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Best Winter Holiday Escapes

  • June 15, 2017
  • By 50 Shades
  • 30 Comments
Best Winter Holiday Escapes

I live on the Gold Coast in sunny Queensland where they say the weather is beautiful one day and perfect the next!  The average Winter temperatures here are between 12.5 to 21.5 degrees C and most of the days are sunny and dry. Plus the sea water temperatures rarely drop below 20 degrees C.  So people always ask why would we need to escape Winter here on the Gold Coast? Believe it or not once you live here a while you do start to feel the cold and as a result some of us like to escape the cooler temperatures. Particularly for my friends who live in the Southern states I’ve discovered the best Winter holiday escapes in Australia.

You guessed it! You need to travel further north, closer to the Equator to experience warmer temperatures and to be able to partake in Summer activities like swimming and snorkelling. From my experience it is a good idea to look for travel deals that are often offered to these fabulous destinations. We’ve previously obtained a great deal to Port Douglas via Luxury Escapes. Click on the link on the right hand sidebar of this website to browse their latest deals.

Cairns/Port Douglas

We have twice visited Cairns and Port Douglas in Far North Queensland during the Winter months. The gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest coral reef system, is composed of over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching for over 2,300 kilometres. The Great Barrier Reef has to be seen to be believed!

Best-Winter-Holiday-Escapes

Cairns in Far North Queensland

However if you travel further north of Cairns you encounter the world’s largest continuous area of tropical rainforest in Australia, called the Daintree. In some sections the rainforest grows right down to the edge of the ocean and is a must see if you are heading to the far north of Australia.

With average Winter temperatures between 18 to 25 degrees and lower humidity this is the perfect time to visit. Cairns and Port Douglas are probably on the top of everyone’s Winter holiday escape list for these reasons.

Darwin

Another great holiday destination in the Far North of Australia, is Darwin. It’s located on the Timor Sea and is the largest city in the Northern Territory. Darwin has been more or less rebuilt on two occasions after being bombed by the Japanese during WWII and almost swept away during Cyclone Tracy in 1974. During our visit ten years ago we were captivated by Darwin’s history and modern city with a bevy of markets, choices of eateries and shopping and gorgeous views over the harbour.

Best Winter Holiday Escapes

Darwin Waterfront and Florence Falls in Litchfield National Park

A short drive from Darwin, we visited Litchfield National Park where you can experience a refreshing dip in crystal clear waterholes surrounded by tall ‘tombstone-shaped’ termite mounds. Plus we took a boat cruise down the Adelaide River to witness the awesome sight of the jumping giant crocodiles!

Winter is the dry season with lower temperature and less humidity and is the perfect time to explore the more remote areas near Darwin, like Kakadu and Arnhem Land,  that can be off-limits during the wet season.

Broome

Another fabulous destination in the Far North of Australia, Broome, is the most north westerly town in Western Australia and was one of my favourite stops on our around Australia trip in 2014. It is the last frontier before embarking into the expanse of the Kimberley and where one of the world’s greatest wildernesses meets the Indian Ocean.

Best Winter Holiday Escapes

Cable Beach, Broome, North West Australia

The town’s exotic pearling past has left a rich history and a unique multi-cultural mix of people. Broome is surrounded by water, with the extremely popular Cable Beach to the west, and the pristine waters of Roebourne Bay to the east and south.  It is also the gateway to the West Kimberley and the virtually unspoilt and untamed Cape Leveque on the Dampier Peninsula.

Like Darwin, it is best visited during the dry season and the cooler months of Winter when the temperatures are generally mild and the humidity is lower.

Sunshine Coast

One of our Winter holiday escapes is believe it or not, just two hours north to the Sunshine Coast. Our daughter lives here in Coolum and we love the change of scenery and maybe a degree or two more warmth during Winter. This stunning coastal city stretches over 55 kilometres of coastline, from Caloundra in the south to Noosa Heads in the north, with 36 stunning sun-soaked beaches and a lush green Hinterland.

Best Winter Holiday Escapes

Sunshine Coast Beaches, Rivers and Hinterland

From Caloundra to Noosa the coastline is strewn with sandy shores and open ocean, each with their own features and facilities. My favourite places to stay are Noosa, Coolum or Maroochydore. It’s a great place to visit in Winter with lots of hiking or biking opportunities in the Hinterland areas and plenty of delicious local produce to indulge in.

Gold Coast

My hometown the Gold Coast is extremely popular with southerners during the Winter months as a place to escape the cold weather. Southerners flock here to play lawn bowls, enjoy the beautiful sunny days that we tend to have during the Winter months and bring the kids during the school holidays to experience the Gold Coast’s exciting Theme Parks.

The Gold Coast’s mild winter temperatures and warm sea water still allows visitors the luxury of taking a swim, surfing or kayaking at our beautiful beaches. In fact it is probably a lot safer to venture out into the sunshine during winter as the UV rating is a lot lower and you don’t sunburn as quickly.

Best Winter Holiday Escapes

Coolangatta, Burleigh Heads, Miami & Surfers Paradise, Gold Coast

Winter is the best time to try your hand at surfing the magical waves at our surf beaches as the swell decreases and the small waves are ideal for beginners. If you really must you can do this wearing a wetsuit or a long sleeve sunshirt to keep the chill off your body.

I consider winter to be the best time to explore our wonderland of mountains and rainforests in the Gold Coast Hinterland as the temperatures are more comfortable for undertaking physical activities. Whether you do this on foot or under pedal-power is optional, but there are plenty of walking trails that are only a short driving distance away.

So you don’t really need to escape Winter to either Bali or Thailand. Why not holiday in your own country and escape to the Northern parts of Australia? You will be pleasantly surprised on what these places have to offer.

Do you like to take a Winter holiday escape to somewhere warmer?

This post is part of the Lovin’ Life Linky with a Lovin’ Life Team of the “ageing positively” kind who are as keen as I am to promote the Lovin’ Life mindset. The Lovin’ Life Team includes:

Johanna from Lifestyle Fifty
Min from Write of the Middle.
Leanne from Deep Fried Fruit
Jo from And Anyways
and of course me, Kathy from 50 Shades of Age

 


 

 

By 50 Shades, June 15, 2017 Kathy Shade is a 50 something year old who is married with 2 children who has spent most of her life being a housewife, mother and working as an Accounts Administrator in the public school system. She enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, movies, travelling, cooking and blogging! Her friends would describe her as being a 'have a chat' with an outgoing personality and zest for life. Kathy also has a great love of shopping and is known for her bargain hunting prowess!
  • 30

50 Shades

Kathy Shade is a 50 something year old who is married with 2 children who has spent most of her life being a housewife, mother and working as an Accounts Administrator in the public school system. She enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, movies, travelling, cooking and blogging! Her friends would describe her as being a 'have a chat' with an outgoing personality and zest for life. Kathy also has a great love of shopping and is known for her bargain hunting prowess!

30 Comments
  • Amy @ HandbagMafia
    June 15, 2017

    I went to Broome as a teen and would love to go back!

    • Kathy
      June 15, 2017

      Oh yes Broome is an amazing place to escape the Winter weather. I could easily go back there. :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Jo tracey
    June 15, 2017

    I’m cheering for the Sunny Coast (obvs…). Broom is on my bucket list – as is the Barrier Reef…one day… #TeamLovinLife

    • Kathy
      June 15, 2017

      Ha ha! I don’t blame you for cheering for the Sunny Coast. It is a gorgeous place for a holiday. It is a little expensive getting over to Broome, but on the other hand heading up to Cairns/Port Douglas is a little more affordable. Take a look at Luxury Escapes, they have some great deals. :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Sue from Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond
    June 15, 2017

    We are so lucky in Australia, aren’t we Kathy? I’ve yet to visit Darwin and Broome but they are definitely on the list. I wouldn’t mind revisiting the Great Barrier Reef as it is about 20 years since I was in Cairns. Great photos and post – thanks!

    • Kathy
      June 15, 2017

      We are blessed with a huge variety of great places that are warm all year round in Australia. You should put Darwin and Broome on your travel list. They are both different but have so much to offer. :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Lyndall @ SeizeThe Day Project
    June 15, 2017

    I love all these places Kathy. We’re so lucky to live here on the Gold Coast. So many people from down south escape to our beautiful sunny area in the cooler months. There’s a lot of them around right now! :) #TeamLovinLife

    • Kathy
      June 15, 2017

      There seems to be heaps of Southerners on the Coast at the moment. Our Winters are much milder than down south. However they are probably wondering what hit them this week with the wet miserable weather! :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Johanna
    June 15, 2017

    Ooh although I love all these places, I would love to be hopping on a plane to visit Cairns and Port Douglas this winter. Living in WA, many people escape the southern chills and head north to the Coral Coast and Broome in their camper vans and caravans :)

    • Kathy
      June 15, 2017

      Yes Cairns and Port Douglas are brilliant this time of year. We were on the Coral Coast of WA around this time 3 years ago and the weather was perfect. We loved this area and hope to come back one day. :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au
    June 15, 2017

    I love your photos Kathy – they always make me appreciate how beautiful our country is – especially the beaches. We are so lucky to have Winters that still allow us to enjoy being outside (even if we need a few extra layers) After experiencing a few weeks in Europe in Winter, I realize how much I enjoy our milder climate!

    • Kathy
      June 15, 2017

      There is a lot to be said about having gorgeous sunshine during our Winter months. I think that is what I like best about Queensland Winters. It does make me feel very fortunate to live where I am. I don’t think I could ever do a Northern Hemisphere Winter! :) #TeamLovinLife

  • jodie
    June 15, 2017

    What a great country—there is so much variety and loveliness!! My SIL is actually out there right now—maybe that needs to be our next trip??
    Jodie
    http://www.jtouchofstyle.com

    • Kathy
      June 15, 2017

      I hope your SIL is enjoying our wonderful country. Yes you should definitely come to Australia for a holiday. I will personally show you around! :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Debbie Harris
    June 15, 2017

    Great post Kathy and all of these are on my list to escape our cold winter! #teamlovinlfe

    • Kathy
      June 15, 2017

      Thanks Debbie. We always like to escape the Gold Coast over Winter. We are heading for Vietnam in a few months time. :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Janet
    June 16, 2017

    Some great ideas here. I’ve never been to Darwin, or Pt Douglas – and Cairns was just on a stopover flying back from Bali so I don’t think that counts! Hubster and I are overdue for a holiday and I am trying to talk him into a week away for his birthday in July … wish me luck!

    • Kathy
      June 16, 2017

      I think you should do exactly that Janet. Far North Queensland is fabulous this time of year. :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Rhonda Albom
    June 17, 2017

    About five years ago we almost moved to Mooloolaba on the Sunshine Coast and I would say that winter was my primary motivation. Australia is so lovely in winter, especially tropical Australia. Great list of winter spots to go. I have been to about half of them, the rest are still on the list. You have motivated me to think about heading over this winter.

    • Kathy
      June 18, 2017

      Winter is the best time to visit some of the wonderful places in the tropical north of Australia. During Summer it is the wet season and horribly humid. Mooloolaba is a lovely spot on the Sunshine Coast, but now is very touristy. :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit
    June 18, 2017

    So we (as an extended family) were due to go to Thailand in 3 weeks for my parents 50th wedding anniversary adventures. And when I say “adventures” I actually mean an adventure holiday. But with Dad’s recent cancer diagnosis and surgery and the big grow up daughter’s cancer and surgery, trekking through the wilds of Thailand is probably not the best winter escape. So we have just decided to cancel it all and head to Noosa instead. I tried for Port Douglas but sold out and what was left was WAYYYY to expensive, Noosa will add around 8-10 degrees to our winter weather at least. Gotta be happy with that!
    #teamlovinlife

    • Kathy
      June 18, 2017

      That’s a shame about Thailand Leanne, but totally understand why you’ve cancelled. But great news you’re all going to Noosa. If it’s anything like the gorgeous day we’ve had today on the GC it will be warm, sunny and around 24 degrees. Not too shabby!! #TeamLovinLife

  • Agness of Fit Travelling
    June 20, 2017

    I am saving your post to reread it when winter comes! Awesome ideas, Kathy!

    • Kathy
      June 20, 2017

      Thanks Agness. I’m glad I gave you some Winter holiday inspiration! :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Tony (tonyandkimoutdooradventures)
    June 26, 2017

    Only thing left for us is Broome. Can never find the time. Love winter camping. Big fire, marshmallows, can’t go wrong.

    • Kathy
      June 27, 2017

      For us Broome is such a long way away, but I can guarantee once you get there you will never want to come home. Broome, Cape Leveque and The Kimberley are such a unique and incredible part of Australia. I’m not a big fan of Winter camping – I prefer the warmer months. :)

  • Life Images by Jill
    June 28, 2017

    I’m yet to visit Queensland or NT (other than central NT), but they are on our travel list. Last winter we toured for about 6 weeks in the Kimberley. Certainly a great winter escape! Happy travels Kathy.

    • Kathy
      June 28, 2017

      Yes we haven’t done much of the Top End of Australia either, apart from The Kimberley which we need to return to explore the Gibb River Road. We would like to base ourselves in Darwin and see this spectacular area, but it won’t be for a few years. :) #TeamLovinLife

  • Jill Silver
    June 28, 2017

    You mean to tell me that the entirety of Australia isn’t an awesome destination by itself?

    Just kidding. Not really. The husband says we can go next year, and I’m already SO stoked!

    • Kathy
      June 28, 2017

      Well of course it is! However the northern parts of Australia are best visited in the dry season (or Winter) when the heat and humidity is less. The southern parts are best visited during our Summer. I hope that you will enjoy your trip downunder. :) #TeamLovinLife

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