7 destination dupes for affordable travel in Australia

Australia is a vast continent with so much to offer when it comes to unique and photo-worthy travel destinations.


For many, a trip overseas can often feel like an impossibility with work, family and costs. Luckily, you don’t have to go far to find incredible destination dupes in Australia that provide the same experiences closer to home.


© McLaren Vale Grape Wine & Tourism Association


Swap the Rhone Valley for Mclaren Vale


The Mclaren Vale wine region is home to world class wines and culinary experiences that rival top international offerings. The region is best known for its shiraz and cabernet, just as the Rhone Valley is a primary red wine producer in France.

Some of the world’s oldest grapevines can be found here, spotted among more than 80 cellar doors and top restaurants. While the Rhone Valley is situated on either side of the beautiful Rhone River, Mclaren Vale is nestled along the coastline with long stretches of stunning beaches. Plus, the warm summers of Southern Rhone can’t compare to Australia’s famous sun.


The Big Red © Tourism and Events Queensland


Swap the Atacama Desert for the Simpson Desert


While the Atacama Desert in Chile boasts valleys and mountains, clear skies and red sands, the Simpson Desert in Australia may be just as beautiful.

This scorching oasis is the world’s largest sand dune desert, and includes the famous Big Red, which stretches 40 metres into the sky. For those drawn to the Atacama’s fascinating Incan history, Simpson Desert was once home to a tribe from the world’s oldest continuous culture. The Wangkangurru people maintained wells in the east which allowed them to survive in the desert.

For endless horizons, bright wildflowers and sandstone columns, you don’t have to travel halfway around the world.


© Tourism and Events Queensland


Swap the Amazon for the Daintree


If a visit to the Amazon isn’t on the cards, then try stepping into Queensland’s Daintree Rainforest for an experience that’s just as magical. The Amazon may be the world’s biggest rainforest, but the Daintree is the oldest by an impressive 10 million years.

Here, you can try everything from rafting down rapids to spotting crocodiles on a cruise or joining an Indigenous walking tour. The Amazon’s jungle lodges are similar to the Daintree’s luxury treehouse accommodation, featuring an outdoor restaurant and onsite spa. Plus, the area’s unique wildlife includes rare species such as the Southern Cassowary and the platypus, as well as more than 430 species of birds.


© Tourism and Events Queensland


Swap the Greek Islands for Rottnest Island


With blue waters, secluded coves and bungalow stays, a visit to Rottnest Island bears a remarkable similarity to the Greek Islands. Here, you can swim, snorkel or rent a boat to explore the deeper water, moving between sheltered bays and 63 white-sand beaches.

The Greek Islands may be known for their distinct architecture, but Rottnest is home to the unique and immersive. At Discovery Resorts, you can stay in luxurious eco-tents surrounded by natural attractions and sand dunes. Plus, history buffs will be captivated by the island’s Indigenous past as an important meeting place and ceremonial site for the Whadjuk people.


destination dupes
© Tourism and Events Queensland


Swap Miami for the Gold Coast


Australia’s biggest playground is the perfect location for those wanting a beach holiday a little closer to home than Miami, Florida. Both cities are known for an abundance of water activities, music festivals and iconic resorts, but the Gold Coast also has the benefit of three world-famous theme parks.

Tall skyscrapers are the backdrop for both locations, combining resort accommodation with beach-front fun. Whether that means surfing, snorkelling or splashing around, each beach on the Gold Coast offers a different experience to suit all comfort levels. Plus, the foodie scene is always thriving, with plenty of must-try restaurants and bars all along the coastline. Fresh produce can be found at the weekend beach-front markets, where locals and tourists alike shop for mouth-watering culinary delights.


Phillip Island © Wildlife Coastal Cruises


Swap Antarctica for Phillip Island


Antarctica may be home to some of the most diverse wildlife on the planet, but it is also a cold and isolated continent that can be extremely difficult to visit. Instead, we suggest heading to Phillip Island in Victoria. Known as a haven of flora and fauna, Phillip Island is perhaps most popular for the Penguin Parade, where visitors are invited to watch as Little Penguins waddle home at dusk.

Here, you are also invited to join a Wildlife Coast Cruise to spot seals and whales in their natural habitats, or walk through the treetops at the Koala Conservation Reserve. Phillip Island is a great place for boating, and there are plenty of local charters you can book with. Or, if you’d rather keep your feet on land, you can try one of the many walking and cycling trails found all over the island.


destination dupes
© Tourism Australia


Swap Edinburgh for Hobart


Tasmania’s capital shares many similarities with Edinburgh, including historical buildings and a great arts scene. Hobart’s Theatre Royal is the oldest continually operating theatre in Australia, offering an incredible slate of performances every year. While Edinburgh has lots of amazing galleries and museums, Hobart is home to MONA, a renowned creative centre that celebrates art, culture and live music.

Here, the food scene is also alive and buzzing. At the Salamanca Market, more than 300 vendors show off their delicious fresh produce and handmade goods, sourced from around the state. Plus, we have our very own Arthur’s Seat in Mount Wellington.

Loving these affordable destination dupes? Check out our ultimate guide to Australia’s capital cities by clicking here.


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