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5 Aussie places to take the kids in winter

Queensland Australia Tourism Queensland
Queensland Australia Tourism Queensland
Queensland, Australia Tourism Queensland
Queensland Australia
Red Centre Australia Tourism Australia

5 Aussie places to take the kids in winter

story by: Jo Wedlock

Queensland is a winner for winter holidays with the kids.  There is heaps to do, the weather is usually much better than NZ, and it’s a fairly low cost option, with a tantrum-dodging short flight.

1. Port Douglas
During July and August, expect temperatures of between 17 – 25 degrees.  Perfect for a bit of sun without the sweltering temperatures of summer.  With plenty of sunshine, beautiful warm seas, refreshing sea breezes and a warm climate all year round, Port Douglas weather is hard to beat. In terms of location, it is just an hour’s drive north from Cairns via a spectacular coastal road that is surrounded by forest and the Coral Sea or you can fly direct on local carriers. It is the only place on Earth where two World Heritage listed jewels exist; the Great Barrier Reef and the rainforest of Daintree and Cape Tribulation.  There is heaps to do, regardless of whether you prefer the ocean or the forest. Discover the breath taking northern tropics of Australia through pristine Daintree Rainforest walks and safaris, diving and snorkelling the reef and sailing the waterways. Be inspired by the amazing array of nature and wildlife and glorious simplicity.

2. Gold Coast
During July and August, expect temperatures of between 14 – 22 degrees.  The Gold Coast is where you go for beaches and city breaks combined! The calmer swimming beaches are found at the Southern End of the coast – nearer to NSW than to Cairns! The easy holiday with kids is perfect here as most accommodation is walking distance to the beach – usually the hotels will have pools if you prefer fresh water to salt, and of course you have the nearby theme parks such as Wet n Wild, Dreamworld and Seaworld. 

3. Sunshine Coast
The temperatures at the Sunshine Coast are usually pretty similar to the Gold Coast – but if you are not a fan of the hustle and bustle of the Gold Coast then maybe Marrocchydore is the place for you!  Often touted as a more family friendly holiday, you get the great beaches of this coastline without the built up city and massive tourist population.  The theme parks are located between Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast, so if you have access to a car, you’ll get here just as easily as if you were located on the Gold Coast, and enjoy a family friendly holiday.

4. Cairns

During July and August, expect temperatures of between 18 – 25 degrees. Cairns is often overlooked in planning a kids’ holiday, but it can be a great warm place to visit in winter, with lots to do. The Cairns Swimming Lagoon is a massive, crystal clear, man-made, salt water, swimming sanctuary. It covers 4 hectares, allowing for 1000 swimmers at a time. You can lie down those beach towels on the soft grass, bring along some food to cook up on one of the 12 public barbecues and eat at the picnic tables. On weekends, join in on the Cairns Esplanade Markets, activities and let the children dance to the live bands that pump out music just for fun.  One of my favourite Cairns kids’ activity is the Muddy Playground. Muddy's Playground, where children can run through ankle deep water and splash in the shallows. From rope bridges, flying fox, slides, play houses, storytelling areas, to see-saws.

5. The Red Centre
The Red Centre is an amazing place to take kids to explore the Aussie outback and understand the culture as well as do some cool activities they won’t get to try anywhere else in the world.  During July and August, expect temperatures of between 8-20 degrees – the days can get quite warm, but it is the most extreme between day and night as the desert gets quite cold at night.

Visit Uluru (Ayrs Rock) and get a local aboriginal guide to take you around through the caves that go back hundreds of years.  If your kids are a bit older, you may want to climb the rock – don’t try it with littlies though, as there is not much by way of guard rails and it can get very dicey at times.  Another amazing adventure for kids is to do a dawn camel ride and breakfast by the campfire in the outback. Or spend the night under the stars in a traditional ‘swag’ (sleeping bag of sorts designed for the outback) – the kids will be talking about this holiday for years!

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