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Introducing 3001 things – the ultimate Australian travel guide!

The first edition of 3001 things to see and do around Australia compiled by local explorer James Allen, was launched in April.

Published by Hema Maps and including Hema locator maps, 3001 things is the ultimate travel guide – a 376-page book for a ‘big lap’ style tour which is also designed to use to discover many things in local areas.

James came up with the idea for 3001 things while on a 110,000km trip around Australia mapping indigenous song lines.

3001 things to see and do around Australia

As he travelled around Australia, he realised two things:

1. Many of the places he would only visit once in his lifetime, so he didn’t want to miss out on the best beach, view, drive, or hike because he didn’t know that it was there.

2. With a simple, easy-to-follow map with dots, he could get more people out to see these incredible places and hopefully raise awareness of the importance of protecting them for future generations. 

“There are thousands of activities to see and do and there are equally thousands more that I have left out,” James said. “I hope by using the book travellers will be able to spend more time doing and seeing and less time researching."

3001 things – the ultimate Australian travel guide TAS

3001 things to see and do around Australia include attractions by state, territory and region for easy navigation including must see-sites, adventures and family fun as well as history, culture and exploration.

In advance of the book launch, we asked James to name his top five locations in Australia:

“My top five aren’t about totally hidden, out-of-the-way places, as you’ll discover these while exploring the book,” James said. “Instead, my top five are about the place, the significance, the connection to land, and the reason I call myself Australian. They are places I could visit and revisit throughout my life and never get bored. They are places I am proud to talk about to others, and most importantly, I feel excited to take my family. I have focused on the five locations I think every Australian should visit at least once in their life.”

1. Kosciusko (NSW)

No single spot in Australia links us to all the other six continents of the world. It may not have the height of Everest nor the cold of Mt Vinson, but when you reach the top, you become part of a global club. Your thoughts, dreams and conversations expand. The geological history, the indigenous significance, and the purity of the South Eastern Australian mountains all combine in this one location. It is the most recognised Australian mountain in the world and was named and climbed by one of my all-time favourite global explorers, Paw Strzelecki. Unlike many other mountains across Australia, this mountain is accessible to all.

2. Ewaninga Rock Carvings (NT)

It was the huge petroglyph map that got me - a map of waterholes, food, shelters and trails. A map that could only be translated through the ceremonies and dances. We are blessed in Australia with the most extended continuous inhabitation of any continent, a history that stretches so far back the numbers don’t make sense to us. Walking around this little reserve, you’ll feel a connection to Australia and our past like nowhere else. This site is readily accessible to virtually everyone. It’s not cluttered with signs and car parks but is just what it is, a significant historic Australian site in the desert that makes us all remember how special and unique our country's history is.

3. Burke & Wills Camp 119 (QLD)

The deviation between true and magnetic north pushed them unknowingly east, off the exit point discovered by Leichardt to this point, their most northerly camp. Probably Australia’s most famous colonial-era Australian expeditions. Much has been written about the trip, yet it’s only when you experience the country you can begin to comprehend what they endured. Seeing the big croc at Normanton brings just some of the realities of that journey into perspective.

3001 things to see and do around Australia QLD

Within a few years, the marked trees of that time will be eroded, and a part of Australian history will be lost forever. A place to ponder the strength of character on the shoulders on which we now stand.

4. Ewen Ponds (SA)

This is a snorkel that even your grandad could do … with a floaty ring, maybe. My son Jasper and I loved the interconnectedness of the three pools. It appears like nothing, a relatively remote car park on the edge of a farmers’ field, yet there it is. One of Australia’s wonders of the world. Few fish, no coral, and cold water, yet in terms of uniqueness of experiences, this has it.

Cave diving is the main thing around here so make sure you book your timeslot and follow the equipment requirements before you turn up. An experience you will talk about forever.

6. Jewel Cave (WA)

This crushed-up corner of Australia, the Margaret River region, is best known for its beaches and wineries, yet below the surface is one of the world’s most extraordinary caves. The simplicity, accessibility and size of this cave rival any like this in the world. A true nature’s wonder.

We usually view the world from one perspective, on the land, yet when we venture above and below the surface, we truly appreciate how interconnected we all are to nature. A true jewel in an amazing continent we call Australia.

3001 things – the ultimate Australian travel guide WA

3001 things to see & do around Australia is available online! 

Next steps

At Hema Maps, we strive to provide the most comprehensive and accurate maps and guides for outdoor enthusiasts looking to explore Australia's natural wonders.

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