Baz Luhrmann’s Australia – Movie Locations
The dramatic and rugged landscape of Western Australia’s east Kimberley region is one of the film’s featured locations. Much of the World War II action was shot in Darwin, in the Northern Territory. Other scenes were shot at Bowen on Queensland’s north coast; at Vaucluse on Sydney Harbor; and in the historic town of Camden, an outer Sydney suburb.
Named after the scientist Charles Darwin, Australia’s northern most capital is a lively and tropical harborside city. With a rich and interesting history, Darwin’s involvement in World War II is evident at the many preserved sites in and around the city. A culturally vibrant city, more than 50 nationalities up its population of just over 100,000, including traditional landowners, the Larrakia Aboriginal Darwin is also an excellent base from which the internationally recognised World Heritage-Kakadu National Park, along with other attractions like Litchfield and Nitmiluk National the Tiwi Islands and Arnhem Land.
Bowen is a picturesque seaside town on the Queensland coast, north of the Whitsunday Islands. It’s a beachcomber’s paradise, with seven palmfringed beaches, and a reputation for magnificent, snorkeling, diving, sailing and fishing. The town is named after Queensland’s first governor, Sir George Bowen and its remarkable past can be experienced today in its historic streetscapes. In the 1940s, Qantas ran commercial flying boats on its Kangaroo Route between Sydney and Darwin, stopping off at Bowen en-route for vital water and fuel supplies. It’s where the “Bush meets the Beach”!
Kununurra and The Kimberley
Kununurra is the gateway to one of the world’s last true wilderness areas and the place to go for an authentic outback adventure. Kununurra, which means ‘big water’ in the local Aboriginal language, sits as part of the stunning Kimberley region and is a place that will touch your soul and enliven your senses. Venture into red-earth country on a four wheel drive adventure, take a scenic flight over extraordinary rock formations and magnificent waterfalls, or cruise through the inland waterways that permeate the region. Not to be missed is the Bungle Bungle Range in the World Heritage listed Purnululu National Park and Lake Argyle which is several times larger than Sydney Harbor.
Strickland House in the Sydney harborside suburb of Vaucluse is an exceptional example of an 1850s Italianate-style mansion in a largely unaltered landscape setting. The picturesque site and general design of Strickland House represents the aspirations of wealthy nineteenth century Sydney society. It was built on land granted to William Charles Wentworth, who is considered the father of the first Constitution for New South Wales.
The town of Camden, 62km west of Sydney, owes much to the lush grazing land which spreads along the banks of the Nepean River. At the beginning of the 19th century, wealthy colonist John Macarthur saw the opportunities here. He imported merino sheep from England, and grapevines from France, and built a successful wool and wine business. Camden flourished. Its main street provides an impressive view of the Gothic Revival church buildings and meticulously built Georgian-style homes that embodied the town’s status.