Photo Essay: Victoria, Australia

This is part 2 of our Christmas road trip through Australia in pictures: Adelaide, SA >>> Melbourne, VIC >>> Sydney, NSW (4,500 km).

One word only: Koalas!

Ok, a few more words because this is important. After travelling South Australia for a week without spotting a single cuddly marsupial we started to wonder how come that it is so difficult to see even one koala dozing in the treetops. Is Australia’s iconic creature under threat?

Short answer: Yes! Before visiting Australia we did not know how bad the situation is, but a couple of National Parks in Victoria are starting to inform tourists as well as locals about the dangers that destroy koala habitat. The one that surprised me most was the frequency of bushfires.

You might think – like I used to do – that all bushfires are bad. Now here is the thing: Bushfires are essential to the Australian ecosystem. The continent has been burning for many centuries, and Aborigines even used strategic fires once they discovered the power of the flames.

At this point I could go on for a while and easily extend to a long answer, but I will elaborate the “bushfire issue” in a coming post. Today’s focus is on Victoria in images – the Australian state where we finally saw our first koalas in the wild. It’s a truly memorable encounter…

Please click on the photos to enlarge them and to read their captions. Have a great day!

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