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FAMILY

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HOLIDAY

ISSUE 41 WINTER 2014 AUS$6.95 (inc gst)

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LEISURE

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ENTERTAINMENT

with kids THE WINNERS ARE ...

2014 BEST OF

FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS WINNERS & FINALISTS

TRAVEL UP THE EAST COAST WITH US ON OUR

SKI 52-PAGE SPECIAL FEATURE

Aussie Beaches holiday special!

the globe with kids

WIN! plus

A holiday to VANUATU for a family of 4 valued at

$6250 includes airfares

41

9 771832 331006

Yumi Stynes Antonia Kidman Steve Jacobs

HAWAII’S GARDEN ISLE | ON SAFARI IN SOUTH AFRICA VANUATU | ICONIC MANLY, NSW | A BIG FAT FAMILY HOLIDAY IN BALI

WINTER 2014

Welcome

TA-DA!! Your votes are in and we’re thrilled to announce the winners of the Out & About with Kids 2014 Best of Family Travel Awards. Turn to page 21 for the full list of winners and finalists! This winter, we’re chasing sunshine and snowfalls. If you’re a skiing and snowboarding family, check out our annual SKI THE GLOBE with KIDS, and if swimming and surfing is more your style, we’re taking you on a road trip from Victoria to Cape York, in Beaches.. beaches...beautiful beaches! The Out & About with Kids team

Let’s get social Facebook friends share their favourite family beaches in Australia...

Have wheelchair will travel says:

Our favourite beach is Flynns Beach, Port Macquarie. It’s a beautiful family beach and extremely popular with locals and tourists. It is accessible to all with easy access via a long wooden ramp and a beach wheelchair is available to use. We are lucky in Australia to have areas providing these facilities so families can enjoy the beach, despite a member of that family having a disability or mobility issues.

Whats On Central Coast says:

Look no further than the beautiful Central Coast beaches. We have accommodation, restaurants, cafes, plenty of markets and entertainment, too.

Jenni says:

Dee Why on the northern beaches ticks all the boxes, with a fabulous playground for kids, a pramfriendly boardwalk and glorious ocean baths and rock pools. The cafes and restaurants across the road cater to all tastes, too!

Greg says:

Shoal Bay and all the Port Stephens beaches are a family-friendly paradise! Your choice of protected swimming bays, surf beaches and lots of things for kids of all ages to see and do. The adults aren’t forgotten, either, with great shopping and restaurants, and supermarkets for families that want to self-cater.

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Follow us on www.facebook.com/ OAWkids www.instagram.com/ outandaboutwithkids www.twitter.com/ OAWK2

Visit our website and subscribe to the monthly e-newsletter, for all the latest family holiday, leisure and entertainment news delivered to your inbox - and for the chance to win some fantastic family prizes.

with kids

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Out & About with Kids Print & Digital outandaboutwithkids.com.au Publisher Elisa Elwin elisa@oawk.com.au 0413 770 550 Editor Christine Kane christine@oawk.com.au Assistant Editor Lisa Monk lisamonk@oawk.com.au Associate Publisher & Director Sales & Marketing Richard Bunting rbunting@oawk.com.au 0424 138 806

Contributors Jane Milojevic Michelle Pettigrove Yumi Stynes Print Design Magnesium Media Print Art Director Louise Summerton Published by Elwin Media Pty Ltd ABN: 22 159 093 606

PO Box 4148 Balgowlah Heights NSW 2093 0413 770 550

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the editorials are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Publisher and Out & About with Kids. Information provided was believed to be correct at the time of publication. Copyright © Out & About with Kids 2014 Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is strictly prohibited. All reasonable efforts have been made to contact copyright holders. Out & About with Kids cannot accept unsolicited manuscripts or photographs. If such items are to be sent to the magazine they will be returned.

Cover image: Sea World Resort & Water Park. © Sea World Resort & Water Park.

Kids Stay, Play and Eat Free! Special Offer!! Stay 7 nights and only pay for 5!! 2 kids under 12 years stay, play and eat for FREE!! For travel until 31 March 2015. Conditions and block out dates apply. One of Fiji’s most popular family resorts, Plantation Island Resort is located just 15km from the mainland on beautiful Malolo Lailai Island. Plantation is a true Fijian holiday paradise. Located on the shoulder of a blue lagoon with 7kms of sandy white beach, fringed by coral reef and crystal clear waters. Plantation has all the ingredients for a great family holiday, including the free Coconut Kids Club with three supervised activity sessions from 9am till 9pm. You’ll all have a truly enjoyable Fijian family break.

www.plantationisland.com

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contents

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We reveal THE WINNERS! Out & About with Kids BEST OF FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS 2014

2014 BEST OF

FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS WINNERS & FINALISTS

7

WIN!

28 Enter our fantastic VANUATU Family Holiday competition

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16

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DID YOU KNOW…? Top travel apps, fun facts and news – including zoo babies!

THE BABY & TODDLER SHOW It’s on again! Everything you need - and need to know - from pregnancy to early parenthood

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YUMI STYNES “It’s scary having to take your kid to the doctor when you’re away from home.”



MY BIG FAT FAMILY HOLIDAY in BALI The plans Jane Milojevic made for a group family holiday – 18 people including seven grandkids – has everyone vowing they’ll be back again...

DAD’S WORD Meet singer, vocal coach and proud dad, Lindsay Field, and his family

ANTONIA KIDMAN’S SINGAPORE Singapore resident and mum of six, shares her tips on fun for kids in this family-friendly destination

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SUITE LIFE Each issue we give you a sneak peek inside some great hotels and resorts

Bali page 28

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contents

77 Vanuatu page 39

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ESCAPE TO VANUATU A jewel in the Pacific … PLUS: Steve Jacobs, from Channel 9’s TODAY Show, introduces us to his family and his Vanuatu!

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© Falls Creek

SOUTH AFRICA Michelle Pettigrove and her family share an unforgettable wildlife experience. PLUS: the lowdown on Cape Town for families

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THE INSIDER Communications GM for Destination NSW, Tanya Bowes, talks about travels with her five-year-old daughter, Sophie – from Disneyland Paris to Blueys Beach on the NSW Mid North Coast

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BEACHES… BEACHES … BEAUTIFUL BEACHES! From the SA/VIC border to Cape York, explore Australia’s eastern coastline and its abundant family beach holiday destinations. PLUS: Sydney’s iconic Manly!

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KAUA`I Discover why over 300,000 Australians visit this Hawaiian island paradise each year

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SKI THE GLOBE with kids Our annual 52-page feature for families on everything for skiing, snowboarding and snow play, at the best and most family-friendly ski resorts in Australia and across the globe

Win a family holiday to...

Vanuatu! To enter visit outandaboutwithkids.com.au/ vanuatu-competition

Win a week-long family holiday to Vanuatu and spend your days snorkelling over coral reefs, ziplining through the jungle, abseiling down cascades or even dining with the locals at a welcoming cultural village. This family prize includes flights for two adults and two children with Air Vanuatu from Sydney, Brisbane or Melbourne and 5-7 days accommodation in one Lagoon Superior Family room with full daily buffet breakfast.

Situated on 75 acres of exotic tropical gardens on the edge of Erakor Lagoon in Port Vila, Vanuatu, Warwick Le Lagon Resort & Spa is an enchanting vacation destination that oozes South Pacific charm. With gorgeous landscapes, white sandy beaches and mesmerizing views of the Pacific Ocean, this spectacular resort offers a peaceful escape for everything from family holidays to romantic getaways. www.lelagonvanuatu.vu

Flying to Vanuatu is easy with Air Vanuatu offering direct flights seven days a week from Sydney to Port Vila, three days a week from Brisbane and once weekly from Melbourne during peak season. Air Vanuatu also operates domestic air services in Vanuatu between the islands. It is a full-service airline serving complimentary hot meals, alcoholic and other beverages and inflight entertainment. www.airvanuatu.com

Vanuatu is the perfect family escape, only a short flight from home. www.vanuatu.travel

www.lelagonvanuatu.vu

www.airvanuatu.com

Chill out pre-flight in Fiji What a great idea! We all know what it’s like at the end of a holiday to have time on your hands between checking out of your hotel and waiting to catch your flight home. When you’re leaving Fiji, with kids in tow, and have those hours to spare, why sit in the airport lounge when you could be making ‘Fiji Time’ last that little bit longer - swimming, relaxing and refreshing before the flight home? Raffles Gateway Hotel, within walking distance of Nadi Airport, says a big ‘Bula!’, by extending a complimentary invitation to you and your family. Raffles VIP Invitation to non-guests, to pit stop and enjoy their facilities, is gold for travelling families! Towels are provided for your swim and shower facilities are also available. To download your VIP Invitation visit rafflesgateway.com and click Facilities/ Guest Services

© Shutterstock.com

Did you know …?

Make new holiday memories with Mantra Prepare yourself for the spectacular mountain scenery at Mantra Lake Tekapo. Offering spacious self-contained apartments with quality furnishings and underfloor heating, you’ll have everything you need to enjoy your family holiday.

To book call NZ 0800 448 891 AU 13 15 17 or visit mantra.com.au

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D I D Y OU KNOW...?

Travelling through Europe?

The largest nature preserve on earth

As many families will attest, travelling with kids through Europe is easy and comfortable on Rail Europe’s extensive and modern rail network. Their newly-launched mobile website now allows you to directly book and pay for any rail tickets or passes you need for your European travels and includes all Rail Europe’s products and services - timetables, city and train station guides and offers for over 15,000 destinations - one place to buy your tickets! > raileurope.com.au

New Caledonia already boasts the world’s largest coastal lagoon and UNESCO World Heritage site in their backyard, but now a marine park - bigger than Alaska and much larger than any other protected area on the planet, has been established. Covering more than 1.3 million square kms, Le Parc Naturel de la Mer de Corail, or ‘the Natural Park of the Coral Sea’ has been declared a protected area. The park covers 450,000 hectares of coral reefs, 25 species of marine mammals, 48 shark species, 19 species of nesting birds and five species of sea turtles, and generates up to 3,000 tons of fish every year.

© Shutterstock.com

© Shutterstock.com

rail europe

Be free at Malolo! The newly reopened Malolo is about a bure near the beach, surrounded by the world’s friendliest people with a living and authentic culture. Perfect for families and couples alike, you can fill your day with a myriad of activities or simply unwind and do nothing at all. Between November and March, stay 5 nights and receive the 6th and 7th nights free! Or year round choose from F$200 resort credits, Kids eat FREE with 5 night stays.

Malolo. This is the way the world should be.

AHU0032/1 - OAAWK

T +679 672 0978 | enquiries@ahuraresorts.com www.maloloisland.com

AUD$

480

from per room per night for 2 or a family of 4

*

For reservations and information visit www.maloloisland.com *Conditions apply. Approx rates only – check daily FOREX rates.

The Warm Heart Of Fiji.



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Available for download from iTunes and Google Play

7 family-friendly + free! apps 2. 4. Free WiFi Finder - Avoid bill shock when travelling overseas, with this nifty app that lists over 145,000 free WiFi hotspots around the world, and allows you to search online or offline.

1.

Gate Guru – Covering 204 airports, this free day-of-travel resource will get you from home to your destination, map your itinerary, provide personal trip stats and, best of all, provides a comprehensive guide to all those amenities you can never find at an airport – from toilets to cafes, ATMs and lounges – plus live flight details, a journey planner and car rental info.

3.

Google Translate – You don’t even need to be online to use this app when travelling! Easily converse in 80 different languages by speaking or typing and let Google translate for you!

Unlimited ride packages available

INDOOR FAMILY FUN PARK

Daylesford and Macedon Ranges Tourism app Works offline and lets visitors explore this amazing region of Victoria with a touch-ofthe-button e-travel guide. Includes maps, navigation, special offers and information on accommodation, shopping, food & wine, events and activities. The ‘near me’ function tells you what businesses and services are near you at any time.

5.

Tourism Queensland VIC finder – Queensland’s 116 Visitor Information Centres (VIC) are just a tap away with this handy app that not only directs you to your nearest VIC, but also reveals the top things to see and do close by.

6. Qantas has released a new version of its popular iPhone app, delivering real time information for travellers including tips for everything from getting to the airport, navigating the terminal, checking-in, boarding the plane and collecting your bags at the other end. All your favourite Qantas app features are still there, allowing you to buy airfares, book a hotel, view your Frequent Flyer points and set up personal alerts.

7.

Field Guide to NSW Fauna - The Australian Museum’s newest app will help you tell your Double Drummer from your Floury Baker and your Blue Triangle from your Common Jezebel! The most comprehensive guide to NSW wildlife available also features maps and stunning images.

Open 10am everyday! Free admission 93 Princes Hwy Ph 02 4454 3220 www.funland.com.au

Best value Family Fun on the Coast! 10

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Royal Caribbean goes mobile The family-friendly Royal Caribbean International cruise line has just launched an optimised website for mobile and tablet devices, making it easier for you to view cruises and itineraries and grab special deals and offers while you’re on the go. Favourite destinations, ships, live pricing and available cruises can now all be easily viewed on your smartphone or tablet, and with live webcam shots from Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas and Oasis of the Seas, you can catch all the onboard action, in real time. > royalcaribbean.com.au

D I D Y OU KNOW...?

campervan

Britz your way on a campervan holiday Did you know Australia is experiencing a campervan and camping boom? More and more families are discovering the joys of hitting the road for holidays in this wide, brown land, in an all modcons, home away from home on wheels. The only argument you’re likely to hear from the kids about a campervan holiday is over who gets to sleep in the

top bunk! Campervanning makes it easy to tour at your own pace, and Britz is the largest campervan rental company in Australia, with plenty of options to suit your family’s self-drive needs and budget. Choose a 2-berth camper, right up to a 6-berth motorhome or even a 4WD with unlimited kms. Bedding,

linen, kitchen and general living gear are supplied. All you need to pack is the family and a sense of adventure! Britz has great online deals available for bookings out of 10 branches throughout Australia as well as branches in New Zealand and the USA. > britz.com.au or Freecall 1800 331 454

Search, sync and stroll through the weekend! Working parents in particular know just how precious weekends are and ferrying kids to sport and extra-curricular activities, birthday parties and friends’ places is just par for the course. Slotting in your own free time means juggling drop offs and pick ups - often from one end of town to the other! The just-launched Navman SmartGPS lets you save time by searching for anything - from a special shop to a playground - on your computer, tablet or SmartGPS



companion app on your phone, saving the address and syncing it with your SmartGPS when you’re in the car or on foot. You can also get live recommendations for various points of interest as you drive – whether it’s a great coffee in the area, a quick meal or cheap petrol. It’s also the first navigation device to integrate with social media platforms, including Yelp and Foursquare. The Navman SmartGPS retails for $299. > navmansmartgps.com.au

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DI D YOU KNOW...?

Fly allergy-free Swiss International Air Lines is leading the way for allergy sufferers to enjoy improved air travel experiences with the introduction, in May 2014, of new alternative (lactose and gluten-free) food and drinks, along with changes to the cabin interior, making SWISS the first airline in the world to meet the ECARF (European Centre for Allergy Research Foundation) criteria for ‘allergy-friendly’ airlines. The airline has also stopped in-cabin use of decorative flowers and air fresheners that can cause nose and throat irritations and now uses only hypoallergenic soaps in the bathrooms. Allergy sufferers can also order special meals tailored to their needs in all seating classes on long-haul services, and in business class within Europe, up to 24 hours before their scheduled departure. > swiss.com/ch/en/various/allergy-friendlyairline

whale watching

Have a whale of a time… Winter means whales and Captain Cook Cruises provides passengers a wonderful vantage point for seeing these majestic creatures. The whales pass Sydney on their annual winter migration north and humpbacks and southern right whales are the most regular visitors to the waters off the east coast. All cruises come with a guarantee … if no whales are spotted, passengers are offered another whale watching cruise for free. The Captain Cook Cruises catamarans offer open-air viewing and an allweather lounge. They run until mid-November and depart from Sydney’s Circular Quay every weekend at 9.30am and 1.30pm. There are weekday cruises at 1pm and extra cruises are available during the school holidays. Ticket prices are $90 for an adult, $74 for concession and $57 for a child (5-14yrs) or $239 for a family (2 adults 2 children). Book online and save up to 25%. > captaincook.com.au

Travellers give Cook Islands destinations top gongs! The Cook Islands’ two most popular islands for holidaymakers - Aitutaki and the main island, Rarotonga - are both breathtakingly beautiful and surrounded by blue waters teeming with technicoloured tropical fish. In the recent TripAdvisor 2014 Travellers’ Choice Island Awards, Aitutaki came in at #2 and Rarotonga at #5, in the Top 10 Islands in the South Pacific, with French Polynesia, Vanuatu, Fiji, New Zealand and Australia’s Norfolk Island and Kangaroo Island rounding out the list.

© Shutterstock.com

Trip Advisor’s 2014 Travellers Choice Awards Top 10 Islands in the South Pacific

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1. Bora Bora, French Polynesia 2. Aitutaki, Cook Islands 3. Moorea, French Polynesia 4. Efate, Vanuatu 5. Rarotonga, Cook Islands

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6. Waiheke Island, New Zealand 7. Norfolk Island, Australia 8. Taveuni Island, Fiji 9. Kangaroo Island, Australia 10. Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu



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Icefest 2014

IceFest 2014 brings Antarctica to NZ During the September/October school holidays, Christchurch will undergo an icy transformation when the biennial Antarctic Festival, NZ IceFest 2014, comes to town. From a central ‘Hub’, that will become a destination in itself, visitors can enjoy a fun and informative experience that celebrates New Zealand’s and Christchurch’s unique relationship with Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. Interactive kids activities, a Time Travel Exhibition, and Ice Lab, which showcases innovative and futuristic ideas for Antarctic research stations, will combine to entertain and educate visitors who want to learn more about this mysterious continent. The Antarctic Arts Trail will take people around city art galleries, cafes and outdoor spaces hosting a series of visual art, and the festival program also includes a Film Festival and Antarctic Air Day – a look inside the planes that fly to Antarctica! NZ IceFest 2014 runs from 26 September to 12 October. > nzicefest.co.nz © Anthony Powell

A family holiday that blows the budget? Give me a break. BreakFree The Point, Queenstown Discover fun filled and picture perfect Queenstown. BreakFree The Point is centrally located on the waterfront of beautiful Lake Wakatipu with views over the spectacular Remarkables mountain range. Our self-contained apartments offer the ideal family accommodation, with spacious and comfortable living areas, laundry and kitchen facilities, Sky TV and in-room WiFi.

To book call NZ 0800 448 891 AU 1300 987 602 or visit breakfree.com.au

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D I D Y OU KNOW...?

Did you know …?

DENVER ZOO welcomed a Malayan Tapir calf called Baku on 29 April.

In the past couple of months many of the world’s zoos have been busy welcoming new babies – some of whom are rare and endangered species. Both in Australia and overseas, zoos and their visitors are celebrating new arrivals and the first public appearances of slightly older bubs.

Baby boom PERTH ZOO reptile keepers were surprised by the arrival of two Australian shingleback skinks in May and were quick to show the rare little ones to visitors.

MEMPHIS ZOO has a new baby bonobo called Mpingo who was born on April 28 to mum Lily and dad Mofana. The zoo is thrilled with the new addition as bonobos are classified as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

DUBLIN ZOO is celebrating the recent birth of a Rothschild giraffe, to mum Maeve, who arrived into the world already standing 1.7 metres!

Zoo debut

MELBOURNE ZOO visitors have been introduced to the 150kg baby elephan t Man Jai, who made his public debut at 5 months old.

ZSL LONDON ZOO has welcomed two baby llamas, Mocha and Latte, to two different mums, two days apart! The little ones were born on 16 April and 17 April. The zoo’s keepers were also taken by surprise in late May, by the arrival of a baby sloth, unaware that mum Marilyn was expecting!

Mowbray Park Farm TARONGA WESTERN PLAINS ZOO was delighted wit h the debut of female meerkat pup, Jun kins, who was born on 31 March and will be fully grown by the end of Jul y! Mum Umi kept a watchful eye on her baby as she stepped out for the first time to meet zoo visitors.

Man, you think your room’s untidy If you are under 3 then you are FREE at ‘Wow-bray Park Farm’ Come say G’day to Chloe, Chester, Scooter & friends The days are full of fun at Mowbray Park Farm, Kid’s Club, ponies, camp fires, hay rides & more Day visits, birthday parties & weekend escapes Mowbray Park 745 Barkers Lodge Rd Picton www.farmstayholidays.com.au mowbray@farmstayholidays.com.au Call us 02 46809 243 for that special holiday



TARONGA ZOO, SYDNEY debuted an 8-month old female wombat called Sydney, when she moved out of mum’s pouch to begin discovering the world on the outside.

THE NATIONAL ZOO & AQUARIUM, CANBERRA was proud to show off brother and sister red baby pandas whose mum, Ellish, is part of an international red panda breeding program. The winter welcome to the public is perfect timing for the bubs as the colder months are when red pandas are at their most active.

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Don’t miss The Baby & Toddler Show, Sydney After another hugely successful show in Melbourne in April, The Baby & Toddler Show - the event where everything parents need for pregnancy, baby & toddler is under one roof - heads to Sydney in September.

T

he Baby & Toddler Show is an essential part of the journey to parenthood, full of fabulous shopping from over 200 hot brands with exclusive show specials, advice from leading parenting experts on a range of topics and fantastic entertainment including LIVE shows for little ones, face painting and the LEGO DUPLO Brick Pit. Download the show app for your FREE show bag - enter competitions, view and ‘favourite’ exhibitors and products and plan your day. Search for “Baby & Toddler Show Melbourne” in the iTunes App Store or Google Play. • Join the seminars with experts, including Pinky McKay, covering a wide range of parenting subjects, brought to you by Bio-Oil • Get personalised tips and advice from parenting experts at The Advice Hub • Visit the unique, purpose-built Pram Trial Track and put your favourite stroller brands through its paces • Tend to your baby’s needs in the privacy of the luxurious Woolworths Feeding Room and Woolworths Baby Changing Room • Take some time out from the crowds and share maternal wisdom in the Children’s Panadol Learning Lounge • Fun for little ones with Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom LIVE shows, balloons and face painting and have a hug and a photo with Ben and Holly, along with other favourite characters at the Canon Meet & Greet Station • Let little ones get busy in the fun LEGO DUPLO Brick Pit

The Baby & Toddler Show 26 – 28 September 2014 NEW VENUE: Royal Hall of Industries, Moore Park Friends of Out & About with Kids SPECIAL TICKET OFFER $6 saving off the door price at babyandtoddlershow.com.au – until 5pm AEST Thursday 25 September.

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FR EE N AN N Y - PAR EN T S D R E A M H O L ID AY W ITH TH E K ID S Pay for 4 nights or more & receive

2 free nights plus bonus massage & diving *conditions apply.

Remember pre children exclusive holidays?

Best family resort in Fiji 2014 as voted by readers of Luxury Travel Magazine

The goods news is that there is a special place that offers you a romantic, restful, rejuvenating experience with fine dining, whilst enjoying a family holiday. Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort Fiji views children as the future caretakers of the earth & its oceans and has created fun, educational programs for age groups 0-5 yrs & 6-12 yrs. Each child under 6 has an exclusive nanny 9am-9pm & children 6-12 yrs have a Fijian buddy on 1-5 ratio. Enjoy couples time out or fun times with your family.

Call Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort office to enquire about our inclusive family packages. 1300 306 171 - 03 9815 0379 - sales@fijiresort.com - www.fijiresort.com



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YUMI STYNES

… on kids & medical interventions overseas

I

T’S scary having to take your kid to the doctor when you’re away from home. Even if you’re visiting a sophisticated, clean and urbane city with friends living nearby and everyone speaking a language you know, it’s SCARY. I was scared when I had to take my daughter Anouk to the doctor in Tokyo and … to be honest … it was mostly because I had NO IDEA how much it was going to cost! She was five at the time and we were travelling with my mother on the smell of an oily rag, staying with friends and family, sleeping on floors and taking most of our food with us on day trips. I had memories of

travelling to Japan during the extortionate ‘80s - when the Yen (¥) was high, the Aussie dollar was low, and to calculate the exchange rate you basically multiplied all costs by three. My memory said: When you have to reach for your wallet in Japan, prepare for a slugging. As the plane descended at Narita Airport, my poor little daughter, who’d been complaining of an earache, started screaming and clutching her head. My Uncle Hiroyuki’s house was in downtown Sendagi - one of the few inner suburbs of Tokyo that didn’t get bombed or burnt during the Second World War. In spite of the clutter

The nurses and the doctors at the specialist were adorable and patient and spoke to me in careful English and my mother in rapid Japanese.

Anouk visits the doctor in

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Tokyo

and crush of people, all the buildings there are low-slung and undeveloped. A lot of the homes and businesses have that rustic, authentic Old Japanese look about them and many of the shops are family-run and can trace their ancestors back to the area some 15 or 16 generations. The tofu store that used to sell to my mother when she was a little girl has sold tofu to me, silken and smooth, perfect for sliding into a pot of miso soup. After a tough night listening to my daughter crying with sore ears, I woke up knowing that I had to take my kid to see a doctor, no matter how much it cost.



‘Nose-Sucking Machine’

© Shutterstock.com

My mother and I pushed a pram with Anouk and her little sister Dee Dee about half a kilometre down the main road where we’d found a nose and ear specialist. Not wanting our borrowed pram to be stolen, I dragged it up two flights of stairs and crammed it and us into the tiny waiting room and wondered (not for the first time) how a person would survive in Japan if they couldn’t fit into all these small spaces? (I realised later that no one would ever have stolen our battered old pram and that the protocol would have been to leave it outside at ground level near to where all the bicycles are parked.) The nurses and the doctors at the specialist were adorable and patient and spoke to me in careful English and my mother in rapid Japanese. They found that Anouk had blocked sinuses all the way from her ears to her throat. To her little sister’s PROFOUND AMAZEMENT, they connected Anouk, via a double-nostril plug and some clear plastic tubing, to a sucking machine that, over a 20-minute period, pumped an almost infinite reservoir of snot and gunk from her head. Between wailing and laughing with horror at the sight of all this stuff travelling through two tubes, I had an internal dialogue of wailing in horror about how much all this was going to cost. I guess my memories of Japan in the ‘80s had been too strong. Thirty years on the exchange rate was now much more favourable and the visit to the doctor ended up costing about AUD$90. The main problem I had was convincing the little one that - in spite of how much fun it looked - she didn’t need a turn on the ‘Nose-Sucking Machine’ too.

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Happiness is just three hours away!

Kids  y f or jus t

Escape the winter and fly with Air Vanuatu to Port Vila from just $522 return from Brisbane, $573 return from Sydney and $665 return from Melbourne.

$199

Flights operate to Port Vila from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. Direct flights operate to Espiritu Santo from Brisbane.

www.vanuatu.travel

www.airvanuatu.com

2014 BEST OF

FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS WINNERS & FINALISTS

C

ompiling the list of winners and finalists in the Out & About with Kids BEST OF FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS 2014 has been a huge, and exciting, challenge – our biggest Awards year yet, with thousands of respondents, across 21 family travel categories. That’s a whole lot of votes! With new categories including Best Outback Family Holiday Town, Best Australian Farmstays, Best Australian Camping Spot and Best School Holidays Programs/



Activities, our 2014 Awards cast the net far and wide to find the Best, as voted by you and your family. Thank you to all our readers and subscribers who have given their valuable insights on family travel and for taking the time to help us compile the BEST OF FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS 2014. To all the worthy winners Congratulations to and finalists in each category, Ali Burns of Colac a huge CONGRATULATIONS Victoria, winner of the on being voted ‘The Best’ Jayco Eagle Campervan, by Out & About with Kids’ with thanks to Jayco, families.

Camping for Kids and CIL Insurance.

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2014 BEST OF

FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS WINNERS & FINALISTS

© Shutterstock.com

Gold Coast, Qld

Zagame’s Paradise Resort

Best Australian family destination

Best Australian 4 star and under family resort or hotel

1. Gold Coast, QLD

1. Zagame’s Paradise Resort Gold Coast, QLD

2. Sunshine Coast, QLD 3. Whitsundays, QLD

2. The Islander Noosa Resort, QLD

4. Sydney, NSW

Best international family destination 1. Disneyland, California, USA

1. Hamilton Island, QLD

2. Fiji

2. Daydream Island, QLD

5. Novotel Twin Waters Resort, Sunshine Coast, QLD

3. New Zealand

3. Peppers Beach Club, Port Douglas, QLD

6. Turtle Beach Resort, Gold Coast, QLD

4. Q1 Resort & Spa, Gold Coast, QLD

7. Tangalooma Island Resort, Moreton Island, QLD

5. Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa, QLD

8. Rendezvous Reef Resort, Port Douglas, QLD

6. Sea World Resort, Gold Coast, QLD

9. Mercure Capricorn Resort, Yeppoon, QLD

7. Cable Beach Club Resort & Spa, Broome, WA

10. Mantra Surfers Paradise, QLD

4. Disneyworld Florida, USA 5. Bali, Indonesia

Disneyland California, USA

22

3. BIG4 NRMA Treasure Island Resort Gold Coast, QLD

Best Australian 4 star and over family resort or hotel

WINTER 2014 outandaboutwithkids.com.au

4. Kingfisher Bay Resort, Fraser Island, QLD

8. Port Douglas Sea Temple Resort & Spa, QLD

11. NRMA Murramarang Beachfront Nature Resort, NSW

9. Sheraton Mirage Resort & Spa, Gold Coast, QLD

12. Ramada Resort Shoal Bay, NSW

Best Australian family holiday park

Best family hotel or resort in Asia

1. BIG4 NRMA Ocean Beach Holiday Park, Umina, NSW

1. Outrigger Laguna Phuket Resort & Villas, Thailand

2. BIG4 Northstar Holiday Resort, Hastings Point, NSW

2. Angsana Laguna Phuket, Thailand

3. BIG4 NRMA Treasure Island Resort Gold Coast, QLD

3. Angsana Resort & Spa Bali, Indonesia

4. Blue Dolphin, Yamba, NSW

4. Club Med Phuket, Thailand

5. BIG4 Adventure Whitsunday Resort, QLD

5. Shangri-La Golden Sands Resort Penang, Malaysia

6. Cairns Coconut Holiday Resort, QLD

6. Ayana Resort & Spa Bali, Thailand

7. Broadwater Tourist Park, Southport, QLD

Outrigger on the Lagoon, Fiji’s extra special ‘Memei’ nannies take care of little ones Best family hotel or resort in the Pacific Islands 1. Outrigger on the Lagoon, Fiji 2. Castaway Island, Fiji 3. Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, Fiji

8. Cotton Tree Holiday Park, Maroochydore, QLD

4. Malolo Island Resort, Fiji

9. NRMA Merimbula Beach Resort & Holiday Park, NSW

5. Shangri-La Fijian Resort & Spa, Fiji

10. Discovery Holiday Parks Pambula Beach, NSW

6. The Naviti Resort, Fiji

11. BIG4 Beachlands Holiday Park, West Busselton , WA

7. Warwick Le Lagon Resort & Spa, Vanuatu

12. BIG4 Wye River Holiday Park, VIC

8. Plantation Island Resort, Fiji

13. Toowoon Bay Tourist Park, NSW

BIG4 NRMA Ocean Beach Holiday Park, Umina, NSW

9. The Rarotongan Beach Resort & Spa, Cook Islands 10. Treasure Island Resort, Fiji

Outrigger Laguna Phuket Resort & Villas, Thailand



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2014 BEST OF

FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS WINNERS & FINALISTS

Best family hotel or resort in North America

P&O

1. Disneyland Resort, Anaheim, California 2. Walt Disney World Resort, Orlando, Florida 3. Hilton Hawaiian Village, Waikiki Beach, Honolulu

Best baby and toddler resorts & hotels

Best family cruise line

1. Zagame’s Paradise Resort Gold Coast, QLD

2. Carnival

Best family hotel or resort in Africa

2. Club Med Bali, Nusa Dua, Indonesia

4. Disney

1. SunCity Resort, Sun City, South Africa

3. BIG4 NRMA Treasure Island Resort Gold Coast, QLD

2. Camp Jabulani, Hoedspruit, South Africa

4. Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, Fiji

3. Madikwe Safari Lodge, South Africa

5. Breakfree Aanuka Beach Resort, Coffs Harbour, NSW

4. Grootbos Lodge, South Africa

6. Hamilton Island, QLD

5. More Quarters, Cape Town, South Africa

7. Bali Dynasty Resort, Kuta, Indonesia

Thredbo

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1. P&O 3. Royal Caribbean 5. Princess

© Thredbo Alpine Village

4. Nickelodeon Suites Resort, Orlando, Florida

© Australia Zoo

Australia Zoo

Best Australian and New Zealand family ski resorts

Best Australian attractions

1. Thredbo, NSW

2. Australia Zoo, QLD

2. Perisher, NSW

3. Movie World, QLD

3. Mt Hotham, VIC

4. Dreamworld, QLD

4. Mt Buller, VIC

5. Wet ‘n’ Wild, QLD

1. Sea World, QLD

Best Australian attraction – Sea World Resort

5. Falls Creek, VIC 6. Coronet Peak, New Zealand 7. The Remarkables, New Zealand

Best International attractions

8. Cardrona, New Zealand

1. Disneyland, California, USA

Best Australian animal experiences

2. Bali Safari & Marine Park, Indonesia

1. Australia Zoo, QLD

Best International family ski resorts 1. Big White, Kelowna, Canada 2. Vail, Colorado, USA 3. Aspen, Colorado, USA

3. Sentosa, Singapore

2. Taronga Western Plains Zoo, Dubbo, NSW

4. Auckland Zoo, New Zealand

3. Zoos Victoria, VIC

5. Legoland, Florida, USA

4. Sea World, QLD

6. Legoland, Malaysia

4. Banff, Canada 5. Niseko, Japan 6. Switzerland 7. Sun Peaks, Canada 8. Innsbruck, Austria



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2014 BEST OF

FAMILY TRAVEL AWARDS WINNERS & FINALISTS

Sydney Olympic Park

Best Australian farmstay 1. Mowbray Park, NSW 2. Lilydale, QLD 3. Four Elements, WA 4. Burrawang West Station, NSW

Best Australian outback family holiday town 1. Alice Springs, NT 2. Longreach, QLD 3. Coober Pedy, NSW

Best Australian beachside family holiday town 1. Batemans Bay, NSW

Best Australian family camping spot 1. The Grampians National Park, VIC

3. Gold Coast, QLD

2. Coral Bay, Ningaloo Marine Park, WA

4. Rye, VIC

3. M yall Lakes National Park, NSW

5. Robe, SA

4. Wee Jasper, NSW

2. Byron Bay, NSW

5. Wilsons Promontory, VIC 6. Barrington Tops, NSW 7. Wirrabara State Forest, SA 8. Bay of Fires, TAS

4. Kalgoorlie, WA 5. Broken Hill, NSW

Best Australian school holidays program or activity 1. Sydney Olympic Park, NSW 2. Zoos Victoria, VIC 3. YMCA, nationwide 4. PCYC, nationwide 5. VAC SWIM, nationwide 6. Vegemite SurfGroms, nationwide 7. Libraries, nationwide

Best family camping spot The Grampians National Park

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8. Federation Square Melbourne School Holidays Program, VIC 9. Perth City School Holidays Program, WA 10. Queensland Museum, QLD

T

My big fat family holiday in Bali

HE dynamics were always going to be interesting, travelling with my large family group, but being very familiar with Bali, I was confident I had it covered.

THE FAMILY ENCLAVE I had chosen Griya Santrian Hotel, right on the beach in Sanur, a fishing village on the east coast, a comfortable 40-minute drive from the airport (I had organised a 15-seater bus to meet us). Settled in our adjacent ground floor garden wing rooms, with porches overlooking the pool, we were easily able to keep an eye on the kids in the pool and get together in our private enclave in the evenings when the little ones had gone to bed. Early risers were treated to spectacular sunrises as they watched local fishermen cast their nets, searched for starfish and chatted to early morning walkers. While the boys went jet skiing or windsurfing, the girls indulged in massages, manicures and pedicures ... and hair braiding for the little ones - essential evidence of a Bali holiday! There was also a turtle hatchery just a short walk from our resort, which the kids loved. The family with older children hired bikes and went riding on the boardwalk alongside the beach and an unexpected invitation to a local palace provided a lesson in making offerings and an opportunity to be blessed by a high priest. An evening Kecak (Monkey) dance performance added a dose of local culture.

A true Bali fan, Jane Milojevic eagerly rose to the challenge of organising a Bali holiday for her large family group of 18, including seven grandchildren aged from 11 years to 16 months. With a little planning, the varied needs, wants and interests of this blended family - which included two of her own children, two of her husband’s children and a number of first-time travellers – were easily fulfilled in Bali!

BALI SAFARI & MARINE PARK

Š Shutterstock.com

A group outing required group transport, so in the 15-seater bus once more, we headed to Bali Safari

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off a Eve and Sienna, coming rk Pa at Waterbom

ride

B ALI

TOP TIPS

and Marine Park at Gianyar for a full day that began with a piranha-feeding demonstration in the fresh water aquarium and ended with dinner in the Tsavo restaurant, where the lions are on the other side of the window … just five metres from where we were having dinner. In between we went on a ‘safari journey’ through an open zoo area that is home to a range of domestic jungle animals, like the Sumatran tiger and elephant, and African wildlife. We cooled off in the Water Park, had a ball in the Fun Zone where amusement park rides included everything from mild carousels to roller coasters, and jungle river rides to dodgem cars, and had photos taken with an orangutan, a lion cub and elephants. It was a fantastic day!

UBUD, KUTA, JIMBARAN & LEGIAN As some of our group were ‘Bali virgins’ they were keen to see a little more of the island, so we negotiated a couple of cars with drivers for the day and drove to Ubud, stopping on the way to see silverworks, woodcarving, a batik factory and the famous monkey forest at Sangeh. Shopping in the local markets is always great, with an endless supply of cute outfits, novelty bags and toys for kids - all incredibly inexpensive, especially if you have the bargaining gene. Even without that gene, you can shop yourself silly at amazingly cheap fixed prices, in department stores including Hardy’s at Sanur and Matahari and Ramayana in Kuta and Legian. All along the beach, as well as in the main street, there are small restaurants that serve a range of cuisines, including local and western. There are plenty of kid-friendly options and an evening meal for a family of two adults and two children rarely cost more than Rp300,000 (around AUD$30) including a cocktail and beer.

for families

1. Metered taxis are super cheap in Bali and it is also easy to negotiate with drivers of private vehicles. This can work well if you want them to wait for you or if you need a bigger car.

2. Travelling in a large family group requires a certain level of advance planning. The bus transfers were a godsend for us, as was booking the bus for our day trip to the safari park. Taxis worked fine for everything else.

Hugging an orangutan :) coincided with the resort’s regular seafood barbecue evening - perfect for the black and white ‘Rhonda and Ketut’ (“like a sunrise”) singlets that are so popular now. Although the focus of the holiday was very definitely shared family time, there was also an opportunity for the boys and the girls each to have a night out. The girls definitely came out on top with an indulgent session in the Aquatonic Seawater Therapy Pool at AYANA Resort and Spa, followed by a cocktail at the exclusive Rock Bar and dinner at Sami Sami restaurant. Bliss! The final verdict: Bali will see us all back in three years time, no doubt with an even larger family group!

To read more of “My big fat family holiday in Bali” head to outandaboutwithkids.com.au > ayanaresort.com > santrian.com/griya

Jane says:

Waterbom is a theme park in South Kuta where we had the best day ever! There are water activities for all ages, kiddie slides, a toddler pool, a lazy river ride, slides with twists, turns and bumps to add excitement or long straight slides for those with a need for speed. The Superbowl allows you to experience exactly how it feels to be flushed down the loo and the Boomerang sends you twisting and turning down a steep incline before shooting you up into the air, seemingly to touch the clouds, then bringing you rushing back to the pool. While these were enough to scare the budgie smugglers off Grandpa (not quite, fortunately!), the younger adults braved the newest ride, the Climax, where riders stand atop a trap door in a small chamber waiting to experience an almost vertical drop before rushing through a tube that does a complete loop and spits you out at the end. > waterbom-bali.com



4. You can buy nappies there, but bring your own if you are particular about brands. Swim nappies may be more difficult to find, so best to bring a supply and also a good stock of hand sanitiser to ensure the kids stay healthy (this can be purchased in Bali).

of compressed wipes that expand to full size when water is added, come in handy for cleaning and also for keeping necks cool.

Waterbom Bali

as days can be hot and walking is tiring. A toddler’s chair restraint is also useful to keep little ones safe when high chairs are not available.

5. ‘Pure wipes’, which are tablets

OUR OWN ENTERTAINMENT! We added some extra spice to three of our evening meals by turning them into theme nights. Our ‘tropical night’ brought out lots of loud shirts and floral dresses and our ‘black and white night’

3. Strollers are a must for littlies

6. If catering for kids of different ages, it is a good idea to bring a small supply of activity books and a portable DVD player to keep older siblings amused while younger ones sleep. DVDs cost around $1 each in Bali and there is no shortage of appropriate videos for children.

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Complimentary

Kids Club open from 10am–10pm

The 4 star Naviti Resort is cocooned on 38 acres of tropical gardens alongside golden beaches and tropical palms. Situated on Fiji’s famous coral coast the Naviti Resort is a famous All Inclusive resort. where guests can enjoy all meals, unlimited drinks, free golf green fees, Sunset Cruise, nightly entertainment, and many other activities. For more information or to make a reservation Ph. (679) 653 0444 Fax. (679) 653 0099 Email : navitireservations@warwickhotels.com Website: www.warwicknaviti.com

Like us or Call us for free DVD and brochure

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B ALI

TOP

10

REASONS TO VISIT BALI

Babysitting

Jane says…

Recent customer analysis from Escape Travel shows that Bali consistently ranks in the top five international destinations for Australian travellers and is the preferred international holiday destination for families with young children and teens. In fact, Bali has been the number one international destination for Escape Travel for five years running. Escape Travel consultants share their top ten reasons to visit Bali:

1.

It’s a tropical playground where the clocks are decidedly set to island time. Aussie visitors feel a kindred spirit with the laid-back lifestyle on Bali that keeps them coming back time after time.

2.

It is a manageable international flight from Australia that can be taken overnight to maximise time on the ground. Plus, a slick new international airport and cheap transfer options makes for a pleasant transition into holiday mode.

6.

There is a diversity of experiences, from shopping, surfing, lounging, retreating and serenity-seeking, to exploring and indulging. Kids love Waterbom theme park, the Monkey Forest and the Bali Safari and Marine Park.

3.

4.

Bali’s rich culture and heritage is visible everywhere. There are over 20,000 temples on the island and spirituality and community is integral to Balinese people. Colourful festivals and ceremonies are calendar fixtures and traditional Balinese dance, music, drama and local cooking classes allow visitors to immerse themselves in the culture.

Bali is great value for money where affordable flights and accommodation packages are available in abundance and the cost of living while on the ground is staggeringly cheap. Meals are inexpensive, even at upscale resorts and restaurants, with shopping and entertainment reasonably priced. Even better, spa treatments are cheap enough to indulge in, without guilt, each day.

5.

Live like royalty in a private villa staffed by a personal cook, driver and butler, for far less than you think. Your money goes further in Bali, where you can splash out on a stay at a five-star resort with all the bells and whistles - opt for an all-inclusive resort or snag a private villa in Seminyak or Ubud.

8.

9.

Bali has show-stopping natural beauty. Picturesque rice terraces, soaring volcanoes, pristine crater lakes, green hillsides, sacred caves, lush tropical forests and a dramatic coastline inspire awe, while the tropical beaches are a visitor favourite.

10.

Bali is a destination for self-discovery with an ages-old healing tradition that allows you to relax and reset. The benefits of acupuncture have been hailed by locals for centuries and yogic meditation is practised daily by many, making Bali the perfect base for travellers looking for a restorative escape at one of many meditation and wellbeing retreats scattered on the island. > Visit outandaboutwithkids.com.au for special Escape Travel family deals to Bali, valid when booked before 30 September 2014. > Plan a trip to Bali by calling Escape Travel on 1300 799 783 or go to escapetravel.com.au for more information.



7.

World-class restaurants line the streets to tempt foodies with everything from fresh seafood and fusion to complex Balinese dishes.

Bali is home to some of the friendliest and most welcoming people in the world, where no tourist demand is too demanding and service with a smile is standard. The friendly locals have a strong sense of spirituality, are proud patriots and go out of their way to make visitors feel comfortable.

Babysitting services are available at most hotels and the Balinese are known to be great with kids. In fact their sense of humour, gentleness and love of children are an intrinsic element of any family holiday to Bali. My daughter had a taste of this each time she returned to her room after it had been cleaned and discovered the stuffed toys on the beds and cot had been arranged in a different manner.

BALI

need to know Climate: Tropical Bali experiences a year-round average daily temperature of 30°C. Humidity is highest during the wet season (October-April). Currency: Local currency is the Indonesian Rupiah. AUD $1 buys around Rp 10,000. Local lingo: Good morning – selamat pagi. (S’LAH-maht PAH-ghee) Good afternoon – selamat siang (S’LAH-maht SEE-yang) Good evening – selamat sore (S’LAH-maht soh-ray) Good night – selamat malam (S’LAH-maht MAH-lahm) Please – tolong (TOH-long) Thank you – terima kasih (TERri-mah car-see]

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THE BEST THING IN LIFE Watching the kids have fun.

There should always be a special magic for the children when you go on holiday. Like exploring the underwater world with a snorkel, playing on a silky-soſt beach, riding water slides, catching a glimpse of an exotic culture, or enjoying the novelty of staying in a seaside villa. And did we mention eating great food? With Centara, the best things in life are there to be discovered.

Bangkok • Pattaya • Hua Hin • Trat • Koh Chang Chiang Mai • Mae Sot • Udon Thani • Khon Kaen Koh Samui • Phuket • Khao Lak • Krabi

Discover our BEST Rate Guarantee at

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www.centarahotelsresorts.com

T: 02 8096 8781

E: rsoaus@chr.co.th

DAD’S WORD

Lindsay Field & family in front of the Rodin Museum in Paris

Our biggest family holiday disaster was returning on a flight from Hong Kong with an extremely unsettled daughter … the patience of my wife, Julie, was an inspiration. I’ve had great sympathy for those who find themselves in confined spaces with unhappy/unwell children ever since.

Lindsay Field A long-time member of the John Farnham band, this highlyrespected singer possesses a voice described as being ‘like liquid chocolate’. An inspirational vocal coach and the producer of ‘The Myer Spirit of Christmas’ CD, Lindsay lives in Melbourne with wife Julie Reilly and daughters Maddie (19) and Issie (16) - and Maisy the hound….

As a kid my family holidays were always adventurous, camping in the wilds of NZ with extended family – travelling on the back of an uncle’s 7-ton truck. Plenty of beach, singing and fun! The first family holiday with my own kids was to New Zealand to visit a very proud grandmother and meet the extended Kiwi family.

In Australia, we love Port Douglas and the outer reef. Overseas, we’ve explored New Zealand, Italy, France, the UK, Hong Kong and Fiji. The best thing about holidaying as a family is spending time together as a family without the distractions that usually surround us. The shared experiences are things that bring us closer together. I’ve found the easiest way to travel with kids is to give them space and plenty of TLC. Rest is really important, and some sound structure in the itinerary. My #1 family holiday tip is to be loving, caring and attentive to the needs of your family. If I could visit any destination in the world it would be Montepulciano in Tuscany – beautiful in every way.

As a family our holiday musts are changing rapidly as the kids get older. Theme parks have given way to themed soirees. It’s now more like travelling as an adult quartet. Our best family holiday was travelling through Europe with a French-fluent daughter, a semi-fluent Italian speaking partner and the four of us vying to be the responsible adult! Great fun.



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ANTONIA KIDMAN …on her secret Singapore

Mum of six, Antonia Kidman, has been living in Singapore with her family for the past few years, so who better to give us a local’s perspective on all the great things Singapore offers families?

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Tell us about your secret Singapore and what makes it such a great holiday destination? I’ve lived in Singapore for over four years and my enjoyment in the city-state continues to grow. It is a wonderful mix of Malay, Chinese, Indian and Western cultures. I love peeling back the layers and discovering Singapore’s history. What are some things to do in Singapore that would appeal to the whole family? The new Children’s Garden at Gardens by the Bay is an extraordinary experience. The gardens surrounding the water park are beautiful and truly represent vegetation from all over the world. This is one of the places I love to take my family to regularly. These days a lot of families travel with multi generations - Mum & Dad, grandparents and kids. What activities appeal to all ages? Singapore has some great theatre performances that can be enjoyed by all ages. I particularly like one of the local theatre companies called Wild Rice, which has great family-friendly productions. A visit to Chinatown or Little India is also a wonderful way to soak up the culture, as there

are so many things to see and do when visiting these enclaves. Where can families eat outside of the big hotels? Singapore has great Hawker Centres and lots of outdoor dining options along Boat Quay and Robertson Quay. We will often visit Boat Quay for Sunday brunch, and the children enjoy riding along the esplanade on their bikes and scooters. What are your pick of places for families to explore? Fort Canning is a great place to explore where the kids can soak up some history. I would highly recommend one of the free guided walks, as it’s a great way to revisit what happened with the British Commanders before the fall of Singapore. What are your favourite attractions? Tanjong Beach Club is a fantastic spot for lunch and a swim with the whole family. It’s the perfect place to spend a chilled day with the children on the beach, hanging out and building sandcastles. > yoursingapore.com

The water park at the Gardens by the Bay, Singapore



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Four Seasons Hotel, Sydney

The

Suite Life Australia’s best family stays – tried & tested

The iconic Four Seasons Hotel is perfectly located overlooking Sydney Harbour at Circular Quay – a short walk to the Opera House, Harbour Bridge and the historic Rocks district. The Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens are also only a short walk away - giving families ample opportunities to explore Sydney vantage points, the beautiful gardens and educational displays. The hotel features the city’s most stylish accommodation with guest rooms offering a warm yet luxurious ambience. Each room is equipped with 42-inch LCD television, DVD player, iPod/MP3 docking station and wireless internet access. Kids will also love the heated outdoor pool, family-friendly restaurant and special kids room service menu. > fourseasons.com/sydney

Chief Concierge, Jorge Sousa says:

There are 40 beaches in and around “ Sydney, and every one of them offers a safe place to swim, surf or simply make sandcastles on the shore. The most popular beach is Bondi, and there’s an easy walk from there to another kidfriendly beach at Bronte. Remember to stop for fish and chips on the way!

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Alamanda, Palm Cove Nestled among the tranquil surroundings of Palm Cove, and the only coastal property with uninterrupted beach views, Alamanda boasts a prime location just 25 minutes from Cairns International airport. Walk from the stunning, luxurious self-contained apartments straight onto the Great Barrier Reef, or choose to relax in one of three swimming pools. Alamanda Palm Cove is the perfect holiday retreat for both families and couples. With over 60 luxurious and spacious resort apartments, Alamanda provides wonderful relaxation for its guests. Opt to rest and relax in a one-bedroom suite, perfect for couples, with two bathrooms, dining and living areas and fully equipped kitchen, or choose to bring the whole family and stay in the two or three

bedroom suites that cater for five people comfortably. All self-contained apartments are fully airconditioned with timber and tiled floors, as well as a plasma TV, a private balcony and free Wi-Fi. The property also boasts two lounges, along with the award winning Nu Nu’s restaurant that looks out into the tropical haven of the Great Barrier Reef.

Ty Goulter General Manager says:

Palm Cove is a beautiful destination to escape and relax. Alamanda’s beachfront location allows our guests to relax in the comforts of their room, while also being able to easily access the beach. I recommend exploring and experiencing the best of what Palm Cove has to offer, whether it be going for a bike ride, water sports, swimming, hiking, fishing, or heading down to one of the local boutiques – there is something for everyone here.

Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront Darwin’s Waterfront is an ideal spot for a family holiday. With its multiple swimming spots, lively restaurants and peaceful promenade, it’s the perfect place to enjoy the NT’s endless summer weather while soaking up the buzz of the boardwalk. Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront is a go-to place to stay for families looking for a relaxed but action-packed retreat. For the little ones, kids under 12 can eat for free at Curve Restaurant onsite, making their own pancakes at breakfast with the pancake machine, and enjoying a complimentary kids pack, which includes crayons and colouring-in sheets. And if venturing out is what the family is after, the waterfront’s trendy restaurants are right on the doorstep, along with Australia’s freshest seafood along Stokes Hill Wharf. This scenic location is a great spot for gelato, fish and chips, oysters, a stir-fry or a cold refreshment in the sun. Parents can enjoy interconnecting rooms at



Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront for a bit of peace and quiet. Or explore Darwin’s vibrant shopping scene and hip cafes and bars by taking up Vibe Hotel Darwin’s babysitting services. There’s also a gym and indoor pool downstairs, for those eager to squeeze in a workout. But the highlight for the little ones is the Wave Lagoon right on Vibe Hotel’s doorstep - it’s a complete and inexpensive family day out. > vibehotels.com.au/hotels/ northern-territory/darwin/vibedarwin

Emma Fraser, Group Director of Marketing for TFE Hotels says:

At Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront, guests are able to enjoy a central, beachfront location. This is perfect for families, as parents can take their children for a swim at the Wave Lagoon right outside the hotel, stroll the boardwalk and dine out at one of the city’s restaurants, all within metres of each other. Being right on the waterfront, the property offers a vibrant atmosphere, which is great for creating that relaxed holiday feel.

The Lyall Hotel & Spa, Melbourne An oasis of calm located amid some of Melbourne’s finest shops and restaurants, The Lyall Hotel and Spa’s fashionable South Yarra address makes it an ideal base for exploring Melbourne’s major tourist attractions. “Australia’s Leading Boutique Hotel” as voted by the World Travel Awards, The Lyall is Melbourne’s only privately owned and personally managed 5 star hotel. The boutique ambience and personal service is welcoming and accommodation ranges from stylish, contemporary, oriental-inspired one and two-bedroom suites to the opulent Grand Suites and Platinum Suite. Bistro Lyall is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner with a great menu featuring seasonal and local produce and there’s even the option of healthier ‘Spa Cuisine’ choices.

24-hour room service, complimentary wireless internet, bar, The Lyall spa, a gymnasium complete with ‘Life Fitness’ equipment, and a collection of original art, by local French artist Thierry B, displayed in each suite as well as in mini galleries on each level, all adds up to a relaxing Melbourne stay that is distinctive and unique in every way. > thelyall.com

Rowina Thomas, Hotelier, says:

The Lyall has a very “ personalised approach to service

and as a family-run hotel, we welcome and provide for families to ensure that children feel special and very much at home. If you can lure the little ones (and the big ones) away from the jellybeans on the reception desk, you’ll find our service and our family suites provide a comfortable base from which to enjoy the best of Melbourne. Tram rides, feeding the ducks in the Royal Botanic Gardens, The Melbourne Zoo, as well as the Aquarium, are just some of the must-do things for children.

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www.iririki.com

Iririki Island Resort

Welcome!

A

rriving to Iririki Island Resort, you are welcomed straight away into the Iririki family where our gracious smiling staff will be there to ensure your stay is carefree, relaxing and enjoyable. Iririki Island Resort is centrally located on an island only minutes from the shores of Port Vila town centre suitable for honeymooners, couples, and families for total relaxation to a fun filled tropical island holiday. Accommodation includes tropical Island Fare’s (bungalows) set amongst lush tropical gardens to our Waterfront Fares overlooking the crystal clear waters and coral reefs. For families or couples, we provide Deluxe Pool and Ocean view rooms each with their own spa tub. For larger families or even two couples, Iririki offer contemporary two and three level Penthouses. Vanuatu is the jewel of the South Pacific and Iririki Island Resort is the diamond of Vanuatu reflecting the true friendliness of our staff happily to serve you in making your holiday with us a lasting and memorable holiday experience that captures the true essence of Vanuatu and it’s people.

Facilities: 3 restaurants, 2 cafes, 3 bars, live entertainment 4 level cascading pool with swim up bar Bali Hai infinity pool two beach areas spa & gym, tennis courts

Activities: snorkelling sailing jet skis Kayaking beach volleyball games room children’s playground and many tour programs available from our Tour Desk.

Plus: complimentary kids club with the services to provide child-minding for parents looking to spend a romantic evening together.

Iririki Island Resort: Lini Highway, Iririki Island, Port Vila. Vanuatu P: +61 3 9326 6579 W: www.iririki.com E: info@iririki.com

VANU ATU

Escape to Vanuatu We’re spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing a holiday paradise destination in the South Pacific. The region has many holiday jewels for Aussie families and Vanuatu is a gem just waiting to be discovered, says Lisa Monk

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slands dot the South Pacific region like emeralds thrown across blue velvet and an amazing 83 of those islands belong to Vanuatu – a nation with a rich Melanesian history, stunning landscape and tropical climate. This volcanic archipelago lies 1,750 kilometres northeast of Australia (around a three hour flight from the east coast), with New Caledonia to the south and Fiji to the west. Once known as the New Hebrides, the island nation has Spanish, French and English influences, and gained its independence in 1980. The capital city of Port Vila is on Efate, one of the three main islands, which also include Espiritu Santo and Tanna.

SO MUCH TO DO, SO MUCH CHOICE! Efate is the most densely populated of the islands and is home to Bauerfield International Airport and a selection of resorts and accommodation choices to suit everyone.



The resorts offer everything that you expect of a tropical holiday … wonderful pools, a host of dining options, kids clubs and excursions, so you can do as much or as little as you want. Established properties include Warwick Le Lagon Resort & Spa, Erakor Island Resort, Iririki Island Resort and Coco Beach Resort. Vanuatu offers the spectrum of family holiday fun, from snorkelling the colourful coral reefs, ziplining through the jungle or – for the adventurous! – abseiling down cascades, to eating with locals and really getting to know the culture and spirit that make this such a special destination. The island of Tanna is known for volcanic Mount Yasur and its spectacular eruptions and is just 45 minutes by plane from Efate, so is perfect for a day trip. The volcanic nature of the island means the beaches have remarkable black sands, but the coral is as eye-catching as anywhere else in the island group. There is a limited range of accommodation on Tanna, so most visitors tend to stay on Efate.

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Local lingo The national language of Vanuatu is Bislama – and since many of the words are derived from English and French introduced by early colonists, it’s easy to pick up, and pronounce, basic greetings and simple conversation! Start with ‘Halo’ and ‘Gud Bye’ and you’ll be on your way! Please – plis Thank you – tankiu Thank you very much - tankiu tumas How much (is that) - hamas

VANUATU

Need to know

• It’s easy to travel between the islands, so Vanuatu doesn’t have to be a ‘drop and flop’ holiday – unless that’s what you’re looking for. • The islands offer something for everyone – from the underwater caves and coral reefs on Tanna to the cultural history and amazing diving on ‘Santo’. The dramatic volcano action of Mount Yasur is breathtaking and no visit to Efate would be complete without a trip to the Mele Cascades. • The accommodation ranges from budget B&Bs to lodges to top-end resorts. • English, French and the local language Bislama are spoken.

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Vanuatu’s largest island is Espiritu Santo and while it is a popular add-on for travellers staying in Efate, it is increasingly seen as a destination in its own right, due in no small part to the numbers of cruise ships that now call in. If you want to dip your toes into the whitest sand imaginable, then Champagne Beach is for you – a blinding stretch of glistening sand. ‘Santo’ is also home to the Blue Lagoon, a pool of such astonishing blue that it takes your breath away.

KIDS AND CULTURE There’s plenty to see and do with the kids – if you can drag them away from the water! The Iarofa Cultural Village is the home of fire walking and has demonstrations of traditional practices, like sheltering from cyclones in the roots of a banyan tree and ancient fishing techniques. Just a short drive from Port Vila you’ll find the Mele Cascades, which has a wonderful swimming hole and is a great place for a picnic. While the walk can be steep, the guides are happy to help carry littlies, so

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this is a great family excursion. The markets in Port Vila are bursting with life and colour and wonderful range of souvenirs. You’ll find good shopping in the main street, with everything from local handicrafts to duty-free perfume. Take the kids to the Botanic Gardens & Reptile Park - a quirky place with fruit bats, lizards, snakes, a Cannibal hut, Chief’s area, kava and a WW2 collection - and hear fascinating stories about local customs and legends. A tour of Ekasup Cultural village will give you insight into the islanders’ ancient way of life. Learn how to use native herbs for medicine, food preservation and roasting, make hunting traps, weave mats, hats, baskets, and prepare local dishes. Vanuatu can be whatever holiday you’re looking for … lazing on glorious beaches, seeing the colonial buildings in Port Vila, hiking through tropical rainforest and visiting small villages rich in the culture of their ancestors. > vanuatu.travel

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STEVE JACOBS … TODAY show stalwart, seasoned traveller and dad ... on love, work and family in Vanuatu Beware the ‘Vanuatu bug’ when you speak to the genial Steve Jacobs about his favourite island getaway. But don’t worry, it’s not some gnatty insect that might get you - it’s a highly infectious invitation to discover for yourself the destination that ‘got’ Steve and wife Rosie instantly, and the tale of happy coincidences that led them both, and daughters Isabella (3) and Francesca (1), to adopt Vanuatu as the Jacobs family’s #1 go-to holiday heaven, and their second ‘home’. He’s travelled the world in his role as TODAY’s weatherman-on-the-go, but says that of all the spectacular, awe-inspiring and fun places he’s been privileged to visit, both in Australia and across the globe, there’s just something about the call of Vanuatu that is irresistible. So it’s not surprising to hear him declare that he’s ‘absolutely rapt’ to be invited to spread the love, as an ambassador for Vanuatu Tourism.



I’ve never seen my 3-year-old so happy, in her whole short existence, as when we’re on holidays in Vanuatu.

“It’s funny how things are sometimes just meant to happen,” he says. “We were looking for a holiday before we had kids– somewhere romantic, tropical, not too far away, not too pricey - and we weren’t really aware of Vanuatu, but then we found Ratua Private Island off Espiritu Santo, and an hour after we booked our holiday my producer got a phone call from Vanuatu Tourism saying they’d like us to go over there to do the weather for TODAY! “Rosie and I loved it so much, just magnificent! We were actually the first couple to have a romantic moonlight dinner on the new jetty at Havannah. “Then, with TODAY, I got to do all the exciting things like abseiling down the cascade falls, going to Champagne Beach, diving and fishing, and we even broadcast from the Mount Yasur volcano on Tanna Island, which is still one of the top two things I’ve been able to do through my work.

“We also visited a couple of cultural villages in Efate, Espiritu Santo and on Tanna which everyone should do because it really opens your eyes to understanding the rich culture and the people – they are so happy and welcoming with the biggest, brightest smiles.” “And we love the food! It’s a mix of local and European influences, so you get beautiful fresh seafood plus great French wines, cheeses and champagne, all very affordable. We love to wander down to the Bon Marché [supermarket]. With the arrival of Isabella and Francesca, the family experience ‘opened up a whole new Vanuatu world’ and, Steve adds, they now not only feel like locals there but are delighted to see their girls, in their element, falling into the Vanuatu island rhythm and kicking back, au naturel. “Isabella will spend hours down on the sand, digging up hermit crabs and letting them crawl on her hand. Just happily playing.” “I think that’s what made me fall in love with Vanuatu all over again, holidaying as a family. I think it’s these kind of experiences that stay in a child’s mind, when they’re free to roam, to play all day with simplicity, in paradise.”

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Private Paradise Zebra, rhino, giraffe, impala, hippo, elephant, lion - Michelle Pettigrove and her family, including the newly-dubbed, ‘Princess’ Georgia, experience the extraordinary and abundant game viewing opportunities on offer in South Africa, and enjoy the unique hospitality of two private lodges bordering Kruger National Park.

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here are times when things seem too good to be true. Our family’s strongest and happiest travel memories are of extraordinary random incidents and the unexpected grace and generosity of hosts. The Kapama River Lodge and the Royal Malewane Safari Lodge - private game reserves bordering Kruger National Park in South Africa offer both these magical elements in abundance.

...we spot water buffalo, wildebeest, giraffe, kudu, zebra, jackal, hippo, waterbuck, lion, elephant and impala, and not another human in sight.

KAPAMA RIVER LODGE The drive to Kapama River Lodge is spectacular. We cut through the mighty Drakensburg Mountains, where inky shadows lie between peaks, and waterfalls topple over tangerine and lime cliffs. Kapama River Lodge is the largest luxury game lodge in the Greater Kruger area, offering 64 suites. Guests don’t notice its size and capacity, thanks to its unassuming elegance and clever layout. Timber boardwalks link accommodation to the stylish lounge, bar, restaurant and wellness centre and Georgia is thrilled to spot a family of antelope on the way to our room – the first of many such sightings. We meet Wayne and Roger, our ranger and tracker. I ask if the animals are as abundant here on the private reserves as they are in Kruger and Wayne laughs and answers, “There are just as many animals but only a fraction of the humans looking for them.” And he’s right! We spot water buffalo, wildebeest, giraffe, kudu, zebra, jackal, hippo, waterbuck, lion, elephant and impala, and not another human in sight! Georgia’s face is priceless when she sees two rhinos lumber past our truck, almost close enough to touch. On dusk we spot a pride of lions and these awesome cats saunter past, their eyes glittering and their huge paws leaving powdery prints in the dust. Now this is game viewing!

ROYAL MALEWANE Next stop is the Royal Malewane, possibly the most exclusive of the luxury safari lodges. Located in the vast Thornybush Private Game Reserve, the Royal Malewane’s guest book features the signatures of Elton John, Bill Gates, Justin Bieber and the Castro family (yes, from Cuba) to name a few. From the moment we arrive we are addressed by name, except for Georgia who is henceforth nicknamed ‘Princess’. Our upgrade to the Royal Suite is a wonderful surprise. A tour reveals stylish sitting and dining areas, decorated with African colonial furniture, artwork and antiques and the kitchen that’s usually staffed by a private chef and butler! Georgia is delighted with her bedroom, with its



Frank & Georgia king-size canopy bed and huge bathroom. The expansive deck has a private pool, spa and gazebos backing onto the bushveld. Our guides, Terence and Ryan, delight in the adventure as much as we do. They inch us closer to a mother leopard fussing over her young. They thrill to see a black rhino and her calf – two of less than 5,000 left in the world - and grin as we watch a lioness scold her cubs. We spend a long time in the middle of a herd of exhausted elephants, their eyelids drooping from a night of grazing. Private game lodges like Kapama and Malewane are taking pressure off Kruger by offering a viable option for families wanting an authentic safari experience. These customised holidays might be more expensive than a DIY Kruger adventure, but the benefits include up-market accommodation, five star cuisine, access to luxury spa facilities and impeccable service. Possibly the biggest benefit is the superior game viewing - six guests per vehicle and two vehicles per sighting. On our last night the guests share a sumptuous Bedouin-style dinner, with only canvas and a few armed rangers between the local wildlife and us. And like Elton John and the Castros, we know we will be back. > kapama.co.za > royalmalewane.com

Leopard spotting!

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Photographers: Joann oa e Buck + Paul Osta l www w.TheRaro rotong tongan.c n om

PLAY FREE IN PARADISE!

Now your family can feel the freedom of Paradise with the NEW DIRECT FLIGHT from Australia to the heart of the South Pacific, Rarotonga! At the 4-star Rarotongan Beach Resort & Spa your family can enjoy the island’s best beach and lagoon, including ALL-TIDE safe swimming in the Aroa Lagoon Marine Reserve, the island’s best snorkelling lagoon protected by a natural coral reef from the open ocean (no stingers or sharks to worry about!). KIDS STAY FREE! KIDS PLAY FREE @ the amazing Moko’s Kids Club – includes KIDS NATURE & CULTURE DISCOVERY PROGRAMME! FREE Snacks & Drinks at Kids Club sessions! FREE Kids Welcome Pack! NEW Banana Beach Playland crèche (0-3 years; charges apply). NEW Teen Zone! Extensive FREE Activities Programme for all the family with snorkelling, kayaking, tennis, beach sports, games room, learn to dance the hula, play the ukulele & log drums, make a lei, husk a coconut + much more. Around Rarotonga enjoy 4WD Safari Tour, Glass-Bottom Boat Lagoon Cruise, rainforest trek to see one of the world’s rarest birds, Saturday Market, cafes & restaurants – all minutes away! The tropical island family holiday of your dreams awaits you at The Rarotongan!

Aroa Beach + Lagoon Marine Reserve l Rarotonga l COOK ISLANDS P (+682) 25800 l F 25799 info@rarotongan.co.ck | www.TheRarotongan.com S I S T E R

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THE LOWDOWN ON CAPE TOWN Cape Town is a perfect stopping point on your South African family adventure… with fantastic accommodation, gorgeous beaches, fabulous shopping and plenty for kids to do. It is a melting pot of sights, sounds, culture and history, and the beauty of the Western Province lies on its doorstep. One of the best ways to get around and discover all that this surprising city has to offer is the City Sightseeing Bus – an open-top, double-decker bus that lets travellers hop on and off as they like - making exploring the major attractions easy.

WORLD OF BIRDS Visit a World of Birds - the largest bird park in Africa, it has over 3,000 birds and small animals, and there’s a playground and picnic area right next to the flamingos! The aviaries are in a lovely tropical garden setting in the Hout Bay Valley, framed by the back of Table Mountain, the Twelve Apostles, Constantiaberg, Chapman’s Peak and Little Lion’s Head. The World of Birds is open all year - keep an eye out for feeding times. > worldofbirds.org.za

TWO OCEANS AQUARIUM A trip to the Two Oceans Aquarium is a magical journey for young and old. With more than 3,000 enchanting sea animals, this will keep you enthralled for hours. The aquarium is open every day of the year and there’s plenty to keep everyone entertained - visit the touch pool, zoom in at the Hi-Tec Microscope exhibit, go diving with sharks, meet the rockhoppers in a penguin encounter … and that’s just for starters! > aquarium.co.za Watch seals play in the harbour after you visit the aquarium. > waterfront.co.za

MEET A CHEETAH Cheetah Outreach conservation centre allows close encounters with these gorgeous cats, the fastest land animal in the world. Cheetah Outreach is an education and community-based program created to raise awareness of the plight of the cheetah and to campaign for its survival. There are now fewer than 1000 cheetahs left in South Africa so a visit to the centre means you get up close and personal with these amazing creatures, while helping to ensure their survival. > www.cheetah.co.za

WHERE TO STAY Out & About with Kids recommends ‘More Quarters Cape Town’, which offers fabulous accommodation. This apartment hotel is in the heart of Cape Town and combines the best aspects of a hotel with the independence of apartment living. Families are welcome and children under six years old stay for free! Kids from ages six to fifteen are accommodated at 50% of the adult per person rate. > morequarters.co.za

HIKE UP TABLE MOUNTAIN Hike up one of two different trails to the top of the mountain. You can take the cable car back down again if you are too tired to walk. Although the hike up is only suggested for children ages 10 and older, there are plenty of trails to follow at the top… and the views are absolutely amazing! > tablemountain.net



DRAKENSTEIN LION PARK Get up close with the king at Drakenstein Lion Park, a 50-acre cat rehabilitation centre, featuring rare white lions and a chimp haven for rescued primates. It’s located in the scenic Cape Winelands and comprises of 50 acres of sprawling lion habitat and the park is actively involved in improving the quality of life of lions in captivity. > lionrescue.org.za WINTER2014 outandaboutwithkids.com.au

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GOING OUTSIDE TO PLAY HAS NEVER LOOKED SO GOOD. Whichever way you turn, you discover another sight more fantastic than the last. Share it all with your family on the amazing island of Kaua‘i. With three navigable rivers, more than 50 miles of white-sand beaches, and a mile-long list of adventures, Kaua‘i will give your family a lifetime of memories. Activities and outings range from canoeing, kayaking and riverboat rides to hikes along the pristine shoreline. Other activities include ziplining, ATV riding, taking a train through a working plantation, or simply swimming and playing at a local beach. Start planning your vacation today by visiting kauaidiscovery.com.

Kauai Discovery.com

THE INSIDER Tanya Bowes General Manager Communications for Destination NSW, shares her family holiday experiences – from Blueys Beach and Taronga Western Plains Zoo in NSW to a Fiji wedding, and dinner with Mickey and Minnie and friends at Disneyland Paris!

MY IDEAL FAMILY HOLIDAY IS…

Sophie and hereron a cousin Conn family holiday in Fiji.

We aim for that perfect blend of activity to keep my five-year-old daughter Sophie entertained, and relaxed enough for us all to unwind. It’s a chance to have no jobs to do around the house, no schedule and no plans! We all love relaxing by the pool, being in amazing surroundings and having great activities to see and do - whether it’s a trip into the country or a city break. We had a fantastic holiday recently at Smiths Lake in NSW, taking in Blueys Beach, Boomerang Beach and Elizabeth Bay. It was a new spot for us and was a perfect mix of lazing about, meeting friendly locals and getting some serious beach time in.

MY FONDEST FAMILY HOLIDAY MEMORY IS.. A recent trip to Fiji for a family wedding was a stand out. We were joined by my nephews from New Zealand,

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cousins and, of course, the bride and groom. It’s such a fantastic excuse for a getaway together. We stayed at the Hilton at Denarau and then the Intercontinental Golf Resort and Spa - quality family time in fantastic surroundings, and who can beat the Bula bus for a fun experience? Bring back ‘island time’!

MY MOST MEMORABLE FAMILY HOLIDAY MEAL WAS … On a trip to Disneyland Paris last year and a dinner, with the Disney characters, in the Disneyland Hotel, where we were staying. The look on Sophie’s face when she saw Donald Duck, Minnie Mouse, Mickey Mouse and Pluto was unforgettable. The food in the Inventions restaurant was great, with views of the Disney castle and fireworks to boot! Closer to home, a trip to the dog-friendly Riverwood Downs near the Barrington Tops with friends with kids (and dogs!) – where they camped and we chose the cabin (flushing toilet!) - was divine. Toasting marshmallows, snags on the BBQ – simple food in sensational surroundings.

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Hilton Fiji Beach Resort & Spa

We’re planning on taking a trip to Taronga Western Plains Zoo this year to get amongst the animals in an amazing setting, without having to jump on a long flight.

MANY FAMILY TRAVELLERS ARE NOT AWARE OF … I would say for families with very young children, you wonder how on earth you ever managed to travel with just one suitcase! When Sophie was very little I would take everything, bar the kitchen sink, including sterilisers. I wish I knew about microwave steriliser bags, not to mention baby gear hire places in the destination you are travelling to, like babycomes2.co.uk Rest assured parents, as the months go on, the ‘gear’ reduces - until they start getting into surfing and biking!



EVERY FAMILY SHOULD EXPERIENCE … A safari! We’re planning on taking a trip to Taronga Western Plains Zoo this year to get amongst the animals in an amazing setting, without having to jump on a long flight (we have one of those already in September for our annual UK trip). There’s a great range of options for accommodation, from tents with a solid floor in the Billabong Camp, to luxury accommodation in the brand new Zoofari Lodge plus amazing Australian and African animal experiences in the wild!

MY TOP TIP FOR TRAVELLING WITH KIDS IS … Preparation - I travel back to the UK every year at least once with Sophie, and have done since she was nine months old. I wrap little presents for her to open when the wriggles set in, download brand new episodes of her favourite cartoons, scour the internet for new activity books and look out for things like Lego Friends mini sets – they keep her occupied for hours - not for 24 hours, but close enough!

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lots to love Parents and children alike will love discovering Lake Macquarie, the largest permanent salt water lake in the Southern Hemisphere. Enjoy an aquatic playground with 110 square kilometres of water, pristine beaches, 30 public boat ramps and majestic mountain ranges. Lake Macquarie offers accommodation from absolute indulgence to budget friendly.

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Go to visitlakemac.com.au or free call 1800 802 044 for more information, special offers and a copy of your FREE visitor guides. WINTER 2014 outandaboutwithkids.com.au

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Beaches…beaches…. beautiful beaches!

© Shutterstock.com

Australia’s mainland coastline is a mega 30,000 km long. To give you an idea of just how far that is, the distance between the North Pole and the South Pole, top to bottom, is approximately 20,000 kms!



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BIG4 Easts Beach Holiday Park THE PERFECT BEACH HOLIDAY DESTINATION! Our family friendly park has an array of accommodation to suit everyone’s needs from waterfront Beach Retreats and Villas to our Ensuite and Powered Sites. Relax and enjoy a swim or a game of beach cricket on our beautiful Easts Beach. Have a hit of tennis or catch a fish or two. The kids will love our 25m resort pool,

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toddlers wading pool and children’s playgrounds. Kids activities and movies in our holiday periods will keep the kids busy. Our holiday park is the ideal location from which to explore the south coast, with popular tourist attractions such as Jamberoo Action Park and the Minnamurra Rainforest just minutes away.

For further information please contact: BIG4 Easts Beach Holiday Park Ocean Street (PO Box 10) Kiama NSW 2533 Freecall: 1800 674 444 P: 02 4232 2124 F: 02 4233 1009 E: holiday@eastsbeach.com.au www.eastsbeach.com.au

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hree of the world’s great oceans – the Pacific, the Indian and the Southern Ocean - meet along our coastline, and thousands of beaches are dotted along that 30,000 km stretch. From broad sandy beaches to small inlets set between headlands, there are Aussie beaches that abut seaside towns and city suburbs and others that nestle in quiet coves or rocky cliffs … and still others that only reveal themselves on the other side of majestic sand dunes. Australia’s east coast boasts an impressive number of accessible and family-friendly Pacific Ocean beaches – take your pick of holiday destinations from the beautiful beaches on Victoria’s south west coast, north to the NSW South Coast and Sydney, to the NSW Central Coast, Mid North Coast and Far North Coast, through Queensland’s Gold Coast, Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and all the way to the very tip of Australia’s eastern seaboard at Cape York in Far North Queensland. Australians are known the world over as a nation of beach-goers, and with all of this right on our doorstep, it’s a reputation that is hard to deny!



From above: Brighton beach huts.

BEACHES - VICTORIA Victoria shares a 2,000km slice of the Australian coastline, between its borders with South Australia and NSW.

© Shutterstock.com

St.Kilda Beach © Shutterstock.com

MELBOURNE Melbourne’s beaches are a hive of activity year-round, and respite for busy families on warm summer evenings and hot summer weekends. Set in family-friendly suburbs with plenty of dining options and attractions, Melburnians like to take time out at St.Kilda Beach (home of the city’s Luna Park), Brighton, Black Rock, Sandringham and Albert Park Beach. > visitmelbourne.com

Melbourne STAY

Accor Hotels accorhotels.com.au Hilton Melbourne hiltonmelbourne.com.au The Lyall thelyall.com The Langham melbourne.langhamhotels. com.au

PLAY Luna Park lunapark.com.au Docklands docklandsmelbourne.com.au Melbourne SEA LIFE Aquarium melbourneaquarium.com.au Melbourne Zoo zoo.org.au

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Mornington Peninsula STAY

BIG4 Holiday Parks vic.big4.com.au

PLAY Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park pearcedale-conservation-park. com.au Enchanted Adventure Garden enchantedmaze.com.au

The Great Ocean Road STAY

BIG4 Holiday Parks vic.big4.com.au Wyndham Resort Torquay (03) 5261 1500

PLAY Otway Fly Treetop Adventures otwayfly.com Werribee Open Range Zoo zoo.org.au

MORNINGTON PENINSULA At around one hours’ drive from the city centre, the Mornington Peninsula is a popular weekend and holiday playground for families, with endless bay inlets and surf beaches, national parks and wonderful beachside towns. Popular Port Phillip Bay beaches – Rye, Frankston, Mornington, Mount Martha, Rosebud - are family-friendly with playgrounds and picnic areas and are patrolled through the summer months. Ocean beaches, including Sorrento and Port Leo have great surfing and are patrolled from 26 December to 26 January during the summer months and at weekends and on public holidays throughout the year. > visitmorningtonpeninsula.org

THE GREAT OCEAN ROAD This iconic scenic touring route along Victoria’s south west coastline is famous around the world. It’s along the Great Ocean Road that people stop to marvel at the collection of limestone stacks – the 12 Apostles – at Port Campbell National Park, and drop in on Bells Beach, one of Australia’s most famous pro surfing locations – for expert surfers only! The Great Ocean Road is punctuated by coastal regions that stretch from the city of Geelong to

Why would you leave

Queensland to holiday? Seriously, why leave? Skip winter this year, holiday and stay local at Novotel Twin Waters Resort. Plus, if you stay 2 nights or more we’ll throw in breakfast, daily.

From $134 per room per night. *Conditions apply. Subject to availability. Visit accorhotels.com/qld for full terms and conditions.

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Nelson on the Discovery Coast, each with its own popular holiday destination beaches. You’ll find the towns of Portarlington and Queenscliff between Geelong and the Bellarine Peninsula. Head to Point Lonsdale Beach – popular with families and patrolled during the summer. Torquay Beach and Anglesea are both patrolled during summer and 13th Beach at Barwon Heads is the go-to beach for families when staying at Barwon. From Lorne to Apollo Bay you’ll find Wye River popular with camping families, and Lorne, a major resort town and beach on the Great Ocean Road. The crescent-shaped Apollo Bay Beach is perfect for families and patrolled through summer and Port Campbell Beach, near the national park, is a nature lover’s paradise and is also patrolled in summer. In the Warrnambool to Nelson region you’ll find the famous Port Fairy Beach and Lady Bay, which is close to Warrnambool’s city centre and popular with families. Both beaches are safe for kids and patrolled during summer. > visitgreatoceanroad.org.au

PHILLIP ISLAND Cowes Beach on Phillip Island is a great beach for families visiting the region. This popular swimming spot is patrolled from 26 December to 26 January and is a great place to kick back and cool off after taking in all the local attractions (and the penguins!) in this amazing holiday destination. > visitphillipisland.com



Oppposite page: Bells Beach. © Mark Chew, Tourism Victoria

Left from top: Lorne, Great Ocean Road © Andrew Paoli, Tourism Victoria

Twelve Apostles, Great Ocean Walk. © Mark Watson, Tourism Victoria

Cowes Foreshore, Phillip Island. © Robert Blackburn, Tourism Victoria

Penguin tour, Phillip Island. © Phillip Island Nature Park

Phillip Island STAY

BIG4 Phillip Island Caravan Park vic.big4.com.au Ramada Resort Phillip Island (03) 5952 8000

PLAY Phillip Island Nature Parks penguins.org.au A Maze ‘N Things amazenthings.com.au Phillip Island Chocolate Factory phillipislandchocolatefactory. com.au

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B EA CHES

From top: Coastal walk Bronte Beach © James Horan; Destination NSW

Newport, Northern Beaches. © Hamilton Lund; Destination NSW

BEACHES – NSW From Eden on the South Coast to Tweed Heads on the Far North Coast, follow the NSW coastline and you’ll stumble upon hundreds of idyllic beaches.

SYDNEY

Sydney STAY

Base yourself in the city for easy access to harbour beaches and beaches in the east and south east. Manly is the perfect place to stay for northern beaches outings or try BIG4 Lakeside Holiday Park at North Narrabeen. sydneylakeside.com.au

PLAY With so much to see and do plus the option of buses, trains to get around, Sydney is a great playground for families, beyond its beautiful beaches. whatsonsydney.com

The ‘Emerald City’, and its surrounds, is blessed with abundant beaches, including its most iconic beaches – Bondi and Manly. Sydney families flock to Tamarama, Bronte and Clovelly in the east and Bundeena, Coogee, Cronulla, Malabar, Wanda and Maroubra in the south and south east. Along the northern coastline from Manly, lie Curl Curl, Freshwater, Collaroy and Long Reef beaches, among many others, while the peninsula begins at Narrabeen and Warriewood and stretches all the way all the way to land’s end at Palm Beach, via Bungan, Newport, Avalon, Bilgola and Whale Beaches. Sydney is also home to lovely harbour beaches, including Balmoral Beach in Mosman and Milk Beach in Vaucluse, that are safe for little ones and very popular with families on weekends. > sydney.com

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Stay and play in Manly... From the beach to the harbour, take your family to the water’s edge with Accor hotels in Manly. Spoilt for choice with three unique venues, explore the heritage at Q Station or enjoy the beachfront locations of The Sebel and Novotel. We offer a dynamic range of leisure and accommodation options in one of Sydney’s most treasured destinations.

The Sebel Manly Beach

Novotel Sydney Manly Pacific

To make a booking or enquiry go to:

Q Station Sydney Harbour National Park, Manly

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South Coast STAY

Discovery Holiday Parks discoveryholidayparks.com.au BIG4 Easts Beach Holiday Park eastsbeach.com.au NRMA Murramarang Beachfront Nature Resort murramarangresort.com.au NRMA Meriumbula Beach Resort merimbulabeachholidaypark. com.au

PLAY Mogo Zoo mogozoo.com.au Funland, Ulladulla funland.com.au The famous Blowhole at Kiama Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventure illawarrafly.com

Central Coast & Lake Macquarie STAY

NRMA Ocean Beach Resort & Holiday Park oceanbeachholidaypark. com.au Central Coast Holiday Parks cchp.com.au BIG4 Lake Macquarie Monterey Tourist Park big4lakemacquarie.com.au

PLAY Pelican feeding at The Entrance Fishing - everywhere! Australian Reptile Park reptilepark.com.au Treetop Adventure Park treetopadventurepark.com.au

SOUTH COAST The beaches of the NSW south coast are so pretty! Crystal clear bays and uncrowded inlets can be found in bushland, cliff, rock or quaint town settings, all the way from the Sapphire Coast region, through Eurobodalla and the Shoalhaven up to the Illawarra. From Merimbula, Pambula and Tathra in the far south, to Moruya, Batemans Bay, Kiama, Ulladulla and up to the Wollongong area beaches, the stunning south coast beaches and their holidayhaven towns are always brimming with happy families. > visitnsw.com/destinations/south-coast

THE LEGENDARY PACIFIC COAST

Clockwise from top: Family on beach, Kiama © Anson Smart; Destination NSW

Redhead beach, Lake Macquarie. © Paul Foley; Lake Macquarie Tourism

Murray’s Beach, Jervis Bay. © Adam Taylor; Destination NSW

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From Sydney all the way to Brisbane, the Legendary Pacific Coast takes in the Hunter, the Central Coast, the Mid North Coast and the Far North Coast regions of NSW. The names of some of the sensational family beach destinations nestled along the way – The Entrance, Port Stephens, Forster/Tuncurry, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour, Yamba, Evans Head, Ballina, Byron Bay and Tweed Heads - trip off the tongue of holidaymakers. Firm family favourites for generations,

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the region north of Sydney is blessed with a great climate, sparkling waters and fun, fun, fun! > pacificcoast.com.au

CENTRAL COAST & LAKE MACQUARIE In less than 1.5 hours’ drive from Sydney, your beach holiday begins. From Broken Bay at the mouth of the Hawkesbury River to south of Newcastle, the Central Coast is famous for its surf beaches, lakes and national parks. You’ll find great surf beaches at Terrigal, Soldiers Beach, North Entrance, Shelly Beach and Avoca, while The Entrance Beach, Toowoon Bay Beach, Blue Bay Beach and Ocean Beach are great spots for families. Lake Macquarie has over 30 km of pristine, uncrowded beaches including family-friendly Blacksmiths Beach, which is patrolled during summer, Caves Beach with great picnic areas and bbqs, popular Redhead Beach, which is patrolled in summer and great for both swimming and surfing, and Catherine Hill Bay Beach, which is also patrolled in summer, in the heritage town of Catherine Hill Bay. > visitcentralcoast.com.au > visitlakemac.com.au

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B EA CHES

Clockwise from top: Port Stephens, North Coast. © Hamilton Lund; Destination NSW

Go whale watchiing at Port Stephens. © Shutterstock.com

Main Beach at Forster. © Great Lakes Tourismnk

PORT STEPHENS

Port Stephens STAY

Ramada Resort Shoal Bay 1800 181 810 BIG4 Holiday Parks portstephens.nsw.big4.com.au

PLAY Watersports, water activities and beach fun abound in Port Stephens. Venture further afield into nature and discover the beauty of the surrounding national parks.

The Great Lakes STAY

Camp at Myall Lakes National Park BIG4 Great Lakes Holiday Park greatlakes.com.au

PLAY Explore the outdoors here with boating, kayaking, fishing and swimming on the lakes and in the ocean, as well as all the natural wonder and adventure of the national park to discover

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Further north is the beautiful beach and bayside region known for its pristine beaches, family-friendly towns and also the spectacular seasonal whale and dolphin watching experiences! Stockton Beach and Birubi Point boast fabulous sand dunes and great surf, with an expanse of sand perfect for camel and horse rides and spins in 4WD vehicles. The laidback, seaside holiday vibe of Shoal Bay has been drawing families for decades, while Nelson Bay village and marina has fish-loving, and fishing-loving, families in its thrall. Little Beach, Dutchies Beach, Boat Harbour Beach and Fingal Bay Beach have gentle waves and nice, protected spots that are great for families with young children. > portstephens.org.au

THE GREAT LAKES Heading north again, the Great Lakes region is the largest coastal lakes system in NSW, but it also covers 145 kms of coastline on the Legendary Pacific Coast, with beaches galore! Some beaches offer the best surfing and beach fishing on the North Coast, some stretch further than the eye can see and others are protected and perfect for families. In Forster-Tuncurry, take your pick from One, Seven or Nine Mile Beaches, Pebbly Beach and Forster Main Beach. Blueys Beach at Pacific Palms is one of the most surfing famous beaches on the north coast, and is worth a visit for the stunning views it affords across to Seal Rocks. Families will find Elizabeth Beach, or ‘Lizzy’, as it’s known to the locals, perfect for a day of fun in the sun. Lizzy is the only beach in Pacific Palms that is patrolled during summer. Jimmy’s Beach on the Myall Coast is a sheltered spot with gentle surf and great swimming and is ideal for little ones. > greatlakes.org.au

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Port Douglas Kids under 12 stay & eat free Rendezvous Reef Resort offers affordable one, two and three bedroom self-contained two storey villas, each offering an enormous 110 square metres of space, each with a garden or pool view, balcony or patio, fully self contained kitchen and laundry. Choose from a great range of resort facilities, relax by one of 4 swimming pools, cook up a delicious bbq while the children explore the new children’s playground, or enjoy alfresco dining at Straits Cafe and Bar.

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The Islander Noosa Resort Resort & Self Contained Accommodation 2 or 3 bedroom villas for families of up to 4 or 6 including children. Self contained accommodation that won’t break the budget. 3 Pools, solar heated lagoon pool with waterfall and bridge, heated pool to 30 degrees all year. 2 tennis courts, 3 spas and 2 saunas, BBQs & Clubhouse. On tropical 4 acres hidden in heart of Noosaville with shops and cafes at your door.

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• Islander Kidz Art and Craft in school holidays • Fishing and Boating across from the resort on the Noosa River • Surfing at local Noosa Beach -10 mins drive • Australia Zoo • Buderim Ginger Railway • Mooloolaba Under Water World

SPECIALS: 20% special available for stays from 1 June to 31 August 2014 or 1 to 30 Nov 2014 and 1 Feb to 31 March 2015 where a family of 4 stay 5 nights for $620 and a family of 6 pay $720. 187 Gympie Terrace, Noosaville QLD 4566 1300 656 888 or +61 7 5440 9200 info@islandernoosa.com.au www.islandernoosa.com.au

B E ACHE S

From top: Wategos Beach, Byron Bay. © Stuart Owen-Fox; Destination NSW

Coffs Harbour jetty, Coffs Coast. © Ian Spagnolo; Destination NSW

Queensland’s beaches are ranked among the best in the world. © Tourism and Events Queensland

PORT MACQUARIE TO COFFS HARBOUR If you haven’t ever holidayed in either of these north coast regions, it’s a safe bet you know families who have, because they’re two of the most popular family holiday destinations in NSW. Each offers its own fantastic beaches, accommodation options, activities, attractions and towns, ‘Port’ and ‘Coffs’, their affectionate and respective abbreviations, are just made for families. Between Port in the south and Coffs further north, you’ll find the beautiful coastal towns and beaches of Crescent Head, South West Rocks and Nambucca. > portmacquarieinfocom.au > coffscoastcom.au

NORTH TO TWEED HEADS Onwards, to the Queensland border, are the iconic beach holiday locations of Yamba, Evans Head, Ballina, Lennox Head, Byron Bay, Hastings Point and Tweed Heads. The epitome of Australian beach life, these NSW coastal destinations also receive the lion’s share



of the state’s warmest weather, making them ideal for year-round beach holidays! From fabulous and spectacular surf beaches to family-friendly sandy playgrounds, welcoming towns and a laidback beach culture, if it’s relaxation and loads of water action you’re looking for, the Far North Coast has it all. > visitnsw.com/destinations/north-coast > pacificcoast.com.au > Download the Legendary Pacific Coast iPhone app at pacificcoast.com.au/iphone

BEACHES - QUEENSLAND The Sunshine State is a beach lovers’ paradise, with 7,400 km of coastline and an abundance of beautiful beaches – to suit surfers, families and everything in between - stretching from the NSW border all the way to the tip of the state, where the land meets the Torres Strait. Some of Queensland’s beaches are ranked among the best in the world – and don’t forget there are 74 island wonders, on the beautiful tropical coast of Queensland, right in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef!

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B EA CHES

Clockwise from top: Bulcock Beach. © Tourism and Events Queensland

Collecting shells at Noosa Main Beach. © Tourism and Events Queensland

Burleigh Heads. © Shutterstock.com

Brisbane STAY

Tangalooma Island Resort, Moreton Island tangalooma.com Brisbane City has a great range of accommodation types to suit all families and budgets. visitbrisbane.com.au

PLAY Head out to Southbank Parklands Spend a day on nearby Moreton Bay, home to some of the world’s largest sand islands Kids fun galore at The Workshops Railway Museum theworkshops.qm.qld.gov.au

The Gold Coast STAY

Zagame’s Paradise Resort Gold Coast paradiseresort.com.au Sea World Resort seaworldresort.com.au Mantra Surfers Paradise mantra.com.au/queensland Turtle Beach Resort, Gold Coast turtlebeach.com.au YHA Australia yha.com.au BIG4 NRMA Treasure Island Resort Gold Coast, QLD treasureisland.com.au Broadwater Tourist Park, Southport goldcoasttouristparks.com.au

PLAY Even on a beach holiday the theme park capital are hard to ignore! Sea World, Dreamworld, Movie World and Wet ‘N’ Wild are all on the Gold Coast. For an adventure and animal experience visit Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. cws.org.au

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BRISBANE Sandwiched between the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast, it’s easy to forget that the Queensland capital has its very own beaches – even right in the city! Streets Beach in the South Bank Parklands draws families year-round and includes a water play area for kids, Aquativity. From here you can also discover Moreton Bay and Moreton Island, right on Brisbane’s doorstep. Cylinder Beach on Stradbroke Island is a favourite with Brisbane families and its gentle waves are great for little ones, while the wave action on ‘Straddie’s’ Main Beach suits older kids. > visitbrisbane.com.au

THE GOLD COAST The Gold Coast is one of Australia’s most popular destinations, both for Aussie families and for visitors from overseas.

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Surfers Paradise is aptly named, with the long golden sands of Main Beach and great swimming and surfing. Also try Broad Beach and Coolangatta Beach. Burleigh Heads is family-friendly and laidback, with beachside, grassed picnic and bbq areas, kids playgrounds and a walk/bike/stroller path along the beach. > visitgoldcoast.com

THE SUNSHINE COAST On the Sunshine Coast, you’ll find Noosa Main Beach, where the waves are rarely over one metre high and the flat sandy bottom is ideal for little swimmers and novice surfers. Explore Coolum Beach, Kings Beach, Bulcock Beach, Golden Beach, Cotton Tree or Mooloolaba Beach and you’ll find warm waters and excellent swimming and surfing conditions for all ages and interests. > visitsunshinecoast.com.au

The Sunshine Coast STAY

Cotton Tree Holiday Park, Maroochydore sunshinecoastholidayparks. com.au The Islander Noosa Resort islandernoosa.com.au Novotel Twin Waters Resort, Sunshine Coast novoteltwinwatersresort. com.au BIG4 Holiday Parks qld.big4.com.au

PLAY Noosa! visitnoosa.com.au Australia Zoo australiazoo.com.au Eumundi Markets eumundimarkets.com.au

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B E ACHE S

From top: Rainbow Beach © Tourism and Events Queensland

Palm Cove Beach. © Tourism and Events Queensland

Green Turtle on the Great Barrier Reef. © Shutterstock.com

Fraser Coast STAY

Kingfisher Bay Resort, Fraser Island kingfisherbay.com

The Capricorn Coast TROPICAL NORTH QUEENSLAND

Only three hours’ drive north of Brisbane, the Fraser Coast is home to Hervey Bay and Fraser Island – the world’s largest sand island – and is full of natural beauty, along with an enviable coastal lifestyle. Located in the southern area of the Fraser Coast, Rainbow Beach features coloured sands, fishing, boating, surfing, camping and many other activities for families, while the sheltered waters of Hervey Bay make it an aquatic paradise for year-round swimming and seasonal humpback whale watching! > visitfrasercoast.com

With a number of Tropical North Queensland’s beaches ranked in Australia’s top ten, this holiday destination is the perfect, natural playground for the young and energetic. The tropical climate and lifestyle around the Great Barrier Reef, the islands and the exquisite beaches in the region mean things move at an easy, relaxed pace, minus the hustle and bustle! Favourite destinations for Aussie families include Cairns, Palm Cove, Proserpine, Airlie Beach and Port Douglas. > cairns-greatbarrierreef.org.au

THE CAPRICORN COAST The Capricorn Coast is over 150 kms long and lies halfway along the Queensland coast, between Brisbane and Tropical North Queensland, with pristine beaches at Yeppoon. There are also 20 islands of the Southern Great Barrier Reef to be found just off the coast here! > capricornholidays.com.au



STAY

FRASER COAST

With so many beautiful destinations and so much to do and see at each one, it’s impossible to cover everything that’s fantastic about Australia’s east coast beach regions. But, whatever kind of coastal escape your family is looking for, whatever activities and attractions you want from a beach holiday and wherever you’d like to stay – our best advice is to grab the whole family and explore your chosen coastal destination before you leave home!

Mercure Capricorn Resort, Yeppoon mercurecapricornresort.com.au Big4 Adventure Whitsunday Resort adventurewhitsunday.com.au YHA Australia yha.com.au

Tropical North Queensland STAY

Rendezvous Reef Resort, Port Douglas portdouglasinfo.com/ Rendezvous Peppers Beach Club, Port Douglas peppers.com.au/beach-club Cairns Coconut Holiday Resort coconut.com.au Ramada Resort ramadaportdouglas.com.au

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M A N LY

Manly NSW Sydney’s iconic Manly has long been a favourite day-tripping destination for visitors to the city and, indeed, for Sydneysiders. Since 1855 Sydney Ferries’ famous Manly Ferry has been carrying families across the harbour, for the short trip from Circular Quay, to the popular coastal town.

S

o much more than just a beachside suburb, in the past 150 plus years, Manly has earned its reputation as an idyllic holiday haven – a go-to destination for weekend getaways and longer stays. Which is hardly surprising when you consider the breadth of activities, attractions and action this northern beaches locale serves up for families. As a base to discover Sydney – the city museums, shopping and eateries, Taronga Zoo, Luna Park and other family-friendly attractions - Manly can’t be beaten. But it’s as a holiday destination in its own right that Manly comes up trumps!

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SETTING UP BASE CAMP The best thing about staying in Manly is that all the fun things you’ll want to do and see are just a few steps from your door. The Manly village sprawls gently back from the beach and The Esplanade onto the pedestrian-only Corso and lovely side streets, all brimming with enticements! If you fancy a DIY, self-catering break there are numerous holiday apartment options in the area that fit the bill. The Sebel Manly Beach is located right across from the flags on the beach at South Steyne, so you can have the kids at the beach, and swimming safely, straight after breakfast! With 83 rooms ranging from luxury studios to two-bedroom apartment-style accommodation, there’s plenty of space to spread out and an option to suit all family sizes and budgets. If it’s a relaxing respite from the day-to-day that inspires you, Manly has more than its share of fantastic familyfriendly hotels and resorts, including The Novotel, where they treat kids as special guests with welcome gifts, pool, Kids Korner, kids menus and play areas and special deals for families including Kids (under 16) Eat Breakfast Free and 50% off a second room booked. Novotel Manly has 213 guest rooms, each with ocean views and the option of 2-bedroom suites for larger family groups. The Novotel is also the home of Zali’s Restaurant, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner serving up yummy modern Australian fare. For something a little different, Q Station is an experience in nature, history and relaxation. The old Quarantine Station (from the 1830s-1984) at North Head is a playground for swimmers, snorkellers, kayakers, nature lovers and bushwalkers – just the thing for outdoor-loving families, with an amazing harbour backdrop. A mere five minutes from the centre of Manly, in Sydney Harbour National Park, the accommodation (a choice of rooms, suites and historic family-friendly cottages) and food (buffet breakfasts, lunches and dinners with breathtaking views!) is fantastic. You can also take part in a family Ghost Tour or go on one of several historic or educational tours around the extensive grounds. > accorhotels.com.au/hotel/sebel-manly-beach > novotelmanlypacific.com.au > qstation.com.au

Novotel Manly

© Shutterstock.com

Pick your activities



BEACH

You’re on a beach holiday ... so head to the beach! Manly’s stretch of beach is long, with SLS flagged spots, gentle ripples, surf for the serious and rock pools for little ones.

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Manly Sea Life Sanctuary all manner of fish and aquatic reptiles. SEA LIFE’s extensive Breed Rescue Protect program is an active marine life conservation program and you can join in animal feeds and explore the touch pools! > manlysealifesanctuary.com.au

Grab the boogie board or book the family into Manly Surf School, whose motto is ‘To give people the STOKE of surfing’. Manly Surf School runs kids lessons and programs during school holidays for various age groups and you can even book a family surf lesson. > manlysurfschool.com.au

Explore Sydney • Take the Sydney Harbour Eco hopper and cruise around Sydney Harbour. Buy a 24hour hop-on-hop-off fare, which will take you between Manly, Q Station, Watsons Bay, Taronga Zoo, North Sydney, Luna Park, Circular Quay and Darling Harbour on the Manly Fast Ferry. manlyfastferry.com.au • Sydney Fast Ferries run Mon-Fri and take 18 minutes on the one-way trip from Manly to Circular Quay or Circular Quay-Manly. sydney fastferries.com.au • For Manly Ferry timetables visit transportnsw.info

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Manly is also the perfect place to try your hand at scuba! Scubamunkies’ PADI Seal Team and Bubblemakers is fun for the whole family and is designed to expose kids 8 years and older to scuba in the safe confines of a swimming pool, with a qualified PADI Instructor and mum or dad by their side. They’ll blow bubbles and get their fins wet with fun games as they develop skills and confidence. Scubamunkies also offers a Family Underwater Adventure package for 2 adults and 2 children, including equipment. > scubamunkies.com.au

EAT BIKE With 20 kms of dedicated bike tracks, many along the beach, Manly Bike Tours is the one-stop shop for hiring all kinds of bikes for all ages, including tandems and kids bikes. You can jump on a guided tour and see even more of Sydney’s most beautiful coastal town! > manlybiketours.com.au

PICNIC & PLAY Beachside playgrounds and bbq/picnic areas abound, and with grassed areas, toilet facilities, picnic tables and the beach all at hand, you can watch the world, and the people, go by, ride a bike, kick a ball, play on the equipment, relax in the sun and take in the vast harbour vista. > manlyaustralia.com

ADVENTURE Explore life under the sea at Manly SEA LIFE Aquarium and come face-to-face with penguins, endangered sharks, rescued and rehabilitated sea turtles, rays,

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In Manly, you’ll never go hungry! It’s not a question of what type of foods can you find here, but what CAN’T you find here. Of course, there’s all the Aussie beachside goodies you can imagine, from fish ‘n’ chips and burgers to milkshakes and ice-creams, and every cuisine imaginable, in casual, family-friendly eateries along the beachfront and in The Corso. Pizza, noodles, Mexican, Japanese, steakhouses, pubs and cafes and restaurants serving breakfasts, brunch, lunch, dinner and supper ... and if you’re self-catering you’ll find everything you want in supermarkets, delis, fresh produce stores and healthy/organic outlets.

SHOP The Corso buzzes every Sunday with fantastic markets selling everything from clothing and handcrafts to food and fun things for kids. The Corso is packed with a great range of shops for all ages and tastes and the pedestrian-only plaza is safe and easy to criss-cross as you take a leisurely browse, stop for a meal or an ice-cream and soak up the atmosphere.

Top row far left: © James Pipino; Destination NSW Bottom row far left: © Lawrence Furzey; Destination NSW

M A NLY



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Š Deborah Kolb / Shutterstock.com

Sailing the Napali Coast Kauai, Hawaii

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H A WAI I

Kaua`i T Kaua`i is Hawai`i’s 4th largest island, known as ‘The Garden Isle’ and as ‘Hawai`i’s Island of Discovery’, for plenty of good reasons!

he oldest and most northern island in the group, Kaua`i is a true tropical paradise in the Pacific Ocean, with lush green valleys and mountains and spectacular cliffs and waterfalls, all ringed by 80km of beautiful white sand.

WHAT’S NOT TO LOVE? Over 300,000 Australians visit Kaua`i each year to soak up the warmth, explore, play and enjoy the laidback atmosphere that permeates the island. There’s no shortage of accommodation, from budget to luxury, in the most popular resort areas of Poipu (South Shore), Princeville (North Shore) and the Coconut Coast (East Side). Discovering Kaua`i by land is easy, with a wide range of tours to choose from, as well as shuttle services and self-drive rentals - and if you venture beyond your resort to explore the natural beauty of the island, you’ll be well rewarded. From the small towns of Hanapepe, Koloa and Hanalei, to the vast and stunning 27km stretch of the Napali Coast and to Waimea Canyon, a tour of the ‘Island of Discovery’ delivers panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, green cliffs and cascades, lush taro fields, coconut groves and abundant beaches, parks and playgrounds along the way. ➜



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Right: Boy skimboarding off the shore of Poipu beach, Kauai. © Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson

Below: Women in traditional dress perform Hawaiian dance at Aloha festival, Kauai. © Boykov / Shutterstock.com

Local lingo The Hawaiian language only contains seven consonants and five vowels and the mark that looks like an apostrophe in some Hawaiian words is actually a glottal stop – acting as the eighth consonant and adding an extra syllable to the word so that Kaua`i is pronounced Ka-WAH-ee. Aloha (greeting) – A-LO-ha

HEAD OUT FOR FUN AND ADVENTURE

Aloha `Oe (farewell) – A-LOha-OI

At Na `Aina Kai Botanical Gardens on the island’s North Shore, kids will love playing in the children’s garden, ‘Under The Rainbow’, with a towering bronze 4.8 metre Jack (from ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’) and fountain, fun mazes, a wading pool, tropical jungle bridges, a rubber tree treehouse, a train and a covered wagon. The Kaua`i Coastal Park - Ke Ala Hele Makalae - on the East Side, is perfect for walking and cycling, with tandem, child-carrier and kid-sized bikes available for hire and plenty of picnic spots from which to rest, play and enjoy the view. Of the 60 beaches on Kaua`i, Poipu Beach is one of the safest and is lifeguard-protected - and with picnic spots in the beach park and shopping and dining nearby, Poipu is a popular spot for families. Head to Hanalei Bay on the North Shore and

Mahalo (thank you) – Ma-HA-lo Keiki (child) – Kay-KEE Wahine (woman) – Wa-HEE-nay Kane (man) – KAH-nay Luau (feast) – LOO-ow … and then there’s the tonguetwister locals like to try out on visitors … Hawai`i’s favourite fish … the Reef Triggerfish, or humuhumunukunukuapua`a! – (HOO-moo-HOO-moo-NOO-kooNOO-koo-AH-poo-AH-ah)

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sign up for a ‘real Hawaiian surfing’ family lesson with Hawaiian Surfing Adventures - fun and safe instruction with lessons to suit all levels of experience and for kids from 5 years and up. From the water, the vista is completely different! View stunning Kaua`i from one of the many boat tours operating – some offering snorkelling opportunities and, seasonally, dolphin and humpback whale watching. Look out for honu, beautiful green sea turtles, and marvel at the many and varied colourful tropical fish just below the surface. Want more? Well there’s always the Kokee Natural History Museum in Kokee State Park, a hula show at Smith Family Garden Luau and the Kaua`i Plantation Railway at Kilohana Estate, for starters, and as you discover beautiful Kaua`i, you may even recognise familiar locations from some of Hollywood’s most famous films, including Avatar, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, The Descendants, Just Go With It, 6 Days/7 Nights, Hook, Jurassic Park, Mighty Joe Young, Tropic Thunder, George of the Jungle, Raiders of the Lost Ark and two of the classics, Elvis Presley’s Blue Hawaii and Rodgers & Hammerstein’s South Pacific! A hui hou Kaua`i – until next time, Kaua`i!

> Find out more about Kaua`i at Kaua`i Visitors Bureau on Facebook. facebook.com/KauaiVisitorsBureau > Learn more about Hawaiian culture at the Polynesian Cultural Center, Honolulu or visit polynesia.com > Visit gohawaii.com/au

HAWAI I

KAUA`I FOR KIDS ZIP! You can build an entire family scrapbook on ziplining. The ultimate thrill for families, it’s a unique way to see the island: from the air, flying like a bird, looking down at verdant forests, streams and waterfalls, listening to birdsong and feeling the wind and sun on your face. You can even zipline in tandem and take video and pictures of each other.

HIKES & BIKES Canyon trails, waterfall trails – all kinds of trails! It’s a hiker’s paradise in the Waimea Canyon-Ko-ke`e State Park uplands of west Kaua`i. At the Waimea Canyon lookout, you might hear the echo of distant bleating goats and glimpse a white-tailed Tropicbird soaring overhead. At the Ko-ke`e Natural History Museum, you can see owls, rare honeycreepers, and rare plant and wildlife up close and personal. For a unique wheeled adventure, you can cycle to the coast from Waimea Canyon rim, more than 3,000 feet high, in Kaua`i’s version



of the Tour de France. Children 12 and older are eligible for the downhill Waimea Canyon bicycle cruise, led by expert guides over panoramic views of Ni`ihau and the island’s west coast. The Ke Ala Hele Makalae trail is Hawaiian for ‘The Path that Goes by the Coast’ and stretches along the easter coast of Kauai. Walk, bike or run 6.5 kilometres on the Ke Ala Hele Makalae trail Hawaiian for ‘The Path that Goes by the Coast’- that stretches along the east coast of Kauai.

EATS & TREATS Shaved ice, saimin, plate lunches, taro burgers, teriyaki beef sticks,

pineapple and mango smoothies, lilikoi sorbet, coconut ice cream — there are taste treats throughout the Garden Isle. Saimin is the noodle soup that reaches its pinnacle in the small kitchens of this island. Plate lunches —rice, macaroni salad, and beef, chicken or fish in local-style preparations — are the dine-and-dash specialty for Islanders, and a Hawai`i signature available at diners and takeout counters around the island. Enjoy the island’s roadside fruit stands, where fresh chilled coconut can be cracked and served for its cool, refreshing coconut water and freshly picked fruit is blended on the spot for smoothies.

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Mogul Ski World are your holiday makers not just reservation takers BIG WHITE, CANADA

STEAMBOAT, USA

WHITEFOOT LODGE ★ ★ ★

from

$2295*per family

Based on 7 nights accommodation in a 2 bedroom regular condo and a 6 day lift pass for 2 adults and 2 children 12 years and under. Valid 3 Jan – 5 Feb. LIFT SPECIAL Kids 12 and under ski FREE EARLYBIRD ACCOMMODATION SPECIAL Pay 6 stay 7*

❄ We travel and ski with our kids

TRAPPEUR’S LODGE ★ ★ ★

❄ Discounted child ski airfares

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❄ We are passionate skiers and boarders ❄ We care about your holiday experience ❄ Over 30 years of service

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Steamboat

Kids 18 and under Ski FREE*

Kids 14 and under Ski FREE*

Canada: Panorama

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Jackson Hole

KIDS SKI FREE

Ask us for the best family deals and specials on lift passes, ski rental and accommodation

$2399*per family

Based on 7 nights accommodation in a 2 bedroom condo and a 6 day lift pass for 2 adults and 2 children 12 years and under. Valid 4 Jan – 12 Feb. LIFT SPECIAL Kids 12 and under ski FREE EARLYBIRD ACCOMMODATION SPECIAL 40% DISCOUNT – Book by 30 June*

Kids 12 and under Ski FREE* Canada: Big White USA: Silver Star Fernie Kimberley Kicking Horse Red Mountain Resort Banff & Lake Louise

Copper Mountain Keystone Snowbird

*conditions apply please contact Mogul Ski World for all details – LIC #31304

❄ mogulski.com.au ❄ 1800 335 724 ❄ reservations@mogulski.com.au ❄

SKI 2014

THE GLOBE WITH KIDS

Sleigh bells & s’mores

A family story – Sun Peaks, Canada

Tots to teens

Snow much fun @ Tomamu, Japan

Top Resorts NSW // VIC // NZ

A fairytale in Innsbruck Mighty Mammoth USA

Ski Canada with the Family with Skimax

kids for free! SKI Whistler

2959*

$

from

per family

EARLYBIRD BONUS! 47% OFF ACCOMMODATION + KIDS SKI, RENT AND TRANSFER FOR FREE! Includes: - 7 nights quad share in Two Bedroom Apartment at Town Plaza Suites - 6 day Ski Pass *Conditions apply. Valid for travel 3 - 31 January 2015. Book & pay by 29 August 2014

SKI Big White

2955*

$

from

per family

EARLYBIRD BONUS! STAY 7, PAY 5 + KIDS SKI FOR FREE! Includes: - 7 nights quad share in a Two Bedroom Executive Condominium at Stonebridge Condominiums - 6 day Ski Pass *Conditions apply. Valid for travel 25 January - 5 February & 22 March - 11 April 2015. Book and pay by 28 November 2014.

SKI Banff

3075*

$

from

per family

EARLYBIRD BONUS! 25% OFF ACCOMMODATION + KIDS SKI FOR FREE! Includes: - 7 nights quad share in a Superior 2 Bedroom Suite at Fox Hotel & Suites - Daily Continental Breakfast - 6 day Tri-Area Ski Pass valid at Sunshine, Mt Norquay and Lake Louise *Conditions apply. Valid for travel 3 January - 12 February 2015. Book & pay by 29 August 2014.

*Conditions apply. Valid for travel dates that are specified above. Pricing is based on early booking specials which expire on date shown above. Prices are subject to change and availability and may change at any time due to currency fluctuations. Pricing is based on a family of 2 adults and 2 children under 12 years of age. A credit card fee of minimum 1.5% will apply. Airfares are not included. Lic No. 2TA4787. Image courtesy of Bonny Makarewicz, Tourism Whistler.

Š Mt Ruapehu

contents

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Australasia SKI NEWS Australasia Perisher, NSW RESORT REPORT NSW Mt. Buller, VIC RESORT REPORT VIC OVERVIEW New Zealand

22 24 25 28 32 36 38 42 44 46 48

RESORT REPORT New Zealand International SKI NEWS International Jackson Hole, USA Mammoth Mountain, USA OVERVIEW USA Sun Peaks, Canada OVERVIEW Canada Innsbruck, Austria Hoshino, Japan OVERVIEW Japan

Mt Ruapehu

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Welcome

I

n the southern hemisphere the snow, ski and snowboard season has arrived and for dedicated snow-loving families the excitement Fun at Falls Cree k is palpable (and there’s a northern hemisphere season to follow!) Getting out and about in snow season is a tradition for many people, often across multiple generations, while for others it’s an enticing novelty that they’re yet to try and sure to love. Whether yours is a family of experienced skiers and boarders or newbies, one thing is guaranteed - a holiday in snow country is a blast! Ski resorts around the world dedicate themselves to making sure there’s something for every age and level of expertise and, as for the kids, they won’t believe the activities, entertainment, magic and excitement a holiday in a winter wonderland delivers. Happy schussing and shredding!

Publisher Elisa Elwin elisa@oawk.com.au 0413 770 550 Editor Christine Kane christine@oawk.com.au Assistant Editor Lisa Monk lisamonk@oawk.com.au Design Louise Summerton Magnesium Media Published by Elwin Media Pty Ltd. ABN: 22159093606

PO Box 4148, Balgowlah Heights 2093 outandaboutwithkids.com.au Cover image © Jackson Hole Disclaimer The opinions expressed in the editorials are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Publisher. Information provided was believed to be correct at the time of publication. Copyright © Out & About with Kids 2014 Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is strictly prohibited.

5 NIGHT WINTER SAVER 2014

02 6451 3000 reservations@lakecrackenback.com.au www.lakecrackenback.com.au P E

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Winter Special: Enjoy 5 nights and receive 3 dinners as well as 10% off most facilities*. *conditions apply.

Scan to go to special

SKI SILVER STAR

BOOK YOUR ULTIMATE CANADIAN FAMILY HOLIDAY & GET 4 DAYS & NIGHTS FREE* | KIDS 12 & UNDER SKI FREE* Complete your perfect holiday with Canada’s first all-inclusive day ticket and season pass. All alpine tickets and passes include free unlimited access to: • 1,240 Hectares of Diverse Alpine Terrain • 55km Pristine Nordic Trails • 16km Snowshoe Trails • Tube Town Adventure Park • Skating on Brewer’s Pond

BEST PRICE POLICY!

2 BEDROOM FROM

$645* $485*

PER ADULT PER CHILD

STAY/SKI 7 PAY 5

SNOWBIRD LODGE 2 BEDROOM FROM

$915* $756*

PER ADULT PER CHILD

STAY/SKI 7 PAY 5

FREE WORLD’S BEST SKI HOLIDAYS BROCHURE Call or email us for a copy of our 2015 brochure for full details of our available deals.

BOOK NOW for great ski fares with Air Canada!

*Packages based on travel 25 Jan - 6 Feb 2015 and include: 7 nights’ accommodation, 7 day lift pass and taxes. Family package based on 2 adults and 2 children up to 12 years. Costs valid as at 22 April 2014. Free days/nights: Stay/Ski 7 Pay 5, 14 Pay 10, 20 Pay 15. Book by 30 Nov 2014. Kids Ski Free: one free child per equal adult purchase of 5+ nights and 4+ day lift pass. Blackout dates and other conditions apply.

Call 1300 754 754

TPN1105

LORD ABERBEEN

email ski@travelplan.com.au visit www.travelplan.com.au WINTER 2014 81

outandaboutwithkids.com.au Offices in Sydney and Melbourne. NSW Licence No 2TA000270 and VIC Licence No 30167.

SK I T HE WORLD WIT H K ID S

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he arrival of winter in the southern hemisphere has dedicated snow lovers salivating at the promise of a great season and plenty of long weekends on piste, and so close to home. In Australia, skiing and snowboarding families have a choice of resorts in NSW and Victoria, all of which are no more than five or six hours’ drive from the capital cities. New Zealanders also have snowfields on their doorsteps and it’s this proximity that makes it so easy for Aussies and Kiwis to become passionate about skiing. But if you’ve never experienced an Australasian snow holiday, you’re missing out on something sensational! It’s never too

SO CLOSE TO HOME

late to learn to ski and resorts are familyfriendly, offer lessons for all ages and all levels of experience and provide plenty of safe, flat areas for beginners to practise their snowplough turn techniques before hitting the slopes. In Australia you can stay in picturesque Alpine village-style resorts on the snow, while in New Zealand, accommodation is generally off site in beautiful nearby towns, and it’s easy to transfer to and from the mountains each day. You can hire your gear before you leave home or rent what you need when you arrive at the snow. Make sure you have a helmet for all members of the family – big

and small! Book beginners and children in for lessons, it really is the quickest and safest way to learn to get up and out there with confidence. Why not try snowboarding? The take up now, even by very young children, is growing with each new season. If you’re not sure if skiing or snowboarding is for you, don’t discount the Australasian snowfields as a fantastic family holiday destination – seeing a white winter wonderland for the first time is more than exciting! Toboggan, play in the snow, have snowball fights, build snowmen and watch all the colour and movement on the slopes – we guarantee you’ll love it!

Mount Baw Baw

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© Mount Baw Baw

snow, SO MUCH

S KI N E W S - AU S T RA LI A & NZ

© Lake Mountain Alpine Resort

Great news for families with teens Thredbo has raised the age for child passes this season to include children aged 17 years and under, which is a real savings bonus when coupled with the terrific Kids Free Snow packages for winter 2014. Kids Free Lift Pass packages include three nights’ accommodation for a family of four at Lantern Apartments plus lift passes, (available 8-21 June and 1-30 September - some conditions and block out periods apply). The 4-star Lantern Apartments are Thredbo’s most popular apartments, with spectacular mountain views, in-house movies, satellite TV and Wi-Fi. It’s a comfy, contemporary base from which families can enjoy a Snowy Mountains holiday. Choose from one, two or three bedroom apartments and enjoy the self-contained convenience of your home-away-fromhome right in the snow, and just a short stroll to all of the Thredbo Village entertainment and eateries. lanternapartments.com.au

© Shutterstock.com

Lantern and Thredbo savings breaks for families

Lake Mountain Alpine Resort is the closest ski field to Melbourne. In two hours’ drive time you can be skiing, which is why Lake Mountain is the most popular Victorian destination for weekend snow lovers and day trippers. Gates open daily in the season at 8am, and it’s recommended that you arrive before 11am as the resort is subject to close throughout the day in peak season when capacity is reached. If you want to stay longer you’ll find something to suit all family sizes and budgets in nearby Marysville. lakemountainresort.com.au

© Treble Cone

Day trippin’ Alpine adventures

Treble Cone … who knew? National Geographic’s list of the top 25 ski towns worldwide includes only one southern hemisphere town. With iconic ski destinations on the list, including Aspen (USA), Whistler (Canada) and Chamonix (France), the town of Wanaka on New Zealand’s South Island, home to Treble Cone, is in very fine company. If that wasn’t reason enough to visit, Treble Cone is a mere one-hour drive from Queenstown and this season offers discounted Family Lift Passes and a new extension to the Jazz Kids Fun Trail! treblecone.com

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© Selwyn Snowfields

SK I NEWS - AUS T RA L IA & N Z

Speedy scan-and-ski Making it quicker and easier to hit the slopes, Mt Ruapehu is upgrading its scanning system this season, so skiers will be able to access lifts at Whakapapa and Turoa using the Axess automated gate system. Keep your card in your pocket and – hey presto! There’s a small fee to have the new technology activated on your pass. Whakapapa and Turoa Ski Areas also offer fantastic sliding areas with a fleet of superfast toboggans for hire - feel the exhilarating speed as you whoosh down the slope. mtruapehu.com

New this year at Selwyn Snowfields is the Park Program for little shredders on snowboards, with kids able to learn how to ride the features in the Mini Terrain Park. Selwyn is fabulous value for money and the ‘Snow With The Lot’ one-day package is great for families new to the snow. You can try tubing, tobogganing and test out skiing and snowboarding without spending a fortune. Designed to introduce adults and kids to the delights of the snow, once you have a taste it’s guaranteed you’ll come back for more! selwynsnow.com.au

Snowtime intro for families Falls Creek has put together a fantastic, affordable family package for winter 2014 that includes three nights’ accommodation, lift and lesson passes for mum and dad, three full days Snowsports School for kids, and ski or board plus parka and pants rental. Valid 7-19 June and 12-28 September 2014. Falls Creek also offers childcare for bubs from 12 weeks old. skifalls.com.au

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© Mt Ruapehu

‘Snow With The Lot’ one-day family packages

Night delights at Perisher Kicking off in July 2014, Tuesday nights will go off like a cracker at Perisher with free fireworks displays from 7.20pm and Night Skiing and Boarding. Adults without a season pass pay only $30 to take part in the Night Skiing and Boarding and children from 5-14 years pay $16. Night Skiing and Boarding will also be on every Saturday night. This season, Perisher is opening its new Quad chairlift. The ‘Freedom Chairlift’ raises capacity into the Guthega area by 46% - great news for skiers and snowboarders. perisher.com.au

© Perisher

Winter (wonderland!) Festival Head to Charlotte Pass for the Winter Festival on 17-24 August 2014 (conditions permitting) and join in events and activities including Flare Run, Outdoor Ice Bar, Road Gap Jump, Free Tubin’ Tuesday and Standard Race. There will be a daily barbecue out the front of the Kosciuszko Chalet Hotel, with live music and entertainment for the kids and a flourish of fireworks for the Festival finale! charlottepass.com.au

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A U ST RALIA / NS W

POWDER PUPS AT

© Perisher

Perisher FROM SNOWPLAY TO SKIS; KID-FRIENDLY PERISHER PRODUCES A FIVE-YEAR-OLD ‘SKIING WORLD CHAMP’ IN THE MAKING! WORDS: ALENEY DE WINTER

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y kids love the snow but at five and two years of age they’ve spent more time falling in it, playing in it and eating it than they have skiing on it. But that all changed during this visit to Perisher and my son Rafferty has turned into a serious powder pup!

Position, position, position! There is no overnight parking available in Perisher Valley so we park at Bullocks Flat to catch the Skitube to Perisher and the family-friendly Perisher Valley Hotel with our very excited children. The boutique hotel is renowned for its ski in, ski out location in the heart of Perisher Valley, but it exceeds all our expectations. Our tri-level Mountain View Suite is large and comfortable and offers spectacular views over Perisher’s Front Valley. There is also a spa, sauna and in-house masseuse for guests to enjoy and a great games room for the family to relax and play in after a busy day of skiing. Best of all, it’s

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convenient, with internal access to all Perisher Centre’s amazing facilities, including the shopping arcade, restaurants, bars, the Snowsports School, ski hire and Snowy Daycare (for children from six weeks to three), where Marlo will be enjoying making new friends while we hit the white stuff. We drop her off with the lovely staff at Snowy Daycare and take an excited Rafferty on the Skitube to Blue Cow for his first lesson of our icy adventure. Blue Cow is one of four resorts at Perisher Ski Resort, the others being Perisher, Guthega and Smiggin Holes. Perisher covers the largest area of any Australian ski resort, with 47 lifts, including a brand new quad chairlift that will open at Guthega for the winter 2014 season.

Snow much fun We’ve chosen to start our skiing adventure at Blue Cow because it offers more challenging runs as well as excellent beginner slopes … perfect for kids and their out-of-practise parents.

Nothing compares to...

family

time

This winter

KIDS STAY

FREE at The Station

Perisher Blue Pty Limited ACN 061 232 488 ATF Snow Trust ABN 29 420 214 757.

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© Perisher

A U ST RALIA / NS W

As soon as we’re greeted by our fearless son’s instructor, Raff waves us impatiently away with a “Don’t worry mum, I’ll be the skiing world champion by the end of the day.” As bid, we leave our son to his dreams of world domination and take off ourselves to enjoy a thrilling morning of powering faster and faster down the slopes without a worry in the world. It’s not often that my husband and I get time together uninterrupted by kids or chores, so we’re giggling like a pair of schoolkids by the time we go to pick our actual schoolkid up. We’re gobsmacked by Rafferty’s progress … the little dude is flying down the slopes and riding the magic carpet like he’s been doing it for years. It’s astonishing how fast children pick up skiing. He’d already learned to balance and control his skis on a previous ski trip but this time he’s actually skiing, very fast, and loving it! We spend the rest of the afternoon skiing

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with our son and have to drag him off the slopes to pick up our other little snowflake from the childcare centre, where it’s clear she’s had a marvellous time. In fact, she’s been having so much fun she doesn’t want to leave either. That is until we promise her it’s time for her to head out to build a snowman. After stuffing Marlo into a snowsuit and boots, we head out to the slopes for some frosty frolicking. We find a good spot, but the kids - who have been whispering and giggling conspiratorially - seem to have forgotten about the snowman and begin to attack us with snowballs. We return fire until eventually a truce is declared and a giant snowman is built. We’re only steps away from our hotel room, so we head back in to dry off and clean up in time for a fantastic dinner by an open fire at Snow Gums Restaurant, where we watch the night skiers do their thing on Front Valley and the sky light up with fireworks, before taking our weary kids to bed, ready to do it all again tomorrow. perisher.com.au

NSW resort report Charlotte Pass is just 8kms from Perisher and is Australia’s highest resort. Ideal for families, with plenty of accommodation options and reliable snow cover. In 2014 children 4 years and under ski free. Elevation: 1765m Terrain mix: 30% beginner; 50% intermediate; 20% advanced Lifts: 6 Terrain Park: 2 Snow Sports School: For kids from 3 years Child Care: For kids from 3 years charlottepass.com.au

© Charlotte Pass

Charlotte Pass

Charlotte Pass

Just 2.5 hours’ drive from Canberra, familyowned and operated Selwyn is perfect for first timers, with progressive terrain that lets you work your way across the mountain from beginner slopes to intermediate. Accommodation is off-snow with plenty to choose from in nearby Adaminaby. In 2014 take advantage of private instruction for kids aged 2-4 years and the Park Program for little snowboarders. Elevation: 1614m Terrain mix: 40% beginner; 48% intermediate; 12% advanced Lifts: 11 Terrain Park: 2 Snow Sports School: For kids from 3 years Child Care: For kids over 18 months selwynsnow.com.au

© Selwyn Snowfields

Selwyn Snowfields

Selwyn Snowfields

The village atmosphere in Thredbo is simply charming and staying on-snow is convenient and exciting with Family Fun Nights every Thursday in July and August and the wonderful world of Thredboland, where kids aged 3-6 years are taught to ski in an imaginative, creative, speciallydesigned learning program. In 2014 Thredbo has raised the age for child passes to include children 17 years and under. Elevation: 2037m Terrain mix: 16% beginner; 67% intermediate; 17% advanced Lifts: 14 Terrain Park: 4 Snow Sports School: Ski for kids from 3 years, snowboard from 7 years Child Care: For kids over 6 months thredbo.com.au

© Kosciuszko Thredbo Pty Ltd

Thredbo

Thredbo

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Buller

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JUST THREE HOURS’ DRIVE FROM MELBOURNE, MOUNT BULLER IS WHERE MOST MELBURNIANS LEARN TO SKI, CREATING MILLIONS OF MEMORIES. WORDS: HELEN HAYES

elbourne might think Buller is ‘theirs,’ but there are plenty of fans north of the border as well, so we set off with our two teenagers to check it out. It was a short flight to Melbourne and we were on our way in a hire car in no time. The drive is spectacular enough, however, once at Buller, we marvelled at the beautiful Victorian High Country, with our Olympus-like snowy environment surrounded by a sea of forest disappearing into the horizon. We are in a three-bedroom apartment in Huski Apartments, quite near the Lydia Lassila lift and a short walk – or free shuttle – from the village. There is a lot of ski in, ski out accommodation if you want to be close to the action – some of it located down the side of the main run to the village – Bourke Street.

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Boarderline Buller has 80 kilometres of runs serviced by 22 lifts. And the terrain parks ensured my snowboarding son – I have one that skis and one that boards - had plenty of jumps to tackle. There are many areas to explore and we waste no time picking up hire gear and organising lift tickets at the Village Centre, before riding the Blue Bullet up to connect with the Holden Express. From here, you can access almost all areas, so we set off on our magical mystery tour of all things white and get to know the runs over the course of the day. There are several areas where you can cut through the trees and others that are shiny white with not a tree to be seen. The ultimate view is from the top of the Summit, accessed by either

Do the Gnome Roam at Buller

© Mt Buller

An appetite for snow Skiing or snowboarding in all that alpine air brings on a mountain-sized hunger, and luckily Buller has a number of excellent restaurants. We stay on the mountain and dine at Koflers, where everything is homemade, with the lasagna and nachos followed by apple pie and apricot moguls going down a treat. Another day we drop into Tirol Café, also on the mountain, which has a lovely Austrian style blended with Buller history. We sit on the deck outside to take in the views over Mt Stirling and tuck into egg and bacon rolls that are so good that the boys go back for more. For dinner, there is plenty of choice and we try out Chamois Restaurant @ Hotel Enzian and the Duck Inn. Both are excellent and the sticky date pudding at the Chamois was out of this world.

Kid stuff the Summit or Grimus chairlifts. The first time we venture up, the clouds decide to join us so we can’t see much at all and follow other people down unfamiliar runs in a misty game of ‘follow the leader’. Fortunately the clouds lift and on our next sortie, spend quite a while taking in the panorama of this beautiful part of the world. But there are runs to do and chairs to ride, so we slip down runs around Shaky Knees, roar down the Bull Run area, celebrate the trails around Federation and spend hours playing around Wombat, Howqua and Kofler lifts. As for the boys, they split their time between the terrain parks at Kofler, Summit and Skyline, only joining us when in need of food or a hot chocolate.

Buller really caters to families well, with a crèche for kids from three months to three years, Bunyip Kids ski school for ages three to six, Buller Kids snowboard and ski school for those aged seven to 14, and Teens for 15 to 18-year olds. Younger kids will adore doing the Gnome Roam – pick up a booklet and then do a selfguided tour to find all the gnomes that live in these parts. Kids can even indulge in gnomethemed food and drinks around the resort. So what is my Buller? A few hours on the summit and around Wombat, followed by lunch at Koflers, more runs around Bonza and Boggy Creek, a drink at Pension Grimus and dinner at Enzian. A perfect day to end a perfect stay. mtbuller.com.au

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A U ST RALIA

VIC resort report

Mount Baw Baw

Hotham

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Hotham

Mount Baw Baw

Head to the Victorian Alps and experience a snowy winter, just 4.5 hours’ drive from Melbourne. Home to the famous Dinner Plain, Hotham has fantastic ski and snowboarding terrain for all abilities, great accommodation including ski in ski out options and breathtaking scenery. In 2014 take advantage of the High Five Family Special – a three-night package with bonus inclusions. Elevation: 1845m Terrain mix: 20% beginner; 40% intermediate; 40% advanced Lifts: 13 (including Dinner Plain) Terrain Park: 4 Snow Sports School: Ski for kids from 3 years, snowboard from 6 years Child Care: For kids from 3 months hotham.com.au

Only 2.5 hours’ drive from Melbourne, Mount Baw Baw has over 35 ha of groomed runs and is a family-friendly alpine resort (with dog sled tours during winter!) and onsnow accommodation. In 2014 you can skip the queues and purchase your resort entry online before you leave home. www.alpineeasyaccess.com.au Elevation: 1562m Terrain mix: 25% beginner; 64% intermediate; 11% advanced Lifts: 7 Terrain Park: 2 Snow Sports School: Ski for kids from 4 years, snowboard from 7 years Child Care: No childcare but Kids Club operates daily in White Season mountbawbaw.com.au

WINTER 2014 outandaboutwithkids.com.au

Lake Mountain Alpine Resort

Lake Mountain Alpine Resort Families who want to test drive a snow experience can spend just a day here or stay longer at nearby Marysville. Low key and family-friendly, you’ll have plenty of opportunities for snowplay, just a two-hour drive from Melbourne. In 2014, check out the range of family packages. Elevation: 1480m Terrain mix: All crosscountry – 16% beginner, 67% intermediate, 17% advanced. Skiable area: 2400 ha Toboggan slopes: 3 Snow Sports School: For kids from 5 years Child Care: No lakemountainresort.com.au

Falls Creek

Falls Creek Falls Creek is located on top of the Bogong High Plains in North East Victoria, 4.5 hours’ drive from Melbourne. A true ski in ski out village, Panorama Progression Park is a family favourite, and kids will love Pete’s Fox Trail Park. In 2014, check out the great winter specials and packages. Elevation: 1780m Terrain mix: 17% beginner; 60% intermediate; 23% advanced Lifts: 15 Terrain Park: 4 Snow Sports School: Ski for kids from 3 years, snowboard from 6 years Child Care: For kids from 12 weeks skifalls.com.au

Booking your next snow holiday is child’s play at Victoria’s best alpine resorts.

Falls Creek fro m $ per day!

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Mum skis free, kids ski free, half-price packages, multi-day lift pass deals, discounts for buying early and bundling online… There are so many ways to ski more and save more at Hotham and Falls Creek this Winter. Make this the year you take the family to Hotham and Falls Creek, Victoria’s highest, largest and friendliest alpine resorts. With reliable snow, breathtaking alpine scenery, ski-in ski-out accommodation, brilliant snowsports schools and uncrowded slopes, it’s no wonder Hotham and Falls Creek are home to Australian skiing’s biggest smiles. Buy and load your Snow Pass smartcard online and use it at either or both resorts. Save 15% when you buy your lift passes online 14 days in advance and 10% when you buy them online 7 days in advance. You can also save on your lift passes when you buy and bundle lessons and hire equipment online too. Buying online couldn’t be easier, visit snowpass.com.au to buy and save now. And if you want to talk about your options, and package and save on accommodation as well, call Hotham Holidays or the Falls Creek Reservations Centre and we’ll take care of everything for you.

Includes: 5 Ni ghts in a 2 Be droom Premier • 5 Day Adult Apartment. Lift Pass or 5 Da y Kids Lift Pass • 5 Adult Grou . p Lessons OR 5 Days at Kids Snowports Sc hool. • 5 Days Ski or Board Rental. FR

OM: $757 pe r adult & $721 per child (3-14 Valid 7-19 Jun e & 12-28 Se yrs), 4 Share pt 2014. Subje . ct to availabilit y. Code SSA50W S

Hotham from $ per day!

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Includes: 5 Ni ghts in a Schn apps 1 bedroo • 5 Day Adult m Apartment. Lift Pass or 5 Da y Kids Free Li • 5 Adult Grou ft Pass. p Lessons OR 5 Half Days at Kids Snowzone . • 5 Days Ski or Board Rental. FR

OM: $758 pe r adult & $623 per child (3-14 Kids Ski Free - Per Paying Ad yrs), 4 Share . ult - Lift Only. Subject to ava Valid 7-21 Jun ilability. Code e & 7-28 Sept SCHVAHR. 2014.

For information on accommodation, travel, lift passes, lessons, equipment hire, all-inclusive packages & more… Call Falls Creek Reservations Centre: 1800 45 35 25 accom@fallscreek.net skifalls.com.au

Call Hotham Holidays: 1800 hotham (1800 468 426) holidays@hotham.com.au hotham.com.au WINTER 2014 outandaboutwithkids.com.au

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NEW ZEALAND

Cardrona

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Š Cardrona

Ski New Zealand SOUTH & NORTH

NEW ZEALAND IS BLESSED WITH FABULOUS SNOWFIELDS BOASTING WIDE OPEN BOWLS AND GENTLE SLOPES FOR FIRST TIME SKIERS, AND OFF PISTE SKIING AND HELI-SKIING FOR THE MORE ADVENTUROUS. LITTLE WONDER IT HAS THE REPUTATION FOR BEING A PREMIER INTERNATIONAL SKIING DESTINATION.

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n the South Island, there are nine ski fields within easy reach of Queenstown or Christchurch and the North Island’s Mt Ruapehu has two ski areas, and is the country’s only skiable volcano!

SOUTH ISLAND

Every winter thousands of snow lovers descend on the South Island and make their way to the Queenstown – Wanaka region and its four world-class ski resorts – Cardrona, Coronet Peak, Treble Cone and The Remarkables – or from Christchurch, with a hop-step-and-ski to Mt Hutt and Methven Village, or to the beautiful Ohau Snowfields, between Christchurch and Queenstown. Unlike most Australian resorts, the big resorts in New Zealand don’t have accommodation on site, but every snowfield town offers an amazing range of options to suit every stay and every budget and in winter, Queenstown really does become a buzzing snow centre! Bunking down in mountain towns and villages gives skiers and boarders the best of both worlds – active on the mountains by day and the opportunity to experience the local lifestyle, dining and entertainment, when off-slope.

© The Remarkables, Tony Harrington

The Remarkables

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In the North Island you’ll find two of New Zealand’s top ski areas – Whakapapa and Turoa – both on the slopes of Mt Ruapehu. Whakapapa is the country’s largest ski area with more than 65 trails across 1050 ha and Turoa boasts Australasia’s longest vertical descent and New Zealand’s highest lift – The Highnoon Express. Mt Ruapehu is located midway between Auckland and Wellington and is approximately four to five hours’ drive time from either city. Domestic flights are available from Auckland and Wellington to Taupo, the nearest town to the slopes, or fly direct to Rotorua and

Mt Ruapehu

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from there it’s a two-hour drive to your destination. Both Whakapapa Village and National Park Village offer great family accommodation. Snowplay, snowboarding and skiing for beginners to experienced holidaymakers is sensational at Mt Ruapehu and mums and dads can enjoy a full day on the Turoa slopes while little ones, 2-5 years, have fun in the licensed childcare facility, Turoa Yeti Kids Centre. Whakapapa’s Happy Valley is New Zealand’s biggest beginner area and both ski areas have excellent ski schools. mtruapehu.com

© Michael Cullen, Shutterstock.com

NORTH ISLAND

© Mt Ruapehu

NEW ZEALAND

WE NEVER CAN

GO HOME Adventure, learning, snow skills & FUN

Four dedicated kids’ centres (tiny to teens)* EASY drive or bus ride from Queenstown or Wanaka

* including fully licensed Under 5’s centre for children 3mths + 35 Shotover St, Queenstown / 18 Dunmore St, Wanaka p: +64 3 443 7411 e: info@cardrona.com WWW.CARDRONA.COM

CARDRONA. FUN GUARANTEED

WWW.ONEPASSNZ.COM

NEW ZEALAND

NZ

Cardrona

Coronet Peak

Treble Cone

resort report

Cardrona

Coronet Peak

Treble Cone

The relaxed and friendly atmosphere at Cardrona has been attracting snow-loving families for over 35 years. Wide open beginner trails make it easy for children and novices to gain confidence while world-class parks and pipes appeal to the ski and board enthusiasts. Kids 5 years and under ski free and Cardrona’s First Timer package is excellent value for adults and children who have not skied or snowboarded before. Elevation: 1860m Terrain mix: 25% beginner; 50% intermediate; 25% advanced Lifts: 7 Terrain Park: 3 Snow Sports School: Kids Ski & Snowboard School – 5-14 years Child Care: Nursery Kindy – 3 months-3 years; Ski Kindy – 2-4 years cardrona.com

The closest mountain to Queenstown, Coronet Peak is a 20-minute drive from the city. Dedicated learner and novice areas plus Night Skiing/First Tracks from July through September, provide skiing and boarding experiences for all abilities. Fantastic supervised kids programs ensure that kids who do want to ski, and kids who are too young or would prefer snowplay, don’t miss any of the fun on the mountain. Coronet Peak has a skiable area of 280 ha and free Day Lift Passes are offered to all kids 6 years and under. Elevation: 1649m Terrain mix: 25% beginner; 45% intermediate; 30% advanced Lifts: 8 Terrain Park: Yes Snow Sports School: Kids Ski – 3-15 years Child Care: Mini Kids for 3 months - under 2 years; Kiwi Kids for 2–5 years nzski.com/coronet

Treble Cone is the largest ski resort on the South Island and is the closest to Wanaka. On the mountain there’s everything you need for a fantastic family snow experience, starting with the free beginner lifts and dedicated learning area and graduating to the longest beginner trail in New Zealand. There’s a range of terrain from long, wide groomed trails to off-piste areas and the Snow Sports School offers full and half-day kids programs, adult and child group lessons and private lessons. Elevation: 2088m Terrain mix: 10% beginner; 45% intermediate; 45% advanced Lifts: 4 Terrain Park: 2 Snow Sports School: Kids Ski – 3-15 years; Kids Snowboard – 6-15 years Child Care: For kids from 3 years treblecone.com

BIG MOUNTAIN

big DAYS AND The kIDS SkI4free

Only one hour from Christchurch International Airport is where kids 10 years and under stay, eat and ski for free*. *kids 10 yrs & under also get free airport transfers & daily mountain transfers. Go to www.kids4free.co.nz for all the info and participating businesses.

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EArly lEArnIng CEntrEs 3 months – 5 years. 3 dAy sChOOl hOlIdAy PrOgrAmmEs 5 – 15 years. Full and half day options available. Find out about the big mountain at

The Remarkables

Mt Hutt

Ohau

The Remarkables

Mt Hutt

Ohau

Just 45 minutes from Queenstown, The Remarkables features a fantastic network of progressive terrain parks with wide, gentle slopes for beginners of all ages and big mountain steeps for the experts in the family. There are also purpose-built snow tubing lanes. Kids 10 years and under can ride the lifts for free in 2014. Elevation: 1943m Terrain mix: 30% beginner; 40% intermediate; 30% advanced Lifts: 7 Terrain Park: 3 Snow Sports School: Kids Ski – 3-15 years Child Care: Mini Kids for 3 months - under 2 years; Kiwi Kids for 2–5 years nzski.com/remarkables

Kids4free at Mt Hutt and Methven village is great news for families and in just one hour from Christchurch Airport, you can be dipping your (well-covered) toes in snow! For the 2014 season kids can Stay & Play Free in Methven (conditions apply) and kids 10 years and under ski free at Mt Hutt. Elevation: 2086m Terrain mix: 25% beginner; 50% intermediate; 25% advanced Lifts: 4 Terrain Park: 2 Snow Sports School: Kids Ski – 3-15 years Child Care: Mini Kids for 3 months - under 2 years; Kiwi Kids for 2–5 years nzski.com/mthutt

Lake Ohau Lodge and Ohau Snow Fields are located four hours south of Christchurch and approximately two hours from Queenstown. With the family-friendly lodge nestled at the foot of the mountain, it’s a 20-minute drive to the snow and the start of winter fun. Part of the Ohau Range in the Main Divide, Ohau Snow Fields is renowned for reliable snowfall and good weather. The mountain caters for all abilities with flat, wide slopes at the top, where the views are spectacular. Elevation: 2086m Terrain mix: 20% beginner; 50% intermediate; 30% advanced Lifts: 3 Terrain Park: No Snow Sports School: Mountain Goats Ski School – must be old enough to ski or ride in a group with others Child Care: No ohau.co.nz

Queenstown, New Zealand

closest ski areas to queenstown Free day liFt passes kids 10 & under at The Remarkables, kids 6 & under at Coronet Peak.

early learning centres 3 months – 5 years. school holiday programmes 5 – 15 years. 3 and 5 day programmes available.

kids ski & snowboard lessons 5 – 15 years. Full and half day lessons available.

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world

SKI THE

© Shutterstock.com

S KI N E W S - I N T E RNATI ONAL

Earlybird catches Skimax ‘Cool Deals’ Taking advantage of Earlybird skiing and snowboarding holiday packages to Europe, Canada, the USA and Japan can make a big difference to the cost of a ski holiday and Skimax has already started rolling out some great deals for the 2014/15 season. From 5 star hotels to cosy lodges and two-bedroom apartments, some of the Skimax Earlybird ‘Cool Deals’ offer bonuses ranging from ski and lift passes to daily breakfasts and food and beverage credits. Skimax also partners with leading airlines to provide you with the best-priced airfare for your ski holiday. skimax.com.au

Family Cup fun in January 2015

© Shutterstock.com

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he big plus for snow-loving families who live in the southern hemisphere is that our long summer school holidays happily coincide with the northern hemisphere winter season, giving families several weeks in which to enjoy a ski holiday on the other side of the globe. If you’re keen to do ‘the big trip’, you’ll be spoilt for choice, with world-class resorts in Europe, North America and Japan all snowladen and awaiting your December to February arrival! For kids, the chance to discover a new and exciting – and totally different – destination, its unique culture, people and customs, is priceless. Throw in a winter wonderland experience and you’ll be creating (snowy) mountain-sized holiday memories. From the far north of Japan near Sapporo to north-west of Tokyo; from the high Alps of Switzerland, Austria, France and Italy to the mountains of California, Colorado, Utah and Wyoming in the US; and to Canada’s impressive snowy peaks, family-friendly ski resorts and snowfields abound.

Sun Peaks will be unveiling its new, expanded terrain for the 2014/15 season, taking the skiable area to over 1400 ha at this favourite Canadian ski resort. In fact, Sun Peaks has seen a huge amount of growth in its 50 years and is now the largest year-round destination resort in British Columbia’s interior and the host of the popular Sun Peaks Family Cup. The 8th annual event will be held from 4 – 11 January 2015 and kids can take part in gate training sessions, the race series, the Kookaburra Cup Cross-Country Ski comp, Obstacle Course and Mountain Marathon - then grab the rest of the family for the main event - the Family Cup, where families don their national colours and race for their country! sunpeaksresort.com

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SK I NEWS - INT ERN A T IO N A L

© gorillaimages, Shutterstock.com

Ski the globe with Epic Pass

First-hand knowledge, first-rate fun! Work and play combine for the staff at Mogul Ski World. Skiers and/or boarders all, Mogul’s people on the ground have personally tried and tested all of their properties and even travelled with children, to keep skiing and boarding families abreast of the latest and best kids programs and facilities at ski resorts around the world. At every destination, Mogul has the lowdown on the local kid-friendly restaurants, best-suited accommodation and the little details, like the distance from your lodgings to the kids ski school. And because they tap into as many ‘kids ski free, kids rent free and kids stay free’ deals as they can find, you’ll be able to plan and budget for an enjoyable northern hemisphere snow holiday! mogulski.com.au

Vail Resorts’ 2014/15 Epic Pass just got a whole load more epic, with a new partnership that includes Niseko, Japan. Vail has also renewed its Epic Pass partnerships with Les 3 Vallees in France and Verbier in Switzerland to give 2014/15 pass holders access to a whopping 21 mountains across three continents! The Epic Pass offers unlimited and unrestricted skiing and riding for the 2014/15 winter season at all participating resorts including Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone and Arapahoe Basin in Colorado; Canyons in Park City, Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood at Lake Tahoe; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan. vail.com

With over 15 years experience under their collective belts, the folk at Travelplan know their business and 80% of that business is return customers! They’ll find you ski deals around the world and even organise flights, lifts and transfers, as well as guide you to choosing the best resort and accommodation for your family. As the leading tour operator to Snowmass in Colorado, Travelplan offers a range of Snowmass packages and a wealth of knowledge to help you book the perfect Aspen family holiday. Snowmass has 1348 ha of terrain and is one of the largest ski areas in Colorado, offering kids ski and snowboard lessons and the Treehouse Kids Adventure Center childcare for little ones from 8 weeks old through to 4 years old. travelplan.com.au

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© Shutterstock.com

Travelplan knows Snowmass

A WHITE CHRISTMAS IT’S OUR SPECIALTY Snowflakes flutter through the sky. Lights are illuminated in snow covered trees. A white Christmas is magical, there’s nothing quite like it. Proud, local residents will have you feeling like an old friend as you’re served a morning coffee on your ski through the village to the chairlifts. Your kids will meet new mates at the Family Fun Dual Race (Saturdays), Kids Craft Night (Wednesdays) and at other fun activities. These are just some of the reasons why Sun Peaks is a favourite ski destination among Australian families. With new terrain opening in 2014–15 it will also be the second largest in Canada with 4,200 skiable acres!

FRE E KIDS SKI + RENLTOF FERS AND OTHER SPECIA

red travel agent! Book today with your prefer ney to Vancouver Take a direct flight from Syd ht to Kamloops. flig ting nec con with a quick

aksResort.com/AUS ea www.SunPe

9th Annual Sun Peaks Family Cup:

All Nations Celebration, January 4–11, 2015

Photo: Kelly Funk

Take part in a multinational celebration of recreational races, winter activities, and social gatherings. With the annual Winter Festival of Wine held January 17–25, you can also indulge in BC’s award winning wines! www.SunPeaksFamilyCup.com

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A RENDEZVOUS IN

Jackson FOR A TOUCH OF THE REAL WEST, WITH INCREDIBLE WILDLIFE AND AMAZING SKIING, JACKSON HOLE, WYOMING IS A SURE-FIRE HIT. WORDS: HELEN HAYES

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t was a little bit intimidating, knowing we were going to be skiing at one of the best and most challenging mountains in the USA. However, we needn’t have worried, as no matter what your level, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort is amazing - and spectacular as well. Situated in the rugged Grand Teton National Park and very close to Yellowstone National Park, the landscape is gorgeous, and our noses were pressed to the shuttle windows the whole way from Jackson Airport to Teton Village. We are staying in a two-bedroom condo in the Nez Perce complex, with a chairlift at the end of the street and a shuttle bus picking up and dropping off regularly to the resort base

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– just a five-minute trip. We could ski home and the short walk or bus ride in the morning was no problem. If you want true ski in, ski out accommodation, there is plenty available.

Riding The Big Red Tram Jackson has two mountains – Rendezvous and Après Vous – with Rendezvous the higher of the two at a frosty 3185 metres. It’s for the more experienced skiers and boarders, with mostly black and double black runs, with a mix of groomed runs, tree runs, chutes and bowls. Après Vous, with an elevation of 2585 metres, is perfect for less experienced skiers and

© Jackson Hole

snowboarders and has the Saratoga Bowl for those that like a bit more bite. The lessons here are excellent, with the Kids Ranch offering activities for kids from six months to 17 years old. Younger children, from six months to three years, are looked after at Wrangler Daycare, with kids from two learning pre-ski skills and spending a lot of time outside, touring around in sleds, riding the gondola and having a ball. Pioneers is for kids from three to five, Rough Riders for those in kindy and year one and Explorers for kids in years two to nine. The beginner’s area is centred around Eagles Rest and the Teewinot chairs and, as they progress, they’ll love the child-friendly trails between the trees off Teewinot – I certainly did! Après Vous has some beautiful long, wide groomed runs – just my cup of tea – with Werner and Moran my favourites. On Casper, the newly developed intermediate terrain on Rendezvous was excellent, with Sleeping Indian and Easy Does It smooth as silk, while from the top of Bridger Gondola, you could take your pick of a swag of trails that go down to the base or connect to several other chairlifts. Sundance and Gros Ventre were my style,

while the boys loved the black runs off Thunder. For the piece de resistance, we headed up the Tram, known as ‘Big Red’ by the locals. The tram is much bigger than the Big Red Car your kids might be used to … it carries 100 people and soars to the top of Rendezvous and the gnarly black runs that lie in wait. We go up and some locals point out the infamous Corbet’s Couloir, a chute that you have to drop into, through the air. That is most definitely for experts only! At the top, everything is covered in snow and icy fingers hang off the roof of Corbets Cabin – a great place to warm up in, enjoy the freshly made waffles and take in the view. I chose that option, then headed back down on the Tram while the boys dropped into Rendezvous Bowl and danced their way (or is that ploughed?) through feet of fresh powder, exploring the runs off Sublette and Thunder chairs before heading back the base. That is one of the things we loved about Jackson - that you can ski to the base from anywhere.

A feast There are many wonderful places to eat on the mountain and in Teton Village. For lunch we highly recommend the restaurant on Casper,

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© Jackson Hole

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which has some fascinating history on the walls about the local Native American Indians who used to live around the area, and for something special, book into Couloir at the top of Bridger Gondola – mouth-watering meals only matched by the panoramic views. After your day on the slopes, drop into the Handle Bar at the Four Seasons for a drink around the fire pits, and for dinner the Mangy Moose is a must - with a fabulously fun interior, great ambience and kid-friendly meals. For a parents-only dinner, dress up and splurge at Westbank Grill at the Four Seasons. It’s seriously good.

The wild west Wildlife is a big part of the scenery around here, so we did a tour with Jackson Hole Wildlife Safaris - and what an adventure it was. We visited the National Elk Refuge just out of Jackson, saw moose – in fact a mother and baby ran across the road in front of us – a herd of bison, bald eagles, mule deer, big horn

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sheep and some muskrats. Our guide also gave us some really interesting information about the history of the area and showed us some movie locations. There are plenty of other things to do as well, including tubing, dog sledding, snowshoeing and snowmobile tours and snow coach tours – with some going into Yellowstone National Park. The best way to see the National Elk Refuge is on a sleigh ride, as you can actually go into the refuge and get up close to the elk. To finish off your stay, spend a night or two in Jackson, a town dripping with all things western. Stay at the historic Wort Hotel (pronounced wirt as in girt) and venture out for a look at the shops and galleries. The hotel has free hot chocolate and freshly baked cookies in the lounge every day - and if you have any room left, dinner at the Silver Dollar Grill is sensational. What a fitting end to an unforgettable snow holiday.

FAST

FACTS GETTING THERE You can fly direct to Jackson from LAX with United and Delta. united.com delta.com WHERE TO STAY Jackson Hole Resort Lodging jhrl.com The Wort Hotel worthotel.com MORE INFORMATION Jackson Hole Mountain Resort jacksonhole.com Jackson Hole Wildlife Safaris jacksonholewildlifesafaris.com

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A Mammoth adventure MAMMOTH MOUNTAIN, CALIFORNIA

A

WITH A LONGER SEASON, HIGHER MOUNTAINS AND MORE TERRAIN, MAMMOTH IS THE PLACE TO SKI IN CALIFORNIA. WORDS: HELEN HAYES

fter a few days enjoying some of the family-friendly delights of Los Angeles, including an unforgettable day at Disneyland, we headed for the snowy slopes of Mammoth Mountain – a short 60-minute flight from LAX to Mammoth Yosemite Airport. From there it’s just an eightminute drive into the beautiful little town of Mammoth Lakes, in the shadows of the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains. We stayed at the Westin Monache Resort Mammoth in a spacious two-bedroom apartment – a must when you have two teenage boys – and we barely had time to unpack before all our pre-ordered ski gear arrives at the door. No kidding! We went through Black Tie Rentals, and the two very efficient staff had us kitted out with flash skis, a snowboard and boots in no time flat. What a fantastic service! All we needed now was daylight … and snow.

Woolly – the Mammoth Mountain mascot

© Mammoth Mountain

On the mountain Mammoth Mountain lives up to its name, with big numbers across the board. It has the highest skiable terrain in California (with a top elevation of 3369 metres), 1500 ha of terrain to explore with 28 lifts and 150 trails. Add the longest snow season in California (open from November to June) and 300 days of sunshine - and you can see why the US Olympic snowboarding and freeskiing teams train here. We gear up and jump in the village gondola to the Canyon Lodge base area to start our exploration in earnest. With four base areas, Eagle Lodge, Canyon Lodge, The Mill and Main Lodge, there’s plenty of variety and more than enough runs to please everyone. The Schoolyard is the beginner learning area with two chairlifts, which means no hanging around and more time learning. We tackle a plethora of blue runs and a smattering of blacks, with the runs off Broadway Express, Face Lift, Rollercoaster, Stump Alley, Chair 12 and Eagle Express keeping us busy. The highlight is a trip up the Panorama Gondola to the Top of the Sierra, where we spend a minute enjoying the scenic views over the surrounding peaks and the valley. The boys drop into the Cornice Bowl and love Dave’s Run, while we mere mortals take the scenic route – the Road Runner - all the way to the Main Lodge. It is impossibly pretty and well worth doing. As for the boys, the world-class terrain parks provide endless hours of fun. Mammoth has eight parks allowing for progression from green to blue to black. The Main Park is the biggest, with a huge half pipe and supersized jumps. South Park got the thumbs up from our crew, as did Forest Trail.

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© Mammoth Mountain

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Food for thought Although our apartment had a fabulous full kitchen, we decided not to mess it up and tried some of the many wonderful restaurants in the village. We go Mexican at Gomez’s, have a protein hit at Smokeyard BBQ and Chop Shop, and love the Westin Mammoth’s Whitebark Restaurant, where you can eat in the restaurant or in the bar. We also tried one of the local favourites, Roberto’s, which had the best burritos around - according to my expert teen chompers. The food on the mountain was also good, with Mill Café my favourite spot. It has a cool vibe and great barbecue. McCoy Station and Marketplace Grill at Main Lodge were also excellent, with the ‘design your own’ salads and pastas a big hit.

Hot pools and ghost towns There is so much to do at Mammoth Lakes off the slopes. At the end of the day we head straight for the large jacuzzis and heated pool at the Westin Mammoth – a great way to ease tired muscles. We also heard about the hot springs located out of town on the valley floor, so organise to visit one. General consensus amongst locals is that Wild Willy’s is best, and it really was something special. Just a 20-minute drive and then a short stroll along a boardwalk, it felt weird to strip down to swimmers in the chill of the late

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afternoon before sinking into the blissful, steaming hot mineral spring. There were several locals in it already, but talking to them - and watching the sun splash a range of oranges and pinks on the surrounding peaks - made it even better. Another local recommendation was Woolly’s Adventure Tube Park, a short drive out of town on the free red line bus. It has a great snowplay area for younger kids and six lanes of tubing fun for thrill seekers. We sign up and are towed up the hill before hurtling down the lanes at a rate of knots. What a blast! We went up and down countless times, racing against each other and having a ball. If that wasn’t exciting enough, we organise a tour to Bodie State Historic Park, a wellpreserved ghost town and living history lesson. It’s also the official ghost town of the state of California. Once a city of 10,000 people at the height of the gold rush, the only people there now are two rangers who live on site to protect it from over-zealous visitors. We stroll down the streets, peering in the windows of homes, a school, a general store, church and a few pubs, all still with furniture inside. In the school room there is still writing on the board and books on desks. It’s as if the people just up and left, leaving everything behind … as well as a few ghosts.

FAST FACTS GETTING THERE Mammoth is a five-hour drive from Los Angeles or Las Vegas and a 60-minute flight from LAX. Alaskan Airlines and United both operate flights. Transfers from the airport to town can be arranged through the Mammoth All Weather Shuttle. mawshuttle.com WHERE TO STAY Westin Monache Resort has beautiful apartments for families along with a great location. westinmammoth.com MORE INFORMATION mammothmountain.com VisitMammoth.com Black Tie Rentals blacktieskis.com

PLAY AT THE TOP

OF CALIFORNIA 1416 HECTARES 28 LIFTS 300 SUNNY DAYS

Mammoth Mountain Inn

849*

$

from

pp twin share

The Westin Monache Resort

1355*

$

from

BONUS! STAY 7, PAY 6 + COMPLIMENTARY AIRPORT TRANSFERS*

Includes: - 7 nights twin share in Standard Hotel Room at Mammoth Mountain Inn - 6 day Ski Pass

pp twin share

BONUS! STAY 7, PAY 5 + COMPLIMENTARY AIRPORT TRANSFERS*

Includes: - 7 nights twin share in Studio Room at The Westin Monache Resort - 6 day Ski Pass

*Conditions apply. Valid for travel 5 January - 14 February 2015. Prices are subject to change and availability. Airport transfers are from Mammoth lake airport to Mammoth.

To book your holiday and for more trip ideas, contact us at: Mammoth The Westin Visit Skimax.com.au, Call 1300 136 997, Monache Resort Mountain Inn

849*

$ from

1355*

Visit Mammoth

Email skimax@skimax.com.au or visit your local travel agent. pp twin share

$

from

pp twin share

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SKIING ACROSS

The States

THE LIST IS LONG AND IMPRESSIVE - THERE’S A US SKI RESORT THAT’S THE RIGHT FIT FOR EVERY EXPERIENCED SKIER, BEGINNER, BOARDER AND FOR THE SMALLEST FRY…

W

hether you head to the aptly named Mountain States or to California, the US has an incredible number of amazing and varied ski resorts, any one of which is perfect for a family holiday. The relative proximity of the US to Australia, the familiar culture and the shared language are just a few of the reasons you’ll find lots of Aussie families whooping it up on the US slopes every winter.

Rocky Mountain High Above: Breckenridge Colorado. © Robert27, Shutterstock.com

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From Colorado and Utah in the southwest to Wyoming and Montana in the northwest, the Mountain States are renowned the world over for some of the heaviest snowfalls and exhilarating mountaintop skiing and snowboarding. Colorado is home to family-friendly resorts including

WINTER 2014 outandaboutwithkids.com.au

Snowmass, Telluride and Vail. Vail Ski Resort is the largest single resort in the United States with 2140 ha of diverse and expansive skiing. Gentle groomers and advanced terrain cater to all levels of experience and Vail’s fun and safe Kid’s Adventure Zones are all over the mountain, with banked turns and tunnels. vail.com Utah’s Park City Mountain Ski Resort has a whole range of snow activities for kids that run the gamut from tubing to ice-skating and from sleigh rides to snowmobile rides. The unique kids Signature Programs provide an unforgettable mountain education, with children placed into small groups according to both their age and ski and board abilities. Experienced skiers will love the 1300 ha over eight peaks and nine bowls, 116 trails and 16 lifts! parkcitymountain.com

Jackson Hole

See why Jackson Hole was voted No.1 ski resort in North America by SKI Magazine readers.

© Jackson Hole

A ski in ski out village, huge variety of terrain and warm friendly western spirit makes for a perfect place for a family snow holiday.

Jackson Hole in Wyoming is another firm family favourite with two big mountains to experience and plenty of snowboarding areas, including the Burton Stash Parks, the only Stash Parks in the Rocky Mountains. Jackson Hole also offers a dedicated kids snowboarding program for 3 – 6 year olds, using the Burton Riglet Reel, attached to the front and back of the child’s snowboard, to give instructors control over their charges’ speed and direction. jacksonhole.com Then there’s Heavenly! Straddling the states of California and Nevada, Lake Tahoe’s Heavenly Mountain Resort has 97 runs and 29 lifts, a five-lane tubing hill, rolling glades, terrain parks, groomed runs and back country-like canyons. At Heavenly you can head off on the area’s most skiable terrain and then make the unique claim of having skied across two states! Heavenly Day Care and Nursery will look after bubs from 6 weeks, the resort also offers a one-on-one nanny service and ski lessons are available for little ones from 3-5 years. skiheavenly.com

Mogul Ski Specials Kids 14 and under ski FREE* Adults ski FREE Buy a 7 day pass and receive 10 days = 3 FREE days* Earlybird Accommodation Deal Save 20%* January Family Package SLEEPING INDIAN ★ ★ ★

from

$3278 *per family

Based on 7 nights accommodation in a 2 bedroom condo and a 6 day lift pass for 2 adults and 2 children 14 years and under. Valid 5 Jan – 6 Feb. *Conditions apply please contact Mogul Ski World for details

LIC31304

mogulski.com.au

1800 335 724

reservations@mogulski.com.au

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CA NADA

Sun Peaks PERFECTION

SKIING SUN PEAKS IN LATE SEASON BRINGS MORE BONUSES AND DELIGHTFUL SURPRISES THAN THIS FAMILY COULD EVER HAVE IMAGINED POSSIBLE, ALONG WITH A WHOLE BUNCH OF NEVER-TO-BE-FORGOTTEN FIRSTS! WORDS: MICHELLE PETTIGROVE

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eorgia can hardly contain her excitement. She controls herself until I’ve taken a photo of her holding a mouth-watering chocolate caramel toffee apple. The woman behind the counter can’t believe it’s my daughter’s first ever toffee apple and I’m struck by the growing number of ‘firsts’ we’ve racked up during our short stay in this mountain wonderland.

Hit the slopes, it’s snow time! Sun Peaks Resort – an hour’s flight east of Vancouver in British Columbia, Canada – is renowned as one of the top destinations to enjoy the delights of a serious alpine winter. Arriving in the closing weeks of the season – late March to early April – we expect to be regaled with apologies from weary staff about meagre conditions and the winding down of services. To our surprise, everything is still pumping at full throttle, including night concerts, sleigh rides, dog sledding, tubing, cross country, snowshoeing, ice-skating, snow mobile tours; and of course a full complement of 126 alpine ski runs, reached by 11 lifts that stretch across the face of three mountains – (the second largest ski field in Canada and growing). Apparently the only reason the ski season closes on 6 April is that after a typically snowheavy winter, locals are far more interested in golf and gardening. The slopes are still skiable for another six weeks! Sun Peak’s ski program for kids is progressive and fun, run by fully qualified instructors who are famously awesome. Georgia is spoilt with some one-on-one time with lovely Anne Terwiel, mum of Elli Terwiel – Canadian Winter Olympian of 2014. There’s a ‘first’ to remember!

A sleigh ride is the perfect pace to enjoy the magical sights Champagne experience There’s so much to love about this place – most importantly the amount and quality of the snow. Almost six metres of champagne powder falls on Sun Peaks every year. This means a virtual guarantee of four and a half months of flawlessly groomed, first-class ski conditions. Champagne powder, to the uninitiated, is a little like layers of dusted icing sugar. It is magically dry to the touch and skis seem to hover weightlessly, gliding through it, like slipping deliciously along on silk. Australia can go whole seasons without ever experiencing this type of enchanting snowfall. Our first experience of champagne powder begins a love affair, leaving us eternally spoilt rotten. And it’s not just the snow – Sun Peaks delivers on every front. The only thing missing is the crowd! We spend a week here and never queue for ski lifts. Restaurants and cafés are blissfully calm and the whole ski rental nightmare is so lightning-paced it’s enjoyable. There’s no chance of getting homesick here, with a significant contingency of discerning skiers and employees from such far-flung Aussie places as Echuca, Goulburn, Brisbane, Box Hill and Perth.

Small town – big heart

er… First toffee aptplthe eevlast definitely no

A large part of the appeal of any snow holiday lies in the atmosphere of the destination itself. The village centre of Sun Peaks winds romantically around a meandering main street reminiscent of an Italian hamlet, with shopping options ranging from cute novelty stores to the more pragmatic outlets supplying essentials like groceries, ski clothing and local wines. The eating options are broad in style and cost, including friendly café meals, delicious Japanese cuisine, white linen restaurants, and even the good old Aussie pie (made locally from succulent beef and melting pastry). With a year-round population of almost 500, there’s a delightful feeling of small town familiarity, absent from massive resorts of the world.

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Mayor Raine and Nancy Greene Much of the family feel at Sun Peaks lies in the personal commitment of its homegrown ‘royalty’. This tiny mountain community is now a municipality of British Columbia and boasts its own mayor – Al Raine – former coach of Canada’s Olympic ski team. Al and his wife Nancy Greene, former Olympic champion skier and Canada’s Sportsperson of the Century, (and busy Canadian senator!) both live in the village and host regular ski tours of the mountains. This down-to-earth couple strongly supported the drive to establish Sun Peak’s own school, catering for years K through 12 in a four-room schoolhouse halfway up the mountain. The current enrolment is 69 and growing every year. What could be more appealing than skiing on some of the world’s finest runs during recess and lunch breaks? For a fleeting second Georgia wishes she was at school – definitely a first.

C’mon Aussie…! Possibly the biggest benefit of a Sun Peaks family holiday is the price. There are no hidden surprises in the exchange rate, which is usually on a par with the Aussie dollar. A one-day lift ticket costs a remarkable $79 adult, $63 teen (13-18 years), $40 child, and under 5s are free. Even for the average Aussie family, two weeks in Sun Peaks starts looking infinitely doable, considering the airfares drop after January, and the sublime ski conditions are

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practically assured. A loud and strong message to Aussie families wanting to experience the best ski conditions without high season crowds – and at shoulder season prices - is ‘Go to Sun Peaks after the January peak’. The other late season bonus is the milder temperature … and as any skiing family can attest, getting novice skiers onto the slopes is challenge enough, without bone-biting weather.

Yet more firsts! Skiing aside, we find time to enjoy the loping pace of a horse-drawn sleigh ride, with sleigh bells jingling a hypnotic rhythm through the streets of Sun Peaks. And another first – the snowshoe trek into gorgeous snow-blanketed pine glades where we try warm apple cider and discover the decadence of s’mores (sweet biscuits sandwiching slices of melting chocolate and roasted marshmallows). The firsts don’t end there. Summer in Sun Peaks brings with it a raft of fresh experiences including spotting bears, moose, lynx, cougars, pumas and wolves in their natural habitat. The slopes shed their mantle of snow and burst into a frenzy of colourful wildflowers that decorate the world-class mountain bike and bushwalking trails. This is not a destination that will leave our memories any time soon. If your family is ready for some mind-blowing firsts, take a close look at the magic of Sun Peaks and head for the hills! sunpeaksresort.com

Above: Frank, Michelle and Georgia enjoying the champagne powder

SKI SUN PEAKS

SENSATIONAL EARLY BIRD SPECIALS AT SUN PEAKS RESORT: LIFTS UP TO 15% OFF AND KIDS SKI/RENT FREE TO 12 YEARS!* Sun Peaks will soon be one of Canada’s 2nd largest ski resorts, with the addition of over 200 hectares of new ski terrain! The snow quality is also amazing, not to mention the charming village. For an extra special experience, take part in the Sun Peaks Family Cup – All Nations Celebrations (Jan 4-11) and don’t miss the renowned 17th Annual Sun Peaks Winter Festival of Wine (Jan 17-25).

BEST PRICE POLICY!

STUDIO WITH DEN FROM

$582* $186*

PER ADULT PER CHILD

STAY 7 PAY 4

2 BEDROOM RESIDENCE FROM

$1018* $621*

PER ADULT

PER CHILD

STAY 7 PAY 6

FREE WORLD’S BEST SKI HOLIDAYS BROCHURE Call or email us for a copy of our 2015 brochure for full details of our available deals.

BOOK NOW for great ski fares with Air Canada!

*Package costs for travel in January 2015 include: 7 nights’ accommodation, 6 day lift pass and taxes. Family package based on 2 adults and 2 children up to 12 years. Costs valid as at 22 April 2014. Kids Ski/Rent Free: one free child per equal adult purchase of 5+ days. Early booking and other conditions apply.

Call 1300 754 754

email ski@travelplan.com.au visit www.travelplan.com.au WINTER 2014 117

outandaboutwithkids.com.au Offices in Sydney and Melbourne. NSW Licence No 2TA000270 and VIC Licence No 30167.

TPN1104

HEARTHSTONE LODGE SUN PEAKS GRAND

CA NADA

LAND OF THE

silver birch IN THE NORTHERN WINTER, CANADA’S WESTERNMOST PROVINCE TRANSFORMS INTO A SNOW-LOVER’S PARADISE WITH BIG, BEAUTIFUL SKI AREAS, HORSEDRAWN SLEIGHS, FRIENDLY VILLAGES AND A SNOWY LANDSCAPE THAT WILL TAKE YOUR BREATH AWAY.

Whistler-Blackcomb Even non–skiers know the name Whistler, particularly after this Canadian ski resort played host to the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Whatever the season, the biggest resort in North America attracts a staggering number of visitors from around the world, and in winter it becomes much more than just a ski resort – it becomes a must-ski destination. Just two hours from Vancouver, the WhistlerBlackcomb ski area is located in the Coast Mountain Range of British Columbia (BC) and enjoys reliable snow and a long ski season. The two majestic mountains loom above an extensive village offering world-class amenities, with relaxing mountain culture and hospitality. Mums, dads, kids and grandparents love this place, with its choice of

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accommodation for all budgets, including Whistler’s award-winning Four Seasons, the Fairmont Chateau Whistler and the Westin Resort & Spa; the pedestrian-only village stroll, friendly atmosphere and great value family deals. On the slopes there are over 200 runs connected by 37 lifts plus three glaciers and 16 alpine bowls! Little skiers can take part in programs including Whistler Kids Snow School, with its specially designed terrain gardens and family zones, an enchanted Tree Fort and a Magic Castle. Babysitting is available for newborns to 14 years old, as well as a selection of childcare and daycare options that enable parents, with children too young to ski or more interested in snowplay, to venture out and experience over 3000 ha of diverse terrain. whistler.com

Silver Star Mountain Resort From the advanced Rockstar terrain park and Rockstar SnowX course to the Kiddie Terrain Park for ski and snowboard beginners, kids big and small can improve their skills, gain confidence and make friends at Silver Star. The Rippers Program for 3-12 year olds, the Adventure Centre Breakfast Club and the Kids Night Out, which will keep them happy and busy until bedtime - are just a few of the innovative kids activities this BC ski resort has designed especially for families. The Victorian-inspired village is colourful and family-focused with ski in ski out accommodation available. On the slopes, Silver Star has 115 marked trails with the terrain split 15% beginner, 40% intermediate, 35% advanced – and 10% extreme! winter.skisilverstar.com

© Big White Ski Resort

Kids mini sleds at Silver Star Mountain Resort

© Silver Star Mountain Resort

Lake Louise

Above: Blackcomb - mountain view from Whistler. © Pierre Leclerc, Shutterstock.com

bear at Hanging withSthki eResort Big White

Picturesque Lake Louise is located in the Canadian Rockies, in the heart of the majestic Banff National Park, Alberta, and its fresh wilderness setting has earned it the reputation as one of the most scenic ski resorts in North America. The unique layout allows families and groups of varying abilities to ski together; beginners and intermediate skiers have access to an abundance of gentle slopes and long cruising runs; while experts can explore endless chutes, glades, gullies and remote bowls in some of the Rockies’ most challenging terrain. The resort has a 1700 ha skiable area with 145 marked runs and 10 lifts. If you can stretch the budget, it’s worth the once-in-a-lifetime splurge to stay at the iconic and spectacular Fairmont Lake Louise, the jewel in the accommodation crown here - the views are so sublime you’ll want to pinch yourself! skilouise.com

Big White Ski Resort Its nearest town is Kelowna, on the stunning Okanagan Lake, and Big White Ski Resort, on Big White Mountain (of course!), is the second largest ski resort in BC. Five terrain parks, 16 lifts and 118 designated trails have earned this resort a slew of accolades and awards from the folk who know skiing and know ski resorts! Programs for families and kids of all ages include ‘Mom/Dad & Me are Skiing’ and Teen Programs, with kids ski school split into age groups and abilities and Tot Town Daycare on hand for little ones. Big White Central Reservations take care of your accommodation needs and you can choose from hotels and townhouses to condominiums, holiday homes and luxury cabins. The village itself is a hub for shopping, eating, relaxing, enjoying entertainment and generally hanging out and having après ski fun! bigwhite.com

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Innsbruck IT’S THE SCENERY, THE SNOW-COVERED VILLAGES, THE DELICIOUS BELLY- AND HEARTWARMING FOOD, THE HOSPITALITY, THE MAGIC OF THE TRADITIONAL CHRISTMAS MARKETS, THE SKIING, BOARDING AND SUPER SNOW FUN….

I

nnsbruck, the capital of the Alps, is picture-postcard pretty throughout the year, transforming into a magical wonderland in the winter. With fantastic family-friendly resorts, festive Christmas markets, loads of snow activities and spectacular scenery, it’s a don’t-miss destination on your European family holiday. Alpine Innsbruck has nine ski resorts, 300kms of slopes and 90 lifts and cable cars, with areas that will suit every member of the family. Special kids ski and snowboarding schools are designed for tiny tots just finding their ski legs, right up to teenage beginners. You can take your pick of beautiful accommodation throughout the 800-yearold city, or if you’d rather be right on the slopes, stay in one of the charming ski resorts, each boasting its own Alpine

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character. Choose the regions you would like to ski, or tackle all nine with the ‘Olympia World Ski Pass’. Stay at the Olympia SkiWorld in Innsbruck with its 300km of pistes and 90 uphill facilities. Kids are not just welcome - they’re actively encouraged to conquer the slopes. Beginners can enrol in Igls, the new Ski College for young skiers 5 -14 years. If you’re thinking boring lessons, think again. Snowsport Igls has put together a modern, fun curriculum that even covers park riding and safety training. Younger children love the dedicated kids areas. Relaxed, wide turn skiing is also found on the family slopes of the smaller regions like Rangger Köpfl and the Muttereralm ski region. Conveniently accessed from Mutters and Götzens, Muttereralm boasts fabulous runs down sunny slopes.

In Kühtai, Austria’s highest ski resort at 2020 metres (with 75 km of piste), you’re guaranteed snow and fantastic accommodation. Children up to six years receive the ‘Kids-Küh-Card’ for free. In the 2014/15 winter season, Innsbruck will host the WUSSI games, organised by the Lazar family from Australia. WUSSI (World University Snow Sport Games Innsbruck) is an event for university students from around the world - skiers and boarders, beginners and experts. All will gather in Innsbruck from 16 to 21 January 2015 for a fantastic week of snow sporting events, competition, social interaction and fun. Family and friends turn out to offer support and spectators will be thrilled with the exciting, family-friendly event atmosphere. innsbruck.info

INNSBRUCK TOURISMUS GRAFIK h. a.

Innsbruck – the Capital of the Alps Christmas Markets or shopping malls? Ski boots or high heels? No need to struggle to make the right decision – with a holiday in Innsbruck and its Holiday resorts you get the best of both worlds, the city AND the slopes. Where else can you take a designer cable car from a historic city centre that whisks you up to 2,000 meters altitude for afternoon tea? Only in Innsbruck, the capital of the Alps. Take your pick from the vast variety of Innsbruck’s tailor made holiday packages: WINTER 2014 Innsbruck Tourismus, www.innsbruck-packages.com, office@innsbruck.info, www.innsbruck.info outandaboutwithkids.com.au

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THE ULTIMATE FAMILY PLAYGROUND

Hoshino Resorts TOMAMU

TOMAMU LAYS OUT THE WHITE CARPET, AND THEN SOME …

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ell the kids that on the family ski holiday in Japan they will have to spend their days at Adventure Mountain, Nipo Town Kids Park, the Ice Village, the Polar Village and at Mina-Mina Beach and it’s a safe bet their eyes will light up and their bags will be packed before you can say Hoshino Resorts Tomamu!

and perhaps ‘relish’ is more apt, because here you’ll find everything your family needs for an amazing ski holiday. A spot of rafting in winter? No problem! A Banana Boat ride across a blanket of white in the Polar Village? Why not? A family jaunt in a Sledge Cabin? Sounds good!

All this … and more!

A world for kids

Tomamu, in central Hokkaido, is the closest major ski resort from New Chitose Airport in Sapporo. A veritable family playground, Tomamu welcomes kids with open arms and has put enormous energy and resources into devising innovative kids ‘play and learn’ areas and activities for young families to enjoy. In fact, ‘enjoy’ may well be an understatement

Imaginative and inspiring, the resort’s facilities have been designed with kids in mind and while the skiing and snowboarding is fantastic, the options for family snow fun are simply dazzling. Children debuting on skis or snowboards can start their Tomamu holiday at the Kids Academy, where fun and challenging creative story-based lessons give first-timers the confidence to learn,

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2014/2015 BONUS Adding extra value to a Hoshino Resorts Tomamu holiday, the resort is offering a FREE season pass for 2014/15 to anyone who has purchased a 2014 season pass for ANY RESORT IN AUSTRALIA, when accommodation is booked online directly via Tomamu. snowtomamu.jp

Hoshino Resorts Tomamu © All rights reserved

Mina-Mina Beach and indoor wave pool

and engender a lifelong love for the snow! They can then test out their new skills on Adventure Mountain in two separate areas - Chokkari Mountain, for little ones with some experience, and Nipo Mountain for young beginners. Nipo Town is a kids-only area for children too young to ski or snowboard and is a funfilled wonderland that lets them enjoy some supervised snow time. Combine nursery, lunch and snow in a full-day program at GAO Kids Activity Club, as well as all-ages programs and fun activities for both parents and children.

Ice magic Tomamu’s spectacular Ice Village emerges between mid-January and early March and its fleeting appearance is entirely thanks to

nature. Tomamu is located near the source of the Mukawa River, which flows into the Pacific Ocean. When the seawater vaporises, it returns to Tomamu as rain, which then becomes ice. When the temperature at Tomamu drops below -20 degrees celsius, the Ice Village – with its ice rink, ice slide, ice chapel and ice restaurant magically materialises.

There’s a tropical beach? On the flip side of the Ice Village is the warm fun of Mina-Mina Beach and Japan’s largest indoor wave pool. The massive glass ceiling over the complex absorbs sunlight, creating a balmy, tropical atmosphere inside, regardless of the chill factor outside! The 80-metre long, 30-metre wide jumbo pool produces large waves at regular intervals and is one of the unique highlights of Hoshino Resorts Tomamu. Bigger kids can hop inside the Cyber Wheel and roll on the water while little ones enjoy a splash and paddle in the Kids Pool. The Poolside Café in Mina-Mina Beach also serves light meals including french fries, fried chicken and noodles.

Staying and skiing There are two hotels in Hoshino Resorts Tomamu – The Tower, a modern and convenient hotel for families, and Hoshino Resort Risonare Tomamu, a luxury hotel that also welcomes children. Tomamu dining is diverse and you’ll find a wide choice of Japanese and western meals and light refreshments available at over 15 dining outlets. For mums and dads and teens who want to ski and snowboard, an off-piste powder area, Back Country tours, a slope-style park and half pipe plus CAT and Hike Tours provide more than enough challenges on the mountain. So now that the kids are sold on Tomamu … what are you waiting for?

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© Sarah Christensen, SkiJapan.com

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East meets west AT JAPAN’S SKI RESORTS T

here are over 500 ‘ski-jo’ or ski hills in Japan, ranging from huge mega-resorts to tiny local ski hills, stretching from Hokkaido in the north to Kyushu in the south. A family holiday to Japan’s ski resorts is as much about experiencing the culture as it is about hitting the slopes. Try out the traditional Japanese onsens (hot thermal springs) or watch wild snow monkeys bathe in onsens at the Jigokudani Monkey Park in Nagano. Explore cultural activities and temples in every town, enjoy mouth-watering Japanese cuisine and taste wasabi ice cream! Niseko in Hokkaido is one of the best known and most popular of all the Japanese ski resorts. There are four resorts on the 1308 metre mountain Niseko Annupuri, and most of the accommodation is found

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in apartments, lodges and hotels in Hirafu. Niseko’s low altitude means bad weather doesn’t stop play and gondolas and covered chairlifts will keep you protected. The terrain is varied and includes beautifully groomed beginners’ slopes as well as half pipes, tree runs and long skiing and snowboarding trails. Venture out to nearby Sapporo and soak up the friendly local Japanese culture. www.niseko.ne.jp/en APPI, in northern Honshu, is a family-friendly resort with a huge variety of terrains and a wide range of experiences on offer for all ages and abilities, including snowshoeing and cross country skiing, snowmobiling, and private ski and snowboard lessons with English-speaking

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instructors. APPI Family Park is a fully fenced kids wonderland with magic carpets to service tubing, tobogganing and a ski area. Families can also enjoy lunch together in one of the Kamakura igloos or take a dip in an onsen. As they like to say here … Don’t Worry, be APPI! appi.co.jp/foreign_country/english/winter/ Myoko is located on the border of Nagano and Niigata on Honshu and was established in the 1930s, making it one of the oldest ski resorts in the world. It is steeped in Japanese tradition and culture, and with no nightclubs and hotspots, it is ideal for families who want to enjoy an authentic Japanese holiday experience. Boasting many interlinked resorts, the main village is Akakura, where you’ll find most of the resort accommodation. Myoko is known for some of the longest and deepest powder runs in the region. myokokogen.net

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Shiga Kogen on Honshu is Japan’s largest ski resort, with 21 ski areas all accessible on one lift ticket. Covering 600 ha with a large variety of ski and snowboard terrain, it also has a reputation for quality snow, being the highest resort in Japan. Accommodation is spread across the many villages with ski in ski out options and hotels that offer both western and Japanese-style rooms. mogulski.com.au Don’t forget when the Japan ski season is in full swing, the east coast of Australia is only two hours’ behind Japan (with daylight saving), which is a big plus for families who are keen to avoid jetlagged little ones.

© Sarah Christensen, SkiJapan.com

© Shutterstock.com

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Out & About with Kids - Issue 41 Winter 2014