Aurora Australis over Cradle Mountain

The Coolest Winter Experiences in Australia

1 June 2021
Read Time: 6.2 mins

Here are the coolest winter Experiences-

  • Tasmania for Dark Mofo, Aurora Australis, Bruny Island and Tasmanian Devils. 

  • Visit the tropics like Far North Queensland and the Northern Territory while the weather is milder. 

  • Hit the ski slopes at Thredbo or Perisher in NSW or Falls Creek, Mount Hotham or Mount Buller in Victoria. 

  • Meet furry friends- penguins on Phillip Island, echidnas across the country and Tasmanian Devils in Tassie. 

  • Escape to the city for events like Vivid in Sydney and the Gold Coast Marathon in Queensland.

  • Stay in a luxury Chalet in Margaret River

  • Visit a winery in Western Australia, Victoria, Tasmania, Queensland, New South Wales or go glamping in the Barossa Valley. 



In winter, the temptation is real to rug up and hide indoors. Luckily Australia has incredible weather, and in some parts of the country, the winter temperature only gets down to a mild 20 degrees Celsius, making it the perfect place to go on some winter adventures. 

We’ve put together a list of the coolest winter experiences in Australia, check them out! 

Cool Down In The South

Australia’s most southern state is also the one with the most wintery-winter, so if you want something as close to a European winter as Oz can get— this is where to head. You won't be stuck for things to do; Tassie’s scenery provides an incredible backdrop for hikes and cosy stays. 

Here’s some Tassie Winter Highlights- 

  • Dark Mofo festival, which celebrates the winter solstice with many events taking place at night, including musical acts, art installations and a winter feast. 
  • Crisp, clear winter skies and lack of pollution make for spectacular stargazing, and if you’re lucky, a glimpse of Aurora Australis.
  • Wildlife- Head Bruny Island and take a cruise alongside Australia's highest sea cliffs and seals, dolphins, whales and seabirds. Stay at the Free Spirit Pods in an Eco-lodge to increase the ‘cool’ points. 
  • Cradle Mountain on the edge of the Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park. Visit Devils @ Cradle, a Tasmanian Devil sanctuary where you can meet furry friends. 
Tasmanian Devils cuddling each other Image: Tourism Tasmania & Supplied Courtesy of Kentish Council

 

Want to meet the Tasmanian Devils? Book here! 

Head to the Tropics

Winter is the perfect time to enjoy Australia’s hottest areas in milder weather. Far North Queensland and the Northern Territory have high temperatures and humidity in the summer months but enjoy much milder days and cool nights in the winter. There's also the bonus of being the dry season and outside stinger season. Head to Litchfield National Park in the NT for waterfalls and swimming holes or North Queensland to snorkel the Great Barrier Reef. 

person in wet suit with oxygen tank and flippers scuba diving next to coral Scuba Diving The Great Barrier Reef

Related: 5 Queensland Locations To Rival A European Summer


Fun in the snow

Australia isn’t all tropics and balmy temps—it gets cold and snows in some parts too. In New South Wales, you can head to Thredbo, which boasts the Thredbo Supertrail, Australasia’s longest ski run, or head to Perisher for a large ski resort experience. If you’re a foodie, take a short trip to Canberra from Thredbo or Perisher, where it's truffle season, and enjoy events such as truffle hunting and cooking classes. 

In Victoria, you can visit Falls Creek, which is excellent for families or Mount Hotham, which has an authentic alpine feel with its quaint village on top of the mountain. Only 3 hours outside of Melbourne is Mount Buller which has more than 300 hectares of skiable terrain and a good mix of beginner and advanced slopes. 

 Snow boarder watching Sunrise in Blue Cow, Perisher Snowy Mountains. Image: Perisher- Blue Cow, Perisher Snowy Mountains.

See wildlife 

One of the most spectacular sights you will see during the winter months is the migration of thousands of humpback whales. Head to Hervey Bay, only 3.5 hours north of Brisbane and hop aboard a whale watching tour to see these incredible animals. If you’re heading to North Queensland to snorkel the reef, you may be joined by the uniquely coloured dwarf minke whales during the winter months. Sealife isn’t the only must-see; there are penguins on Phillip Island—just 90 minutes from Melbourne; echidnas across the country and Tasmanian Devils in, well, Tasmania. 

person looking at a whale in ocean from side of boat Image: Tourism & Events Queensland- Whale Watching in Hervey Bay

Escape to the City 

If going wild is not for you this winter, head to a city for creature comforts, culture and events galore. Sydney is also synonymous with stunning winter weather. If you visit in early June, you can catch the famous Vivid Sydney, where the city transforms itself with light installations. Those who like an active holiday can join the 14 kilometre City2Surf starting in Bondi or the Gold Coast Marathon in Queensland held in July. 

 

 


RELATED: Super Luxe Winter Holidays You Can Do In Australia


Go West 

Western Australia is the second-largest state in the country and has incredibly diverse landscapes and weather. During the summer, the temperature can climb to 35 degrees. But in the winter months, parts of the state cool right down, making it a cosy winter destination. 

Head to the Coral Coast to the World-Heritage listed Shark Bay and Ningaloo Reef, where you’ll be treated to beautiful beaches and diverse marine habitats. For long days of sunshine and temperatures in the high 20s, head north to Broome and The Kimberley. Soar above the beehive-shaped Bungle Bungles on a scenic flight, visit a pearling farm or embark on a cultural cruise to discover ancient Aboriginal rock art. 

If you want something cooler and cosier, head to Margaret River, where a high of 16 degrees lends itself to forest walks by day and a glass of premium Margaret River wine by the fire at night. Stay at Eight Willows Retreat in a luxury chalet surrounded by bushland and immerse yourself in the history of Margaret River wine before being treated to a Chef's High Table lunch at an award-winning restaurant. You’ll feel like you’re in the French countryside—how cool is that?

 

 

Want A Cosy Maraget River Getaway? Book Here! 

Enjoy a drop or two. 

Speaking of wineries, there are plenty to explore—especially during the cooler months. There’s nothing better than staying warm with a glass in hand in one of Australia’s premier cellar doors. With wine regions in Western Australia, Victoria, Tasmania, Queensland, New South Wales and South Australia, you’re spoiled for choice but for an extra cosy winter experience; we recommend a glamping trip in the Barossa. You’ll be just a short trip away from Tanunda—a great starting point for your day of sipping and swilling and well situated for scenic tours, bush walks, and all the culture you can fit in. 

couple near fire with safari tents behind them Image: Tom Roschi Photography- Glamping in Barossa Valley

There’s something for everyone, so there's no excuse this winter—get out and enjoy the coolest winter experiences in your own backyard! 


Check out more Winter Escapes Here 


 

Caitlin MacDonald

Experience Caitlin's experience

Caitlin caught the travel bug 10 years ago when she lived in London for a year and spent another 6 months travelling around Europe and South East Asia. When she isn't writing about travel, she is writing about her other obsession- heavy music and you can catch her at the edge of a moshpit on most weekends.