Got caught up with working like a demon for 2014 and have the Christmas Holidays upon you with nothing booked to keep the kids occupied!?
Fear not as there are a whole lot of options still available that won't have you scrambling for passports (or organising urgent ones). Many of them, if you live on the East Coast, can be reached by car. And the best news of all, despite being right in the middle of the high season, the prices won’t break the bank.
What’s not to like about Queensland’s Sunshine Coast? Perfect for the kids at Christmas, with its fantastic kid-friendly beaches, this beautiful part of the world has plenty of activity options on offer.
There are a couple of accommodation places that provide access to these activities, one of them being the Australis Noosa Lakes situated at Lake Doonella and opposite the Noosa River. It is a two hour drive north of Brisbane or just 20 minutes from Maroochydore Airport.
The property is set on seven landscaped acres and features beach house style apartments and Noosa's largest pool complex, so there is plenty to keep the kids occupied.
Not far away at Mudjimba Beach is the Accors Novotel Twin Waters Resort. At Novotel there are a stack of recreational facilities available, which include a swimming pool and spas, windsurfers, catamarans, kayaks, a water trampoline, beach volleyball, bikes, kids club, mini putt-putt and more.
Twin Waters is fantastic for families and has 40 free activities for children. For the grown-ups there's also the championship 18-hole Twin Waters Golf Course and a luxurious Day Spa. And for all family members, this resort has a lot of dining and restaurant options.
Further south at the Gold Coast there are a few more last minute options. These include Jupiter’s Hotel and Casino at Broadbeach. Just minutes away from Surfers Paradise, the hotel is located in a central part of the Gold Coast with the beach and the Oasis Shopping Centre just a monorail ride away. Also there are connecting walkways that lead you right to the doorsteps of Pacific Fair Shopping Centre.
If theme parks are your kids’ idea of paradise, why not surprise them with at trip to Paradise Resort. Right in the heart of Surfers, this resort is geared for babies and toddlers right through to 12 year olds. With this kind of resort design, you can relax knowing the kids are having the time of their lives in the Zone 4 Kids club with its magical themed play spaces.
Paradise Resort is the only resort in the Southern Hemisphere with a Kids Club, Water Park and ice-rink all under one roof. It also comes complete with a lagoon pool and spa, Dusty's Adventureland, Zagame's Bistro, Poolside Cafe and Bar plus a host of free daily activities.
Pullman Resort Magenta Shores on the Central Coast NSW is within comfortable driving distance from Sydney.
Just 90 minutes north of the city, this resort offers luxury villas with a choice of one, two and three bedrooms or studio guestrooms. Great for families these villas feature fully self-contained open plan style with separate living and dining, a fully equipped kitchen, laundries and furnished private landscaped courtyards and balconies.
Dining choices include a restaurant, alfresco restaurant terrace, kiosk, bar lounge and convenience shop.
Things to do include tennis courts, swimming pools (including a children's pool area), beach volleyball, day spa, steam room, fully equipped gym and national parks. For the golfing enthusiast, there is also a 18-hole Ross Watson-designed golf course.
For the kids there is a Kids Club that is open every day of the school holidays and each weekend. It is priced at $29 per child, per day (payable direct to the resort).
Rest assured, with these family-friendly holiday options, you will get the chance to recharge your batteries after a big year with the added bonus of avoiding the dreaded 'I'm bored!' over the next six weeks.