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Guide for beginners Readers’ tips Recipes

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BEST OF BEST THE

HOLIDAY PARKS Family bushwalks + Houseboats + Kiama +


MAKE YOUR DAYDREAMS A

LIFE LONG MEMORY

destinationtweed.com.au


Fill your days with family fun this summer and take a trip to the fabulous Tweed Coast. ItÕ s the perfect time to get out, get active and turn your daydreams in to life long memories. ItÕ s turtle time! Get up close and personal with green turtles on a snorkeling trip with Watersports Guru. Learn all about the marine environment while having fun. Jump on a stand-up paddleboard, learn to surf, go kayaking or throw a line in the river and try your luck catching a fish. At Tropical Fruit World the lychees are luscious, the mangoes are mad and delicious stone fruits are in season. Take a safari tour through the orchard where you can pick and sample the fruits then mix them all up and make your own fruit flavoured ice cream! ItÕ s the healthiest fun under the sun. For old fashion fun teach the kids the Ò Aussie ArtÓ of crab-potting, yabbie pumping and fishing along the beautiful Tweed River. Or nip over the border for a full day of memories at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.

Book online at destinationtweed.com.au Email info@destinationtweed.com.au or call toll free 1800 674 414 to speak to one of our friendly local staff.

And for somewhere to stay thereÕ s no end of choices. From hinterland to the beach, youÕ ll find all kinds of accommodation for all families and budgets; from van parks and cabins to something flashy and affordable like Salt Village one of the TweedÕ s iconic places to stay. This summer turn those daydreams in to lifelong family memories with an unforgettable holiday to the Tweed. TWEED TOURISM • TWEED BUSINESS


from the editor

Letter from the Editor

It’s that time of year again, the month we’ve been waiting for all year – Holidays with Kids’ Caravanning and Camping flip issue is here with everything you need to know before you set off on your summer holiday adventures. Most excitingly this issue are our Readers’ Choice Awards – the definitive list of Australia’s Top 10 Holiday Parks. This state-bystate guide of holiday park favourites is voted for you, by you. We were overjoyed to be inundated with votes – the HWK team has counted every single one, and put them together to create the perfect go-to-guide when planning your next getaway. At HWK we love camping so we’ve dedicated some space in this issue to converting all our cherished readers who are yet to bite the bullet, hammer in the tent pegs and enjoy the wonder of sleeping in the great outdoors. A novice camper herself, Maddie Hoskins from the HWK team was converted on a recent trip, and she has written a Camping 101 list that will make sure you’ve got all you need for a comfy camp-out. We’ve also tracked down the campfire recipes that are sure to put a smile on everyone’s faces – big and small – and some valuable tips from the real experts out there – our readers. Lucky staff member, Amelia Hungerford, takes you on a tour of Tassie staying at Discovery Parks along the way. We go on a 4WD adventure at NSW’s Clarence River and discover the joys of Victoria’s high country, while experienced hiker, Ken Eastwood, takes us on some fantastic walks for families. Lastly, we jump on board with some of the best places to hire a houseboat on some of Australia’s most picturesque rivers. Bon voyage for now, and happy camping! david thorndike

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Contents REGULARS 08

50

Camping 101

54

Buying a caravan...

58

Holidays afloat

62

Victoria’s High Country

66

Clarence River

70

Family hikes

74

Readers’ tips

76

The Great Aussie Cook Out

In touch All the latest news and updates on all things camping and holiday park-ing.

FEATURES 16

CAMPING AND CARAVANNING

Top 10 Readers’ Choice Awards Holiday Parks The results are in, so here are the lists of the best Aussie Holiday Parks, as voted by you.

HOLIDAY PARKS 32

Holiday parks for all

38

Kiama

42

Treasure Island

44

Tassie

A round-up of some great family-friendly facilities. Enjoy the laid-back lifestyle of this NSW favourite. Don your peg leg and walk the plank to one of Queensland’s most treasured holiday parks. Discover Australia’s island state.

Win!

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Or a campervan? Motorhome? Campertrailer? Don’t worry, we’ll help you decide. Grab the captain’s hat and jump on board for a houseboat holiday on Australia’s beautiful waterways.

Show the kids some Man from Snowy River country - you’re in for a rugged time. Our editor takes the family on a 4WD trail along this beautiful NSW waterway. Get the kids on one of these beautiful bushwalks, suitable for even the littlest adventurers. Who better to ask for advice than our massive panel of at-home experts – our readers? All your favourite camping recipes with a twist from Coleman.

...one of four family holiday par k weekends and see your review published in HWK! p .7 3

58

Top tips for camping novices.


Junior Rangers take on Summer Are your kids budding environmentalists? If they’re into frogs and ponds and possums, they will love Parks Victoria’s Junior Rangers program. Activities aimed at getting primary-aged children interested in the bush and learning about its conservation run all throughout the school holidays at national parks across Victoria. Whether they tackle the great outdoors on their own, with some self-guided fun, or join a ranger for a day out, little ones will discover some of the country’s great parklands with activities like bush I-Spy, knot tying and beachcombing. Ranger-led activities are run throughout the state, including locations such as Great Otway National Park, Wilsons Promontory National Park and Mount Buffalo National Park. There are activities such as ‘Rockpool Ramble’ by the beach, ‘Bush Detective’ to track wild animals, and ‘Fired into Life’ to learn how rangers prepare for bushfires. These days are popular, so make sure you book in advance, and don’t forget that all children must be accompanied by an adult. www.juniorrangers.com.au


Camping made easy Never attempted camping before but want to try it out? Lane Cove National Park makes it simple. They’ll do all the hard work for you, so your only prerogative is having fun. When you arrive you’ll find pitched tents awaiting you, complete with comfy stretcher beds, a camp table and chairs. All you need to remember is sleeping bags, pillows, towels, swimmers, toiletries, torch and, most importantly, a sense of adventure! You’ll be in prime position to explore the national park’s beauty by foot or by bike, and enjoy a well-designed camp kitchen at meal times – all for only $90 per night for a family of four. www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/lcrtp

Lake Hume’s heavenly haven The gem of Victoria’s Albury-Wodonga region, Boathaven Holiday Park, has recently been extended to include seven all-new cabins that are sure to impress. With state-of-the-art mod cons, they’re a perfect choice for families wanting a comfortable base as they make use of the park’s awesome facilities and location. When the weather’s kind, enjoy outdoor movies on Friday and Saturday nights. Kids will love the school holiday activities, and the tennis courts, jumping pillows, recreation room and pool will keep all the family busy. Boathaven is also in a prime position for boat trips, waterskiing and other water action on the bordering Lake Hume. There’s never been a better time for families to escape to this amazing area. www.aspenparks.com.au

Families fly Tiger to Grandparents Week April 2014 is jam-packed with exciting news for the Whitsundays. Low-cost Tiger Airways is set to begin direct flights between Sydney and the Whitsunday Coast on 1 April, while BIG4 Adventure Whitsunday Resort will host a special Grandparents Week beginning 7 April. How’s that for convenient timing? Grandparents Week is designed to encourage the extended family to enjoy time together in tropical paradise – complete with fun activities like kite making, photo trails and scavenger hunts for kids, and massages, bingo and movie nights for all ages. There will also be special events like ‘Battle of the Granny & Gramps’, family portraits and Park Olympics. We think it sounds like an unbeatable pairing for some serious family entertainment (at a not-so-serious price). www.adventurewhitsunday.com.au, www.tigerair.com, www.tourismwhitsundays.com.au

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in touch

Maiden’s Inn makeover

Maiden’s Inn Holiday Park, Echuca Moama, has just ranked fourth in our Top 10 Holiday Parks for Victoria, so it clearly gives guests plenty to rave about. The park, recently adopted by BIG4 Parks, has invested time and money in some fantastic upgrades – there are six brand new ensuites and a further six renovated ensuites so your caravan or camping experience can be all the more deluxe; there are 15 new two-bed villas and 21 three-bed villas, along with eight new dog-friendly marina caravan sites to choose from. A new BBQ area has also been built and the camp kitchen is stocked up with all you could need for gourmet camp dinner creations and treat-filled friendly get-togethers. The popular Marina Precinct now features concrete roads and paths though the native greenery, helping you to easily reach the Murray (with or without boat in tow). Just 2.5 hours from Melbourne, there’s plenty to uncover in these superb riverside renovations. www.aspenparks.com.au

Sydney Lakeside makes a splash Settle down for some good old family fun at Sydney Lakeside Holiday Park, ideally located near the shores of Narrabeen Lakes on the Northern Beaches. You’ll find everything from unpowered sites to four-person villas. Best of all is the new water park with fountains and sprinklers, leaving mum and dad plenty of time to relax and take in the naturally beautiful surrounds. Summer is the perfect time for cooling off in a magical new water complex and the perfect opportunity to make new friends. There will be plenty of holiday activities to keep little ones busy, so check the schedule to see what’s on during your stay. www.sydneylakeside.com.au

You have reached your destination

120+ holiday locations across OZ & NZ! www.familyparks.com.au

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in touch

The great Gran and Grampout Move over glamping, ‘Gramping’ is the latest camping trend sweeping the Aussie nation. But what is it, you ask? Simply put, it’s camping with grandparents. It may seem obvious, but studies have shown that 86 per cent of grandparents want to spend more time with their grandkids – and what better way than with a taste of adventure in the great outdoors. On 30 November, Aerogard held a Grampout on Sydney’s Cockatoo Island, filled with music, campfire stories, games, special guests such as The Voice winner Harrison Craig, and more. But just because you may have missed out, don’t lose heart – be inspired! A grampout is something you can enjoy any time this summer – and if you register online at aerogardgrampout.com.au, you can download a special ‘Guide to Gramping’ that will give you some basic ideas and pointers for starting the fun. You can even keep it basic and just stick to a grampout in the backyard. Kids and grandparents alike are bound to have a ball. www.aerogardgrampout.com.au

Naturally relaxing N Stay right on the beach or river frontage age at all of the Sunshine Coast Holiday Parks at any of the he 9 great g locations: Dicky Beach Family Holiday Park (07) 5491 3342 Mooloolaba Beach Holiday Park (07) 5444 1201 Maroochydore Beach Holiday Park (07) 5443 1167 Mudjimba Beach Holiday Park (07) 5448 7157 Cotton Tree Holiday Park (07) 5459 9070

Coolum Beach Holiday Park Noosa River Holiday Park Noosa North Shore Beach Campground Boreen Point Campground

(07) 5446 1474 (07) 5449 7050 (07) 5449 8811 (07) 5485 3244

BOOK ONLINE

sunshinecoastholidayparks.com.au www.sunshinecoastholidayparks.com.au 12

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in touch

The Air-Volution of camping

Camp like a pro When headed on a camping trip, it can be a nightmare trying to fit everything you need into one carload. However, never fear, because it can be made a whole lot easier if you use your roof. Prorack has a whole range of products to help you strap things safely up top when you head off on your next adventure – and they’re even able to hold items that can be a particular nuisance. The Prorack High Lift Jack Holder ($59), Prorack Shovel Holder ($45), and Prorack Spare Wheel Restraint which stows one tyre in a rooftop basket tray ($59) are the latest designs from the brand, all of which are easy to install and made of heavy duty materials to withstand the toughest of conditions and keep your belongings safe. The Jack Holder even has padlock security for additional peace of mind. You won’t need to fear bulky items when packing ever again! www.prorack.com.au

Society is advancing. First was the wheel, then the light bulb, then the iPhone... now we usher in the era of the Darche® Air-Volution™ range of tents and swags. Where campers once struggled with the fickle pinches of metal or fibreglass poles, now there are new ‘air poles’ that let you a pump up a 4-person tent in less than 60 seconds – or a swag in just 10! Built into the tents, these poles can’t be lost, tangled or broken; no hammers or pegs are required. They are made from puncture resistant material, are specifically designed for Australia’s harsh conditions and the AirVolution™ swag is the first of its kind in Australia. The AirVolution™ tent not only allows extra-speedy set up, but is designed to provide a larger internal space, better airflow, maximum ventilation and condensation reduction. Now, all you have to do is work out who’s making the s’mores! Tents are available in two sizes, four-person ($899) or six-person ($1299), while swags are even more affordable. The outdoors will never be the same again. www.darche.com.au

GRANDPARENT’S WEEK 7-11th APRIL 2014 Good old-fashioned fun is back... It’s time to ditch the technology for kite flying, knitting, biscuit making, scavenger hunts, water fights, our special Park Olympics and more during Grandparents Week. Here in our tropical paradise, we make it easy for all generations to switch off their devices and switch on to good old-fashioned fun again. For enquiries and bookings call our friendly Frogettes on 1300 640 587.

Reservations 1300 640 587 adventurewhitsunday.com.au/gpweek Shute Harbour Road - Airlie Beach

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way The fun family geta

BIG4 Badger Creek Holiday Park About an hour’s drive from Melbourne, you will be surrounded by 24 hectares of peace and tranquility in natural bushland in the Yarra Valley

419 Don Road, Healesville 3777 www.badgercreekholidays.com.au info@badgercreekholidays.com.au Reservations 03 5962 4328 BIG4.com.au

Make a splash year round at BIG4 Ballarat Windmill Kids love our new indoor heated pool with splash pad, toddlers’ pool, two spas, 20 metre lap lanes and BIG screen for watching movies from the water! Swim laps or relax in the spa while you watch them have a ball! Kids can also burn energy on our giant jumping pillow, pedal Go Karts, basketball and tennis courts, and playground. Located near the Golf Course and Lake Wendouree, we’re close to all the Goldfield’s attractions from Sovereign Hill to Mt Buninyong. Stay in a luxurious cabin or enjoy our natural bush setting in your own caravan or tent. And remember to bring the bikes! 56 Remembrance Drive, Alfredton, Ballarat 3350 ballaratwindmill.com.au Freecall 1800 256 633 or 03 5334 1686 info@ballaratwindmill.com.au

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Photo courtesy of NRMA Treasure Island Holiday Park

HOLIDAY PARKS

16 Top 10 Holiday Park Awards

32 Holiday park facilities

38 Kiama

42 Treasure Island

44 Tasmania


1 5

1

2

3

4

5

6

BIG4 Adventure Whitsunday Resort NRMA Treasure Island Holiday Park

2 6

NRMA Merimbula Beach Resort & Holiday Park BIG4 Cairns Coconut Resort

3

NRMA Darlington Beach Holiday Park

4

Stockton Beach Holiday Park


readers’ choice awards

T 2013

L I DAY PA R KS R EV EA L E OP 10 HO D

W

e’ve been overwhelmed by responses for this year’s Top 10 Holiday Park Awards. The sheer number of votes we received simply goes to show that more and more families are opting for holiday park getaways. And why wouldn’t you? The parks in the pages to come showcase unique, fun accommodation and experiences in some of Australia’s most remarkable locations. Best of all, they’re suited to all families, whatever their budget. Whether you’re a family that likes to set up tent or hire a cabin, or a family that enjoys the beach or the bush, these parks can offer it all. With the popularity of holiday parks booming, many have been able to undergo renovations and upgrades that ensure a level of service and comfort that makes for camping, caravan or cabin heaven.

While parents will be impressed by the amenities and facilities as they relax in some of this country’s most peaceful and idyllic destinations, their kids are sure to be entertained. In compiling this year’s winners we’ve discovered an abundance of awesome action – water parks and pools, BMX tracks and go-karts, kids’ clubs, cooking classes, jumping pillows, flying foxes, wildlife walks and more. Due to the large number of votes received, this year the Tasmania, Western Australia, South Australia and Northern Territory categories have all been expanded to include five finalists, while we’ve featured the top 10 finalists in the overwhelmingly popular east coast states. For the eco-conscious, our Top 5 Eco Parks category has returned, offering green and sustainable holiday options all across the nation. To all the readers who voted, Holidays with Kids says thank you.

Categories New South Wales Victoria Queensland South Australia Western Australia Northern Territory Tasmania Eco Parks

For further information and image galleries on all placegetters in the Top 10 Holiday Park Awards, please visit our website www.holidayswithkids.com.au/top_10_awards2013

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readers’ choice awards

NSW

3

1

As Australia’s most populated state, it’s no surprise NSW also has the most holiday parks, and subsequently the most votes. Home to more than 180 national parks and a long coastline of sandy beaches, to feature in our readers’ NSW Top 10 these parks really had to stand out from a high-quality pack. All our finalists this year happen to be coastal parks, and while the inland may not get a look in, the entire coast is covered, from Merimbula in the south to Hastings Point on the Queensland border.

1

NRMA Ocean Beach Holiday Park

7

Toowoon Bay Holiday Park

2

BIG4 North Star Holiday Resort

8

Stockton Beach Holiday Park

3

NRMA Merimbula Beach Holiday Park Merimbula

9

BIG4 Easts Beach Holiday Park

10

Happy Hallidays Holiday Park

4

5

6

Umina

Hastings Point

NRMA Darlington Beach Holiday Park Arrawarra BIG4 Soldiers Point Holiday Park Port Stephens

Sydney Lakeside Holiday Park North Narrabeen

18

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Toowoon Bay

Stockton

Kiama

Hallidays Point

Highly Commended BIG4 Deniliquin Holiday Park Deniliquin Discovery Holiday Park Pambula Beach Pambula Blue Dolphin Holiday Resort Yamba

For more information on each park visit www.holidayswithkids.com.au


Award Win ning!


Scan here

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ays d i l o h y a The w ! should be

• Water Play Park

• Quality appointed self-contained cabin accommodation.

• Giant Jumping Pillow

• Large shady grassed powered sites, water & sullage for your comfort

• Peddle Go-Karts • Tennis / Basketball • Mini Golf

• Ensuite sites

• Camp kitchen

• Spectacular Riverfront camping a feature not to miss

• Private boat ramp

• Drive through sites catering for large motor homes • Modern amenities with accessible facilities

• Fully equipped conference centre • RSL Club courtesy bus to Park door (on request)

• Solar heated resort swimming pool BIG4 Deniliquin Holiday Park Ochtertyre Street, Deniliquin NSW 2710 www.big4deniliquin.com.au info@big4deniliquin.com.au Reservations 03 5881 1131 Freecall 1800 227 217

Make MeMories at anglesea Beachfro nt

A haven for kids and parents! Unique beach and river frontage – fish, swim, surf, mountain bike, relax. Pedal Karts, mini-golf, giant jumping pillow, heated pool and spa, toddler playroom. Walk to great coffee, shops and cafes. Choose shady camp spots, private caravan sites or luxury cottages. Bring your bikes. Space to run free! angleseabeachfront.com.au info@angleseabeachfront.com.au

Freecall 1800 040 455

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readers’ choice awards

VIC

9

2

Despite its relatively small size, Victoria packs in more than 700 camping locations and over 365 holiday parks – it’s certainly not a state lacking in options for family fun. The fantastic thing about this year’s Victorian Top 10 is that it really encompasses the entire state – from the bustle of Melbourne and the beauty of the Great Ocean Road to historic Ballarat and the inland regions near Echuca and Bright.

1

BIG4 Ballarat Welcome Stranger Holiday Park Ballarat

2

7

BIG4 Pisces Apollo Bay

BIG4 Ballarat Goldfields Holiday Park Ballarat

8

Discovery Holiday Parks Warrnambool Warrnambool

3

Melbourne BIG4 Holiday Park

9

4

Echuca Holiday Park

10

5

Bright Holiday Park

6

Melbourne

Echuca

Bright

Eastern Beach Holiday Park Lakes Entrance

22

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Apollo Bay

Anglesea Beachfront Family Caravan Park Anglesea Ashley Gardens BIG4 Holiday Village Melbourne Highly Commended BIG4 Inverloch Holiday Park Inverloch BIG4 Phillip Island Caravan Park Phillip Island Boathaven Holiday Park Albury-Wodonga

For more information on each park visit www.holidayswithkids.com.au


LifeÊshouldÊbeÊoneÊ BIGÊholiday.Ê Whether you love the freedom of camping or ‘ glamping‘in great cabin accommodation you can experience it at a Watts Holiday Park. Book on line or call to make your holiday reservation today.

BIG4ÊRenmarkÊRiverfrontÊHolidayÊParkÊ Cnr Sturt Hwy and Patey Dr, Renmark, SA 5341 Reservations: 1300 664 612 or 08 8586 8111 stay@big4renmark.com.au www.big4renmark.com.au

MelbourneÊBIG4ÊHolidayÊParkÊ 265 Elizabeth St, Coburg, VIC 3058 Reservations: 1800 802 678 or 03 9353 8222 stay@melbournebig4.com.au www.melbournebig4.com.au

BIG4ÊBallaratÊGoldfieldsÊHolidayÊParkÊ 108 Clayton St, Ballarat, VIC 3350 Reservations: 1800 632 237 or 03 5330 8000 stay@ballaratgoldfields.com.au www.ballaratgoldfields.com.au

BIG4ÊBallaratÊWelcomeÊStrangerÊHolidayÊParkÊ 263 Scott Pde, Ballarat, VIC 3350 Reservations: 1800 622 722 or 03 5330 8999 welcome@welcomestranger.com.au www.welcomestranger.com.au


readers’ choice awards

QLD

3

5

Ah, Queensland. Home to the Sunshine Coast and the adventure-filled Gold Coast, it’s no wonder the state offers some of the most popular parks in the country. The top three from 2012 have managed to proudly hold their places this year, and while Airlie Beach and Cairns in the north do get a mention, this year it seems the allure of the Sunshine State lies mainly in its south-east coastal region.

1

NRMA Treasure Island Holiday Park Gold Coast

2

Cairns Coconut Holiday Resort

3

BIG4 Adventure Whitsunday Resort Airlie Beach

4

Lake Somerset Holiday Park

5

Ashmore Palms Holiday Village

6

Cairns

Kilcoy

Gold Coast

Broadwater Tourist Park Gold Coast

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2

7

BIG4 Gold Coast Holiday Park

8

Rainbow Beach Holiday Village

9

BIG4 Forest Glen Holiday Resort

10

Dicky Beach Family Holiday Park

Gold Coast

Rainbow Beach

Sunshine Coast

Sunshine Coast

Highly Commended Caloundra Waterfront Holiday Park Caloundra Lake Monduran Holiday Park Gin Gin Brisbane Holiday Village Brisbane For more information on each park visit www.holidayswithkids.com.au


5 AUSTRALIAN & 12 QUEENSLAND TOURISM AWARDS

FREE • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

www.coconut.com.au

Splash Waterpark Neos 360 ADA Gymnasium Pancake Breakfast (Thurs) Wireless Internet 18 Hole Mini Golf Aqua Aerobics Heated and Cold Spas 2 Resort Pools Movies under the stars Barbeques Day/night Tennis Adventure Playground 2 Jumping Pillows Movie & TV Room Tour booking desk City Courtesy Coach... and much, much more

FREECALL: 1800 636 622

E: coco@coconut.com.au • 23-51 Anderson Road, Woree, Qld, 4868

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readers’ choice awards

Home to landmarks as stunning as the Flinders Ranges, the opal town of Coober Pedy, intriguing Lake Eyre and a number of beautiful valleys and peninsulas, South Australia is dotted with 140 fantastic holiday parks that display the best of the state. Our Top 5 all come from the south-eastern region. Winners can be found from down near Mount Gambier in the south, offshore onto Kangaroo Island and up to the Murray River.

SA

WA

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1

BIG4 Adelaide Shores Caravan Park Adelaide

2

BIG4 Renmark Riverfront Holiday Park Renmark

3

Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park Victor Harbor

4

BIG4 Discovery Holiday Parks Robe Robe

5

Kangaroo Island Shores Caravan & Camping Kangaroo Island

2

4

Australia’s largest state covers a variety of terrains, from the city region of Perth to the coral coast along the west, and the golden outback stretching inland. Whether you’re after sun and sea or inland sands, one of WA’s 240 parks has got you covered. While this year’s Top 5 features four parks tucked away in the south-west corner, it’s nice to see the northern region of Exmouth also make an appearance.

1

Mandalay Holiday Resort

2

BIG4 Taunton Farm Holiday Park Margaret River

Busselton

3

BIG4 Beachlands Holiday Park

4

Exmouth Cape Holiday Park

5

BIG4 Middleton Beach Holiday Park Albany

1

Busselton

Exmouth

www.holidayswithkids.com.au

3

For more information on each park visit www.holidayswithkids.com.au


It’s now holiday time for the little ones! When the Christmas rush is over and the big kids are back at school, it’s time for the little ones to have some fun! At the Adelaide Shores Caravan Park and Adelaide Shores Resort there will be plenty of room on the jumping pillow and in the pool once again. Our February Kids Club program is one of a kind in SA, offering family activities such as; animal puppets, craft making, fit kids and dance classes. For mum & dad it means time out with yoga on the beach, bootcamp & plenty more! Mention this ad for your free Kids Club Pack upon arrival. Hurry as spaces are limited! For reservations or accommodation enquiries FREECALL 1800 444 567 adelaideshores.com.au

Visit a working cattle station! Located only an hour’s drive from Darwin en -route to Kakadu National Park, Mt Bundy is an ideal stop-over where families can experience the real ‘Top End’. Camp sites are set in shady, grassed areas along the Adelaide River. Visitors can join a 4WD tour of the property, enjoy horse treks across the expansive bushland, throw a fishing line in the river, or just relax by the pool. All accommodation has its own cooking facilities and the nearby Adelaide River Inn welcomes families. In the dry season (April to September) guests can join the weekly social campfire meals - a great chance to chat with the Mt Bundy Crew.

www.mtbundy.com.au

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readers’ choice awards

NT

TAS

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The Northern Territory, home to the iconic Red Centre and Uluru, showcases some of Australia’s most unique and beautiful locations. With a small population and only around 80 holiday parks, most of NT’s Top 5 parks are found up near Darwin, but first place was taken out by a park in the renowned town of Alice Springs.

1

BIG4 MacDonnell Range Holiday Park Alice Springs

2

Darwin FreeSpirit Resort Darwin

3

Tumbling Waters Holiday Park

4

Mt Bundy Station

5

BIG4 Howard Springs Holiday Park Howard Springs

2

Berry Springs

Adelaide River

3

The tiny island state of Tassie is certainly not one that should be overlooked by family holiday-makers. There are more than 75 holiday parks, with this year’s Tasmanian Top 5 stretching from historic Port Arthur near Hobart, up to the picturesque northern point, with a stopover via Cradle Mountain. It just goes to show, good things really do come in small packages.

1

Port Arthur Holiday Park

2

Discovery Holiday Parks Cradle Mountain Cradle Mountain

Port Arthur

3

BIG4 Ulverstone Holiday Park

4

Captain Cook Caravan Park

5

Stanley Cabin & Tourist Park

1

Ulverstone

Bruny Island

Stanley

www.holidayswithkids.com.au

For more information on each park visit www.holidayswithkids.com.au

5


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Award Winning Exmouth Cape Holiday Park Exmouth , lia Western Austra

Experience this award winning holiday park located within the township of Exmouth, approximately 1,270 km north of Perth. Exmouth is considered the gateway to the Ningaloo coast, home to the Ningaloo reef and some of the world’s rarest land and sea creatures. For lovers of the deep blue there are endless water activities available - swimming with the whale sharks, fishing, diving, snorkelling...all on the magnificent Ningaloo Reef. All this can be experienced whilst enjoying the comforts of Exmouth Cape Holiday Park with a range of accommodation and facilities to make your holiday memorable.

Visit our website for amazing Hot Deals! When booking please quote: Top10Exmouth2013

3 Truscott Crescent, Exmouth WA 6707 Tel: 08 9949 1101 Freecall: 1800 621 101 E: exmouth@aspenparks.com.au

aspenparks.com.au AW1590

Award Winning Village y a d li o H 4 IG B s Ashley Garden oria t ic V , e n r u o lb e M

Experience this award winning holiday park offering an appealing alternative for visitors to Melbourne. Where else can you stay within 9kms of the main city centre and experience a little bit of country so close to the city. Less than 30 minutes from Melbourne CBD, Tullamarine Airport, Spirit of Tasmania Ferry Terminal and easy access to major highways, Ashley Gardens BIG4 Holiday Village is the perfect place to begin or end your Melbourne adventure and making navigation a breeze. Melbourne boasts fabulous events, a passion for food and wine, fashion, sports and a fabulous arts scene.

Visit our website for amazing Hot Deals! When booking please quote: Top10Ashley2013

129 Ashley Street, Braybrook, Victoria 3019 Freecall: 1800 061 444 T: (03) 9318 6866 ashleygardens@aspenparks.com.au

aspenparks.com.au AW1590

Award Winning Park in ay Boathaven Holid Victoria ga, Albury – Wodon

Experience this award winning holiday park located in the Albury-Wodonga Region, Boathaven Holiday Park is situated on the shores of Lake Hume. The Park provides the perfect holiday getaway with lake and poolside villas and cabins, ensuite caravan sites and shaded caravan and camping sites. Facilities include tennis and volleyball courts, playground and BBQ areas - all creating an environment that allows you and your family to relax and enjoy a holiday to remember!

Visit our website for amazing Hot Deals! When booking please quote: Top10Boathaven2013

33 Boathaven Road, Eden VIC 3691 T: : (02) 6020 6130 Freecall: 1800 352 982 boathaven@aspenparks.com.au AW1590

aspenparks.com.au


readers’ choice awards

ECO

With this year’s Eco-Park Top 5, it’s clear that opting for a sustainable holiday experience certainly doesn’t mean any less fun and adventure. These parks from all across Australia are leading the enviro-way with their recycling inititatives, solar energy, use of rainwater tanks and other eco-conscious actions. With ‘green’ finalists from NSW, SA, WA and QLD, here’s the pick of the bunch as voted by you.

1 2 3

Murramarang Beachfront Nature Resort South Durras, NSW Rawnsley Park Station Flinders Ranges, SA

BIG4 Peppermint Park Busselton, WA

4

BIG4 Atherton Woodlands Tourist Park Atherton, QLD

5

Beachcomber Holiday Park Potato Point, NSW

Highly Commended Clarkes Beach Holiday Park Byron Bay, NSW

Lane Cove River Tourist Park Sydney, NSW For more information on each park visit www.holidayswithkids.com.au

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s k r a P y Holida for All

With facilities from day spas and pampered pooch packages to on-site abseiling and kids’ clubs, it seems holiday parks are growing up and catering for everyone in the family. With the incredible range of attractions on offer, holiday parks are becoming holiday destinations in their own right.

01 Family at BIG4 North Star Holiday ParK


holiday parks

Choice of accomodation

BIG4 North Star Holiday Resort

www.northstar.com.au No more leaving your best friend behind – many holiday parks now cater to domestic pets. While it’s common for furry friends to be allowed to stay in parks, strictly monitored, some go that step further and organise Pampered Pooch packages. Pets lucky enough to be signed up will enjoy such luxuries as massages, hydro baths and 24-hour relaxation music. BIG4 North Star Holiday Resort in Hastings Point, NSW, has teamed up with the Tweed Valley Pet Resort to ensure pooches get a relaxing holiday accommodated in modern pet suites. There is even a pickup service from the holiday park, so pooch can travel in chauffeur-driven style. Now that’s how to treat your best friend!

Jumping pillows

NRMA Ocean Beach Holiday Park

www.oceanbeachholidaypark.com.au From Safari Palm tents to cabins, villas to tree houses, holiday parks offer much more than just a square patch to set up your cramped two-person tent. These days, camping means everything from a kitted-out caravan to a five-star safari tent with private Jacuzzi. Never fear, die-hards, you can still pitch a tent – just choose between powered and non-powered sites. NRMA Ocean Beach Resort and Holiday Park in the Central Coast’s Umina offers a huge selection of accommodation styles, from spa villas to safari tents and even a Palm Treehouse. There is also a spacious twobedroom Sunset Loft that boasts an upstairs retreat to which mum and dad can escape.

Pet-friendly

Cairns Coconut Holiday Resort

www.coconut.com.au Gone are the days of dodgy springs and waiting to see who will be knocked off the trampoline first. These days, the child-friendly jumping pillow is a must at most holiday parks. They are much safer, much bouncier and much more colourful than the spring versions of the past, and the kids quite simply can’t get enough. They are also much bigger, and can often cater to more than 20 kids at one time! Cairns Coconut Holiday Resort boasts not only the largest jumping pillow in the entire southern hemisphere, but they even have two pillows so no one will ever miss out. That’ll put some bounce in any child’s step.

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holiday parks

BIG4 Hopkins River Holiday Park

hopkins-river-holiday-park. vic.big4.com.au Whether your family is into beachside bathing holidays, bush discovery breaks, city capers or river-side relaxation, you can bet your bottom dollar that there is a holiday park in the right location. If fishing’s your thing, the BIG4 Hopkins River Holiday Park has the location, location, location for you! Perfectly situated on the Great Ocean Road, just 10 minutes from Warrnambool and away from the crowds, you can take the kids fishing off the jetty, launch your boat or take a cruise. It is also near the Premier Speedway for car racing enthusiasts and minutes from in-season whale watching.

Location

Adventure playgrounds

Mandalay Holiday Resort

www.mandalayresort.com.au Slides, tipping buckets, water gardens, floating rivers, huge shade awnings – the more splash, screams and slips a water park has, the more the kids love them. In fact, holiday parks these days have such fantastic water features that many kids don’t want to leave the property. Fun factor aside, water parks are usually also at least partly shaded, which is a godsend for parents in the summer sun. A holiday park with a bit of a difference is Busselton’s Mandalay. This Western Australian gem has a colourful waterslide where the kids really can slide down a rainbow! Wonder if they’ll find a pot of gold?

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BIG4 Soldiers Point Holiday Park

soldiers-point-holiday-park. nsw.big4.com.au Supervised activities, flying foxes, ball pits, huge slides – holiday parks have got kids’ activities down pat so your little ones will be happy rain or shine. These indoor play centres are also a great way to escape the dangerous midday sun. BIG4 Soldiers Point Holiday Park in Port Stephens has a great soft-play area for little ones, complete with a jungle theme, big ball pit and plenty of wild friends to play with. There is also an indoor heated pool with play features for those cooler months and lots of indoor kids’ activities scheduled in the kids’ club.

Water play


Central Coast Holiday Parks offer a unique holiday experience for the whole family. Located at Budgewoi, Canton Beach, Norah Head & Toowoon Bay, the Parks' prime locations offer the best of the lakeside and beachside haven that is the beautiful Central Coast. Keeping the kids entertained won't be a problem with facilities that include:   

Scan here!

  

Jumping pillow

Games room

Heated swimming pool

Pedal go karts

Resort style pools at Norah Head & Toowoon Bay Jumping pillows at all four parks Outdoor amphitheatres at Norah Head & Toowoon Bay where families can watch a blockbuster under the stars FREE wireless internet Foxtel in all cabins FREE school holiday activities

Pet friendly

Cabins and sites

Kids party venue, pet friendly accommodation, family and group get togethers, we are the perfect place for everyone to enjoy. Affordable accommodation, in a lovely bush setting with abundant wildlife. Located within an easy drive to Melbourne CBD, we are ideally located for you to explore and visit the Zoos, Puffing Billy, Healesville Sanctuary, Science works, Aquarium the Museum just to name a few attractions. If you don’t have your own tent we have one set up for you to try out the camping lifestyle.

www.cbtp.com.au

phone: (03) 9844 3637

email: info@cbtp.com.au

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holiday parks

Onsite dining

BIG4 Eden Gateway Holiday Park

www.edengateway.com.au Nestled on NSW’s beautiful Sapphire Coast, kids will love this marine paradise, with its spectacular whale watching and enviable fishing all year. Take your boat or charter a harbour cruise to explore the local waterways. The Marine Discovery Centre and Whale Museum are ‘must sees’ in town. At BIG4 Eden Gateway there’s also plenty of room for your boat and the kids can swim in the brand new pool. There’s a giant jumping pillow, bocce and plenty of go-karts to keep the kids amused in the park when marine spotting gets too much. Plus there is loads of room to explore.

Abseiling

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NRMA Merimbula Beach Holiday Park

www.merimbulabeachholidaypark.com.au Gone are the days of a rusty barbecue plate resting on a rickety pile of bricks. These days, dining while camping can be as humble or upmarket as you please. Barbecue facilities are often comprised of gleaming stainless steel expanses, cleaned several times a day, many even with fridges and microwaves. But if you don’t feel like cooking, many sites have delicious casual restaurants, cafes, or simple takeaway outlets. NRMA Merimbula Beach Holiday Park has great dining facilities, notably the Cheeky Monkey Café, that boasts real coffee as well as all the usual family favourites. Of course, there is a delicious kids’ menu too.

Marine Magic

BIG4 Grampians Parkgate Resort

www.parkgateresort.com.au Scaling new heights in holiday park facilities, at BIG4 Parkgate Grampians Resort kids from five years old can learn to abseil in the park itself, if they’re game enough. Lessons are on offer these Christmas holidays, and parents can also take the kids rock climbing, bush walking and riding on the myriad tracks and natural formations that surround this perfect bush location in the heart of the majestic Grampians National Park. Nature, wildlife and wildflowers abound and the air is crystal clear in this stunning mountain location. The park also has a jumping pillow and other great facilities, but with all that bushland to explore, we don’t think you’ll need them.

www.holidayswithkids.com.au


s t r o s e R d n a s k r a P n e Asp ! y o j n e o t y l i m a f e h t l l a r o f y a d i l o h A

Great online deals! Visit our website to book an amazing Summer deal!

Cabins • Caravans • Camping • Backpackers • Resorts

AW1556

Western Australia Fremantle Woodman Point Holiday Park Fremantle Coogee Beach Holiday Park SwanÊ Valley Perth Vineyards Holiday Park Exmouth Exmouth Cape Holiday Park Exmouth Blue Reef Backpackers Karratha Pilbara Holiday Park PortÊ Hedland Cooke Point Holiday Park MonkeyÊ Mia Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort CoralÊ Bay Ningaloo Reef Resort South Australia PortÊ Augusta Port Augusta BIG4 Holiday Park RoxbyÊ Downs Myall Grove Holiday Park

1800 244 133 1800 817 016 1800 679 992 1800 621 101 1800 621 101 1800 451 855 1800 459 999 1800 653 611 1800 795 522 1800 833 444 1800 356 103

New South Wales Echuca/Moama A Shady River Holiday Park Echuca/Moama Maiden’s Inn Holiday Park Eden Twofold Bay Beach Resort Dubbo BIG4 Dubbo Parklands Forster/Tuncurry Wallamba River Holiday Park

1800 674 239 1800 356 801 1800 631 006 1800 033 072 1800 268 176

Victoria Albury/Wodonga Geelong Echuca/Moama Melbourne

1800 352 982 1800 336 225 1800 222 052 1800 061 444

aspenparks.com.au

Boathaven Holiday Park Geelong Riverview Tourist Park Yarraby Holiday Park Ashley Gardens BIG4 Holiday Village


Kiama karma Just a short drive south of Sydney, andrew mevissen discovers the charms of Kiama, and gets very wet in the process.

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E as ts B ea ch H olid ay Pa rk

01

Y

ou haven’t been to Kiama on the NSW South Coast until you’ve been ‘blessed’ by its famous blowhole, drenched by the huge plumes of seawater that shoot skyward through an ancient rock shaft. Of course the booming blowhole (Kiama is actually Aboriginal for ‘sea noise’) doesn’t shoot geysers every day but on the day we peered into its mysterious depths, we were well and truly ‘blessed’ by Kiama’s charm, as were dozens of other soggy tourists! Nestled amongst impossibly green hills that tumble to the sea just 90 minutes from

Sydney, this picture-postcard beach town makes an ideal destination for families seeking lazy, hazy days of sun, sand, sea and surf with lots to see and do. Dried off and with the township’s number one drawcard ticked off on our must-see list, we headed to our holiday base five minutes away – the equally popular Big 4 Easts Beach Holiday Park that hugs Kiama’s prettiest stretch of sand. Tucked into a beautiful, verdant valley, the park is one of the biggest in Australia – boasting over 550 sites and more than 60 villas and cabins – but it’s also one of the most idyllically situated holiday parks in the country,

fronting gorgeous and protected Easts Beach and framed by rolling farmland munched on by contented cows. The park was originally a dairy farm established by English settlers, Thomas and Elizabeth East, in 1850. By the early 1900s, the East family allowed visitors with tents, drawn by Kiama’s blowhole and Irish-like scenery, to camp on the farm for one shilling a night, with cold showers, a pit toilet and fresh milk and butter thrown into the deal. Today, guests at the 14-hectare, resort-like park are pampered by deluxe sea view spa villas, a lagoon pool, Jacuzzi, jumping pillow, tennis courts,

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kiama, nsw

01 The rolling green hills of Kiama 02 Jaspar relaxes on the Big4 Easts Beach villa verandah 03 Family fun with Segway Tours South Coast

playgrounds, café, camp kitchen, wireless internet and even a massage studio – and the showers are piping hot! A kids’ activity program offers movie nights, craft workshops and a kids’ disco. Our deluxe, two-storey spa villa, with a master bedroom and bunkroom for the kids, offers a stunning view of the beach, a mere 10 metres away. Two balconies invite you to just sit and drink it all in, especially in the morning when the sea sparkles at the end of our bed. At night, a skylight above the spa bath allows you to lay back and see stars. And of course there’s no better sleep than when you are serenaded all night by the rhythmic sound of waves lapping the beach. Big 4 Easts Beach Holiday Park sits on the Kiama Coast Walk, a spectacular coasthugging trail leading south to Gerringong that offers families the chance to roam across open meadows with spectacular ocean vistas along the way. But we’re after a faster way to explore the coast – on a Segway. For the uninitiated, Segways are intriguing, self-balancing, two-wheeled electrical transporters that are incredibly fun to ride. Just lean forward and you are whisked effortlessly forward up to 20km/h. A new operator, Segway Tours South Coast, offers 90-minute guided tours through Killalea State Park at Shellharbour, just north of Kiama. After a short lesson on how to maneuver the high-tech Segways, which are worth around $11,000 each and suitable for children 12 and over, we’re off down the hill, around the swan-filled lagoon and flying along the surf beach, providing a unique thrill that you’ve got to experience for yourself. Our teenage daughters now want one to get to school! More action is in store the next day when we line up for the adrenalin water rides at nearby Jamberoo Action Park. The latest drawcard is the Funnel Web, a giant, enclosed waterslide that shoots you into an enormous, rollercoaster-like funnel before sucking you back into a dark tunnel. My wife and I scream like little kids and our teens shriek with laughter. Perfect for a summer’s day, the park offers lots of waterslides for all ages and an exciting wave pool and inland beach. We slow the pace the next day with a nature-themed adventure to Minnamurra Rainforest, where walkways snake through sun-dappled, subtropical rainforest filled with waterfalls, lyrebirds, water dragons, lush ferns,

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03

rock orchids and ancient fig trees. Further up the Illawarra Escarpment, we enjoy a different view of the rainforest from the breathtaking Illawarra Fly Treetop Walk where springboard cantilevers, elevated walkways and a spiral tower take you high above the valley. The winding, rock-wall-lined roads around Kiama are perfect for a scenic drive, with jungle-clad hills, rolling farmland, tiny hamlets and sea vistas combining to provide a sensory feast. Countless car ads have been filmed in Kiama’s hinterland. Back amongst the Norfolk pines of Kiama, the seaside air calls for a classic serve of fish and chips. We amble through the Kiama Seaside Markets and during our stay also visit the new-look Kiama Leisure Centre with its indoor pool and great school holiday programs. But our greatest thrill is being able to fling open the door of our beachside villa at Easts Beach and be wading into the surf seconds later – just magic!

auStralian

RepoRt CaRd Information Kiama Coast www.kiama.com.au

Stay Easts Beach Holiday Park www.eastsbeach.com.au

do Segway Tours South Coast www.segwaytourssouthcoast.com.au

play Jamberoo Action Park www.jamberoo.net Illawarra Fly Treetop Walk www.illawarrafly.com


h The perfect be ac ! holid ay destin ation 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, toddlers wading pool, jumping pillow 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.

BIG4 Easts Beach Holiday Park Ocean Street (PO Box 10) Kiama NSW 2533 Freecall: 1800 674 444 Ph: 02 4232 2124

Fax: 02 4233 1009

Email: holiday@eastsbeach.com.au Website: www.eastsbeach.com.au


holiday parks

Family Treasures

There is soon to be much more plunder for kids to uncover at one of Queensland’s best holiday parks.

O

ne of the Gold Coast’s most beloved holiday parks, and a Holidays with Kids favourite, Treasure Island Holiday Park has some exciting news ‘under construction’! Adding to its already bulging list of to-dos for kids is the latest ‘treasure’ in the park – a brand new water park, scheduled to open around Christmas time. Work has already started on this pirate-themed splash wonderland which will feature a pirate ship, giant octopus, huge tipping bucket, water cannons and ground sprayers, all guaranteed

to keep your little buccaneers amused for hours as they search for buried treasure under the ‘x’ and battle the fearsome kraken! Just don’t try and drag them away or you might be forced to walk the plank. Treasure Island also has plenty of other attractions on offer, and their Christmas school holidays program is sure to bring good cheer. There will be a visit from Santa Claus, great Chrissy arts and crafts to keep little fingers busy and out of mischief, and daily activities such as mini-Olympics and treasure hunts. The park also has fantastic year-round kids’ faves such

as a jumping pillow, adventure playground, mini golf and pedal go karts. Besides the soon-toopen water park, Treasure Island also has four spas (yep, we said four) and three pools; one with a water slide, one with a waterfall and a shaded wading pool for the littlest members of your swashbuckling clan. Reception also sells discounted tickets to the area’s famous theme parks, but we’re not sure you’ll be able to get the kids out of Treasure Island, which may not be a bad thing for mums and dads who just want to relax! www.treasureisland.com.au


01


tasmania

A journey of discovery With the help of six Discovery Holiday Parks spread across Tasmania, amelia hungerford finds a road trip across the Apple Isle is the perfect family escape.

Tasmazia and the Village of Lower Crackpot is a fabulously kooky place for kooky people.

T

asmania is famous for stunning scenery and farm-to-table dining, but it is also home to plenty of family-friendly experiences, if you know where to go.

Devonport Discovery Holiday Parks – Devonport is just a short drive from the Spirit of Tasmania cruise terminal, right on the banks of the picturesque Mersey River. They offer guests a variety of accommodation options including ensuite powered sites and a selection of cottages and cabins. There’s a jumping pillow and playground for kids, and serene surrounds for parents. Learn about the treacherous local nautical history at the Bass Strait Maritime Centre or get arty at the Devonport Regional Gallery, showcasing local Tassie talent and crafty activities for the kids. On the way to Cradle Mountain, be sure to stop at the Don River Railway, perfect for kids who are loco for locomotives – they can hop on a steam engine and go for a ride. Speaking of loco, Tasmazia and the Village of Lower Crackpot is a fabulously kooky place for kooky people. Get lost among eight entangling

mazes (they say the Great Maze is the world’s largest) and wander the Village of Lower Crackpot, a model village built to a one-to-five scale, complete with post office and Cathy Freeman Sports Centre.

Cradle Mountain Retreat to the wilderness at Discovery Holiday Parks – Cradle Mountain, where the National Park is the perfect backdrop to the powered and unpowered sites on offer, and cosy gas log-heated cottages and cabins complement Tasmania’s wild beyond. Explore on a family bush walk along the famous Overland Track or have a close encounter with Tassie’s infamous Devils at the Devils @ Cradle conservation facility – the night-time feeding is a thrilling event for the whole family.

Strahan Just two hours away, you’ll find Discovery Holiday Parks – Strahan. Nestled between the beach and the town, you’re perfectly located to relax with self-contained cabin accommodation and idyllic coastal surrounds. A twilight cruise to visit remote Bonnet Island and its resident Little Penguins is a great place to start but if you want thrills and spills, you need an exhilarating ride on the Wild Rivers Jet Boat, complete with views of ancient, majestic Huon pines. On the way into Hobart, stop by the Lake St Clair lookout as you skirt the national park.

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tasmania

01 Lake Dove nestled under Cradle Mountain, photo by Rob Burnett 02 The cabins at Devonport have a great community feel 03 Snuggling up at Discovery Holiday Parks – Cradle Mountain

devonport launceston (hadspen)

cradle mountain

strahan hobart

02

Hadspen

03

You’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of an untamed wilderness. On the outskirts of Hobart, take a detour to Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary where the kids can handfeed a friendly mob of kangaroos and learn about the survival of native animals in the wild.

Hobart and Mornington Hobart Discovery Holiday Parks – Hobart is located on the Derwent River, close enough to be convenient but with all the beauty of the bush. Or you could choose to admire the views of Mount Wellington from Discovery Holiday Parks – Mornington Hobart. Be tempted at the Cadbury Visitor Centre, where you’ll learn how your favourite choccies are created (tastings encouraged), before taking in the controversial Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), where staff can guide you along a kid-friendly path

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around the exhibitions. MONA is also home to the Moorilla Winery, Moo Brew Brewery, Source Restaurant and wide open spaces where the little ones can run free. Enjoy a picnic among the colour of the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens or discover all things Tassie, from environment to culture, at the Tasmanian Museum & Art Gallery. Uncover a treasure trove at the Salamanca Market and don’t miss the Cascade Brewery Heritage Tour – suitable for families – taking you through the heritage gardens and museum. On your way to Launceston, treat your family to a ‘reverse BYO’ picnic at Puddleduck Vineyard (you supply your family’s favourite treats, Puddleduck supplies the drinks), complete with beanbags on the grass. For more animals, stop at Zoodoo Wildlife Park – the kids will love their hands-on approach.

The penultimate stop on your Tasmanian journey is Discovery Holiday Parks – Hadspen, south-west of Launceston. Near the South Esk River, this holiday park is perfectly located to admire the natural beauty of Cataract Gorge. Whether you take in the gorge from the chairlift or from the water aboard a Tamar River Cruise, don’t miss the gardens and resident peacocks. Take a canopy tour high among the leaves at Hollybank Treetops Adventure before coming close-up with a Tasmanian Devil. The littlies can get their paws dirty handfeeding wallabies, wombats and kangaroos at Tasmania Zoo. Take the scenic route to Devonport via Beauty Point, where you’ll find the historical wonder of the interactive Beaconsfield Mine & Heritage Centre, as well as the cute inhabitants of Platypus House and Seahorse World. As a sweet treat, just outside Devonport in Latrobe is The House of Anvers where you can watch confectioners at work and sample mouthwatering treats in the cafe – don’t forget to buy some for the road.

AUSTRALIAN

REPORT CARD Information www.tasmazia.com.au

Stay Discovery Holiday Parks www.discoveryholidayparks.com.au/tas


TASMANIAN JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY

STAY THREE, JOIN FREE

AND SAVE 10% Tasmania’s mesmerising wilderness, mystical valleys, picturesque villages and early settler history have long been attracting visitors to this unspoilt island. Our park locations make it easy for you to explore all that Tasmania has to offer. With fully equipped cottages, cabins, camping and caravan sites, choose Discovery Holiday Parks on your Tasmanian Journey of Discovery.

Devonport

Book to stay 3 or more nights at Discovery Holiday Parks in Tasmania, receive a FREE membership card at the time of check-in and enjoy 10% discount on your Tasmanian Journey of Discovery. Eligible Travel Dates: 1 October 2013 to 30 June 2014

FRE

SPIRIT OF TASMANIA

Cradle Mountain

E

Launceston (Hadspen)

BICHENO

FREYCINET NATIONAL PARK

Strahan GORDON RIVER RICHMOND MONA

Hobart

For more information and bookings please visit us online www.discoveryholidayparks.com.au/tasmania or FREECALL: 1800 030 044 Terms & Conditions: All reservations subject to availability. A minimum of 3 nights must be booked at Discovery Holiday Parks in Tasmania for the 10% discount and free membership to apply. Discount limited to $50 per stay at each park. Membership applicable for 2 years from date of first stay. Offer applies to new bookings made direct with Discovery Holiday Parks in Tasmania and not via alternative online channels. Offer valid for stays to 30/06/2014. Must quote promotional code JOD10 at time of booking. Discount is based on the standard accommodation rate and does not extend to extra guests. Cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer. DHP679


Photo courtesy of Rob Blackburn, Destination NSW

BUSH CAMPING, HIKING & BOATING

50 Camping for beginners 58 Houseboats

54 Homes on the road

62 Victoria’s High Country

70 Family hikes

74 Readers’ tips

66 Clarence River 76 Camp recipes


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first-time campers

Camping 101 Photo Credit: 02 Evolving Images, Destination NSW; 03 Echuca-Moama and District Tourism; 04 James Pipino Destination NSW

First-time family campers? Fresh faces on the scene can pitch their tents like seasoned professionals by keeping some simple pointers in mind, writes madeline hoskin.

02

Thinking location, location, location We’re blessed across this sunburnt country to have a wealth of camp grounds, holiday parks and wide open spaces speckling our soil. Choosing a camping haunt is half the mission... and can also be half the fun. If your kids are old enough, encourage them to research some Aussie destinations they’ll enjoy. The more involved they are in the planning process, the more excited they’ll get. Think about whether you’re a clan that prefers access to sun and sand, or maybe you’d prefer bush-based fun. Or do you want the best of both worlds? A national park by the sea could be the way to go.

01 Camping is fun for all ages 02 Dunns Swamp camping ground at Wollemi National Park 03 Edward River in Mathoura 04 Royal National Park in NSW is a great spot for camping

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04

Tent tips

Creature Comforts

The essence of any camping trip is the tent setup – and for beginners, knowing what to look for in a tent is tricky. First consider how many people it needs to fit. Are you looking for one big family tent, or would older kids enjoy the freedom of their own ‘room’? Also don’t take the term ‘four-person tent’ literally. They’ll fit lying down... but only just. That’s not even considering the bags and sleeping equipment you’ll need to squeeze in. You also need to make sure you can stand up inside the tent comfortably. Our advice? Minus two people from the suggested capacity. All tents are also given a water head rating to show weatherproof credentials. If it’s likely to be bad weather, aim for a rating of around 3000 and definitely try to steer away from anything below 2000.

You don’t have to rough it just because you’ve gone bush. If you pack little luxuries like a fan for the tent, eye masks and ear plugs, citronella candles, MP3 speakers, seasonings (even just basic salt and pepper) and moisturiser, you’ll be surprised at how clean, calm and comfortable camping can feel. Also, investing in a good airbed, pump and soft sleeping bag can be all it takes for families to be wide-eyed adventurers and not a hoard of zombies. Or even pack the doonas – vacuum-pack bags are great space-savers if you go for this option. You can even upgrade to stretchers with airbeds on top – raised and padded is a simple joy. Don’t forget your pillows!

H ot Ti p

Have a practice run using your tent in the backyard so it’s not your first time setting up when you get to the campsite – the start of a holiday is not the time or place for unfortunate surprises!

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first-time campers

Packed to� Perfection Setting up: Tarp – it will give you some much-needed outdoor living space Hammer (tent poles need some help getting into the ground) Air pump (if you’re taking air beds) Lantern Extra batteries

If you want to let kids roam alone a little (not too far), give them an emergency daypack with a few snacks, water and a whistle – maybe even a walkie talkie. Bush tucker Speaking of comforts, there are few commodities that scream ‘glamping’ better than a Weber Q (RRP start from $289). You’ll be able to whip up everything from bacon and eggs for breakfast to roast dinners in the evening. Regular barbecues are the popular way to go – just make sure you don’t forget your gas supply. If you want to get more rustic and resourceful but don’t want to cook everything in billy cans, look into buying items like an ever-faithful Trangia stove. They’re small and simple to use, and the kids can even learn some bush kitchen tricks. Also, consider taking a pressure cooker, they make boiling rice and veggies a whole lot easier. If you do choose to go somewhere more remote and you’re not sure of the water situation, a portable SteriPen can make any water safe to drink. 05 Get the kids away from the computer and involved in all kinds of activities

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Chairs – one for everyone!

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Pillows Rubbish bags

Kid control Camping is a golden opportunity to encourage teched-out kids to get ‘back to nature’. Leave iPads at home... or at least in the boot for unexpected downpours. Many holiday parks offer a kids’ program, especially over the summer holidays. If not, there’s probably equipment, jumping pillows, pools or the ocean on hand – it will amaze you just how easily kids make friends in such an environment. They’ll be swapping snack packs and campfire stories in no time! If camping solo or your children are a little shy, have a stash of ideas up your sleeve to get them interacting with their surroundings. Teach them ‘camp cooking’ by toasting marshmallows or baking bananas over the campfire, or create a pre-departure scavenger hunt and see how many things they discover. If they’re crafty, get them a scrapbook, scissors and some glue to document their memories, or help them make ‘bush sculptures’ out of found objects. Little jobs like fetching water, gathering firewood, even washing dishes will be great fun for kids and will give them a feeling of accomplishment. Oh – and family board games, cards and billy tea at night around the lantern is a must.

Flashlights and/or head torches Camp table

Cooking: Esky (and ice) Cooking utensils Barbecue (or cooking tool) Gas supply Eating utensils (cutlery, plates etc.) Oil Tea towels Tupperware containers and foil

Extras: Insect repellent Wet wipes Hand sanitiser Signal whistle Lots of light clothing layers Sunscreen Backpack/day bag


Great Holiday Parks! Rivergum Holiday Retreat

Kangerong Holiday Park

Murray River, Corowa P 02 6033 1990 E rivergum@holidayretreats.com.au www.rivergumholidayretreat.com.au

Mornington Peninsula, Dromana P 03 5987 2080 E dromana@holidayretreats.com.au www.kangerong.com.au

The Lakes Beachfront Holiday Retreat

Kilcunda Oceanview Holiday Retreat

90 Mile Beach, Lakes Entrance P 03 5156 5582 E lakesbeachfront@holidayretreats.com.au www.lakesbeachfront.com.au

Bass Coast, Phillip Island P 03 5678 7260 E kilcunda@holidayretreats.com.au www.kilcundaoceanview.com.au

www.holidayretreats.com.au T: 1300 1 PARKS (1 72757 )

Adventure Awaits at Koala Shores

Waterfront fun

Quiet & relaxing location

Family friendly accommodation

Fantastic facilities

camp sites and ensuites, there’s With a calm waterfront setting, resort pool, bouncing pillow and accommodation ranging from luxury villas to waterfront swimming, fishing, mini golf, with outdoors great the to back family the Get Stephens. Port in Park Holiday Shores Koala BIG4 at love to ages all for plenty Shores. Koala BIG4 at you for here all It’s play. kids the watch you canoes, paddle boats, tennis, exploring the region or simply relaxing as

Phone: 1800 463 029 www.koalashores.com.au 2 Oyster Farm Road, Lemon Tree Passage NSW 2319

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caravan’s, camper trailers and motorhomes

Camping va-va-voom If you like a little more comfort when camping, why not consider buying or hiring a camper trailer, caravan or motor home for your next trip?

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f you reckon that the only way to camp is a tent set-up in the bush, with no facilities and no creature comforts, then you may find you are a little behind the times. Hugely popular in the sixties and seventies, the family road trip in a caravan is back. And it’s not just caravans anymore, many families are now choosing to upgrade to a motorhome, or if heading off the beaten track, towing an off-road camper trailer. Now don’t think for a moment that making the change over to a camper trailer or caravan means you’re no longer ‘real’ camping. Anything that gets you out in the bush, surrounded by nature and gazing up at a million stars still counts in our book – and just because you’ve seen the light and would rather sleep on an innerspring mattress then on the ground next to the fire, well that may just mean you will wake up refreshed and enjoy the trip all that more. If you’ve never done a motorhome road trip before, or towed a caravan or camper trailer, there are a few you things you may want to think about before you decide which path to go down. Top of the list is the type of family car you have (is it set up for towing?) and then, where are you planning to stop and camp overnight; i.e: bush camping in national parks or checking into a caravan park. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons surrounding these choices.

Camper Trailers Camper trailers have really taken off in the last ten years and are now one of the most popular methods of camping, especially if heading off road with your 4WD. There are many different makes and models of camper trailers available, some suited to on-road use only, while at the other end of the extreme, some fold out to reveal all the latest mod-cons, such as solar power and hot water systems, while under the exterior is a strengthened chassis, heavy duty off-road suspension and a specialist tow hitch for extra articulation. Of utmost importance before deciding on what type of camper trailer you need is working out where you are likely to take it. If you are staying on the main highway or decent bitumen roads, and then setting up in a holiday park for a few days (or a few weeks), then a basic on-road trailer that can be towed by most large sedans will do the job. If you take a powered site at a holiday park, then you won’t even need a 12V system to power your lights and other accessories, and you can bring all your basic appliances from home, such as your kettle and toaster. Bush camping on the other hand will require either a 12V battery system in the camper trailer, or you can take your gas stove and lantern as you would with a tent. Once you have sorted out your cooking and lighting requirements, anything else (yes, even hot water) is a luxury.

Other considerations with camper trailers include; a water tank underneath the trailer; a large awning and annexe to create more covered space and extra sleeping room (in most models there is only the one double or queen size bed, so stretchers or air mattresses will be needed for the kids) and possibly storage racks built onto the trailer to carry extra equipment that won’t fit inside such as canoes, kayaks or kids’ bikes.

Pros • Extra space when packing for your trip inside the trailer. • Usually have a full queen sized bed with an innerspring mattress for mum and dad. • 12V power to accessories such as LED lighting, and for charging electronic equipment such as mobile phones and camera batteries. • Off road models behind a 4WD can access some of the most remote and beautiful country Australia has to offer.

Cons • Can take half an hour or longer to set up for some soft floor models by the time you do the annexe. • Unlikely to include airconditioning, or many of the creature comforts of your average new model caravan or motorhome.

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caravan’s, camper trailers and motorhomes

Caravans

Motorhomes

The age-old adage that caravanning is only for older or retired couples could not be further from the truth. There are plenty of caravans on the market that have been designed with the family in mind and include bunk beds or dining areas that fold out into kids’ beds. The advantages of caravan travel are obvious, with most new caravans fitted out with all the bells and whistles including airconditioning, full-size upright refrigerators, gas stove and oven, with some even having a washing machine. Except for being in a slightly smaller space you really do have all the creature comforts of home at your fingertips. While these are fantastic if you are staying at a powered site in a holiday park, once you hit the outback or the bush, you will need to rely on the caravan’s internal 12V power system, and also the LPG. Always remember to switch your caravan fridge straight on to LPG if setting up for more than a day, as it will quickly drain all power from your 12V battery. The other option is to recharge your battery every day through a solar panel if one is fitted to the caravan.

Motorhomes come in a variety of sizes from small truck to semi-trailer. With all the features of a caravan, they are a great choice for long road trips around Australia where you are sticking to the main towns and highways. There are also a few designed and built to head off-road. Motorhomes are generally considered easier to manage over towing a caravan, plus there is no need to worry about couplings, or hooking up cables and Anderson plugs to ensure signals are operating and batteries are being recharged when on the road. Most motorhomes can be driven on a regular licence; however larger ones will require a heavy vehicle licence.

Pros • You can leave the caravan at the camping spot and explore the area by car on day trips. • Virtually no set-up time after positioning the van and winding down the stabiliser legs. • Family models will have comfortable beds for everyone. • Many vans have the option of a shower and toilet.

Cons • Very heavy and most will need a large 4WD to tow safely. • Can be intimidating to tow, especially in regards to cornering and handling in high winds. If you are a first timer, then a towing course is recommended.

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Pros • No set up time – just park and enjoy. • You will look and feel like the king of the road. • Can be fitted with every conceivable mod con.

Cons • Can be expensive to buy, with top of the range models about the same price as your average house. • No option for sightseeing around the area without taking your mobile home with you, so best suited to trips where you won’t need the use of a car at all.

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03 01 Homes on the road are fun for all 02 A wind up camper can provide better rear vision while driving over a caravan 03 The perfect set up, image courtesy of Colin Broad 04 Luxury motorhome interior 05 A large 4WD is required to tow most caravans

If you’re buying or hiring a caravan or camper trailer, your choice of tow vehicle is critical.

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IP R T D A O R IE S S U A T A E R THE G

Grab the family, grab some friends, and hit the road.

IT’S ON!

Whether your dream roadtrip is the Great Ocean Road, the Legendary Pacific Coast or The Red Centre, explore it at your own pace with the freedom of a Britz Campervan. Britz have Australia’s largest range of 2WD and 4WD campervans, so you’ll find one to suit your needs, and your budget.

To book simply call 1800 331 454 or visit our website: www.britz.com.au JOIN OUR ONLINE COMMUNITY facebook.com/britzfanpage

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Home on the water Wake up to birdsong and panoramic views as you navigate your way down one of Australia’s spectacular rivers. Hiring a houseboat could be just the getaway your family needs, writes joanna tovia.

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or a holiday with a difference, why not take to the river on a houseboat that combines all the mod cons with a new take on adventure – the scenery changes daily and there’s always something new to see and do. Australia’s rivers provide a stunning backdrop, whether water sports and discovery are on that day’s agenda, or you just want to laze about on the deck and soak up the serenity. Houseboats range from ultra-luxe, with on-board Jacuzzis and multiple bedrooms, to cosy and comfortable. We take you around Australia in search of some of the best options on offer.

01 Houseboats are a great bonding experience 02 Fun ashore 03 Taking in the ever-changing scenery is part of the fun 04 Make sure you pack the fishing rods and try your hand at catching dinner

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Myall Lakes, NSW

www.luxuryhouseboat.com.au Surrounded as it is by Myall Lakes National Park, Myall Lakes is a nature lover’s paradise and is the perfect setting to bring the family together. Swimming and snorkelling one minute, bushwalking and bird watching the next, the kids will never be short of something to do. Luxury Houseboat Hire has two sizes to choose from, depending on your needs: a 33ft 2-6 berth houseboat the size of a large caravan, or a 45ft 2-10 berth houseboat the size of a small apartment or cabin. Both come with a fully equipped kitchen, gas fridge and freezer, and fresh water on board for bathing. Bring your DVDs – there’s a TV and DVD player but no TV reception. How you spend your days is completely up to you. A dinghy with oars and optional motor is supplied for your land-based activities and in case you want to stop off at a cafe or restaurant for a bite to eat. These houseboats launch out of Bulahdelah, the gateway to the Myall Lakes. No licence is required to captain these boats but if you want to do any fishing, you’ll need a licence – Bulahdelah Newsagency will sort you out with one.

Murray River, VIC

www.murrayriverhouseboats.com.au Extending for 2520km, the Murray River is the third longest navigable river in the world after the Amazon and Nile. It spans NSW, Victoria and South Australia and, with 37 golf courses along its banks, is a mecca for golfers. Gliding down the scenic Murray River through the Echuca, Moama and Rich River region of Victoria in a houseboat is a great way to experience this remarkable river. If you’re after a little luxury as you go, try Murray River Houseboats. No expense has been spared in the design of the Indulgence, an 8-12 berth boat with four bedrooms, all with ensuites, and a 10-seater spa on deck. The surround-sound entertainment system (complete with 80 DVDs to choose from) and air conditioning will have you relaxing in comfort, or head up to the top deck and lie back in a sun lounger as the river banks drift on by. Murray River Houseboats also has a range of more modest options available to suit families of all sizes and budgets. The boats launch out of Echuca, a quaint town where you can hire a canoe, take a horse-and-carriage ride, or explore the area by bike.


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The kids won’t be able to wipe the smiles off their faces – nothing tastes as good as a meal you’ve caught yourself.

Hawkesbury, NSW

www.hawkesburyhouseboats.com.au The living’s easy on board a 6-berth familyfriendly houseboat available for hire through Hawkesbury Houseboats. The ‘Executive’ houseboat has a split-level design with three double beds that convert into lounges and a table during the day. Casting a line overboard on the Hawkesbury River may well be rewarding – the area is known for 30kg jewfish and mulloway, not to mention kingfish, bream, flathead, crabs and squid. Cook up your catch of the day on the upper deck’s three-burner barbecue with roasting hood; the kids won’t be able to wipe the smiles off their faces – nothing tastes as good as a meal you’ve caught yourself. But if fishing isn’t your thing you’ll find lots to do on this beautiful stretch of water, and there is also a wide variety of other houseboats to suit your needs and budget.

Mandurah, WA

www.houseboatsmandurah.com.au On the west coast, the relaxed, friendly vibe of Mandurah is an ideal launchpad from which to explore the many wonders of the Peel Inlet and Harvey Estuary and WA’s own Murray River. Drop anchor and discover a secluded cove, go fishing at Dawesville Cut, or go crabbing off Boundary Island. Only 20km down river from Mandurah’s vibrant cappuccino strip is the town of Pinjarra, where you can stop for a spot of golf, visit the zoo, or go antique shopping. Mandurah House Boats has a range of boats for hire. The African-themed Hakuna Matata has three double bedrooms, plasma TV with DVD player, and spacious front and rear decks. When you dock back in Mandurah, take the family to the King Carnival amusement park – it will be the perfect way to end a fun-filled holiday on the water.

Murray River, SA

www.houseboats.com.au Setting off from historic Mannum, an hour from Adelaide, Unforgettable Houseboats combines style with comfort: onboard there are king and queen-size beds, ducted air conditioning, Jacuzzis and gourmet kitchens complete with dishwasher and microwave. The Unforgettable 1 has four bedrooms, a spacious living area and a dining table seating up to eight people, while the two-storey Unforgettable 6 turns heads with six bedrooms, five bathrooms, Jacuzzi and bar. No matter how you choose to travel, your holiday can be as adventurous as you want it to be. Explore the backwaters by dinghy, take afternoon rambles along the riverbank, or go a step further and hire water sport equipment for water skiing, canoeing and jet skiing. The river is yours to enjoy at whatever pace you wish.

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Living the high life Immortalised in print and on the big screen, the Victorian High Country continues to attract many visitors to this rugged and pristine part of Australia’s wilderness, writes colin broad.

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n 1890, a distant 123 years ago, The Bulletin news magazine published a poem by Australian bush poet Andrew Barton ‘Banjo’ Paterson called The Man from Snowy River. It was to become one of Australia’s most well-known and best-loved pieces of literature. The 1982 movie of the same name starring Tom Burlinson (Jim Craig) and Sigrid Thornton (Jessica Harrison) immortalised this story after transcribing it onto the big screen. The poem was further cemented in history in 1983 when an extract

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of verse was inscribed onto the Australian $10 polymer note alongside Banjo Paterson’s image and name. The Man from Snowy River describes where the man comes from rather than setting the scene for where the adventures actually took place, Victoria’s High Country. The poem aside, it was the movie that inspired many to visit this region and the famous ‘Craig’s Hut’ that was built specifically for the movie. The hut overlooks an inspiring countryside many had never imagined existed.


You find yourself driving along a mountain spur with views that make you feel on top of the world.

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victoria

Today the Victorian High Country is alive with visitors; some looking for a weekend away while others are seeking adventure. Located in the north-east region of Victoria and accessed from the south, or from the north down along NSW alpine regions, this region attracts visitors all year round. There are three reasons why the Victorian High Country may be inaccessible, and that’s during snow falls where certain gates are closed and locked, when bushfires ravage the area, or when access is not advised during wet or bad weather. Such is the nature of the area that the risks during this time are too high for visitors to safely visit the region.

Whilst there are some easy access tracks and trails for light 2WD vehicles, the real attractions are located in some of the more inaccessible areas, and access is rated as you would find in any snowfield. Ratings of green, blue, double-blue, black and double-black diamond note the increasing difficulty and ruggedness of the tracks throughout the region. Adventure may mean different things for different people, so expect to see 4WDs, the odd camper trailer in tow, motorbikes and even the odd postie bike as you make your way around the ridges and valleys of the Victorian High Country. Thanks to modern technology, GPS

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receivers, digital maps and real-time positioning make trekking across the high country relatively simple. The key to any trip is preparation, and no matter how much effort is put in before leaving, travelling with others is the safest decision that you could make. Our 230km four-day trip from Jindabyne, through the Victorian High Country and finishing at Tom Groggin within viewing distance of Mount Kosciuszko, began towards the south of Jindabyne off the Barry Way. Although the Barry Way is relatively tame and well maintained in comparison to the rest of the journey, the views of the Snowy River along the road are simply breathtaking and it’s well worth stopping at the designated view points to take in some of the spectacular scenery. Ingeegoodbee may sound like a funny name but it is definitely a fantastic track and represents the start of many kilometres of driving in low range. Your turn-off from the Barry Way, which is a gentle dirt road in comparison to the rest of the track, will quickly highlight that things are about to get interesting. Ingeegoodbee leads you right onto a spur before descending downwards into the Victorian Alps ahead, and from here it is not long before you reach a magnificent clearing which gives you that first ‘High Country’ experience that you’ve been looking for, with alpine trees bleached and bare from the winter snow falls.

01 Craig’s Hut. Photo Peter Dunphy 02 Befriending kangaroos 03 Campers are spoilt for choice 04 Steep descent 05 Rustic stopover spot

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McFarlane Flat Track is the next trail you will encounter and this makes no allusion to being flat. There appears to be a never-ending descent before it too rises and, once again, you find yourself driving along a mountain spur with views that make you feel as though you are on top of the world. Cobberas Trail is the least-known trail that we travelled along. Although relatively similar to the other trails on this trip, it stood out as the most interesting with one particular section proving a challenge for all vehicles, especially those with camper trailers in tow, to ascend. And even though no winches were required on this trip, it was comforting to know that our convoy of well-set-up tourers had them fitted if needed. Davies Plain Track has loose sections but nothing too concerning. If you’ve ever wondered what the purpose of high plains huts

were, they are past remnants of cattlemen’s homes away from home. Running cattle in the high country and the remoteness of the area created an issue when rounding up cattle. This would often take days on end, so the cattlemen from the bygone era built huts at significant points along their mustering journeys. Some were inhabited full time while others were used as a stopover or for months on end. Some are more elaborate than others, while only a few of the ‘original’ dwellings still stand today. Davies Plain Hut is a fine example of a Cattleman’s stopover. There are various camping areas along this trek. The most notable are Davies Plain Hut, Charlie’s Creek, The Poplars, Native Dog campground, Limestone Creek, Jacobs River campground and, of course, Tom Groggin. After staying on the Barry Way the first night, our second night stopover was at Native Dog

campground, before making our last night stopover at Tom Groggin. For those adventurers among us, there is a water crossing through the river to the eastern bank at Tom Groggin that opens onto a large open camping area populated by hundreds of kangaroos and within walking distance to the river. It’s ideal for a quick dip during the summer months. This may be a short trek by distance, but the scenery is forever changing. People need to be fully self-sufficient, and thanks to those visitors who continue to take all of their rubbish out with them, the area remains in pristine condition and awaiting the next load of visitors. The only discouraging point about this trip is that it finishes on the Alpine Way, a road paved in black which leads back to civilisation and all that is associated with it. How good would it have been to turn around and do it all again? Well, maybe next time.

AUSTRALIAN

REPORT CARD

Information www.visitvictoria.com/regions/high-country www.parkweb.vic.gov.au

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Woody Head Fishing, camping and coastal rainforest walks, david thorndike discovers that the beauty of the Clarence River Coast at Woody Head is well worth the drive.

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lanning a full day’s drive to get to your holiday spot with three kids under six years of age needs to be done carefully. Snacks, drinks, toys, music and (if you have an in-car DVD player) movies, need to be carefully thought out and selected to keep everyone happy. Memo to self – be sure and pack them in an easily accessible location next time, not in the bottom bag at the back of your camper trailer! We reached our destination at 7pm after a full days’ drive from Sydney, and in the middle of the most terrific thunderstorm the kids had seen. The campground at Woody Head was fairly full considering the weather, but the challenges of setting up with darkness only a few minutes away in the pouring rain were deemed avoidable, and we decided to head into town in search of more comfortable accommodation for the first night, and reassess in the morning.

We struck gold just two kilometres down the road at the Iluka Motel, where owner Les handed over the keys to a family room with kitchen and bathroom, a queen bed, two singles and a couch. Within five minutes, we had sausages cooking in the frypan for dinner, and the kids were getting bathed and changed into their pj’s, before settling down to a movie and then a comfortable night’s sleep. The next morning dawned with a bright blue sky and few signs of the previous night’s downpour. After a quick breakfast and thank you to Les, we were back at the campsite and setting up for the next three days. Administered by NSW National Parks, Woody Head Campground is located in Bundjalung National Park, and has plenty of spots for tents, camper trailers, caravans, and there are even a few family cabins for those who don’t want to give up all of the creature comforts.

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01 The fishing is great 02 Local paths are easy enough for little legs to tackle 03 Smile everyone! 04 Kayaking on Woody Bay 05 The views are simply beautiful

The boys came back having spotted a bush turkey, plenty of birds including a sea eagle, and the resident kangaroos.

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The amenities are clean and modern with flushing toilets and coin operated hot showers – a 20 cent coin buys two minutes of hot water. There is an undercover area with picnic tables, and also free gas BBQs positioned with full views of the ocean. In fact, one of the best features of Woody Head has to be its position. Many of the campsites also have views out to the ocean, and there is a beach, a boat ramp and plenty of rock pools. We had our camper trailer set-up in no time, and the boys took to their bikes to explore the rest of the park. They came back having spotted a brush turkey, kangaroos, a sea eagle, and a plover with its nest built right next to an empty camp site. By 10am, we decided to take a short drive around to Yamba as we had heard that the local markets there were very good. Not having done a full shop for the trip yet, we thought this may work in our favour. My brain must have been in holiday mode already though, as it didn’t occur to me until it was too late that my wife might also see this as an opportunity for some other ‘completely necessary’ purchases and before I knew it, there were bags with new shoes, a couple of dresses and some local craft knick knacks that apparently would be perfect for Christmas presents.

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clarence river coast

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Visit Clarence River Fisherman’s Co-op at Iluka (or Yamba) for a feed of fresh Yamba prawns and the catch of the day. Nothing beats freshly caught local fish and chips on the beach in the evening.

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AUSTRALIAN

REPORT CARD Getting there

After the markets, we explored Yamba beach and the rocky foreshore, before climbing up to the lighthouse to enjoy the view from the top of the hill. It’s easy to see why Yamba is one of the most popular holiday spots on the North Coast. After some late-night s’mores and a great night’s sleep, we woke to a picture-perfect morning and took the opportunity to hike through the coastal rainforest just around the headland. The start of the hike is on the outskirts of Iluka village, and finishes at the bluff lookout, which has fantastic views of the whole coastline across to Yamba. It is also the perfect place to go whale watching. The hike is less than 3km one way, and is a very easy grade with no elevated sections until you come to the climb up to the lookout on the bluff. We spent the rest of the day relaxing, and a late afternoon fish yielded a few small bream, but it was all catch and release. It did provide the inspiration for a seafood dinner though, and we headed down the road to Clarence River Fishermen’s Co-Op that evening to sample some Yamba prawns, reputed as the best in NSW.

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Our final morning had us exploring the local bays by kayak thanks to Geoff Warne who runs Action Adventure Activities at Iluka. Geoff also does bike and scooter hire, and stand up paddle boards, so families can really get out and explore the area. My two sons, Ryan (6) and Noah (5), and I were soon surfing the small waves down to the beach and enjoying gazing through the crystal clear water at the sea life below. We were told there is a resident turtle who lives just off the point, but didn’t catch sight of him this trip. On the way home we passed massive fields of sugar cane (we stopped at one so the kids could see where sugar came from) for which the Clarence river flats are well known, and stopped by the Clarence River Visitor Centre. The centre is well stocked with information and lovely staff who are very helpful. It is easy to see why Iluka is a popular spot for families. Perfect for both weekend escapes or long family holidays, I don’t think you could ever tire of spending time here.

Iluka is a nine hour drive from Sydney and three hours from Brisbane. It is on the opposite side of the Clarence River from the popular tourist town of Yamba.

Stay Woody Head Campground www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au Iluka Motel www.ilukamotel.com.au

Eat Clarence River Fishermen’s Co-Op Queen St, Iluka

Thumbs up The campground looks out over the beautiful waters of Woody Bay and out to the Coral Sea. Be sure and get up early to see the sunrise over the ocean – it’s magical.

Play Action Adventure Activities Iluka. Call Geoff on 0497 201 924


angourie broomshead copmanhurst glenreagh grafton iluka maclean minniewater nymboida ulmarra wooli yamba

family adventure in the

clarence Northern New South Wales

 fabulous beaches  fishing  canoeing  boating  local events  bushwalking  national parks  river cruises  lush hinterland A holiday in the Clarence provides the perfect mix of natural environment with quiet coastal and country towns for you and your family to explore. Take some time to discover the many exciting activities and special experiences awaiting you in the Clarence. To plan your holiday to the Clarence visit one of our Visitor Information Centres at Grafton and Maclean, or call:

02 6642 4677


Five fun family walks finds some hikes perfect for families who love the outdoors and don’t mind stretching their legs a little. ken eastwood

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s many of us reflect on our childhood, the family moments we remember are often those in the outdoors – that camping trip where the tent blew away, a special picnic spot we went to every year, or a bushwalk where we were caught out in the rain. For me, bushwalks seemed to have been one of the main times we came together as a family, where the distractions of the outside world disappeared, and we were all just together with a simple objective. My brother and I would play and run happily along the tracks, imagining we were on trailbikes, my elder sisters chatting as they went, and Mum and Dad endeavouring to point out what wildlife we hadn’t scared away. Walking remains the cheapest and easiest form of exercise, and yet bushwalking has declined in the past few decades as fewer families delve into the outdoors. As a general rule, family walks should be spectacular, on well-defined tracks and achievable. Each of the following iconic walks are suitable for families with active kids who don’t mind walking for a while, or parents who don’t mind snuggling bub into a child carrier backpack and setting off.

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National Pass, Blue Mountains, NSW www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au

Length: 6km, steep in places, allow half a day Recommended age: 8+ One of the most spectacular mid-length walks in the country, National Pass has incredible variety in its 6km loop, and makes for a fantastic family adventure. It starts on the edge of the World Heritage listed Blue Mountains escarpment, and teeters above the extraordinary Wentworth Falls, before descending to its base. You can paddle and play in the pools at the falls’ base before meandering along through rainforest and under small waterfalls halfway up the cliff. The uphill section is through a rainforest gorge, with delightful falls and cascades to admire. Alternative walks in the area: The Blue Mountains is a huge network of walking tracks, with everything from 5-minute walks to spectacular lookouts and waterfalls, to multi-day hikes. Two easier and fun alternatives for younger families are to catch the terrifyingly steep Scenic Railway to the bottom of the cliff and do a short loop walk in the rainforest (see our article, Into the Blue, for more information on the Rainforest Walk); or to simply wander along the cliff-top walk from the iconic Three Sisters. Just keep little ones close as the latter has some steep cliff drops to either side. Another lookout worth visiting is Sublime Point in Leura where you can see up to 29km away.

Mt Kosciuszko, NSW

Great Ocean Walk, VIC

Alternative walks in the area: Teenagers capable of a harder walk would enjoy tackling the best track to the summit, which is the tough 22km loop from Charlottes Pass via Blue Lake. The walk crosses the Snowy River and the views from Blue Lake Lookout are sublime.

Alternative walks in the area: Any part of this walk can be done separately for those who don’t have time to tackle it all, and the area is full of little paths down to beaches or iconic spots such as The Twelve Apostles. If your family is interested in staying overnight, there are some great possibilities for overnight walks stretching from one all the way to seven nights for those with enough stamina.

www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au Length: 14km, fairly flat, allow all day Recommended age: 8+ A bit of a rite of passage for true blue Aussies, this is an opportunity to get to the highest point on the Australian mainland, 2228m-high Mt Kosciuszko. Compared to many of the Snowy Mountains’ other summits, it is not particularly steep or difficult. The best time is early summer, when the wildflowers will be at their most prolific. Nearly all year round there will be some snow patches on the ground, and usually enough to build a snowman and have a snow fight. In winter the area is completely covered in snow and not suitable for a family walk. There are several ways to the top, but the easiest is to take a chairlift from Thredbo to the top of the range. It’s a fun way to start and finish the walk, and usually the café at the top of the chairlift is open. Then there’s a 7km easy-walking mesh and paved track across the granite and snowgrass to the summit, and even toilet facilities a few hundred metres from the top. Weather can change quickly, so everyone should have warm clothes and a raincoat.

www.parkweb.vic.gov.au Length: 104km, never too steep, 7 days Recommended age: 10+ Not suitable for baby carriers. Known as the most beautiful drive in the country, Victoria’s coastline from Apollo Bay to the Twelve Apostles is also home to a brilliant walking track that weaves through national parks and along beaches. Wildlife includes wallabies, kangaroos, echidnas and koalas, as well as penguins, seals and other marine life. In one of the most convenient holiday services for families, several companies, such as Raw Travel, will transport your gear between beautiful accommodation along this stretch, so you have nothing to carry but lunch and swimmers, and they will pick you up and drop you off each day. One of the best places to stay is the Great Ocean Ecolodge in Cape Otway, where you can also get a night spotlighting tour to see the wildlife after dark – a family adventure to remember forever.


family hiking

Kings Canyon Rim Walk, NT

www.parksandwildlife.nt.gov.au Length: 6km, steep start, allow half a day Recommended age: 8+ When families make their pilgrimage to Central Australia, most go to Uluru and Kata Tjuta, but many miss out one of the red region’s most spectacular sights: Kings Canyon. It has plunging 250m orange and red cliffs, and cool, green oases along the creek lines. The rim walk starts with a lot of stairs to get up to the top of the cliff line, but the effort is definitely worth it, with some of the most exciting viewpoints in Central Australia. Cliffs are unfenced and dramatic, and it’s worthwhile for your own peace of mind hanging onto children’s hands (or tying them to you). Wildlife is likely to include lots of lizards, including skinks and dragons, and inland birds such as eagles.

Karangahake Windows Walk, North Island, New Zealand

www.doc.govt.nz Length: 2.5km, some stairs, allow 1-2 hours Recommended age: 5+ Tucked away at the start of the Coromandel Peninsula in the east of the North Island, this little walk is an absolute cracker for families. It has a swing bridge across a roaring river, beautiful scenery, interesting history and – best of all – a pitch-black section where you stumble through old mining tunnels, with occasional ‘windows’ to the outside world. There is also a lot of old mining equipment to view. It’s loads of

If you have little ones who aren’t yet capable of joining the hiking fun, you might be considering taking your pram along for the ride. All-terrain strollers, such as the new Bugaboo Buffalo, can handle far more than shopping centres and parks. Wider wheels and a range of configurations ensure bub enjoys a smooth ride even when the going gets tough. You can even carry your picnic along in the underseat luggage holder, which will hold up to 16kg of goodies and supplies. The Bugaboo Buffalo was road tested on a gentle hike in the Blue Mountains National Park, so you know you can take baby just about everywhere. www.bugaboo.com

01 and 02 The spectacular National Pass. Images by Ken Eastwood 03 The Great Ocean Road is simply beautiful 04 Kings Canyon, Watarrka National Park

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Alternative walks in the area: There are a handful of shorter and longer walks from the carpark. A fun one if you’re into the history of local mining takes you past the underground Woodstock Pumphouse. The walk takes you over rivers, through tunnels, and up wooden stairs to the pumphouse tunnel. Don’t forget your torch, or you’ll miss the amazing rafters supporting the ceiling inside.

Pr am -f rie nd ly ad ven tu rin g

Alternative walks in the area: You don’t have to miss the stunning canyon if you or your little ones aren’t quite up to the rim walk, however. Perfect for families, the Kings Creek Walk is a flat 2.6km stroll that takes you along the creek to a lookout which showcases the canyon walls in technicolour. You will need sturdy shoes, though, because the ground can get rocky in places.

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fun for adventurous kids (and grown ups). The tunnels are flat and safe, but a torch is recommended. There are some stairs near the beginning and back down to river level.

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Four lucky families will win a three-night weekend away in one of these NRMA Holiday Parks. Each family will then write a review of their holiday which will be published as a Reader’s Review story in subsequent editions of Holidays with Kids!

#1

HAVE YOU EVER WANTED TO BE A TRAVEL WRITER? NOW’S YOUR CHANCE.

#2

NRMA OCEAN BEACH HOLIDAY PARK

NRMA DARLINGTON BEACH HOLIDAY PARK

Set in a stunning beachfront location at Umina Beach on NSW’s beautiful Central Coast, the park boasts some amazing new free features that the kids will love, including a brand-new water park and themed adventure playground!

Nestled on Arrawarra Beach just north of the family-holiday hub of Coffs Harbour, this eco-friendly holiday park boasts waterslides, two jumping pillows, tennis court, a BMX track and Kidz Korner activities program.

#3

#4

NRMA TREASURE ISLAND HOLIDAY PARK

NRMA MERIMBULA BEACH HOLIDAY PARK

Located on the stunning Gold Coast, at Treasure Island there’s no end of activities, with everything from a jumping pillow to buggy hire. A brand new pirate-themed mini-golf course and water park will also open before our lucky winners arrive.

With a perfect beachside location on the NSW South Coast, Merimbula offers a children’s wading pool, Kidz Korner activities, a jumping pillow, children’s playground, Balanz Bikes and go karts.

It is also close to Magic Mountain theme park for a great day out.

To ente r

simply fill out our Readers’ Survey online and tell us in 25 words or less why your family would make great travel writers. www.holidayswithkids.com.au/competitions

Entrants must fill out the Readers’ Survey available online and then tell us in 25 words or less why their family would make great travel writers. Note – all magazine entries must be posted or faxed to Signature Media – contact details on website. Please note that entries without a completed Readers’ Survey are not valid and cannot win a prize. The competition will end on 11 March 2014 and be drawn on 12 March 2014.


readers’ tips

First time tips for campers Tent – check. Sleeping bag – check. Mozzie repellent – check. You’ve got the basics covered, but what about all those little things that only seasoned campers know about? We’ve asked the experts (our readers) for their advice and put together some of the best insider tips guaranteed to make your first camping experience that little bit easier.

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Purchase a good quality tent. It’s better to spend that little more and get a tent that will hold up against the wind and rain. Also, purchase long tent pegs as short ones won’t hold up to the wind. – gary

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Bring clear nail polish. It can be used to repair small punctures, as glue, and even stops cuts from bleeding. Try it. Amazing stuff. – lynda

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Keep a couple of plastic shopping bags in the boot, and put any dirty laundry straight into those. Easy to transfer directly into the laundry at home! – alida

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Pegs – a must to hang out wet swimmers on tent ropes and don’t forget the Aloe Vera gel – it’s your answer to all things. – kristie

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Pack bedding, clothes and towels in space-saver vacuum bags. Yes, you have to take a vacuum camping, but with the considerable space savings, there is ample room so we can re-pack the bags to come home, and a vacuum also comes in handy when cleaning out dust and sand during your trip. – kylie

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Tupperware is your friend! Make your kids’ favourite meals and freeze them. In a good esky these meals will last 3 to 4 days on ice so you only have to reheat. A good example is spaghetti bolognese. – rachel

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Have a container to store important things like your wallet, car keys, glasses or torch. These things easily get lost in your tent and you don’t want to spend your holiday constantly searching for them. – fiona

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readers’ tips

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My camping tip is to make sure your air bed fits in the tent before you leave! We found that out the hard way. – donna

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Never go away without a set of solar garden lights. Place these near the tent ropes so you don’t trip over them in the middle of the night. – tanya

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Set your kids up with their own chair, own sleeping bag, own cup and plate, own toilet bag to take to the showers. They will be really excited to ‘look after’ their own things! – kate

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We have a family of six – two small boys, 3 and 4, and two teenagers. Camping has been one holiday we can all enjoy. In the outdoor shower make sure you lather up with soap before you start using the water. – heather

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Camping is one of life’s simple pleasures. Don’t be afraid of dirt! Pack the old clothes and relax – let the kids be free (they love it!). Bring slip-on shoes that kids can get on and off themselves. – kate

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Involve kids in the setting up and packing up. Fun stuff like collecting firewood, filling up water buckets and hammering in tent pegs helps to make them feel part of the big adventure and keeps them occupied and happy. – miriam

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Take tent pegs to suit your campsite. The small tent pegs that come with new tents are a bit like Goldilocks; the ground has to be just right – not too firm and not too soft – for them to be useful. For hard ground, you want heavier tent pegs that are not too long so they don’t bend as you hammer them in. For soft or loose ground, the longer and wider sand pegs are great. Keep a few of each in your peg bag. – barry

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A blank scrapbook for each child and a glue stick means they can make a collage of nature from items found around the campsite – a great way to create lifelong memories from the trip. – miriam

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recipes

The Great Aussie Cook Out AUSSIE CAMPFIRE S’MORES

This is a great recipe the whole family can help with and enjoy together.

S’mores, toasted chestnuts, and billy-boiled tea – the old favourites still taste great, but it’s easier than you think to bring some à la carte to your camp.

CAMPFIRE SANDWICHES A delicious way to start your day! Fill them with whatever you can dream up – cinnamon and sugar in the middle topped with cream cheese, ham and cheese, tuna and cheese, or even make them into mini pizzas (pizza sauce, pepperoni, sausage and mozzarella). The sky’s the limit on what you can come up with!

Suggested Ingredients: Scrambled egg Bread Sausage, ham or bacon Sliced cheese Square camp iron

Directions: Cook eggs and meat or prepare them before leaving on your camping trip. Butter each slice of bread on one side. Place one slice of bread buttered side down in the camp iron, and then layer the filling before topping with the second slice of bread. Close the camp iron and place over a hot fire for approximately one minute on each side. Check frequently so you do not burn them.

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Ingredients: Arnotts’ Nice Biscuits Cadbury Furry Friends Chocolate Marshmallows

Cooking Equipment A good sturdy stick, a campfire or gas burner and LOTS of napkins

Directions: Lay out all your ingredients. Place a marshmallow onto the end of a stick and toast until golden brown (or charcoal black depending on your taste). Place the freshly toasted marshmallow and a chocolate between two biscuits and ‘Smoosh’ everything together! Have kids count to 30 before they eat their S’mores as the marshmallows may be too hot otherwise.


recipes

AUSSIE KANGAROO SALAD Ingredients Kangaroo steaks Red wine Garlic Olive oil Bay leaf Carrot Celery Apple Tomato Natural yoghurt

Preparation Marinate the Kangaroo in red wine, garlic, olive oil, salt & pepper, and bay leaf overnight.

Cooking Place Kangaroo on high heat. While it cooks, cut your salad into small string-like pieces, cover lightly in natural yoghurt and mix.

Serve Lay the salad on the plate and then place the cooked Kangaroo on top. Season with salt & pepper and enjoy with a nice glass of wine.

COLEMAN KIDS’ CHICKEN Ingredients 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts 1/4 cup peanut butter 1 tablespoon honey 2 tablespoons soy sauce 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder 1 tablespoon tomato sauce Salt & pepper, to taste

Directions Cut the chicken into 2cm cubes. Wrap the cubes in a packet of heavy-duty foil, and then freeze. Just before leaving for your trip, loosely wrap the frozen packet in a second layer of foil. The chicken will keep for 24-36 hours (so it can be done before you leave home). When you’re ready to cook, combine all ingredients in a frying pan set up over a medium campfire, breaking up the frozen chicken as needed. Cook, while stirring often, until the chicken is cooked through. This takes about 20 minutes. Serve with rice, couscous or quinoa.

OUTBACK WOODFIRE BBQ PIZZA Suggested Ingredients: Pita bread Pizza sauce bottled Onion, sliced Ham, sliced Cherry tomatoes cut in half Fresh basil leaves 1 small pkt of shredded cheese

Cooking Equipment

CAMPFIRE RISOTTO CANS There’s a lot written about how to cook this classic Italian dish that involves intense stirring and attention. But in true Australian Doorstep fashion, we’ve adapted it to life on the open road. Follow our homespun version and you’ll see how incredibly simple and tasty it can be.

Ingredients:

Pizza stone, pizza paddle, BBQ with a hood, twigs for wood fire effect

Directions Put pizza stones on BBQ, close and preheat, and make sure twigs are around the edges of the pizza stones. Make pizzas to your own taste. Spread base with pizza sauce, put on all the toppings you love, top with cheese. Slide onto heated pizza stone and close lid. Check in 5 minutes that the base is not burning on the bottom and is crisping nicely; if pizza is browning too quickly regulate the heat. Cut and serve.

2 cups white rice 3 cups of water Can of mushroom soup Fresh mushrooms Fresh Parmesan cheese

Directions Place rice into boiling water. Cook until 80% cooked. Turn down to simmer, until water is almost completely absorbed. Add can of mushroom soup. Stir and simmer for around 5 minutes – try not to overcook the rice. Keep it with just a little bite. Add fresh chopped mushrooms – stir in and let cook through as you take the pan off the heat. Top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

WE THANK OUR FRIENDS AT COLEMAN FOR THESE RECIPES

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directory

New South Wales

Product

“Remember the RID . . . you’ll be so glad you did!”

Camp under the stars without bringing a tent.

r o e k a L e h t . . . n a e c O the

LANE COVE RIVER TOURIST PARK PLASSEY RD, MACQUARIE PARK NSW 2113 LCCP@ENVIRONMENT.NSW.GOV.AU 02 9888 9133 OR 1300 729 133 NATIONALPARKS.NSW.GOV.AU/LCRTP

For just $90 a night, we’ll pitch your 4-man tent and set you up with a table, 4 chairs, and 4 stretchers. All you need to do is pack up the kids, linen, food, and drinks. Don’t forget to bring your spirit of adventure!

? e s o o h c y h W

$90 per night per family of 4. Conditions apply.

Western Australia

RID for KIDS

Reach for the RID this Summer!

Located in a coastal pocket of paradise between Sydney, Newcastle, and the Hunter Valley Wine Region, Relaxed, family friendly accommodation central to the Margaret River region KIDS RID Lake Macquarie offers plenty of things to see and do on your next family adventure! A wide range of

Camping from $14 per night

Cabins from $78 per night is• available 2-bedroom from from $115unpowered per night tent sites to luxury • Water-based, accommodation at our chalets four locations villas with Foxtel. alcohol free

• Safe to use on With plenty of family friendly facilities such as playgrounds, heated pool, tennis courts, campers kitchen

With free sports equipment, shady sites, a jumping castle during school holidays, playground, abounding Aussie wildlife and more, there is plenty for families to love about Gracetown. Toll Free: 1800 555 818 www.gracetowncaravanpark.com.au /GracetownCaravanPark

South Australia

A picturesque Park located in the heart of the beautiful Barossa Valley

Variety of Cabins • Camp Kitchen • BBQs • Tennis Courts Playground • Bike Hire • Free Wi-Fi • Kiosk • Family-friendly W www.barossatouristpark.com.au

P 08 8562 1404

toddlers 12 months & over 7% active DEET • Now available at Woolworths

and recreation rooms, Lake Macquarie is fast becoming THE preferred holiday destination. • W.H.O. recommended

+30 Sunblock with Repellent • Moisturising Vit E, RID repellent, & +30 SPF • Triple protection from bites, burn & dry skin! • Nano-free and approved by Friends of the Earth Belmont Pines is located on a peninsular surrounded by the Lake. This relaxed park offers beautiful water views from most sites. Centrally located, Belmont Pines is the perfect base to explore the area. Choose from two bedroom villas and cabins, or waterfront campsites. Park Facilities include pool, campers’ kitchen, and Mini Putt Putt golf.

Blacksmiths Beachside Holiday Park is a short stroll from the quiet and patrolled Blacksmiths beach. Swim in safety in the beautiful clear water or build hundreds of sand castles on the long stretch of sand. Stay in style in modern one and two bedroom villas and bungalows, or large campsites available. Facilities include heated pool, tennis courts, and playground.

www.lakemacholidayparks.com.au

Why choose when you can have both?

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Wangi Point Lakeside Holiday Park is nestled between the shores of Lake Macquarie and Wangi Flora and Fauna Reserve. Accommodation ranges from gorgeous campsites amongst the trees to Villas with views of the water. Great Bushwalking and boat launching facilities as well as camper’s kitchen and kid’s playground. Take the family on a bush adventure at one of the areas best kept secrets.

Visit us at www.rid.com.au

New South Wales

Lake n . .. or the Ocea

School Holiday specials r and thedeals available oonline hot

New South Wales

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Swansea Gardens Lakeside Holiday Park is a spacious tree filled park on the shores of the Lake, with plenty of room for active families. Park accommodation ranges from deluxe waterfront villas with Foxtel, to budget non-ensuite cabins. Facilities include a huge camper’s kitchen and recreation room, pool, tennis and basketball courts and playground.

Freecall 1800 626 438

www.lakemacholidayparks.com.au

Lake Macquarie Holiday Parks are the perfect family holiday destination. Located right on the lake or close to the beach there is plenty of accommodation choices, fun facilities and activities for the whole family to enjoy! Parks include Belmont Pines, Blacksmiths Beachside, Swansea Gardens and Wangi Point check out their details online using this QR code!

Book online at www.lakemacholidayparks.com.au or FREE call 1800 626 438


Holidays With Kids 38 Caravan & Camping