When it starts to get cold in those parts of Australia that suffer most from a drop in temperature, the inclination may be to head overseas for some northern hemisphere summer sun. However, there are plenty of hot spots in Australia that offer great winter getaways.
So, if you’re looking to escape the frosty Fahrenheit of the southernmost states, here are five suggestions of where you can enjoy a touch of winter warmth.
Darwin, Northern Territory
Too hot to visit during the summer months, Darwin sees an influx of tourists in July – hardly surprising when the temperature tops out at a toasty 30°C. While no visit to Darwin is complete without a day or two spent in Kakadu National Park, the Mindil Beach Markets make staying close to town worthwhile. With a strong military history, those who are interested in the strategic significance of Darwin won’t be disappointed. And for the romantic, don’t miss the stunning sunsets.
Northern New South Wales
You don’t have to venture too far out of Sydney to experience some very pleasant temperatures in July. Newcastle, just over two hours drive from the state’s capital, is a great place to base yourself to explore the surrounding area on day trips. Tipping the thermometer at almost 17 degrees in July, walks along the beach are a definite possibility. Although a day trip to enjoy a glass or two of wine in the Hunter Valley may be more up your street. The city also retains strong links to its maritime past so consider climbing up to Nobby’s Lighthouse or spend a few hours at the Maritime Museum.
The Kimberley, Western Australia
Similar to Darwin, visiting the Kimberley during an Aussie summer isn’t advisable but in July, the deep ochre colours of the land contrast wonderfully with the bright blue of its waters. The average temperature in July is about 29 degrees, meaning that exploring the Bungle Bungles and the spectacular Horizontal Falls is a lot more comfortable and safer than during the scorching summer period. Many visitors also opt to combine a trip to the Kimberley with a relaxing stay near Cable Beach – not a bad way to escape the cooler climes!
A favourite of all Australians looking for some winter sun. However, July is smack-bang in the middle of school holidays for just about all of Australia so it can be busy, and expensive. The average temperature is 20 degrees, which makes relaxing on Noosa’s Main Beach or strolling around the farmer’s markets very pleasant indeed. If the crowds of families becomes too much, then an escape to World Heritage-listed Fraser Island is just a short boat trip away.
Anywhere where there’s snow
Okay, so we know that the whole idea of a winter warmer getaway is to escape the cold, but let’s face it, there’s something quite special about being rugged up in cabin with the snow falling outside. Snowfall can vary greatly in Australia, but many ski resorts have snow-making facilities, so you are pretty much guaranteed to see some of the white stuff. Even if you’re not a skier or lover of winter sports, why not gather your family together and celebrate Christmas in July?