Holidays are the best – but they eat up all your leave, and because of that we usually reserve the big ones for overseas travel. Enter the humble weekender – spots close enough to fly/drive to on a Friday night, then home on a Sunday.

There’s loads of places around Australia to get amongst over a few days, so we’ve rounded up the ones we reckon are well worth it this spring.

CANBERRA, ACT

Credit: Floriade

Don’t mock our capital, the old ‘Berra has plenty of awesome shit to do/see/enjoy, and the best bit is it’s a short 3 hours from Sydney.

Let’s start with the bloody DELIGHT that is Floriade – a massive event with flowers everywhere that runs through September. They also have Floriade NightFest, which incorporates light shows and installations. That’s not to mention the consistently excellent exhibitions held at the NGA and the various museums and galleries.

And don’t leave without having a picnic at Lake Burley-Griffin. On a sunny day, it’s perfection.

STAY: We stayed at Ovolo Nishi, an extremely chic hotel right on the shore of Lake Burley Griffin.

“This is a super luxurious and comfy hotel who have thought of just about everything. There’s Apple TV, breakfast, snacks and a mini bar all included, so no need to worry about a huge bill come checkout. There was wine tasting downstairs on Saturday arvo, a huge trendy restaurant, cinema, and bike hire inside the hotel, too.” – Kristen

TWEED SHIRE, NSW

Credit: Mistere Resort & Spa Urliup

Want to be close enough to Byron for a swim, but far enough away to avoid the poseur crowd? Welcome to Tweed Shire. It’s lush rainforest vibes and acres of cane fields make it relaxing as all hell, but with the added benefit of small-town NSW feels and no Instagram influencers parading the streets.

STAY: We bunkered down right in the middle of a rainforest at Mistere Spa & Retreat, Urliup. Each villa is self-contained and spaced away from the others, so it’s maximum privacy and 10/10 levels of quiet.

“I literally can’t talk about anything else besides the fact that our villa had a huge bathtub, with floor-to-ceiling windows looking out onto a mini waterfall and lush rainforests. I’ve never been more relaxed in my entire life.” – Mel

JURIEN BAY, WA

Credit: Parks WA

White sand, turquoise waters AND endangered Australian sea lions to look at? We’re sold. Not to mention the fishing is epic, and if you take your 4WD, there’s plenty of dunes to hoon around on. Spring is a great time to hit up Jurien Bay, before the crowds of school holiday kids descend.

STAY: It might not be fancy, but this AirBnB farmstay is only 23km out of town, and features plenty of kanga-sighting, epic night skies and all-Aussie cookouts.

DAYLESFORD, VIC

Credit: Peppers Mineral Springs

The posh getaway town for Melburnians, there’s a lot to love about Daylesford – even if you’re not mega cashed up. For starters, there’s ridiculously beautiful walks through dense bushland to be done, not to mention sampling all their weird and wonderful mineral water variations. Keep that mineral-health thing flowing with a visit to one of the mineral spas in town – treatments might be exxy, but use of the spa is usually under $100.

STAY: We bunked at Peppers Mineral Springs Hotel, which features an on-site mineral spa where the pools overlook their lush gardens.

“Our room was this stand-alone villa with a working fireplace and two levels. It was so luxurious, and so nice to be away from other guests for our own private holiday.” – Ella

DARLING HARBOUR, SYDNEY

Credit: Darlingharbour.com

Continuing with the “flowers!” vibes, Sydney is an excellent mini-vacay spot if you, er, don’t live here already. Especially in spring – the weather is often sunny and warm, meaning long strolls along the harbour are in order. Darling Harbour is a great spot for access to good stuff, without feeling like you’re in the middle of the hustle/bustle.

STAY: We stayed at Ovolo 1888, a reworked old wool store a stone’s throw from the action in Darling Harbour.

“I think what I loved most about Ovolo 1888 was the way it didn’t feel like a hotel. The heritage elements stood out – high ceilings, exposed brick walls, beams from the old wool store. It felt like a cool NYC loft or something.” – Mel

DELORAINE, TAS

Credit: australia.com

If this isn’t the cutest town in existence, then what is. The riverside town is the perfect spot in Spring, when flowers bloom and the grassy lakeside knolls are greener than ever. Hit up local farms for their famed salmon, honey and raspberries. Not to mention cheese, a Tassie specialty.

STAY: Luxury Bed and Brekkie joint Arcoona Manor  is a national trust building, which’ll really get you into the old-world vibes of Deloraine.

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Image: Mistere Resort and Spa