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Forums » Australia & the South Pacific » Seeing Australia with younger kids

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marlourbina

Seeing Australia with younger kids

by marlourbina »

Hello,

My family of 4  have tickets to fly into and out of Sidney in July for 18 days of in Australia travel and are looking for your great suggestions for family fun and exploration. We know we need to cover serious distances to see The Great Barrier Reef, Darwin and Uluru but they are a must. Considering we are going to be covering ground we want an affordable way to see this amazing place and it is important is meet the people along the way.  My kids love to play with other kids and we really want to find a way to see a few places and also get to know the people. Don't love the idea of really long car rides when my kiddos want to be running and jumping and making friends.

Do Australian families have anything like a KOA here in North America? Such as campgrounds that might have cabins and swimming pools and a family friendly atmosphere. We don't really want to camp Oregon-style (sleeping bags, cookstoves etc) but would like a more connected experience that that of hotels. Anything in-between? Ideas as to where can we stay to meet local families in the Winter? Are there hostel-like places that are family friendly?  Rather not worry about gap-year parties waking my kiddos if we can avoid it.

Any ideas would be so appreciated.

Thank you!

Portland, Oregon

 

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Pauline Frommer

RE: Seeing Australia with younger kids

by Pauline Frommer »

Yes, they call them campervans Down Under and you will find families at the parks that accommodate them. And also at the hostels. But frankly with the itinerary you're proposing, you're going to need to fly a bit to see it all. No way to do that by car in the amount of time you have (and actually enjoy it). Australia is huge. Quantas Airlines does offer a money saving pass that allows you to hop to a few places in the country. You may want to look into that.

Have a wonderful trip!

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s13_eisbaer

RE: Seeing Australia with younger kids

by s13_eisbaer »

There are plenty of good places to stay with kids as you drive around Oz. BIG 4 Parks are really good - they're a caravan park (RV park), but also have cabins etc that you can hire. They usually have plenty of activities for kids like a nice swimming pool, mini golf, playground etc. Here's an example of one on the Gold Coast: http://treasure-island-holiday-park.qld.big4.com.au/

Apart from "BIG 4" parks, do a search for "caravan park" and your location. E.g. "caravan park Alice Springs" and you should find a variety of places to stay. They're pretty good on price, and not as rough as camping - you can usually hire a small cabin with kitchen etc. The places often have lots of kids, especially in school holidays.

 

If you're looking to hire a campervan (that's like a motorhome/RV) then there are heaps of companies. Check out http://www.vroomvroomvroom.com.au/campervans/ for an idea on prices etc. Though if you're staying in cabins, you might not need a campervan - a large car would probably be fine!

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marlourbina

RE: Seeing Australia with younger kids

by marlourbina »

Thank you!

Your post is exactly what I had been hoping for.  We are so excited!

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marlourbina

RE: Seeing Australia with younger kids

by marlourbina »

I have been reading a lovely book on Australia (Under a Sunburned Sky) that has been an interesting read on this amazing country/continent. That said I was a bit horrified by the beautiful and tempting danger Australia holds. I am starting to get anxious about taking my darling 6 year olds to Australia with the amazing list of poisenous/ venomous creatures in the sea (Blue-ringed octopus, Cone Shell, Great White) on land (Funnel Spiders, Adders/Snakes) that all seem so amazingly deadly. Beautiful octopus in a tide pool mom...dead! Look a sea shell mom...dead!   I think our Mountain Lions at least don't entice small children to pick them up. Anyone have advice or words of comfort for this mom in keeping her kiddos safe? I am a very vigilant mom so I will watch my kids like a hawk, but I do not want to step off the plane and be crazy scared to let my little ones play at the beach or walk in a garden. Do Australian parents worry as much??? Do kids get killed all the time by these creatures?  Are  Australians just made of this great stuff that all their kids pay attention and, well don't do stupid things?

Words of advice anyone?

Thank you kindly.

 

 

 

 

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s13_eisbaer

RE: Seeing Australia with younger kids

by s13_eisbaer »

In Response to Re: Seeing Australia with younger kids:[QUOTE]

Do kids get killed all the time by these creatures?  Are  Australians just made of this great stuff that all their kids pay attention and, well don't do stupid things?

Posted by marlourbina[/QUOTE]

Haha I'm pretty sure Aussie kids are just as stupid (or should that be "inquisitive") as anywhere else. These creatures aren't as common as you might think, and they tend to hide away from people as much as possible. If a kid died from one of those animals it would make NATIONAL news here! Quite rare.

 

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GabSleeman

RE: Seeing Australia with younger kids

by GabSleeman »

Amazing places are shared with various views.

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mquartz

RE: Seeing Australia with younger kids

by mquartz »

Bill Bryson who wrote that book “Under a Sunburned Sky” is first and foremost a humorist. Don’t for a moment believe his scare-mongering about dangers from the animals in Australia. It’s funny to read if you’ve lived there and know the extent of the exaggeration, but don’t let it dissuade you from travel.

Today’s newspapers here in the US state that 23 toddlers shot themselves or others in the last 12 months in the US. A 2-year-old got snatched off a Disney beach by an alligator. These are real incidents. Bill Bryson makes up stuff. I lived in Australia for 15 years and never had an encounter like those he warns against. The closest was a nest of funnel-web spiders on the outside of my house. I exterminated it before the little spiders hatched.

Bryson spins yarns, he learned to do it like they do in Australia when their wicked sense of humor overcomes them. Go have fun, swim between the flags, and use common sense, it’s a great place!

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