From rangers to surf-traders, from aborigines to creators, from kangaroos to koalas, from the immensity of the bush to the infinity of the Pacific... Australia is a dream, a dream on the other side of the world for many travellers, as offbeat on the hemisphere as in its "Australia way of life". A suitcase full of fantasies could come back full of disillusionment, yet neither the 24 hours of travel nor reality caused disenchantment once there. From Sydney to Melbourne via Ayers Rocks, this island-continent in the middle of Oceania is just an experience. Australia is unclassifiable, except that it is one of those things you have to experience at least once in your life.

Sydney, little cosmopolitan-bath?

Sydney, the economic capital ofAustralia is also aquatic. On the Pacific Ocean stretch miles of beaches, sometimes endless, sometimes cliff-top. Fifteen minutes by metro are enough to challenge the waves of Bondi Beach, where young people spread out their good years. Tamarama Beach is more confidential; Shark Bay is more suited to families, who don't have to be offended by the nudist tendencies of Kings Beach; those of JervisBay are each more ravishing than the other and the palm of the palm is Manly, which can be reached by ferry from Circular Quay. Thirty minutes of cruising lead to this charming seaside resort. Plan to return at sunset to admire the surrealist shadow of the Opera House; the fine arches of the Harbour Bridge and the silver buildings stand out against the orange-red canvas of Sydney Harbour... Back in the harbour, one dawdles along the alleys at the foot of the Opera House. Nearby is the Museum of Contemporary Art and the NSW Art Gallery, which has a rich collection of Aboriginal art. The walk continues with the wind in the Botanic Gardens and then along Macquarie Street where you'll see the city's tallest buildings: the Parliament Buildings, the State Library of New South Wales, St James' Church and the Mint.

The port also distributes two flagship districts: The Rocks and CBD. Urban scenes framed by a forest of skyscrapers, we will have to go to the panoramic floor of the Sydney Tower to see them in our turn. Despite its electric grey side, this block has preserved splendid buildings such as the aristocratic Queen Victoria Building. To reach The Rocks, we will pass by the Harbour Bridge. The city has renovated its maze of alleys, sandstone cottages and pubs where once toasted thugs and dockworkers. A very different atmosphere from the one that awaits us in the bush.

Ailleurs-roc voit rouge

Several internal connections project us straight into the surreal bush. The dusty red earth contrasts with the chrome blue sky, the air is hot, there is nothing, but then nothing, as far as the eye can see! Ayers Rock or Uluru is THE postcard of Australia, the one with the big red rock 348 m high and 9.4 km in circumference in front of which a kangaroo is hopping, at least for the picture... But Ayers Rock is above all THE sacred enclosure for the aboriginal population. Carved in caves and covered with cave paintings, Uluru gives rise to several rites and beliefs, which is why climbing is forbidden today. Classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site, the site also includes the Kata Tjuta massif, 32 km away

Melbourne, arty getaway

As the capital of the State of Victoria, Melbourne has established itself as the cultural, artistic and sporting capital of the whole country. And if you zoom in, it has been voted one of "the most livable cities in the world". Melbourne has it all, starting with a landscape that curls tightly against the bay of Port Philip, with the Yarra River running through it. Water, space, light...

She is also an aesthete, an architect whose style combines the contemporary with old Victorian stones, parading the most retro of her trams, the City Circle Tram, in front of ultra-modern buildings dominated by the Eureka Tower. Insolent, she dares everything to the point of affixing the absolutely futuristic design of Federation Square in front of the clocks of Flinders Street Station, which have not counted their hours since 1854! Fed Square" is the nerve centre of the town and houses the visitors' centre, shops and restaurants as well as two large museums. The Ian Potter Centre, dedicated to Aboriginal art, and the Australian Image Centre, which showcases television and digital culture

Joyful, colourful and controlled, street art is omnipresent without offending the magnificent Art Deco arcades of Collins Street, which are entirely adorned with glass, marble and ironwork. A freedom of style, a freedom of spirit, a spirit that bubbles with envy

Savour the Victoria

Hedonistic, Melbourne is gourmet or more exactly gourmet: restaurants cultivate the finesse of the plate and their sommeliers the range of wines produced in the Yarra Valley, an hour away. With valleys and curves wrapped in soft green, the State of Victoria has 40 vineyards and more than 300 wineries among the most prestigious in the country. The wine routes are so attractive that France has a few lessons to learn about wine tourism. Here the wineries have gourmet restaurants, spas, art galleries and work with local producers to fill baskets with the best fresh produce. The landscape is splendid, the art of the table is highly celebrated and the region boasts a beautiful hostelry: it is therefore the getaway of epicureans and connoisseurs of all kinds who will take the Great Ocean Road, the coastal road where the 12 Apostles stand, on their return. Another sacred myth, Australia is a daydream

Smart info

When? Who says the other end of the world says at the other end of the dial so the seasons are totally reversed. So you will find a summer sun in December but spring is the ideal period for this journey (September to November)

Getting there. Count 24 hours of travel and a minimum of 1 200 €. Find your flight at the best price: compare.

Information: Find out about visas