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“Australia” on location

Forget Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman, the main stars of the Baz Lurhman epic movie ‘Australia’ are the stunning locations around the country which were used as a backdrop for the romantic/adventure/action packed movie. The film is set in the 1930’s and 1940’s with the two main characters embarking on their own epic journey to drive 2000 cattle across Australia’s Top End. They find themselves caught up in the World War II bombing of Darwin.

As well as showcasing some of our war-time heritage, the movie utilises indigenous culture and unique outback characters to paint a stunning portrait of the country.

Kununurra is the gateway to Australia’s North West region, which includes the Kimberleys. The actual township was built in the early 1960’s, but the ancient landscape has been home to indigenous Aboriginals for centuries. Stay at one of the world’s most unique holiday destinations, El Questro Wilderness Park. El Questro covers an amazing one million acres of land – a huge pocket of breathtaking and untouched scenery.

The Northern Territory offers many stunning true Australian images throughout the movie – from the rich colours of its dramatic landscapes to Darwin’s historic Stokes Hill Wharf. Take the afternoon Darwin City Sights Tour and visit the historic East Point Military Precinct and the Stokes Hill Wharf area.

The Bungle Bungles (Punululu National Park) are both a unique mountain range, and National Park. Take a 2 day 4WD Adventure from Kununurra and drive via the scenic Ragged Range visiting Turkey Creek, Northern Gorges and Osmand Ranges. Walk among the Bee Hive domes of the magnificent Bungle Bungles, camp overnight in this World Heritage listed area, trek Echidna Chasm and Mmini Palms.

The 5 star Skycity is one of the most popular hotels in Darwin. The pyramid-shaped Casino Hotel is situated on 7 hectares of tropical beachside gardens at Mindil Beach, approx 3 kms from Darwin city centre. Leisure facilities include a golf putting green, fitness centre, tennis courts and a lagoon-style infinity edge swimming pool. Dine in one of the many restaurants, sip a cocktail by the pool or try your luck at the casino.

The Whitsunday township of Bowen (about an hour’s drive North from Airlie Beach) forms the backdrop for many scenes of the movie, as well as doubling as war-time Darwin.

Many of Sydney’s historic and heritage houses were also used during filming. Strickland House in Vaucluse doubled as Darwin’s Government House, as well as the location for a grand dancing scene. Camelot at Camden was used for rehearsals, and the House of Iona is the base for Baz Lurhmann’s production company Bazmark Productions. Some filming and production was done at Sydney’s Fox Studios. Whilst no longer open to the public, you can visit the adjacent Entertainment Precinct which houses entertainment venues, parklands, sporting grounds and a range of cinemas, restaurants and bars. There are so many fantastic Sydney hotels to choose from depending on your budget or location requirements.

With the ever-changing value of the dollar, plus the recent economic uncertainties, NOW is the best time to holiday in your own backyard! Go see the movie Australia, and be inspired to holiday in Australia!

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