Few places capture the imagination of adventurous travelers like Australia. Home to rare flora and fauna found only here, this country of dramatic geographies and prehistoric roots is a bastion of bucket list destinations. Immersing into the magic of Australia is well worth a transpacific flight. Thanks to the reversed seasons south of the equator, winter in the Northern Hemisphere means its summer down under. World-class hotels, delightful food, unspoiled nature, inspiring arts, and cultural experiences make these ten stunning cities in Australia truly must-visit destinations. It’s the perfect time to go!

10 Perth

Wildflower season in Perth runs from September to November and makes a unique experience for nature lovers in the city. Perth Hills is a great destination for hikers. The city offers heritage trails to learn about the local history. Visitors can set their sights far beyond the city at the Perth Observatory, with dazzling views of the cosmos. There’s no shortage of things to do here and delightful places to hide away after a day of adventures.

Related: 12 Reasons Why Perth, Australia Is Worth Visiting

9 Sydney

Famous for its striking opera house, Sydney is a city of arts imbued with an adventurous spirit. In addition to the arts, visitors can enjoy surfing, learning about aboriginal culture, hiking, and horse riding. The list of things to do here is long and offers something for every traveler. The city also boasts a clean and modern downtown with world-class shopping. The upscale vibe of the city is perfectly complemented by the stylish collection of accommodations available here.

8 Brisbane

The cultural heart of Brisbane is the South Bank area. This neighborhood is home to cultural centers and experiences where visitors can immerse in arts and culture from around the world and Australia’s own heritage. The city has a stunning collection of hotels to indulge the weary visitor. For spell-binding city views, a cruise of the Brisbane River and a hike up Kangaroo Point Cliffs can’t be missed. Howard Smith Wharves is the go-to destination for foodies seeking variety with an ocean view.

7 Adelaide

For oenophiles, a visit to Penfolds Magill Estate for a wine experience is a must-do in Adelaide. There are many other charming vineyards just a short day trip from the city center, making Adelaide the perfect base for vineyard hopping. The city offers urban beaches perfect for sunset walks and sunbathing. Shoppers won’t be disappointed by the unique finds at the Central Markets. Whichever experience visitors choose, finding a home away from home in Adelaide is a simple matter of choosing one of many elegant and well-appointed stays in the city.

Related: 8 Best Wineries In Australia's Hunter Valley Wine Country

6 Darwin

The Darwin waterfront offers a scenic stroll that visitors should not miss. Adventurous travelers can take advantage of a long list of outdoor activities, including striking national parks and fishing excursions. The Deckchair Cinema offers an outdoor movie-watching experience to entertain movie lovers. Thanks to its location, Darwin’s restaurants offer fresh seafood and cuisines from across Asia. Visitors can enjoy a high-flying twist on the scenic tour with a flying tour of the region’s expansive wetlands. Whichever adventure travelers choose, the day winds down with total immersion in comfort at one of the city’s cozy accommodations.

5 Canberra

Canberra offers a wealth of family-friendly activities, from museums and cultural centers to wildlife experiences. Lake Burley Griffin, in the middle of the city, is an excellent urban escape. For travelers seeking fine Australian wine, the region offers multiple vineyards for whiling away the hours with a crisp glass of local vintage. Shoppers and food lovers will feel at home in the Braddon district, where rustic markets and trendy restaurants turn a common stroll into a daily food festival. Visitors can get cozy in one of the city’s highly rated boutique hotels and recharge for another day of exploring Australia’s capital city.

4 Melbourne

Federation Square is the trendy, modern heart of Melbourne, but there is so much more to see. From relaxing escapes to urban adventures, visitors here will not be disappointed. Wilson’s Promontory boasts a scenic beach and views of shimmering dark blue ocean stretching to the horizon. The city is home to gin distillers where visitors can indulge in a tasting. The pulsing arteries of the city can be found down the city’s iconic and decorated laneways. Visitors will be delighted by the variety of surprising finds and experiences waiting to be discovered down these charming and kitschy alleyways.

Related: Top 10 Dog-Friendly Trips You Must Take In Australia

3 Cairns

Visitors planning to dive into the Great Barrier Reef will likely embark at Cairns. While the reef is a special place, there’s magic waiting on land in Cairns as well. Wet Tropics Rainforest is over 100 million years old and is home to a wealth of flora and fauna. Visit this one-of-a-kind site to learn about the forest from indigenous elders and dip into crisp natural pools. There are waterfalls to be found here and rolling acres of untouched wilderness. The Skyrail takes visitors high above the forest canopy for a birds-eye view of one of Australia’s unique and expansive wonders. Relaxing in Cairns after a jungle adventure is as easy as booking one of the city’s many cozy accommodations.

2 Hobart

Hobart is home to a uniquely Tasmanian sensibility shaped by nature and a relaxed attitude. Art and culture options abound, mingled with nature. Mona (Museum of Old and New Art) is literally carved into a headland. Wineglass Bay, Cataract Gorge, and kunankyi/Mount Wellington are three ideal destinations for lovers of the outdoors. Despite the rugged nature of the island, there is no shortage of luxurious and comfortable accommodations in Hobart. This city is not only the provincial capital of Tasmania but an ideally situated jumping-off point to explore this wild and wonderful Australian island.

Related: 8 Reasons Why Tasmania Should Be On Your Australia Itinerary

1 Gold Coast

The aptly named Gold Coast features a treasure trove of outdoor activities. Visitors can go diving at Kirra or Palm Beach Reef diving sites and catch a wave at Surfers Paradise Beach. On land, Rungulla National Park offers rugged dunes to explore while Gondwana Rainforest features raw, untouched nature to inspire visitors. The Jellurgal Aboriginal Cultural Centre welcomes travelers to connect with the area’s aboriginal history and traditions. Fortunately, there is also a wealth of truly unique, charming, and welcoming accommodations for every adventurer’s tastes. The Gold Coast represents natural Australia at its finest.