This blog was originally written for and appeared on big4.com.au
Ooh, I have excitement in my fingertips even writing this! When I think of summer holidays in Australia, I think of our great country sparkling at her very best; what a beauty she really is, especially over the Christmas ‘summer’ holidays.
We’d set up at a holiday park, usually for a few weeks at a time. Games of beach cricket; splashing about in the surf on dad’s shoulders, feasting on prawns and freshly caught fish on the barbie; making ‘best’ friends at the holiday park; playing card games inside the tent; not to mention the time a mini-cyclone swept through our campsite in Eden and we got to eat ‘Minties’ for breakfast, as all our food had blown away!
I am so grateful for these childhood memories, and we are blessed in Australia to have such opportunities in our backyard.
There are so many options, it can be a little overwhelming; and I always find recommendations from my like-minded friends are a great way to start. So in the spirit of sharing, here are five of my best Australian summer holiday destinations for you to consider. I would love you to share your favourites in the comments section below so that I can get ideas from you, too.
1. Wye River, Victoria.
The coastal town of Wye River is a treasure in summer. Surrounded by Great Otway National Park (think koalas and lush rainforest) and the truly spectacular Great Ocean Road (undoubtedly one of the most scenic coastal drives in the world), it comes alive with the sounds of children playing at the beach, and walking up to the ice-cream shop with no shoes on. While many beachside towns have succumbed to over-development, thankfully Wye River has maintained the old-world charm reminiscent of childhood holidays gone past.
Staying at BIG4 Wye River Holiday Park, you’ve got the best of both worlds. Surrounded by mountains, the river, and the ocean beach at your doorstep, it makes for a brilliant summer holiday. During your stay, apart from splashing around at the beach, take advantage of the many activities in the region.
5 things to do while in Wye River:
- Get a bird’s-eye view of the rainforest on the Otway Fly tree-top walk, the world’s tallest elevated walkway of its kind.
- Take a walk in the forest and see Hopetoun Falls and Triplet Falls.
- Drive the full length of the Great Ocean Road, taking in the dramatic limestone cliffs and turquoise waters.
- Follow all or part of the Great Ocean Walk.
- Drop in at the Wye River General Store, which is both a café and an old-school convenience store (remember the lollies you’d buy with your pocket money?).
2. Merimbula, New South Wales.
The Sapphire Coast in New South Wales is a show-stopper and packed full of gems – Bermagui, Eden, Pambula, and Merimbula to name just a few of my favourites. The entire region was treasured by my family growing up, and still is. So, in having to put forward one place, I am going to offer up Merimbula, in celebration of all the happy camping memories.
5 things to do while you are in Robe:
- Walking trails: take the cliff walk or a bush trail. You can collect local trail maps from the information centre.
- Go fishing at Breakwater or Lake Battye, or take a local fishing charter that runs year round.
- Four-wheel driving on Long Beach (approx 12km long and accessible over summer).
- Enjoy sailing, paddle boarding, or kayaking on the peaceful lakes.
- Pack your clubs for a round at Robe’s public golf course.
4. Albany, Western Australia.
Maybe I should have named this story my five favourite beachside holiday spots! For me, summer is all about enjoying the wonderful coastal destinations Australia has to offer, and the outstanding location of BIG4 Middleton Beach Holiday Park in Albany on the south coast makes it an absolute cracker and worth putting on your list.
I will never forget sitting on the top deck of one of the luxury holiday cabins at the holiday park that overlooks the ocean, watching a humpback whale frolic in the water right in front of us.
- Join the café culture along sophisticated Hastings Street, parallel to Main Beach.
- Explore the art galleries in the hinterland and browse the Eumundi Markets.
- Take the family to kid-friendly attractions such as Australia Zoo in Beerwah.
- Spend the afternoon at the Sunshine Beach Surf Club.
- Enjoy the many water-sports on offer, from sailing and scuba diving to canoeing and deep-sea fishing.
I would love to hear what your top 5 Australian summer holiday destinations are? Have you been to any of my special places? Please leave a comment below.
Reminiscing about all of these holiday spots has inspired me to book our family Christmas for next year! We are taking the pop-top to Merimbula!