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Travel Guide > Australia & Oceania > Australia

Australia Sports & Activities

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  • in the surf Australia has seemingly endless sandy beaches. Follow the crowds to the world famous Bondi Beach in Sydney, or Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast. Or find a stretch all for yourself (but beware of dangerous rips on beaches, it is considerably safer to find a patrolled beach). The surf is smaller and warmer in the Tropical North, where the reef breaks the swell, and larger and colder in the south with waves rolling in from the Southern Ocean. (And yes, in the middle it is just right).
  • in calm tropical oceans Cable Beach in Broome is swept pristine daily by the tide, has perfect sand, and warm water - go in winter.
  • in thermal pools South of Darwin there are many natural thermal pools, surrounded by palms and tropical foliage. The most expensive resort in the world couldn't dream of making a pool this good.
  • in freshwater lakes Inland Australia tends to be dry, but there are freshwater lakes where you would least expect them. Explore inland of Cairns at the Atherton Tablelands, or head outback to the Currawinya National Park.
  • in rivers If its hot, and there is water, there will be a place to swim. Wherever you are, just ask around for the favourite swimming spot, with a waterhole and rope to swing on.
  • in man-made pools The local swimming pool is often the hub of community life on a summer Sunday in the country towns of New South Wales and Victoria. Many of the beachside suburbs of Sydney have man made rock pools for swimming by the ocean beaches.
  • on the beach ! Find your spot by the water, and get out the towel. Tropical north in the winter, down south in the summer. As always when in Australia, protect yourself from the sun.


  • Snorkelling take a trip out to the Great Barrier Reef on the Queensland coast, or the Ningaloo Reef off the coast of Western Australia. Or take a trip out to Julian rocks off Byron Bay, or just dive in off the beach to see the tropical fish in Bundaberg.


  • Golf
  • Rock Climbing
  • Mountain Biking Try the trails in the Snowy Mountains or black mountain in Canberra, or cycle for days along the Munda Biddi Mountain Bike trail in Western Australia.


  • Skiing. New South Wales and Victoria have well developed ski facilities. Tasmania can also have skiing for a few months of the year, given the right weather.

Thrill Activities

  • Sky Diving all around Australia
  • Hot Air Ballooning in Canberra, Brisbane or in the Red Centre.


It has been said that if there are two flies crawling up a wall, then you just need to look around to find the Aussie who will be running a book.


Crown Casino in Melbourne is Australia's largest, nicely located at Southbank, but there are others scattered in every capital city as well as Cairns, Launceston, the Gold Coast and Townsville

Day at the races

All capital cities have horse racing every weekend, with on-track and off-track betting available, they are usually family occasions, and fashion and being seen are part of the event. Just about every pub in New South Wales will have a TAB, where you can place a bet without leaving your chair at the bar. Greyhound racing and trotting happens in the evenings, usually with smaller crowds, more beer, and less fashion. Smaller country towns have race meetings every few months or even annually. These are real events for the local communities, and see the smaller towns come to life. Head outback to the Birdsville races, or if you find the streets deserted it is probably ten past three on the first Tuesday in November (the running of the Melbourne cup).

The unusual

The lizard races, cane toad races, camel races, crab races. Betting on these races is totally illegal, and at you will find the TIB (Totally Illegal Betting) around the back of the shed at the annual guinea pig races at Grenfell.

Two up

If you are around for Anzac Day (25th April), then betting on coins thrown into the air will be happening at your local RSL club, wherever you are.

Australia has almost a quarter of all the slot machines (locally known as "pokies" or "poker machines") in the world, and more than half of these are located in New South Wales, where most pubs and clubs have gaming rooms (labelled "VIP lounges" for legal reasons) where one can "have a slap" and go for the feature.

If none of this appeals, and you just have too much money in your pocket, every town and suburb in Australia has a TAB. Pick your sport, pick a winner, and hand over your money at the counter.

Gambling is illegal for under-18's. This can often restrict entry to parts of pubs, clubs, and casinos for children.

Places for Sports & Activities in Australia

Spectator Sport Netball
is Australia's largest female sport, and there are weekly games in an international competition between Australia and New Zealand teams.
in Australia
Spectator Sport Football (Soccer)
is a small event by European standards, but there is a national A-League, which is a fully professional league involving teams from Australia and one from New Zealand, with games played weekly during the summer. Most cities have a semi-professional "state l... more
in Australia
Sport (Other) Circus Arts
Ever wanted to escape your job and join the circus? Want to learn how to juggle?  Swing on a trapeze?  How to tumble safely?  Circus Arts, located in the Arts and Industry Estate is THE place to try! http://www.circusarts.com.au/byron/ To get ther... more
Mid Range, 4hr workshop $90, in Byron Bay
Surfing Cheyne Horan School Of Surf
Learn to surf with former World Champion, Cheyne Horan at Byron Bay!  Standing and surfing in the first lesson 2 hour surf Easy to learn surfing techniques Taught ocean awareness and surf safety Lessons are progressive each day We select the appropriate eq... more
Mid Range, $49-$189, in Byron Bay
Surfing Style Surfing Byron Bay
Surfing with Style puts a smile on your dial.  Learn to surf with local guys who have grown up surfing all the best breaks in Byron and who are trained life savers to boot!
Low Budget, $60-$200, in Byron Bay
Diving/Snorkeling Sun Dive
Located just 2.5 kilometres from Byron Bay, one of Australia's most popular travel destinations, Julian Rocks Marine Park is rated as one of the top five scuba diving locations in Australia. The mixing of tropical warm currents with cooler temperate waters makes... more
Mid Range, Snorkelling $50, Diving $85-$95, in Byron Bay
Diving/Snorkeling Byron Bay Dive Centre
The Byron Bay Dive Centre caters for all levels of experience. Join one of our guided diving or snorkelling trips and let our dive crew show you one of Australia’s most spectacular dive sites. At the Byron Bay Dive Centre you can complete a range of P... more
Mid Range, Snorkel $55, Dive $85-$95, in Byron Bay
Adventure Sport Skydive Byron Bay
Experience Byron Bay from a height of 14,000ft during one of Australia's most popular skydives!
Top End, $249-$334 per person per jump, in Byron Bay
Surfing Rusty Miller Surf
Rusty is the original. After an incredible early career as a pioneer of pro surfing that took him to the top in the US, Rusty surfed around the world and found his home in Byron Bay. Here he has lived, surfed and related his unique 'how to learn' surfing method ... more
Low Budget, in Byron Bay

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