Are you planning a special family vacation in Australia? Well, you’re in luck! In this article, we have put together a list of the best holiday destinations for families in Australia. Australia has amazing places to visit, from beautiful beaches to exciting opportunities to see wildlife and have thrilling adventures. You’ll have plenty of options to create unforgettable memories with your family. Whether you want to relax, learn about different cultures, or explore the great outdoors, we have chosen the top destinations that guarantee fun for everyone. Join us as we explore these family-friendly spots all around the country, and get ready for an incredible Australian adventure that will make everyone happy.
Best Holiday Destinations for Families in Australia
1. Dubbo Zoo
Dubbo Zoo is considered a great holiday destination for families in Australia for several reasons. Firstly, it offers a unique and exciting wildlife experience. Families have the opportunity to observe a wide range of animals up close, including the impressive lions. This can be both educational and thrilling, allowing children and adults alike to learn about different species and their habitats.
Additionally, Dubbo Zoo provides a variety of activities that cater specifically to families. The Zoofari Lodge offers a memorable glamping experience, allowing families to immerse themselves in the wilderness while enjoying comfortable accommodations. The nighttime safari is a highlight for kids, where they can actively participate in feeding the animals and witnessing their behavior after sunset. This interactive experience creates lasting memories and fosters a sense of connection with the natural world.
Moreover, the zoo’s location in Dubbo town offers additional attractions for families. The presence of a waterpark provides a fun and refreshing way for kids to cool off and enjoy water-based activities. Exploring Old Dubbo Gaol adds a historical dimension to the visit, allowing families to learn about the region’s past in an engaging and interactive manner.
Furthermore, Dubbo Zoo’s accessibility is another advantage for families. It is located in the central-west region of New South Wales, making it a feasible destination for families traveling by car. The option to embark on a road trip and explore other towns along the way adds to the adventure and allows for a more comprehensive holiday experience.
2. Phillip Island
Phillip Island is an incredible holiday destination for families in Australia. Let me tell you why it’s such a fantastic place to visit:
Firstly, the Penguin Parade on Phillip Island is an absolute must-see. Imagine watching those adorable little penguins waddling back to the shore at sunset. It’s a truly magical wildlife experience that will leave your whole family in awe.
But that’s not all! Phillip Island offers even more chances to get up close and personal with wildlife. You can visit the Koala Conservation Centre and stroll along treetop boardwalks, where you might spot some cuddly koalas lounging in the trees. And at the Phillip Island Wildlife Park, your kids can hand-feed kangaroos and meet other fascinating native animals.
Now, let’s talk about Seal Rocks. You can take a cruise and head over to Seal Rocks, where you’ll see Australian fur seals in their natural habitat. It’s an exciting adventure that will give you a glimpse into the lives of these playful creatures.
Phillip Island is also home to stunning nature parks. At the Nobbies Centre, you can learn about marine life, take coastal walks, and soak in the breathtaking views of the rugged coastline. And don’t miss out on Churchill Island Heritage Farm, where your little ones can learn about farming activities and have a blast interacting with farm animals.
For those seeking a bit of thrill, Phillip Island has you covered too. You can try your hand at surfing on the island’s fantastic waves or experience the adrenaline rush of high-speed racing at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit.
Of course, let’s not forget the beautiful sandy beaches where your family can swim, sunbathe, and build sandcastles. And the scenic beauty of Phillip Island, with its cliffs, hills, and coastal vistas, will provide the perfect backdrop for your family outings and exploration.
When it comes to accommodation, you’ll find plenty of family-friendly options on Phillip Island. From holiday parks to resorts and self-contained apartments, there’s something to suit every family’s needs and ensure a comfortable and enjoyable stay.
So, get ready for an unforgettable family adventure on Phillip Island. With its incredible wildlife encounters, stunning natural beauty, and exciting activities, it’s the perfect destination for creating cherished memories together.
3. The Gold Coast
The Gold Coast is another amazing destination for families in Australia. The Gold Coast is famous for its golden beaches. Picture your family relaxing on the soft sand, building sandcastles, and taking refreshing dips in the sparkling ocean. The beaches provide a perfect setting for quality family time and fun in the sun.
The Gold CoastIt is home to some of the most exciting theme parks in Australia. Imagine the smiles on your kids’ faces as they experience thrilling rides and watch entertaining shows at Dreamworld, Sea World, and Warner Bros. Movie World. These iconic attractions provide an exhilarating atmosphere and a wide range of activities that cater specifically to families.
If you’re looking for more adventure, the Gold Coast won’t disappoint. You can explore the beautiful beaches and even take surfing lessons together, creating unforgettable memories as you ride the waves as a family. And when you’re ready for a break, the coastal parks offer the perfect spot for a family picnic amidst stunning scenery.
The vibrant atmosphere of the Gold Coast adds to its charm. You can indulge in delicious cuisine, shop at local markets, and be entertained by street performers along the bustling streets. The city’s liveliness creates a sense of excitement and fun for families, ensuring there’s always something to enjoy.
When it comes to accommodation, the Gold Coast offers a wide range of family-friendly options. Whether you prefer a resort, hotel, or self-contained apartment, you’ll find comfortable accommodations that cater to your family’s needs.
4. The Sunshine Coast
When it comes to family-friendly destinations in Australia, the Sunshine Coast is a name that shines brightly. With its stunning beaches, exciting wildlife encounters, and a plethora of outdoor activities, it offers the perfect blend of relaxation and adventure for families seeking an unforgettable vacation.
Let’s start with the Sunshine Coast’s crown jewels – its magnificent beaches. Picture your family strolling along pristine sandy shores, soaking up the sun, and splashing in the crystal-clear waters. The beaches here are renowned for their family-friendly atmosphere, providing a safe and relaxed environment for kids to build sandcastles and parents to unwind.
But there’s more to the Sunshine Coast than just beaches. One of the top attractions is the world-famous Australia Zoo, established by the legendary Steve Irwin and his family. This wildlife haven invites families to get up close and personal with incredible animals, including awe-inspiring crocodiles, cuddly koalas, and friendly kangaroos. The zoo’s educational shows and interactive experiences will leave your children with a newfound appreciation for the natural world.
For those craving outdoor adventures, the Sunshine Coast doesn’t disappoint. The majestic Glass House Mountains beckon with their scenic hiking trails, offering panoramic views that will leave your family in awe. If you’re up for a challenge, embark on a family climb and conquer these natural wonders together. And don’t forget to explore the lush rainforests of the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, where enchanting walks, cascading waterfalls, and encounters with unique flora and fauna await.
Water activities are also a highlight of the Sunshine Coast. Whether you choose to embark on a leisurely river cruise, paddle along the Noosa River, or test your skills with a surf lesson, the region’s waterways provide endless opportunities for family fun and bonding.
Beyond nature and wildlife, the Sunshine Coast boasts a wealth of family-oriented attractions and entertainment options. From thrilling water parks and engaging mini-golf courses to immersive wildlife sanctuaries and interactive museums, there’s never a dull moment for families on the Sunshine Coast.
To ensure a comfortable stay, the Sunshine Coast offers a range of family-friendly accommodations. Whether you prefer a beachfront resort, a cozy holiday park, or a spacious self-contained apartment, you’ll find options that cater to your family’s needs, complete with amenities like pools, playgrounds, and activities designed to keep everyone entertained.
Nestled in the heart of Victoria, Ballarat is a captivating city that seamlessly blends rich history with family-friendly attractions. From its iconic gold rush heritage to its engaging cultural experiences, Ballarat offers a unique and memorable vacation for families seeking a glimpse into Australia’s past.
Step back in time as you explore Sovereign Hill, an immersive outdoor museum that transports visitors to the 1850s gold rush era. Your family can wander through the bustling streets of this recreated township, interact with costumed characters, and even try your hand at gold panning. The living museum provides an educational and entertaining experience, ensuring that both children and adults have a deeper appreciation for Australia’s heritage.
For a deeper dive into Ballarat’s history, a visit to the Museum of Australian Democracy at Eureka (MADE) is a must. Discover the story of the Eureka Rebellion, a significant event in Australia’s fight for democracy, through engaging exhibits and interactive displays. Your family can learn about the brave men and women who fought for their rights and gain insights into the democratic principles that shape the nation today.
Beyond its historical attractions, Ballarat offers a range of family-friendly activities. Wildlife enthusiasts will delight in a visit to the Ballarat Wildlife Park, where your children can encounter iconic Australian animals up close, including kangaroos, koalas, and wombats. The park also offers opportunities for wildlife encounters and educational presentations that will leave a lasting impression.
For a touch of adventure, head to Kryal Castle, a medieval-themed park that promises a day filled with excitement and imagination. Your family can witness jousting tournaments, marvel at magical shows, and explore the castle grounds, immersing yourselves in a world of knights, princesses, and mythical creatures.
When it comes to natural beauty, Ballarat doesn’t disappoint. The city is surrounded by picturesque landscapes, including the enchanting Ballarat Botanical Gardens. Take a leisurely stroll through the gardens, admire its vibrant displays of flowers and plants, and enjoy a family picnic amidst the serene surroundings.
Accommodation options in Ballarat cater to families of all sizes and preferences. From cozy bed and breakfasts to family-friendly hotels and holiday parks, you’ll find comfortable and convenient accommodations that suit your needs.
Cairns is a place filled with warm weather, lush rainforests, and the incredible Great Barrier Reef. It’s no wonder why it’s a popular choice, especially since you can find affordable flights here on budget airlines.
When you’re in Cairns, it’s easy to embark on a day tour to explore the Great Barrier Reef. You can spend a whole day sailing around the islands or join a snorkeling tour to discover the best spots to see colorful coral and marine creatures.
One of the great things about staying in Cairns is that you can experience both the reef and the rainforest. You can visit places like the Daintree Rainforest, Mossman Gorge, or Cape Tribulation. Families will particularly enjoy the Skyrail Rainforest cableway adventure. You can hop into a gondola that fits six people and glide above the rainforest canopy. Once you reach the top, you can take a walk through the rainforest and learn about the unique plants and animals that inhabit this special environment.
7. Coffs Harbour
Coffs Harbour is a town located in New South Wales, about halfway between Sydney and Brisbane. It’s a popular destination with fantastic surf beaches, opportunities for whale watching, and a wide range of hotels and resorts to choose from.
The main attraction in town is the Big Banana. It offers fun activities like ice-skating, a delightful candy store, and an exciting toboggan ride. If you head south to Sawtell, you’ll discover a laid-back village with a charming main street lined with fig trees and delicious local food. Little kids will especially enjoy Sawtell’s butterfly house. Remember to wear something colorful because the beautiful butterflies love landing on colorful hats and shirts.
If you venture west to Bellingen and Dorrigo, you can take peaceful walks through the rainforest, immersing yourself in nature’s beauty.
Coffs Harbour is also known for its estuaries, which are areas where rivers meet the sea. These estuaries, such as Moonee, Boambee, and Bonville creeks, are perfect for young children to swim in. At Jetty Beach, you can even rent a canoe or kayak and paddle up Coffs Creek in the morning. As you navigate through the mangroves, keep an eye out for crabs and small fish. If you enjoy fishing, bring a yabbie pump along. These estuaries are teeming with yabbies, which make excellent bait.
8. The Blue Mountains
The Blue Mountains is a beautiful destination that we and many others adore. It’s located just one hour west of Sydney’s CBD, making it perfect for a weekend getaway.
During winter, the Blue Mountains takes on a charming European vibe, making it an ideal place to have a Christmas in July celebration. Families can find plenty of cozy bed and breakfasts and rental homes to stay in this area.
In summer, the mountains are a fantastic spot for bushwalking. There are numerous waterholes where you can take a refreshing dip, like the Jellybean waterhole in Glenbrook, or enjoy a paddle in a canoe at Wentworth Falls Lake.
If your family enjoys horseback riding, the Megalong Valley is the place to be. And for those seeking a touch of luxury, consider visiting Wolgan Valley.
We also recommend exploring Penrith, located at the foot of the Blue Mountains. Here, you can try exciting activities like indoor skydiving, wakeboarding, and enjoy a cruise on the Nepean Belle.
9. The Hunter Valley
The Hunter Valley, located about two hours from Sydney (depending on traffic), is a fantastic destination known for its wonderful wineries, delicious food, and abundant wildlife. You can choose to visit popular towns like Polkobin or opt for more secluded retreats like Wollombi.
The region boasts numerous wineries that are family-friendly and often offer food options as well. In the Hunter Valley, you’ll also find renowned cheese, chocolate, and ice cream. Most people who visit here tend to focus on eating and enjoying the culinary delights. However, if you’re up for it, you can wake up early and experience floating in a balloon above the vineyards or burn off some calories by going mountain biking.
Keep your eyes peeled at dusk as the Hunter Valley is home to many wombats, and you may spot them roaming around the area.
10. Margaret River
Margaret River is a place that offers delicious food, beautiful beaches, and welcoming locals. It’s no surprise that it made it onto this list.
Margaret River is the top wine-growing region in Western Australia. You’ll discover many wineries and breweries that are perfect for families. Have you ever tried a delightful bottle of wine with “Yallingup” written on the label? Well, that’s from Margaret River.
In addition to its wine, the region is known for its incredible surf breaks. Every year, it hosts the Margaret River classic surfing event. You can start your day with a surf session and then spend the afternoon exploring the wineries.
Bendigo is a fantastic destination for families, and it’s one of your top favorites. When you search for Bendigo on Google, you might find a lot of information about banking, but this little town in Victoria is truly a hidden gem.
Located right in the heart of Victoria, Bendigo is just a two-hour drive from Melbourne. It’s filled with magnificent old buildings that stand as a testament to the wealth brought by the Gold Rush in the 1850s. You can explore numerous art galleries, workshops, and theaters, or take a winery tour. Simply walking along the beautiful tree-lined streets is a delightful experience.
Bendigo is one of those charming regional towns where you can slow down, unwind, and enjoy a relaxed atmosphere.
12. Rottnest Island
Rottnest Island is indeed considered one of the best destinations for families in Australia. Located off the coast of Western Australia, Rottnest Island offers a variety of family-friendly activities and attractions that make it a popular choice for family vacations.
One of the highlights of Rottnest Island is its stunning beaches with clear turquoise waters. Families can spend their days swimming, snorkeling, or simply relaxing on the sandy shores. The island is also home to unique wildlife, including the adorable quokkas, which are friendly and photogenic marsupials that children love to interact with.
Exploring the island by bicycle is a popular activity for families. With no cars allowed on the island, it’s a safe and enjoyable experience to ride around and discover its natural beauty and historical sites. There are also guided tours available that provide insights into the island’s rich cultural and historical heritage.
Rottnest Island offers various family-friendly accommodation options, including self-contained units and holiday cottages. There are also restaurants, cafes, and picnic areas where families can enjoy meals together.
13. The Grampians
Situated in Victoria, this national park offers a diverse range of family-friendly activities and attractions that make it a popular choice for family vacations.
Nature takes center stage in the Grampians, with its awe-inspiring landscapes that feature majestic mountain ranges, cascading waterfalls, and breathtaking lookout points. Families can embark on various hiking trails suited to different skill levels, providing opportunities for shared adventures and exploration amidst the park’s natural beauty.
One of the main draws of the Grampians is its abundant wildlife. Children will delight in encountering kangaroos, wallabies, and a colorful array of bird species while immersing themselves in the park’s natural wonders. For those seeking a bit of adrenaline, activities such as rock climbing, abseiling, and canoeing are available, adding an adventurous twist to the family’s visit.
The Grampians offers a variety of family-friendly accommodation options, including camping grounds, cozy cabins, and comfortable holiday houses. These provide convenient and welcoming bases for families to relax and enjoy the park’s offerings. Additionally, there are well-equipped picnic areas and barbecue facilities, perfect for enjoying outdoor meals amidst the park’s picturesque surroundings.
Beyond its natural splendor, the Grampians holds cultural significance, with ancient rock art sites that provide a glimpse into the rich Indigenous history and heritage of the region. Families can engage in guided tours and explore interpretive displays to deepen their understanding of the area’s cultural legacy.
We have tried our hardest to share with you some of the best holiday destinations for families in Australia. If you know of any other destinations that you think would be helpful for our readers, please leave a comment and let us know. We will read your suggestions and, if they are good, we will add them to our list. Additionally, if you have any special memories from any of the places we mentioned in the article, please share them in the comments. Let’s have fun and reminisce together! And don’t forget to subscribe to our daily newsletter to stay updated on the latest blog posts.