Discover Some Of The Rarest Fossils In The World At This Australian National Park

Australia has amazing wildlife, both plants and animals. It's home to over 500 animal species at risk of extinction and thousands more that aren't endangered. Rainforests, highlands, mountains, and more make up the topography, meaning you'll see variances in habitats as well as animals. It's quite the destination — or should we say paradise — for nature lovers. For those who also love history and geology, the Nilpe­na Edi­acara Nation­al Park located in Southern Australia has just the thing for you in addition to an abundance of nature, especially fossils.

Nilpe­na Edi­acara Nation­al Park is the perfect place for your next Australian adventure. It opened to the public in April 2023 and displays some of earth's rarest fossils. The fossils you can see are thought to be some of the first living complex organisms. They're incredible. They're thought to be over 500 million years old, and you can now see them for yourself in the new national park.

History and tours

The fossils, referred to as the Ediacaran biota, vary dramatically in size. They're from the Ediacaran Period, a time when the supercontinent Rodinia broke up and sea levels rose. "To think this area was once a shallow seabed and to think it gave rise to the first evidence of animal life is truly amazing and incredibly special," Minister for Climate, Water, and Environment Susan Close told InDaily.

The Adnyamathanha People, whose land the fossils reside on, knew about the fossils first. In 1946, geologist Reg Sprigg brought them to the public's attention. Since then, scientists have been studying them; and now, they're on display for all to see. You can visit the red, rocky terrain the fossils are imprinted upon either by yourself or with others on a guided group tour. The tours cost $195 AUD per person and last for about three hours. During this time, you'll visit the stone Nilpena Depot Woolshed, have an audio-visual experience, explore the Nilpena Fossil Fields, and more, all while learning from an accredited tour guide.

When to visit

The South Australian government and the Flinders Ranges Ediacara Foundation, a foundation that's committed to education and preserving the fossils, partnered to create the national park and make their findings accessible, both for scientists interested in research and for the everyday person who wants to learn more.

With that being said, the Flinders Ranges Ediacara Foundation recognized that getting to the fossils can be difficult, meaning not everyone will be able to see the fossils as they are. Thus, they helped create the Blacksmith's Shop to ensure everyone could have a fascinating and informative experience. It includes audio-visual installations and displays of fossils. The Instaworthy place in Australia is great for people of all ages, including children.

The best time to visit, according to the National Parks and Wildlife Service of South Australia, is when the temperature is cooler, so April through October make for the ideal time to go. If you're eager to learn about and see the remains of some of the earliest organisms on earth, take a trip to the Nilpe­na Edi­acara Nation­al Park.