When The Turquoise Holiday Company began 18 years ago, Australia was one of the first destinations we sold. It’s a country close to our hearts, with all of us having spent many of our younger years living, travelling and working all over Australia. We became passionate about the vast open spaces, incredible marine life, beautiful coastlines, vibrant cities and the warmest of welcomes you’ll find anywhere in the world, and still very much are today. So, it’s devastating for us to see the huge extent of damage from the recent bushfires to the landscapes, wildlife and homes of the local communities.
Australia is still open!
Wildfires are quite normal in Australia and are actually needed to regenerate some of its native flora and fauna. Australia’s Aboriginal population have been carrying out controlled fires for hundreds of years. Unfortunately, due to the extreme weather, they are greater in size and number than ever before, but we dearly hope they will be under control soon.
However, we also want to emphasise that the fires are only affecting a small corner of the country and much of this vast country is safe and very much open for visitors. Australia is a country that’s as big at the USA and the size of the UK and Europe combined. It has over 60 designated wine regions, over 16,000 miles of unforgettable coastline dotted with thousands of islands and a rugged landscape just waiting to be explored. Boutique retreats, luxury island escapes, rainforest lodges and outback stations offer unparalleled experiences within the most incredible scenery.
How you can help
Australia will bounce back. The plants will regrow quickly and communities will heal. However, for a nation that’s so reliant on tourism, it’s the local tourism and independent businesses that need your and our support most to get back on track. The biggest support we can give Australia now is to visit, buy the local produce, enjoy incredible food in the restaurants and explore with the local guides.
Now is the time to plan your next trip to this wonderful country and see for your own eyes why we love Australia so much.
If you are considering a trip, or travelling soon, and would like more information about which areas are currently affected by the bushfires, Tourism Australia has created a web page with advice about each of the regions, which is constantly updated – click here for more information.
If you’d like to donate, here’s a list of approved local causes which help the affected communities directly.
Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery – supports people at evacuation centres and providing emergency assistance, such as cash grants to bushfire victims
Healesville Sanctuary Bushfire Emergency Wildlife Fund – helps fund emergency veterinary assistance and scientific intervention
NSW Rural Fire Service – donate straight to the New South Wales Rural Fire Service, or to a local Rural Fire Brigade to support volunteer firefighters
Port Macquarie Koala Hospital – helps thirsty koalas devastated by the recent fires
SA Country Fire Service – CFS Foundation – also helps support volunteer firefighters
Victoria Country Fire Authority – supports affected families and communities
Victorian Bush Fire Appeal – provides practical support to local communities
Wildlife Rescue (WIRES) – actively rehabilitates and preserves Australian wildlife