Spring into action: 10 fun family holidays in Australia
Shake off the winter blues, dig out your swimsuits and sunscreen, and let the bloomin’ good times roll! Spring forward into a world of outdoor wonders and family fun with the change of seasons.
Whether you're itching to witness wildflowers blooming like colorful confetti in Western Australia, have a whale of a time off the Queensland coast, or soak up sun rays in South Australia, get ready to spring into action because Australia's got a bouquet of family-friendly adventures waiting for you.
Shake off that winter chill and bloom into a special adventure with your little buds in tow. We've handpicked 10 destinations that are bursting with springtime charm and are tailor-made for families seeking laughter and bonding under the sun.
Go whale watching in Queensland
After soaking up the tropical vibes of North Queensland, humpback whales embark on an epic return migration to icy Antarctic waters – with their newborn babies in tow. If you're looking for a front-row seat to the aquatic parade, gather your clan in either Hervey Bay or Redcliffe.
There, you can marvel as these majestic beings breach and frolic in the secure embrace of the bay's waters, putting on a show that's pure ocean magic. Watch as these magnificent whale mums teach their young to breach, tail slap and spyhop. (Yep, ‘spyhopping’ is a real thing – it’s when a whale raises its head out of the water vertically to take a look at its surroundings. Guess whales are sightseers, too!)
Where to stay: Hervey Bay is known as the whale-watching capital, and Oaks Hervey Bay Resort and Spa offers a prime spot near family-friendly beaches. In Redcliffe, Oaks Redcliffe Mon Komo Suites sits at the heart of town, with panoramic ocean views just 500 metres from the pier where the spring whale-watching boats depart.
Spring for wildflowers in Western Australia
When spring comes knocking, parts of Western Australia turn into a colourful carpet of dazzling wildflowers. This biodiversity hotspot counts more than 12,000 species of wildflowers, many of which are found nowhere else on this blue planet.
Tick this spring spectacle off your Aussie bucket list and see colourful blooms – including kangaroo paws, Sturt’s desert pea, and fluffy mulla mulla – contrast with the dusty red earth, turquoise sea and golden spinifex grass. It's a scene straight out of a dream.
Where to stay: The wildflowers make their way south from late winter to mid spring, so start up north with a stay at Oaks Broome Hotel or Oaks Cable Beach Resort, then make your way south to Oaks Perth Hotel and explore King’s Park in the sunny capital.
Slow down in northern New South Wales
Life moves fast, and sometimes all you want on holiday is the chance to slow down. Gather your flock and take flight to northern New South Wales, where gentle waves and golden dunes set the pace for your long weekend or week in paradise.
Casuarina is an idyllic spring fling destination where time takes a step back, allowing life's most exquisite joys to blossom. Unwind, reconnect, and savour the simple spring pleasures of life by the water's edge.
Where to stay: Spring into summer at Oaks Casuarina Santai Resort, which blends contemporary and traditional Balinese design. Relax beneath a leafy cabana by the huge pool, pamper yourself at the spa, and dine at the Spice Den.
Chase spring-loaded thrills on the Gold Coast
Dealing with teenagers might sometimes feel like herding spring bunnies, but worry not – the Gold Coast's theme parks will keep them entertained and engaged.
From the adrenaline-pumping rides of Dreamworld to the cinematic wonders of Warner Bros. Movie World, the mega waterslides of Wet ‘n’ Wild, and the marine marvels of Sea World, you’ll find a spring-loaded adventure for the whole gang.
And the best part? Spring offers perfect weather and smaller crowds than summer.
Where to stay: Need a base camp for your spring escapade? The best Gold Coast hotels are by the beach, of course. Choose from Oaks Gold Coast Hotel in the heart of Surfers Paradise, or Avani Broadbeach Residences, which hits the spot with its own award-winning restaurant, beach bar and diner. Head a little further south and you’ll find Oaks Gold Coast Calypso Plaza Suites, which offers a huge pool and a games room.
Hit up the Hunter Valley Zoo
Monkeys, marmosets and meerkats all call the Hunter Valley Zoo home. Gather up the kiddos and dive into a world of wildlife conservation while having fun and meeting creatures from around the globe.
While the Hunter Valley might bring to mind the picturesque wineries in the region, this lush destination offers so much more. Families can also enjoy scenic hot air balloon rides, hop around local markets, swing into action on golf courses, serve up some tennis fun, and explore the spring blooms and secrets of the Hunter Valley Gardens.
Where to stay: There’s no better place than the 300-acre Oaks Cypress Lakes Resort. Set against the mountainous Broken Back Range, it’s home to a pro golf course, two restaurants, three pools and two tennis courts.
Experience the best of the Great Barrier Reef
Spring is one of the best times to visit the beautiful and lush Far North Queensland. Touch down in Cairns, the gateway to all the splendours of the Great Barrier Reef, and let your family vacation blossom into an exploration of this UNESCO World Heritage-listed marvel.
One of the seven great wonders of the world, the reef consists of more than 3000 individual reef systems, and is bigger than Victoria and Tasmania combined. Glide over to tropical islands and bask on sun-kissed shores, and dip beneath the surface to snorkel with Nemo and his merry aquatic crew.
Where to stay: The best place to base yourself for reef fun is Cairns. Oaks Cairns Hotel sits in the heart of the city, with a chic rooftop bar providing endless ocean vistas.
Spring into the south of Australia
Caught between the allure of a springtime urban escapade and the call of coastal serenity? Have your cake and eat it too when you choose Glenelg for your springtime getaway. This seaside suburb of Adelaide feels like a world away from the buzz of the city, yet with a hop on a tram, you'll find yourself in downtown Adelaide before you can say "spring break".
Seek sunshine by the beach and let your little adventurers run wild on the golden sands. When you’ve had enough fun in the sun, venture into the city to explore the Botanic Gardens in full springtime bloom.
Crikey! Meet the crocs at Australia Zoo
Make a pact with adventure this spring and set course for the iconic Australia Zoo. More than a wildlife park, the Irwin family is dedicated to not only showcasing the marvels of the animal kingdom, but also fueling vital conservation endeavours.
After an enriching day at the zoo, return to your Sunshine Coast apartment. Now it’s time to explore the golden beaches the coast is famous for. Unwind on sandy shores, bask in the spring sun, and create memories by the sparkling ocean.
Where to stay: Oaks Sunshine Coast Seaforth Resort at Alexandra Headland is perfect for older kids, with a pool, jacuzzi and gym. Oaks Sunshine Coast Oasis Resort at Caloundra is a favourite for younger kids, with its own fun-filled waterpark, resort-style pool, putt putt golf course, sandpit, climbing frame and giant Kangaroo Jumper.
Coastal calm at The Entrance Waterfront
Pristine beaches, calm waters, and a charming boardwalk make The Entrance the ultimate chilled out playground for a springtime family adventure. Here on the Central Coast of New South Wales, you can enjoy sun-soaked picnics by the water and paddle boating.
The kids will love watching the daily pelican feeding, and together you’ll make special memories with a spring fling at this idyllic coastal town.
Where to stay: Turn your coastal escape into a family holiday to remember by staying at Oaks The Entrance Waterfront Suites, with unparalleled views over the crystal waters of Tuggerah Lake. The hotel has a heated pool and a dedicated children’s wading pool.
Keep the kids busy in Port Stephens
From dolphin-watching cruises to an innovative waterpark, spring offers a world of adventure in Port Stephens for families.
Take the kids to Toboggan Hill for a thrilling toboggan run, as well as mini and giant mazes. Ride a camel across the Stockton Dunes at sunset, and go on short hikes through Tomaree National Park. Meet native animals at the Oakvale Wildlife Park, and get wet at SPLASH Waterpark in Nelson Bay – it’s as refreshing as a spring shower!
Where to stay: Base yourself in Nelson Bay at Oaks Nelson Bay Lure Suites, or choose Oaks Port Stephens Pacific Blue Resort at Salamander Bay, which is home to one of the largest swimming pools in Australia. The resort also has a gym, heated spa, Japanese steam room and tennis courts.
Stay 2 nights, save up to 30% with our Spring into Summer sale. Visit Spring into Summer | Oaks Hotels, Resorts & Suites to plan your next Oaks Hotels getaway. Sale ends 22 October. T&C’s apply.