Australia is so much more than sandy beaches and the Sydney Opera House. There is a spiritual side to this country that many tourists often miss visiting. Some of these religious spots have become a hallmark of the areas and cities, and stand like a reminder of Australia’s history and heritage. The hospitality of the locals-only adds to the experience that will stay vivid in your memory for a long time. Before you book your ticket and pack your bags, there is one thing you should take care of – a visa. This is not a complicated process, and you should be on your way quickly.
There are two types – ETA, Electronic travel authority that is specifically designed for visitors coming from the US, and some Asian countries, and eVisitor created for tourists coming from the EU. For prices and online applications visit evisa.express to get more information before you embark on this Australian adventure.
In case you’re not sure where to start we bring you a list of some of the most famous religious places to visit Down Under. Mingling with locals on these destinations will surely give you more insight and ideas on less-known localities.
Saint Paul’s Cathedral
Gothic style cathedral is situated in the heart of Melbourne, on the busiest square of the city, Federation Square. It’s over 125 years old and is the seat of Archbishop of Anglican Church of Melbourne. It’s easily accessible with public transportation and is always packed with curious crowds. The cathedral represents the masterpiece of the architect William Butterfield. From the outside, it was built from sandstone, and inside of the church is covered with tiles. Visitors are free to take photos of the outside look of the church while taking photos inside the church will cost you around 5AUD.
St Mary’s Cathedral
The St. Mary’s Cathedral will celebrate 200 years of existence next year. It’s one of the oldest buildings in general in Australia and it’s famous for its stained-glass windows. At the time it was considered to be a masterpiece with huge windows’ decorations. The most famous one is the one above the pipe organ representing roses. It’s located in Sydney, so this shouldn’t be out of your way while visiting. Tourists are free to snap photos both inside and out.
The oldest synagogue in Australia is 150 years old and is considered to be world heritage by the United Nations. It represents a huge spiritual place for both Progressive and Orthodox Jewish communities. The Synagogue was obviously influenced by the Egyptian builders, having trapezoid windows and columns. It was built at the site of former convict Judah Solomon, in Hobart, Tasmania, and it has a capacity of 150 people. This Cathedral is a sight to see, it really shouldn’t be missed.
Perth Mosque is the oldest mosque in Australia. It’s located in Perth, and it was built at the beginning of the 20th century by immigrants from Punjab, Pakistan which is the heart of the Sikh community. Middle Eastern architecture is seen everywhere, and most tourists are amazed by its beautiful exterior as well as the interior. The mosque is open five times a day honoring every prayer.
All Saints Church
This church is the oldest one in West Australia, being built in 1838. The first service was held a couple of years later, and the followers are still flocking for worship. It’s located in Henley Brook from where you’ll have a beautiful view of the landscape. The church is also a historic landmark where Captain James Sterling put up his camp to explore the western part of the continent.
A progressive Jewish community is accepting people of all religions in this spiritual sanctuary. The Synagogue was built in 1878 and is decorated with a beautiful façade that attracts tourists around the world. The ones who are interested in the history of Judaism can take a guided tour and learn not only about this synagogue, but the whole Jewish faith. It’s located in Sydney, in the center of all major tourist attractions, so make sure not to miss it.
A truly spiritual place in the middle of Sydney. Hindu people gather here every day in great numbers to pray and meditate. The atmosphere inside the temple is serene and calm, perfect for gathering your thoughts. This is a true sanctuary and escapes from urban life, all the hustle and bustle of the city. The Temple is perfectly maintained, featuring a large parking lot to accept all those who are searching for peace of mind. A beautiful, calm experience that will transport you in the deepest corners of your own mind. Do not miss it.
Auburn Gallipoli Mosque
Another place that is open for all people regardless of their religion. Originally, it is a mosque, but everyone feels at home here, free to pray or just look around at its beautiful decorations. It is very diverse, and you could say modern in a way that accepts everyone from atheists to orthodox believers. You can take a guided tour if you want to learn more about Islam, but remember that you will need to take off your shoes before entering, so bring some socks. The mosque staff practices perfect hygiene, so don’t worry about germs and such. This sanctuary is also open to any sort of celebrations like weddings, and their financing comes mostly from donations so feel free to help if you can.
Australia is home to people coming from different backgrounds and religions. Its doors have always been open to every peaceful nation, and in return, they enriched the history of their new home. It’s a whole world on a small scale. Aussies are very proud of their history and the monuments that stand as witnesses of time. If you’re looking for peace and serenity in between your Australian adventures make sure you visit some of these places. It is a true must regardless of your religion or spiritual orientation since Australia is very accepting of people of all religions.