Best and Worst Things About Living in Australia

A quick run down on the benefits and disadvantages of living in Australia. I’d love it if you can help me out and pitch in some of your ideas about the best and worst things about living in Australia by leaving a comment at the end.

The Benefits and Best Things About Living in Australia

  • Great weather
  • Interesting birds and wildlife
  • Good schools
  • Friendly, funny people
  • Safe and politically stable
  • Great and diverse scenery
  • Swimming in warm ocean and excellent public pools
  • Outdoor Lifestyle,  lots of bike and walking tracks
  • Sporting opportunities
  • Camping galore
  • Beaut beaches
  • Surfing all year round
  • $4 clean skin wines from Dan Murphy

The Worst Things About Living in Australia

  • Very suburban
  • Skin cancer rates, highest in the world
  • Complicated tax system and high taxes – Business owners need to get a good accountant and decent online tax software to stay on top of it.
  • Dangerous wildlife like snakes and spiders
  • Droughts, water shortages and forest fires
  • Cockroaches, in every Queensland rental house apparently
  • Surf Rage incidents and crowded surf breaks
  • Hideous crows cawing at all hours and raiding bins

Well, the benefits and good things about living in Australia far outweigh the drawbacks so that seems to be the right balance for a happy lifestyle.

What do you think are the benefits of living in Australia? What are the best things about living in Australia and what are the worst things?

Please add your comments below.

Related articles

>> New to Noosa
>> Best and Worst Things About Living in Queensland


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  1. snow white July 20, 2009 at 1:09 pm - Reply

    Licensing laws. They have laws for everything possible, making work and earning a living unbelievable in some trades.

    • Bob May 27, 2014 at 11:19 pm - Reply

      So you think that we should give guns away in banks like the USA?!?!?

      • Daniel September 2, 2015 at 4:09 am

        That doesn’t, and never has, actually happened. Michael Moore made it up with paid actors. This is kind of common knowledge.

  2. Annabel Candy July 20, 2009 at 4:13 pm - Reply

    Once again, you prove to be more informative than me. Thanks! Huh, maybe you’ve got used to those rules and regulations:) The Alice licensing laws sound like an effective barrier to drinking. I’m not averse to seeing the odd snake from a distance after being conditioned to living with snakes in Costa Rica. Recently, I did skid to a halt outside a neighbor’s house at the sight of a ten foot python lounging on his front lawn but it turned out to be a loved pet!

    Wow, it looks like I missed out on a lot of worsts. Luckily we don’t have box jellies or salties here on the Sunshine Coast. But you’ve got me worried, what on earth are irukandj and coneshells. No, on second thoughts I don’t want to know!

  3. Andy MacGregor July 20, 2009 at 5:16 pm - Reply

    Ive always found it strange that Aus has such a high suicide rate amongst young males when it appears to have so much going for it. Sorry to be morbid !

  4. Janet July 20, 2009 at 8:09 pm - Reply

    Down side: Your children will grow up to be Aussies!
    Up side: Savings on heating your home!

    PS You need to read up on cone shells if you are going to live in the tropics! Wear good water shoes.

  5. Teresa July 20, 2009 at 10:30 pm - Reply

    ooh I am not sure I would go into the water after reading all that!

  6. CoralM July 21, 2009 at 12:01 pm - Reply

    Hi Annabel

    I think the Noosa area is just fantastic. I love walking in the National Park and I love the beautiful white sand beaches. The people are nice too! The government pay our medical bills, our power bills are low, we have fresh tropical fruit for breakfast and prawns cooked on the BBQ for dinner. The sun shines in a cornflower blue sky. It is indeed the ‘Lucky Country’.

    Negatives? I seem to be buying a lot of sunglasses!

  7. Janine July 21, 2009 at 8:42 pm - Reply

    Perscription charges
    The state of the roads (pot holes)

  8. Sharon (thesunlitdesk) July 21, 2009 at 10:12 pm - Reply

    You forgot Cane Toads on the Worst list (at least for Queensland). Cane Toads on the road, in the dogs drinking water, drowning fish in the pond (it happened to my mother’s fish), choking water ways with their eggs, croaking in drain pipes at all hours of the night. I’d also like to add mosquitoes. They’ve died down now because it’s winter, but the little buggers are still around and come out when the weather is warm enough. I’d also add ants and Medicare. On the best list there’s also Cherry Ripes, Jack’s salt and vinegar chips and Aussie beef (I’ve had it in NZ, USA, including Hawaii, and Ireland and my butcher beats em all).
    Great post, mate.

  9. SergioM July 24, 2009 at 5:32 pm - Reply

    I haven’t been in Australia and I’d like to. However, Australia is too far from Spain and the flight is expensive :-( Well, someday!

    I’m looking forward to reading more posts to leave you some productive comment. So long!

  10. Carolyn Cordon August 3, 2009 at 3:27 pm - Reply

    Worst part – some of our politicians
    Best part – some of our politicians

    There’s lots more but I think those two are important. We need to do away with State governments, I think.

  11. Unemployed British migrant August 11, 2009 at 11:01 am - Reply

    Snow White is quite correct, and I think the discussion got diverted onto Liquor Licensing Laws when it should have remained on Ocupational Licensing Laws, which in Queensland are quite restrictive.

    Australia goes out to the world to recruit `skilled people’, and then when they get here, State legislation stands between them and employment. I write from personal bitter experience.

    This is a wonderful country to live in, but if it is ever going to compete on a per-capita productivity basis with (eg) the US or (God forbid) China, then every person with a skill must be allowed to gainfully use it, to be able to earn their living and contribute to Australia’s development via the Taxation System.

  12. Annabel Candy August 11, 2009 at 12:28 pm - Reply

    Thanks for raising these important issues. One of my reasons for writing this type of post was to make people who are thinking of moving to Australia more aware of the problems. I read too many posts on forums from new immigrants who are going back home, usually because they cannot find work or afford the housing.

    I agree with you that there are too many rules and regulations here. It’s depressing how hard it is to do some things.

    Sorry to read about your bad experience. I recently wrote what I hope is a winning job application letter for a friend. If I’d be happy to write one for you too or help in anyway I can. Just let me to write a job application letter for you to send to prospective employers with your CV.

    I recommend you keep smiling and actively seek work by applying for jobs on spec or starting your own business. I wish you luck with all your plans.

  13. Unemployed British migrant August 17, 2009 at 11:12 pm - Reply

    Thanks Annabel for your encouraging words, but I’ve already done the self-employed bit, and 5,000+ job applications down the line I’m wearing out of new ideas for those as well.
    If this post is aimed at prospective migrants, my advice would be not to burn your bridges in the UK, so you can retrace your steps if necessary. We had such faith in the boundless opportunities supposedly available in the `Lucky Country’ we didn’t provide for the possibility that we might one day need to return from whence we came.

  14. Vegemite Vix November 12, 2009 at 11:59 pm - Reply

    Hi Annabel, I would say that one of the best things about OZ would be (for you, and for me a fellow Kiwi) that it’s not ‘home’. Moving to a new country offers so much in life lessons; in learning about yourself, in bringing your family closer, and in becoming more expansive towards other people and other countries.

    Of course one of the downsides would also be ‘that it’s not home’. Because? Because no matter how much you like it until you really settle you will feel like the new girl at a new school!

    I know this because I have lived in Australia and because last year I moved to the other side of the world (along with my dog, cat and three kids!) to live with a wonderful Englishman in rural Hampshire. II’ve been here just over a year and have been writing about my experiences in this new world (to me) on my blog. As the UK is the 4th country I’ve lived in I have a few ideas about the expat experience :-)

  15. scheng1 November 16, 2009 at 12:37 pm - Reply

    haha, you will go mad if you migrate to Singapore! It’s heat and humidity, plus looking out of your window to see the opposite blocks of apartment.

  16. Australian Sites March 14, 2010 at 12:54 am - Reply

    The worst thing as far as I’m concerned is recently Australia seems content to let itself slip back into the dark ages as far as internet censorship and internet access is concerned.

    Tackling access first, it is insane that the kinds of speeds and access available in Australia at a high cost is so behind other developed countries – Our fastest connections here are comparable to what is offered free as a basic service in some countries and those in rural areas suffer very much (Dial up or paying thousands of dollars to set up satellite is all that’s available in my town)

    As for censorship – what a joke, we condemn other countries for doing the same yet our Gov is happy to take away our rights to control our own choices :(

    I agree with every aspect of your good list though :)

  17. Hamid March 29, 2010 at 2:43 am - Reply


    Can someone please tell me how dangerous is the living in Australia to get the skin cancer because im from Persia and I luv the sunshine and have no problem with that and planing to come and study in Melbourne but people told me the ozone layer is pretty close to australia and its a big risk to live there even they told me about some spiders in the cities…and im a lil dissapointed cuz i really like AU and i think its a nice n friendly country ! :( so plz let me know about everything if you live there,,,

    • Abbas Hussain December 28, 2012 at 3:29 am - Reply

      Hi hamid, just read your comments on Au 2010, was you born there or emigrated from Iran to AU? I live in the UK and me and my wife who is a midwife are thinking of moving , had enough of the UK.

    • Rosie March 15, 2015 at 4:48 pm - Reply

      Don’t worry, Hamid. I live in australia and I promise that you will not get skin cancer if you are careful and always wear sunscreen and a hat.

      • Sara October 22, 2015 at 9:24 am

        Hey my name is Sara I live in Florida USA , skin cancer is a large factor in this state, mostly because people that move here are from up north and don’t listen to the warnings of skin cancer in our state. I have worked in Dermatology with a board certified MOHS surgeon for the last 10 years. I have seen cancers aside from melanoma that people have never even heard of that are just as dangerous, people in general should protect themselves from sun to the best of their ability. I have a young family and we go to the beaches here every summer I make my kids use a high spf sunblock and reapply it every 2-3 hours. Zinc is the safest sunblock to use. Just food for thought sun is a factor in many places.

  18. Annabel Candy March 29, 2010 at 1:31 pm - Reply

    Hamid – Skin cancer is a risk here because if the ozone, the sunny weather and the outdoor lifestyle. When you visit take precautions. Stay out of the sun between 10am and 3pm. Always wear a hat and sunscreen.

  19. Nikki November 23, 2011 at 10:29 am - Reply

    I love living in Australia.
    I came from New Zealand and spent too long scared of Australias spiders and snakes.
    In my first year here, I had an encounter with a large fluffy spider and just recently I came across a 7 foot python. I not only survived but, once I realised they were not poisonous, fanged or dangerous, I loved the experience. The wildlife here is amazing.
    It is worth taking some precautions when out in the wilder parts of the country but for the most part there is nothing to worry about.
    I agree with all the best things mentioned and would like to add to that list the amazing variety of scenery, wildlife, birds and climates.
    As for the bad, there are politicians, taxes, rules and restrictions everywhere. Did I mention that I love Australia?

  20. Sarah Lawson June 18, 2013 at 4:56 pm - Reply

    Hi Annabel,
    Nice list you have here! I strongly agree that Aussies are friendly and funny. Everyone has their own story to tell.. and don’t forget our unique Australian slang! I must say, we are very creative when it comes to speaking (makes it harder for other people to understand our English at times).

    There are lots of good schools that’s why different people from different countries go to Australia just to study. And it’s a good thing. In fact Australia is the best place for international students.

    We have a very rich culture. Learning about our undying Aboriginal culture is one of the most important things you shouldn’t miss when you’re in Australia.

  21. Hossam June 16, 2015 at 8:01 am - Reply

    Hey Annabel
    your topic is so important to me, i am from Egypt and i got offer from Australia (wooow soooo far) but i am searching for new location with work, Life, fun, and future. so do you think i am taking the right decision :D ?
    also do you think i may have the option to open my own business or it’s not easy in Australia ?

  22. Jewin November 2, 2015 at 8:41 am - Reply

    Hi annabel im from zimbabwe i want to know much about australia

  23. nneona April 20, 2016 at 8:15 pm - Reply

    How bad is Australia in general

  24. Tanya November 5, 2016 at 8:02 am - Reply

    Hi , I lived in Australia for 1 year nearly 9 years ago ! I will be qualifying as a meantal health nurse next year & thinking of moving over again from the uk. Only this time with my husband & daughter who will be 5 then ! I am after some advise if financially we will be better off plus better education & way of life ? Or will we be stuck in a rat race to pay our bills but just in a different country ?
    Any advice is greatly appreciated x

    • Annabel Candy November 9, 2016 at 10:16 am - Reply

      Hi Tanya,

      Gosh that’s impossible for me to answer. I know that nurses work hard and long hours. Here’s my opinion: I’m from the UK too and personally I feel the lifestyle is better here because the weather is. More sunshine means more time to be outside and enjoy the beautiful beaches. That’s probably the very best thing about living here in Australia.

  25. Karen Pratt November 13, 2016 at 6:07 am - Reply

    To those that are thinking about immigrating to Australia. Australia and the people of Australia will accept you with open arms if you immigrate to OZ, only if you come through the proper channels, did not sneak in under the radar, please do it legally. There are plenty of opportunity’s for young families, the outdoor factor of living in OZ is always a draw card. We do have over regulated rules in our country, but which country doesn’t. Abide by Australian ways and their rules and requirements and you will love our lucky country. Each country has issues with internet connection, WIFI, transportation, medical care, etc, we do not live in a perfect world.

  26. jessir December 5, 2016 at 11:32 am - Reply

    yo you guys are stupid

  27. Nenad January 20, 2017 at 9:53 am - Reply

    I would like to move to Australia. I’m 23 years old and I speak English very well. But I don’t have many skills and/or experience. Do I have a chance?

  28. Ralph Quito April 21, 2017 at 3:09 pm - Reply

    Annabel Candy thank you for sharing! What a lovely article and the photos are amazing too! I love how you put together these information on Best and Worst Things About Living in Australia. Easy to read, very relatable and great tips! Can’t wait to read more!

  29. Omotayo April 26, 2017 at 10:26 pm - Reply

    Kindly advise: I and my hubby with three kids are planning to move to Australia from Nigeria. My eldest child is four years old. Cos I want Western education for my kids

  30. Christopher October 26, 2017 at 1:28 pm - Reply

    I am an American, born in Los Angeles (where I currently reside), but grew up in Surfers Paradise, Qld for most of my formative years. My mother is a dual Australian-American citizen, my step-father is Australian and I have previously had permanent residency in Australia. I am considering moving back there, but there are some hesitations including the hot, humid weather (at least where I was from on the Gold Coast), it is expensive (again maybe not in all parts of Australia, but where I would want to live), and Australia is pretty far from just about everywhere in terms of travel, which is necessary for what I do. To Hong Kong (from Brisbane) is about 9hours, Paris can be up to 24 hours, Rio=20h, LA=13h, etc. I’m lucky having ties there, but many foreigners will not have a very easy time getting residency. Nice, genuine people, but lots of racism against almost every other culture (including the British-POMS and Americans-YANKS), especially darker-skinned people (even Italians!) and arabs (especially after recent bouts of terrorism). So, much to consider before just picking up and moving there again.

  31. Kingslayer December 19, 2017 at 10:51 pm - Reply

    kangaroos will literaly break into your house, but wont eat you (haha)

  32. David Grahame Harrison January 24, 2018 at 1:30 pm - Reply

    Australian people and Australia in general really are not that friendly and there are alot of rules and regulations here. I find the country to be very lonely to live in. I have traveled and lived in China and have many friends there. Also traveled and stayed in other Asian countries. China ia way more friendly to live in than Australia and much essier tovdo things there. I think Australia is overated and the successive governments have donea great job messing it up. No real developments or technology. Great medical though and welfare system as the government really wont create jobs for the people. All in all, outsidecof Australia I findis more friendly. Just my view and experiance.

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