals.Twin Falls at Kakadu National Park

Sea Cliffs, Tasman National Park, Tasmania

Located on the aptly named Desolation Island, the Cape Pillar sea cliffs are as intimidating as the island they stand on. They hold the record for the tallest sea cliffs in the southern hemisphere, and also the unofficial title of ″The Scariest Cliff in the Known Universe.″

Umpherston Sinkhole, Mt Gambier, South Australia

The Umpherston Sinkhole (or the Sunken Garden) is one of the most spectacular gardens located in the Mount Gambier region.
Umpherston sinkhole was once a typical limestone cave that formed by the corrosion of limestone rocks by seawater waves and the sinkhole was naturally created when the chamber’s roof collapsed.

The Pinnacles, Nambung National Park, Western Australia

It’s a true desert landscape in Nambung National Park, where the weathered rock spires of the Pinnacles rise out of yellow sand dunes. Yet the park sits on the deep blue Indian Ocean, along an idyllic stretch of coast three hour’s drive north of Perth. After experiencing the eerie Pinnacles, stay in the fishing village of Cervantes, with its white beaches, coral reefs and Lake Thetis, a salt lake teeming with living fossils.

Get up close to a rich array of wildlife in Badgingarra National Parks and discover Jurien Bay’s national parks and idyllic sandy beaches.

 

Grampians National Park, Victoria

Grampians National Park is a nature reserve in Victoria, Australia. It’s known for its sandstone mountains, wildflowers and wildlife including echidnas and wallabies. Near the village of Halls Gap, the Brambuk Aboriginal Cultural Centre gives insight into local Aboriginal history and rock art. Trails lead to waterfalls like towering MacKenzie Falls and lookouts such as the Balconies, with views of the Victoria Range.

Undara Lava Tubes, Undara Volcanic National Park, Queensland

Undara Volcanic is a national park in North Queensland, Australia. It is notable for its lava tubes and gem fossicking. Minerals found there include topaz, moonstone, peridot, aquamarine, garnet, quartz and gold. The park contains the remains of the Earth’s longest flow of lava originating from a single volcanic crater. The lava flow is about 160 km long.The park is remote, and accessible from the regional centres of Townsville or Cairns.

The volcanic activity that formed the tubes occurred approximately 189,000 years ago and the volcano Undara expelled massive amounts of lava onto the surrounding Atherton Tableland. In total it was estimated that over 23 billion cubic metres of lava was released covering an area of 55 km.

Bungle Bungles, Purnululu National Park, Western Australia

The distinctive beehive-shaped towers are made up of sandstones and conglomerates (rocks composed mainly of pebbles and boulders and cemented together by finer material). These sedimentary formations were deposited into the Red Basin 375 to 350 million years ago, when active faults were altering the landscape.
The combined effects of wind from the Tanami Desert and rainfall over millions of years shaped the domes. Weathering also helped create this marvel. Water seeps into the rock, and at night it expands as it gets colder. This creates small cracks which eventually wears out the rock.

Stromatolites of Hamelin Pool, Shark Bay, Western Australia

A visit to the remarkable Hamelin Pool stromatolites in Western Australia is a must when holidaying in the Shark Bay World Heritage Area. The Hamelin Pool stromatolites are oldest and largest living fossils on earth. Stromatolites are considered ‘living fossils’, part of the Earth’s evolutionary history.
Hamelin Pool in Western Australia is a place of great interest to botanists and geologists as it gives an indication of what the earth may have looked like about 3.7 billion years ago when stromatolites grew widespread across the water. Visitors can view these amazing life forms, without causing damage by walking on a purpose-built jetty and looking down at the Hamelin Pool stromatolites below.
Photo of Stromatolites of Hamelin Pool

Kata Tjuta, Uluru- Kata Tjuta National Park, Northern Territory

Kata Tjuta is a group of large, ancient rock formations about 30 kilometres (18.6 miles) away from Uluru in Australia’s . Together, these giant stone formations form the two major landmarks within the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. Kata Tjuta is made up of 36 domes spread over an area of more than 20 kilometres (12.4 miles). The highest point is Mount Olga, named in honour of Queen Olga of Württemberg by the explorer Ernest Giles.
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park is jointly managed by its Anangu traditional owners and Parks Australia. Kata Tjuta is sacred to the Anangu people, who have inhabited the area for more than 22,000 years. The sandstone domes of Kata Tjuta are believed to be about 500 million years old.

Australia’s pink lakes, various locations

The distinctive colour of the water changes as a result of green alga Dunaliella salina, halobacterium Halobacteria cutirubrum, and/or high concentration of brine prawn. Once the lake water reaches a salinity level greater than that of sea water, the temperature is high enough and adequate light conditions are provided, the alga begins to accumulate the red pigment beta carotene. The pink halobacterium grow in the salt crust at the bottom of the lake.

It is believed that the construction of a highway and a rail line altered the flow of water into the lake reducing its salinity which is why (as of 2017) it no longer appears pink.

Kings Canyon, Watarrka National Park, Northern Territory

Walls of China, Mungo National Park, New South Wales

The landscape of Australia is ever changing and with Mungo National Park, those changes can be dated as far back as 32 million years ago. It was around this time that the ocean flooded the Murrary Darling Basin, turning south-western NSW into an inland sea.
After 25million years, the ocean retreated but water levels in the area continued to fluctuate as surrounding river systems flooded. By 150,000 years ago, Lake Mungo and the surrounding Willandra Lakes had been established.

Wave Rock, Hyden, Western Australia

Wave Rock is a natural rock formation that is shaped like a tall breaking ocean wave. The “wave” is about 15 m high and around 110 m long. It forms the north side of a solitary hill, which is known as “Hyden Rock”.




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