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 5 stunning countries to visit before they disappear: Oceania

5 stunning countries to visit before they disappear: Oceania

  1. Great Barrier Reef, Queensland Australia

Being the largest living structure, over 2,300 km long, The Great Barrier Reef is one of the most diverse ecosystems on the planet! Containing 2,900 species of coral, and 1,500 species of fish, The Great Barrier Reef provides all of its marine inhabitants with shelter and food. It also shelters Australia's eastern coast as a natural wave breaker, protecting inland inhabitants from rogue waves. Fun Fact: Other than English, the most common languages spoken today are Chinese, Arabic, Vietnamese, and Italian.

Why it's in danger:

This image captures a perfect example of what coral bleaching is and how its dangerous to all marine life.

It's estimated that 2/3 of the coral reef is dead! Rising temperatures in the ocean kill the algae living inside the coral, creating what is known as coral bleaching. Not only does ocean acidification make it hard for corals to build their skeleton, it will also hinder future reef recovery if it's not dealt with appropriately.

Top attractions for people visiting Queensland:

  • Daintree Rain Forest- Estimated to be around 180 million years old this rain forest predates the amazon rain forest! With that said, this dense jungle is full of unique critters that roam the forest and call this place home. Spectacular scenery from waterfalls, to gorges and mountain ranges, to fast flowing streams, this area of Australia lets you experience a diverse and almost prehistoric biome.

  • Fraser Island: Beautiful white sand beaches, cool ocean breeze with the smell of salt from the ocean, this is the perfect spot to unwind after a long day. Seeking thrill? How about Franser skydiving!?

  • White Heaven Beach- Ready for a day of swimming? This beach is perhaps the most unique beach! The sand dunes go deep into the ocean & create small-scattered-sand-islands, divided by shallow ocean water.

  • Great Barrier Reef- Visually stunning, this under water paradise is what the trip is all about, the striking colors that mother nature has created can be found here; displayed as camouflage for fish or found on the corals themselves.

2. Franz Josef Glacier, New Zealand

Franz josef Glacier seen from bellow a river valley

Franz Josef Glacier is surrounded by an ancient rainforest and unbelievably picturesque scenery. This beautiful location in New Zealand is the place to let your wanderlust out and experience natural beauty. Only a couple minutes walk from the Franz Josef township, this magnificent landmark is the most accessible glacier in the world, hence the name 'Franz josef Glacier'.


Why it's in danger:


The Franz josef Glacier is under threat from rising temperatures. During the summer of 2008 the glacier receded by an astonishing 4-7 meters and 2-4 meters during winter.


Top attractions for people visiting New Zealand:

  • Franz Josef Glacier Valley Walk: Experience the natural scenery at Franz Josef Glacier with a hike. The rapid-retreat rate of the glacier means that the longer you wait, the less time you have to go and experience this natural wonder.

  • Franz Josef Glacier Helicopter Tour: Just for a bit of perspective on how large this Glacier is and how fast it can retreat in one summer (even during winter), take a birds eye view and see it for yourself. This is also a great opportunity for you to see the the natural landscape of the west coast of New Zealand. See how the rainforest and glacier meet to make for a truly unreal looking yet natural biome.

  • Lake Matheson Tour: Enjoy the calm reflective water of Lake Matheson while taking a stroll through some beautiful trails. This trail is considered to be easy to trekk and full of spectacular views.

3. Kakadu National Park, Jabiru Australia

waterfall and pool water at Kakadu National Park

Once the ancestral land of the Bininj & Mungguy people, it is now a National park. Some aboriginal people still call this place home, preserving their culture and way of life. This geographically stunning, and ecologically diverse area is a National treasure. Containing some of the world's most beautiful cascades & crystal clear pools of water, don't forget your swimsuit and camera! Navigating the tough terrain requires an off-road worthy vehicle; yet hiking through the many trials will give you a profound one of a kind experience like no other. Exploring the wetlands by boat, is the best way to navigate this section of the park. With an amplitude of animals, Kakadu National Park is a site to behold. Here is a 5 day Kakadu Safari you can book to get the most from your visit to Kakadu National Park.


Why it's in danger:


Rising sea levels threaten to flood this fertile marshland with salt water, endangering the survival of the species that depend on the bounty of the wetlands.


Top attractions to visit in Kakadu:

  • Barramundi Gorge Waterfall- A unique, chill place to take-in and relax by the clear pool of water at the gorge. Take a dip and unwind at nature's sun-soaked 'spa' and enjoy the view nature provides.

  • Ubirr Art Site- Explore the mountains of an ancient world, discover the 40,000+ year old cave art that depicted aboriginal way of life and cultural practices.

  • Jim Jim Falls- This is the ideal place to take an amazing Instagram/drone shot because of its topography and majestic tall cliff waterfall surrounded by the beautiful vegetation.

  • Mamukala Wetlands- A bird watchers paradise, with plenty of wildlife to observe and a scenic natural background, you'll have a deeper understanding of why the wetlands are important to conservation and to Australia's unique ecology. Here is a wetland tour you'll love.

4. Vanuatu

A blue hole in vanuatu

Lowkey to tourism, and bursting with culture of traditional customs, this extraordinary place is truly not just a must-see, but a must-experience! Located in the South Pacific, Vanuatu houses 80 islands!! With it's striking, beautiful blue holes scattered all over the nation, the islands that make up Vanuatu are the definition of the word 'getaway'. Don't believe me? Just look up pictures of Matevulu. Get that next vacation inspo going on.

this is a waterfall in the vanuatu island country

Here are my top list of attractions of what to do while you're in Vanuatu:

  • Write a post-card and send it to a friend or relative at Hideaway Island. The mailbox is underwater. ;)

  • Erakor Rainforest

  • Fels Cave

  • Visit Tanna Island for the best of both worlds. The island consists of both white and black sand beaches!

Bonus attraction** You see all of these bomb ass attractions? Well here's one more: Mt. Yasur. Active volcano. You're welcome.


Bottom line?

Vanuatu is AMAZING! But as amazing as it is,
this fragile archipelago is in danger of flooding due to rising sea levels. Ocean acidification isn't helping either, it’s endangering the flora and fauna of these beautiful paradise-islands.

5. Fiji

an image of a fijian home taken from above

So popular you might not even know it's going extinct. Pretty sad what humans can do to the planet in the short amount of time we've been here right? So here's the deal: we want to help you travel; from being able to save up enough money to go on that perfect trip, to telling you what places are great to visit, down to letting you know about the environmental factors that affect this planet. Traveling is so much fun, & odds are if you are here reading this on a TRAVEL website you agree.


Without further ado, here is what you need to know about Fiji:

  • Fiji is located in the South Pacific, (between Hawaii & Australia) it contains 322 uninhabited islands!

  • Underneath Fiji's blue lagoons, coral reefs are dying due to rising temperatures.

  • Viti Levu is where most residents live.

  • Castaway Island is more family oriented.

  • Fiji once had cannibalistic rituals, the cannibalism has since stopped and now you can take an in-depth cultural experience tour if you want to learn more about the indigenous way of life.


Why Fiji is in danger:

Rising sea levels threaten to bring Fiji down, some towns have already relocated because of this. Saltwater is also contaminating their ground water supply, without fresh water, towns won't survive, regardless of flooding.

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5 amazing South pacific countries in danger of disappearing forever.
 
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