Key places to go
New South Wales features six World Heritage-listed sites, covering all sorts of amazing areas and reserves. All but two, the Sydney Opera House and four convict sites, are natural attractions. The remainder include parks and reserves managed by the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service.
The world's most extensive area of subtropical rainforest forms part the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia which encompass the major rainforest parks and reserves of northeast NSW and southeast Queensland. These include Mount Warning, the Border Ranges National Park, Washpool National Park and the adjacent Gibraltar Range National Park. Blue Mountains National Park, a scenically dramatic region of forested ravines and pristine bushland about 120 kilometres west of Sydney by road, is part of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. It is listed for its extensive eucalypt forests and natural biodiversity.
For an island paradise only a two-hour flight from Sydney or Brisbane is World Heritage-listed Lord Howe Island. It lies on the southernmost coral reef in the world, home to 500 species of fish and over 90 species of coral. Finally, the vast and starkly beautiful Willandra Lakes Region, encompassing Mungo National Park, centres on a system of ancient lakes formed over the past 2 million years. Aboriginal people lived on the shores here for at least 50,000 years. The remains of a 40,000-year-old woman found in the dunes of Lake Mungo mark the oldest ritual cremation site in the world.