Inspire

The 10 New Aussie Destinations Everyone Is Keen To Visit For A Winter Vacay

Whether you're at home or on the road, there's no excuse to miss AWOL ever again. Sign up to our newsletter, and follow us on Instagram.

Welcome to the official start of winter. Sure, I miss the sun and warmth as much as anybody, but winter travel is actually a delight as long as you lean in — or head to parts of the country where you can avoid it altogether.

Seeing as we very sadly still can pop off for that summer Euro-trip, many of us are looking locally for our winter holiday adventures. If you’re in need of a little inspo, Tripadvisor has collated its search data to discover exactly where Aussies are keen to vacay this winter.

To determine the top 10 most popular destinations, Tripadvisor noted the places that had the most growth in the number of searches — a sure sign that they’re up-and-coming winter destinations. From balmy beach towns to heading out to the country, it’s not hard to see why.

Another fact the search data showed, is that June 7 to 14 are the most popular travel dates, so maybe just avoid those if you can. Unless you love crowds, of course, in which case have at it.

Top 10 Fastest-Growing Winter Destinations

#1 Hahndorf, South Australia

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Hahndorf (@hahndorf_southaustralia)

Hahndorf is Australia’s oldest surviving German settlement and it’s adorable. Think stone cottages, pubs, restaurants, boutiques and plenty of authentic German food. Plus it’s in the Adelaide Hills, so there are plenty of wineries around.

#2 Palm Beach, Queensland

Palm Beach is the perfect place to enjoy the best of the Gold Coast without having to deal with the hecticness of Surfer’s Paradise. Sitting between Coolangatta and Burleigh Heads, this long-forgotten suburb has really stepped up its cafe and arts culture.

#3 Dubbo, New South Wales

Not only does Dubbo have the best zoo in Australia, but it’s also one of the best places to go star-gazing, has some epic cultural tours and classic country pubs. Plus, I love the road trip there from Sydney.

#4 Carrara, Queensland

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by 🌹 TYLER CHERLANE AULD (@tylerauld)

Another one on the Gold Coast, proving that people are looking for new scenes in a familiar area. Carrara is also home to the largest markets on the Goldie, and who doesn’t love a market.

#5 Benowa, Queensland

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Deanjohnson (@deanjohnson)

See above re: a love for new beaches around the Gold Coast.

#6 Townsville, Queensland

Controversial, but forget Cairns. Head a few hours south and stay in Townsville instead. It never gets too cold, there’s luxury accommodation for those seeking it, an adorable cafe culture, stunning islands to day trip to and more. Here’s a guide to spending 48 hours there.

#7 Hope Island, Queensland

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by GoBoat Gold Coast (@goboatgoldcoast)

Wow, people are seriously obsessed with the Gold Coast for winter, which is fair, much like the Sunshine Coast, it’s actually great even when it’s a bit chilly. The best part of Hope Island is that it’s where GoBoats leave from, you know, those floating picnic tables?

#8 Wallerawang, New South Wales

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by The Blue Fox (@thebluefoxlithgow)

On the western edge of the Blue Mountains, Wallerawang actually came into existence as a power station town in the 1950s, so there are plenty of cute historical buildings to enjoy. Not to mention all the amazing BM activities, and you’re just 15-minutes from some amazing Lithgow restaurants.

#9 Fremantle, Western Australia

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by EMILY MCLAREN (@emilyymclaren)

Fremantle is hardly obscure, yet it’s definitely a gem that people don’t take enough advantage of. Twenty-five minutes from Perth by train, there are beaut beaches, great food, a random Bonn Scott statue and the Little Creatures Brewery. Here are eight reasons to head there for your next trip.

#10 Biggera Waters, Queensland

Aaaaand we’re back o the Gold Coast. Let me just leave you with this guide to bar-hopping without needing to drive, and this guide to the GC Hinterland which you MUST visit while you’re there.


(Lead image: Instagram @emilyymclaren / @lesvalmar)