While for many of us, travel evokes dreams of trips to far-flung destinations, it’s worth remembering that our own backyard offers some epic travel experiences too, as well as incredible learning opportunities.
With the whole gamut of travel experiences from scorching deserts to tropical rainforests, pristine lakes and remote farmland, a tour through Australia may just reignite a love affair with this incredible place we call home.
Quadrant’s focus on farming and the agricultural industry also gives its guests an appreciation for the challenges and way of life of those who choose to work this often tough and remote land for a living.
For Quadrant guests, Tour Guide Scott Perkins contends that the number one lure to explore Australia is the outback. There’s nowhere else in the world quite like the Australian outback with its incredibly vast distances and extreme landscapes.
This unforgiving countryside covers over 70 percent of the country, yet accounts for only 3 percent of its population, hence Australia is home to some of the biggest cattle stations in the world, with several of them bigger than some European Countries!
The men and women that work the land are truly remarkable and Scott says it’s their honesty, genuine nature and expertise that impresses guests and it’s that interaction that is often the highlight of the tours.
Like all of Quadrant’s experienced staff, Scott Perkins lives and breathes the agricultural industry, having grown up on a sheep farm in outback Queensland and now living in Darwin, he joined the company to satisfy his long association with and love of all things “ag”.
Owing to his lifestyle growing up in Queensland and his love of the area, he’s the tour leader for Queensland’s Savannah and Gulf tour which takes guests to some of the best cattle and cropping operations in the country.
Like the country itself, the tour options in Australia are diverse. From experiencing some of the world’s ancient natural environments in Western Australia’s Pilbara
area, with landscapes that date back over three billion years, to the innovative farming practises and artisan producers of Tasmania.
The Best of Tasmania Tour highlights the clean and green farming practise that have made Tassie the envy of the farming world, but it also includes some of the state’s most iconic experiences, like the Steam train journey from Strahan to Queenstown.
Having originally began life as the only link between the two towns, back in 1897, the West Coast Wilderness Railway climbs rugged mountains and crosses deep gorges, giving some understanding of the huge challenges posed in creating the line and the determination and resilience of the people responsible for it.
As well, the tour allows for time at one of Tasmania’s most historic and hauntingly beautiful sites, Port Arthur. The 19th century penal settlement is now an open-air museum.
The green forests and lush landscapes of Tassie are a world away from the tours through the top end and central Australia but that’s where the ultimate beauty of this country lies, in its variety and its depth.
So, while the exotic far-away lands of Europe and Asia will always have a very special place in the heart (and bucket-list’s) of travellers, there’s something truly special, magical even, about going walkabout in our own massive backyard.