Beaches aren’t usually your go-to for a winter holiday, are they? But the reality is, a lot of these summery spots are just as mint in winter as they are in their high season.
All over Australia, coastal areas people flock to like flies on a coleslaw during summer get ignored through winter. But not anymore! You’re going to be a smart cookie and check one out this winter, right?
1. Shoalhaven, NSW
A coastal stretch a couple of hours south of Sydney, the Shoalhaven area is full of sleepy beach towns and long, dog-friendly beaches. There are farm-to-table restaurants, small boutiques and vineyards around to keep you occupied in the day, and plenty of the accommodation spots will see you curled up with some vino and a book of an evening. Also – horse-riding on the beach!
STAY: Bangalay Villas are luxury boutique villas right on Seven Mile Beach, and there’s a super popular restaurant on site, too.
2. Denmark, WA
Known for Greens Pool, a rocky beach that is Instagrammed to infinity, Denmark is just as lovely in winter. The town is all country charm – yes, there’s a bakery claiming to have award-winning pies – and the Valley Of The Giants Tree-Top Walk is pretty spectacular. Plus, Greens Pool is worth a visit just to check it out, even if it’s not swimming season.
STAY: The Floating Forest is a retreat set in bushland, meaning max relax and privacy, plus bird noises when you wake up. Who doesn’t love that?
3. Rainbow Beach, QLD
A long, LONG beach on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, Rainbow Beach has horse-riding and four wheel drive tours on offer – or you can just head down and check out the rugged beauty, and get a piccy on the famous rainbow stairs. You’re also at the closest off-point to Fraser Island.
STAY: There are heaps of perfect holiday rentals around the area, like this view-heavy spot on HomeAway.
4. Honeymoon Bay, TAS
Freycinet National Park is obviously a must-do when in Tassie, but if you haven’t yet ticked it off your bucket list, don’t think you have to hit it up in summer. The beautiful Honeymoon Bay is spectacular, even if it’s too chilly to swim. The hikes in the area will warm you up, too.
STAY: Freycinet Lodge is ridiculously swish and also includes some majorly delicious restaurants.
5. Seal Bay, SA
I’m cheating a bit here because Seal Bay is a conservation park on Kangaroo Island, so it’s not really like the other beach locations I’ve mentioned here. But look, guys! Sealies kissing! On the beach! This is just the perfect year-round beach to visit, and given Kangaroo Island was devastated by the bushfires and is now regenerating, you’ll be doing something good for the tourism industry, too.
STAY: Wandering Souls currently have pop-up glamping tents on Kangaroo Island, which means you can be among the elements while sleeping in a cosy bed.
6. Otway National Park, VIC
You know of the Great Ocean Road, but did you know there’s also a Great Ocean Walk? You can hike the stunning cliff edges of Victoria’s Otway National Park, running from Apollo Bay to Port Campbell. It’ll take you eight days, but why not do bits of it? Or road trip along and hike a section each day. Whatever the case, you’ll cop some wonderful vistas and yep, still get to see the Twelve Apostles.
STAY: The Great Ocean Road is DEF a time for booking a lush holiday rental – there are so, so many of them. This extremely swish house is a goer.
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