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Bill Bryson's travels in a sunburned country: Australia will never look the same again.

It is the driest, flattest, hottest, most desiccated, infertile and climatically aggressive of all the inhabited continents and still Australia teems with life – a large portion of it quite deadly. In fact, Australia has more things that can kill you in a very nasty way than anywhere else.

Ignoring such dangers – and yet curiously obsessed by them – Bill Bryson journeyed to Australia and promptly fell in love with the country. And who can blame him? The people are cheerful, extrovert, quick-witted and unfailingly obliging: their cities are safe and clean and nearly always built on water; the food is excellent; the beer is cold and the sun nearly always shines. Life doesn’t get much better than this…


Bryson makes you laugh out loud...Down Under is filled with quirky stories',

Sunday Express

Bryson makes you laugh out loud...Down Under is filled with quirky stories',

Sunday Express

Bryson makes you laugh out loud...Down Under is filled with quirky stories',

Sunday Express

The thing that Bryson most loves about Australia - its "effortlessly dry, direct way of viewing the world" - is, in fact, his own. They're a perfect fit

The New York Times Book Review

Bryson is the perfect travelling companion... when it comes to travel's peculiars the man still has no peers

The Times

Bill Bryson is a very talented writer and an enormously funny and perceptive one. He is an artist who needs a big canvas. Australia has provided this. He's painted a masterpiece in travel literature

Globe & Mail Toronto

He arrives at his destination, finds a hotel, checks in, meanders around the neighbourhood, visits any museums or public monuments he happens to encounter, has a couple of drinks, eavesdrops on a conversation or two, then goes to bed. A year later, people on three continents are hospitalised as a result of ruptures caused by laughing so hard at his account of the experience

The Age, Melbourne

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback


    January 4, 2016

    Black Swan

    432 pages

    RRP $24.99

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  • EBook


    May 1, 2010

    Transworld Digital

    432 pages

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Also by Bill Bryson

A Short History of Nearly Everything
The Road to Little Dribbling
At Home (Illustrated Edition)
One Summer
A Really Short History of Nearly Everything
At Home
Troublesome Words
Icons of England
The Lost Continent
Bryson's Dictionary: for Writers and Editors
Mother Tongue: Popular Penguins
The Life And Times Of The Thunderbolt Kid
Bryson's Dictionary
Neither Here, Nor There
Bill Bryson's African Diary
Notes From A Big Country
A Walk In The Woods
Made In America
Large Print: One Summer
Notes From A Small Island


The Road to Little Dribbling
The Last 100 Days
Heroes of Hamel
The Bat
The Songlines
The Football Solution
Are We There Yet?
The Art Of Travel
The Making of Martin Sparrow
Our Australian Girl: The Pearlie Stories
Far and Away
The Rise and Fall of Australia
Without Reservations
Two Old Men Dying
Long Road from Jarrow
The Marches
Africa Solo