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Best autumn destinations in Australia

It may be difficult to believe, but autumn is just around the corner. Autumn in Australia brings different kinds of weather to various regions, as the continent itself is expansive. Whether you want to behold stunning foliage, have an outdoor adventure, bask on the beach or enjoy a mixture of all three, you can do it during Australia's autumn months. The season runs from March to May and brings with it cooling temperatures and average levels of rainfall. Here are some of our top picks for things to do in Australia during autumn.

Orange, NSW

First on your list is a visit to the city of Orange, often referred to as Australia's Colour City. It's not just the town's name that earns it this moniker - during the autumn months, the area erupts with bright, colourful foliage. Orange is about 3.5 hours from Sydney, making it a convenient place to jaunt off to for a weekend away.

In Orange, you'll discover not only natural beauty, but some of the best cuisine and wine Australia has to offer. A plethora of wine bars, microbreweries and wineries pepper the countryside, including Badlands Brewery, Angullong Wines, Brangayne Wines, De Salis Wines, Gordon Hills Estate, Orange Mountain Wines, Patina Wines and many more. Food-wise, you'll have plenty of fine dining establishments from which to choose, including Eighteen 70, Highland Heritage Estate, Tonic and Lolli Redini.

Litchfield National Park, Northern Territory

Orange provides natural beauty in a manicured setting, but if you really want to get in touch with nature, you may want to consider visiting Litchfield National Park. Located about two hours from Darwin, the park comes alive in autumn with gold- and red-tinged trees set among tranquil rivers and waterfalls.

Because the landscape of Litchfield is dotted by various bodies of water, it's a great place to go for a peaceful swim. There are a number of guided tours available, some of which are guided by Parks Service employees. Most impressive (other than the autumn leaves) is the park's collection of native creatures and plants. Sugar gliders, wallabies, wallaroos, flying foxes, kingoes and myriad avian species all call the park home. Bird-watchers will be in paradise.

Yarra Valley, Victoria

Victoria's Yarra Valley is a gorgeous destination any time of year, but it's particularly lovely in autumn. The valley is located just about an hour's drive from Melbourne, but it feels like a different world. Contrary to the fast pace of urban life, the meandering, natural aesthetic of the Yarra Valley is soothing and relaxing.

During autumn, the trees come alive with fiery gold, orange and red tones, and the average temperature hovers around a pleasant 20.4 degrees Celsius. This rural Australia region is also known for its food and wine, and there are a number of producers in the region you should visit. Consider making the trip to Sir Paz Estate, Helen's Hill Estate, Maddens Rise Wines, Allinda Winery and Acacia Ridge.

Melbourne, Victoria

Melbourne is unlike the other places on our list in that it's an urban location. But don't let its status as a major city fool you - Melbourne is a great place to spend an autumn holiday. Firstly, there are all the inherent attributes of Melbourne. Its top-notch accommodation, great bars and restaurants, and stunning urban parks make it a fun place to visit at any time of year, but the array of colours that grace its treetops make it a particularly beautiful place to visit in autumn.

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