101 ways to experiences Australia: Art and culture

Australia is home to more museums, art and cultural centres than any of us can hope to see in a lifetime.

That doesn’t mean we can’t try.

We’ve got galleries in the streets, on siloes and in the suburbs. Artworks made by the world’s oldest living culture. We have neighbourhoods ranging from supercool to kitschy. Sports stadiums and centres where you can worship your sporting idols or reflect on the history of your favourite sports and events. There are places where you can step back in time, check out the creative work of fashion designers and makers of artisanal creations sold at farmer’s markets and regional boutiques.

Yep, this country is truly one of the world’s most creative and culturally impressive hubs.

Tourism Australia has put together its 101 ways to holiday in Australia. A sort of Aussie travel bucket list if you will.

We’ve already covered Australia’s food and wine must-dos. This week we count down the ways you can get acquainted with Australia’s art and culture, and you may not have to go far to get a taste.

83. Visit a moment in time
Step back in time with a visit to a historic site. Relive Australia’s gold-rush era at Sovereign Hill in the town of Ballarat in Victoria, or explore the country’s origins as a convict settlement at the Port Arthur Historic Site in Tasmania. You can take a tour – and even spend the night – at the convict-built Fremantle Prison in Perth.

82. Pan for gold
Channel your inner fortune seeker and visit an old mining site. Pan for gold and tour the old sites to understand what life was like for early colonial settlers.

81. Relax with a spa day
Treat yourself to a staycation and rejuvenate with a pampering session. Visit a day spa, dine at a health-minded restaurant or indulge in a wellness retreat in the wilderness. You can even start your day on the sand with a sunrise yoga session on the beach.

80. Neighbourhood-hop
Meandering through Australia’s diverse districts and suburbs makes for a day full of surprises. Just hop on local transportation and discover a whole new world of vintage shops, cool underground bars and leafy parks.

79. Shop Australian designers
Australia’s cosmopolitan cities are at the forefront of the country’s love for fashion. Seek out streets filled with boutique shops playing host to edgy start-up labels and young, experimental designers.

Read more: Podcast: Buy Australian and see Australia

78. Relish in Australia’s quirks
Whether it’s checking out the country’s ‘Big Things‘ or learning about the UFO capital of Australia, there really is something for everyone. Plan a trip around a local event, where you might find yourself sailing on a dry riverbed or tossing tuna.

77. Tour your favourite sporting ground
Whether you’re a footy fanatic, cricket-obsessed or a racing enthusiast, pop by the local sport stadium for a tour and deep dive into Australia’s sporting heritage. Make sure you snap a selfie from the stand.

76. Go to the theatre
Australia is home to a thriving performing arts scene. Whatever your passion, you’ll find venues across the country serving up the best of Australian music, dance, comedy or theatre. Be sure to check venue websites to learn about cancellations and capacity.

75. Find a farmers market
The best way to meet the farmers, makers and growers and fill your basket with fresh produce is to visit a local farmers market. Wander through any of Australia’s farmers markets to taste and buy artisan bread, local cheese and freshly picked fruits and vegetables.

Read more: Tasmania’s top spots for shopping and markets

74. Road trip Australia’s biggest outdoor gallery
In rural communities across Australia, you can find painted grain silos and water towers. What began as the PUBLIC Silo Trail of Western Australia has spread across four other states to include South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. There are now 70 silo artworks documented as part of the Australian Silo Art Trail.

73. Visit an art gallery
You can easily spend the whole day wandering through the diverse art galleries located in Australia’s cities and towns. Visit a permanent collection or plan your trip around the ever-changing roster of exhibitions.

72. Experience urban Aboriginal cultures
Indigenous culture is alive and well in Australia’s urban centres, with easily accessible walking tours as well as museums, galleries and cultural centres to explore. Peruse ancient and contemporary art, discover the history of major cities and participate in cultural practices that have been passed down for generations.

71. See the oldest Australian art
Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art is the oldest living art tradition in the world. Across the country you’ll find rock art dating back tens of thousands of years, offering a priceless look into the past. Book in with a local Aboriginal guide for an authentic experience with Australia’s art culture.

Read more: Five Aboriginal cultural centres to visit in New South Wales

70. See where champions are made
Australia is home to some premier sports precincts, and budding sports stars can get a behind-the-scenes peek. In Canberra, the Australian Institute of Sport offers guided tours (resuming 2021), and in Sydney you can try your hand at white-water rafting at the Penrith Whitewater Stadium, which was used during the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.

69. Uncover street art
Art doesn’t stop when you walk out the museum doors. Hit the streets and uncover hidden alleys and laneways filled with vibrant art and designs. Australia’s street art isn’t contained to cities either. Jump in the car and marvel at the creativity of regional towns that feature towering artworks and unique exhibitions.

What’s your favourite Aussie cultural experience? Where do you go to get your culture fix? Why not share your suggestions with our members?

Article edited from 101 ways to holiday here this year originally published on www.australia.com.

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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca has worked in publishing and media in one form or another for around 25 years. He's a voracious reader, word spinner and art, writing, design, painting, drawing, travel and photography enthusiast. You'll often find him roaming through galleries or exploring the streets of his beloved Melbourne and surrounding suburbs, sketchpad or notebook in hand, smiling.
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