Question:

How do I find information in Australia?

The Australian School of Outdoor Technical Training

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Stingers (Box Jellyfish)

From late October to early May, venomous box jelly fish, also called stingers or sea wasps, occur in the coastal waters of northern Australia. The jellyfish does not exist in the waters surrounding most of the islands of Queensland and are rarely found on the Outer Barrier Reef, allowing visitors to enjoy the Great Barrier Reef year round. In the Northern Territory the stingers are present at all beaches, while in Western Australia they affect the Kimberley coastline. Those beaches affected by stingers have warning signs for visitors. During this time, visitors are advised to swim in the ocean only, where protective enclosures are provided.

Disabled Visitors

Disabled Visitors
Access for people with disabilities in Australia has improved significantly in recent years, and it remains a priority. Australian hotels, airlines, attractions and major transport carriers generally provide access for people with disabilities. It is advisable to check with all service providers prior to your visit, ensuring that they are able to meet your particular needs. Advance notice and reservation well ahead will also help ensure that you receive the best possible assistance.

Eating out: general

Eating out:
Australia has many fine restaurants, with cuisine from around the world. A lot of restaurants are BYO, and charge a nominal corkage fee.
Although tipping is not mandatory, if the service and food are good it is customary to leave a tip, this is usually divided by all the staff at the restaurant.

Sharks

The great white
First, the sharks. Real danger comes from the great white shark which frequents the Southern Ocean, but you'll find sharks in most seas, and occasionally they do come close to the beach where you may be having a swim. Chances are, if you only go to beaches where there are people around, you won't come face to face with a shark. So go to known beaches and do swim between the flags -- this is an area where surf lifesavers keep an eye on the water and the people who swim in it, and this would generally be an area free of sharks.
Shark sightings: Surf lifesavers will clear a beach if there is a shark sighting. If you go for a swim, the other danger is being caught in a rip, and marked off areas are generally safe. If you go to a relatively deserted beach, you can risk being laughed at if you ask the locals about shark danger. Better to be laughed at, of course, than to be foolhardy.

Embassies/High Commissions

Embassies and High Commissions in Canberra include:

British High Commission (Commonwealth Ave., Yarralumla, Phone: 02/6270-6666, Opening Times: weekdays 8:45-5) www.ukinaustralia.fco.gov.uk

Canadian High Commission (Commonwealth Ave., Yarralumla, Phone: 02/6273--3844, Opening Times: weekdays 8:30-4:30) www.canadainternational.gc.ca

New Zealand High Commission (Commonwealth Ave., Yarralumla, Phone: 02/6270-4211, Opening Times: weekdays 8:45-5) www.nzembassy.com

U.S. Embassy (Moonah Pl., Yarralumla, Phone: 02/6270-5000, Opening Times: weekdays 8:30-12:30) canberra.usembassy.gov

Tourist Information:

Tourist Information:
Each town in Australia has a tourist information centre, it is depicted by a white sign with an itallic blue i, they are well sign-posted, and supply maps and brochures informing of local places of interest.

Surf and Water Safety

Surf and Water Safety
Popular beaches are patrolled by volunteer Surf Life Saving Association members identified by their red and yellow caps. Enjoy your holiday and minimise risks by observing simple safety.
- Always swim or surf at places patrolled by surf lifesavers or lifeguards.
- Swim between the red and yellow flags. They mark the safest area to swim.
- Always swim under supervision or with a friend.
- Read and obey signs.
- Don't swim directly after a meal.
- If you are unsure of surf conditions, ask a lifesaver or lifeguard.
- Never run and dive in the water. Even if you have checked before, conditions can change.
- If you get into trouble in the water, don't panic. Raise your arm for help, float and wait for assistance.
- If caught in a rip, float with the current or undertow. Stay calm. Don't try to swim against it. Signal for help and wait for assistance. Areas of discoloured (brown) water usually signal a rip.
From late October to early May, venomous box jelly fish, also called stingers or sea wasps, occur in the coastal waters of northern Australia. The jellyfish does not exist in the waters surrounding most of the islands of Queensland and are rarely found on the Outer Barrier Reef, allowing visitors to enjoy the Great Barrier Reef year round. In the Northern Territory the stingers are present at all beaches, while in Western Australia they affect the Kimberley coastline. Those beaches affected by stingers have warning signs for visitors. During this time, visitors are advised to swim in the ocean only, where protective enclosures are provided.
When swimming inland, check water depth and note the presence of other hazards before diving in. If caught in a fast flowing river, try to float feet first. Avoid swimming in boating areas.

Genealogy

Was one of your forebears an early settler in Tasmania? Many people come here to find information for their family trees.
Genealogical research takes time and will be easier if you prepare before you arrive. Look in your local bookstore or library for a reference on genealogical research or family trees. You might like to contact someone in Tasmania:Genealogical Society of Tasmania
19 Cambridge Road,
Bellerive, Tasmania, Australia 7018.
(Bellerive is a suburb of Hobart.)
Telephone from other Australian states: 03 6243 6200.
Telephone from overseas: + 61 3 6243 6200.

Australian Frequently Asked Questions

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