Although the results of the meeting of the Reef 2050 advisory committee are in, government officials aren’t willing to make any changes to the Reef 2050 plan.
Back in 2015, the Queensland government released something called the Reef 2050 Long Term Sustainability Plan. They did it because the Unesco World Heritage Centre let them know that they were considering adding the Great Barrier Reef to the list of world heritage sites that were under severe threat. Now, though, in a meeting of the Reef 2050 advisory committee, at least two groups of experts said the battle to “ensure the Great Barrier Reef continues to improve on its outstanding universal values” has already been lost.
When you hear, that Melbourne is the world’s most liveable city and Australians have been voted the friendliest people on earth, you must be tempted to experience this incredible country for yourself. Nowhere else will you find such diverse and astounding landscapes, brilliant hot sunshine and some of the best beaches on the planet. Here are 10 reasons you need a vacation down under:
#1 Natural Beauty
Australia is home to some natural wonders that have to be seen with your own eyes. The Great Barrier Reef is just one of these wonders and is the largest single thing on earth made by living organisms. The world’s biggest coral reef is a must for all divers as you witness the huge amount of life that depends on it for survival. The marine life here is truly staggering.
National Parks house and protect many of the world’s natural wonders, from the peaks of Torres del Paine to the dragons of Komodo. Travel bloggers The Planet D, Swedish Nomad and more pick the best…
1: Sagarmatha National Park, Nepal
You may not recognize the name Sagarmatha, but you definitely know this national park: Sagarmatha is the national park of Mount Everest.
Located in Nepal, Sagarmatha encompasses 1,150 square km and when hiking to Everest Base Camp, we spent two weeks trekking through its incredible landscape. Every day felt like a dream as dramatic mountains towered overhead while we walked through massive valleys. It felt like a little slice of heaven and I don’t think there is anywhere on Earth that is more beautiful or spiritual.
A scientific research expedition, funded by the tourism industry, to a remote part of the Great Barrier Reef will look for climate change-resistant coral in a bid to understand how coral can survive.
Great Barrier Reef Legacy (GBR Legacy), a nonprofit organisation, will launch the 21-day trip in November, inviting more than 10 scientists, including Australia’s Charlie Veron — known as the “godfather of coral”, on the research boat.
During the expedition, Veron — former chief scientist at the Australian Institute of Marine Science — will search for “super corals”, species that have the strongest capacity to cope with rising temperatures.
Great Walks of Australia, the collective brand that markets Australia as a key guided walking destination, is proud to announce the addition of a new walk for NSW, the Blue Mountains Grand Traverse by Auswalk. This brings the number of walks in the program to 12, with 10 of those showcased in the new Signature Collection.
Located in one of Australia’s many unique and spectacular walking destinations, this walk is the 2nd in the collection for NSW, having recently adding the Seven Peaks Walk by Pinetrees on Lord Howe Island in April 2017. The Blue Mountains walk offers a fully supported opportunity to explore this important natural environment, only 90 minutes from Sydney, which features stunning cliffs, canyons rainforests and waterfalls. It is located in a UNESCO World Heritage listed area, as are the Great Walks products on Lord Howe and on Maria Island, Tasmania.
The weekend is over and it’s back to the grind, which is why it’s hardly surprising that we might plan a future treat to brighten up our gloomy thoughts. According to a study by Hostelworld.com, which is headquartered in Dublin, the busiest time for booking an adventure abroad since 2014 has been between 8pm and 9pm on a Monday in July. Which Monday it is depends heavily on whether there is a major international sporting event on, however.
The global hostel booking site came to its conclusion by examining daily travel booking patterns to predict the busiest day for booking in 2017, and concluded that it’s today, Monday 17 July. It reckons that the number of bookings made today for trips around the world will be 40% up on an average day.
AUSTRALIA has so much more to offer beyond Sydney, white sand beaches, and the Great Barrier Reef. I was fortunate enough to go to the Northern Territory — the Top End, which is the Northern strip of this territory. Check out some of my favorite images from this intriguing and relatively unvisited area.
The Northern Territory is sparsely populated — the fewest residents of all the Australian states. But it occupies 1/6th of the country’s land, so it’s a place of wide open spaces and is the site of Alice Springs, the normal stop-off for people seeing the Outback and visiting Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park . I visited 3 areas within the NT: Darwin, Kakadu, and Arnhem Land.
Darwin was named after Charles Darwin and has just about 140k inhabitants. It’s the bustling metropolis of the Northern Territory and 15th most populated city in Australia.
If you’re after the unforgettable Australian experience, you definitely have to visit Kakadu National Park. Don’t miss the opportunity to go beyond simple tourism and witness one of the world’s great natural reserves. In fact, Kakadu is listed as a World Heritage Site for both its cultural and natural heritage.
Kakadu National Park will gift you with a remarkable array of experiences. Here, you could go cruising on Yellow Water Billabong along with its 290 bird varieties and fabled wildlife. Or, you could dive into Australia’s 50,000 years of Indigenous heritage through the park’s rich natural rock art galleries. Right at the heart of this compelling destination you might also want to relax in a fully-Indigenous owned 4-star hotel!
A bit of history
Aboriginal people have occupied the Kakadu area continuously for the last 40,000 years.
It’s the world’s biggest coral reef system, home to some 400 types of coral. In the past 18 months, rising ocean temperatures helped cause the single greatest loss of coral ever recorded there.
Nearly a hundred miles off the shore of Port Douglas, Australia, tourists jump into the water of the outer reef. On their dive, they see giant clams, sea turtles and a rainbow of tropical fish, all swimming above brightly colored coral.
On a boat, marine biologist Lorna Howlett quizzes the tourists in the sunshine. “How many people out there saw a coral highlighter-yellow?” she asks, eliciting a show of hands. “What about highlighter-blue? Yeah? Anyone see some hot pinks?”
Eager hands shoot up among the few dozen tourists lounging on the deck of the boat in their wetsuits.
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) just released its ‘List of World Heritage in Danger’, and it has one notable omission. The Great Barrier Reef.
Australian experts have spoken out about the exclusion.
Dr Hugh Sweatman, Senior Research Scientist and Leader of the Long-term Monitoring Program for coral reefs of the Great Barrier Reef at the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS)
Over the past 12 months hard coral cover on the Great Barrier Reef declined by about a quarter, bringing average reef-wide coral cover down to 18 per cent.These findings are based on surveys of 68 mainly mid- and outer-shelf reefs to March 2017, and do not yet include the impact of Tropical Cyclone Debbie or the further intense coral bleaching in 2017.
In general, the impacts of coral bleaching, cyclones and crown-of-thorns starfish outbreaks differ along the 1,500 km length of the Reef.