WILD AUSTRALIA DIARY ENTRIES
VIC Watch for blue whales, Portland
Adult blue whales are massive; they can reach 30m in length and have a tongue weighing as much as an elephant. During summer, hit the cliff-top lookouts along the Great South West Walk around Portland for a chance to spot these graceful giants, which arrive to benefit from the seasonal Bonney Upwelling and abundant krill. Cape Nelson, and nearby Cape Bridgewater, are among the few places globally where you can spy blue whales from land. For more info: Call the Cape Nelson Lighthouse on 0428 131 253 or visit capenelsonlighthouse.com.au
NT Enjoy a wet Red Centre, Alice Springs
As Australia enjoys the rain brought by long-awaited La Niña conditions, head to recently drenched Alice Springs to spot such moisture-loving rarities as mushrooms and ducks in the outback. Tjoritja/West MacDonnell National Park, stretching for 160km west of Alice, is a great place to spot outback birds such as painted finches, budgerigars, Letter-winged kites and rufous-crowned emu wrens. For more info: Call Alice Springs Visitor Information Centre on 08 8952 5800 or visit discovercentralaustralia.com
NSW Star-gaze, central NSW
The night skies of central NSW are best viewed between March and October when less cloud and light pollution make for clearer skies that show off the Milky Way in all its glittering glory. There are lots of star-related activities and attractions on offer at the Parkes Observatory, aka The Dish, as well as opportunities to camp under the stars, plus plenty of other local icons that provide great foregrounds for astrophotographers.
For more info: visitcentralnsw. com.au