Ultimate Guide to Sydney for Kids – Things to do in Sydney with kids and more

Ultimate Guide to Sydney for Kids – Things to do in Sydney with kids and more

Your Ultimate Guide to Sydney for Kids

Think of Sydney Australia, and no doubt the Harbour Bridge, Bondi Beach, Taronga Zoo and the magnificent Opera House come to mind. They may be the jewels in Sydney’s many-pronged crown, but there is so much on offer in Sydney for kids and the whole family, you could stay for a while.

Sydney, the capital of New South Wales, Australia is home to an incredible tapestry of cultures and flavours which is likely why it’s tops to visit Sydney with kids. The city’s colonial history is the perfect balance to its beach lifestyle and thriving urban vibe.

Save up your vacation days and spend them checking out all the fun things to do in Sydney with kids. You won’t regret it.

Best things to do in Sydney with kids

There are so many things to do in Sydney with kids, but never enough time! Sydney is filled to overflowing with stuff to do, and these are our favourites.

Taronga Zoo

Want to get up close and personal with native and exotic animals? Taronga Zoo is your place to go. Throw in gorgeous harbour views and a beautiful park-like design, and Taronga could quite possibly be the highlight of your trip. You’ll need a full day at Taronga Zoo if you want to see most of the animals.

Things to do in Sydney with kids Taronga Zoo

If you’re after some adrenaline pumping adventure, then try tackling Wild Ropes, an action-packed high ropes course, high up in the trees of Taronga Zoo (separate ticket required). You need to be aware that if your kids are under 15, an adult will need to do the course with them. My boys absolutely loved it (ages 8 and 10) but I was absolutely terrified pretty well the entire time, and I love a lot of adrenaline activities. Not one to give up, especially since you have to get winched down as there’s no easy way out like a ladder, I made it to the end!

Things to do in Sydney with children - High ropes

If you’re there during New South Wales’ school holidays, enrol the kids in one of the Keeper for a Day programs. For the ultimate sleep-over, book the Roar and Snore and camp overnight with the animals. The zoo is located on Bradleys Head, Mosman. If you’re staying in the city it’s a 12-minute ride on a Sydney ferry that leave Circular Quay every 30 minutes. You can also reach the zoo by bus or car.

Book tickets to Taronga Zoo including 2-Day Hop On Hop Off Ferry Pass.

Sydney Opera House

Put on your walking shoes and grab your camera for a day discovering the dazzling Opera House. Take time to walk around the exterior, then dive beneath the sails and go backstage the city’s busiest music, arts, and performance venue. The Sydney Opera House Junior Adventure Tour held during school holidays is seriously cool for families.

What to do in Sydney with kids - Opera House

Sydney Harbour Bridge

Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge! Do we need to elaborate? It’s totally awesome. Book your climb here.

If trudging up the 1,332 steps on the BridgeClimb is not for you, you can still enjoy 360-degree views of the city from the Harbour Bridge Pylon Lookout, an 87m-tall bridge bearing that only requires a 200-stair climb that you can take at your own pace while enjoying a photographic tour through the history of the Bridge. Access to the pylon is via the Bridge Stairs in Cumberland Street, The Rocks. Open daily 10.00am to 5.00pm (last entry 4:45pm).

Fun things to do in Sydney for kids - harbour

Take a ride on Sydney Harbour

There are lots of options to explore Sydney Harbour, you can take a harbour cruise, a tall ship, or if you’re short of time, the best value way to cruise the harbour is aboard a Sydney Harbour Ferry. Ferries run from Circular Quay to Manly, the Zoo, Darling Harbour, and up the river to Parramatta. The kids will love it.

The Rocks

The Rocks is a family favourite. Wander the cobble-stoned streets, learn a thing or two about the history of Sydney with a guided-tour (or self-guided outing), picnic under the Harbour Bridge, visit the many galleries and museums or wander through the renowned Rocks Markets. Quirky, quaint and unexpected. Did you know, many of the buildings are the original, convict-built sandstone buildings.

Circular Quay

If you’re wondering where people are taking those iconic photos with the Opera House, the Harbour Bridge, the Harbour and if your really good, Luna Park, then Circular Quay is the place to go. Circular Quay is also the place where you’ll catch the ferry to places like Manly and Taronga Zoo, it has a major train station, and is where you’ll see the Opera House, the Rocks, and the Museum of Contemporary Arts.

Bondi Beach

Sun seekers will be satisfied with a trip to the famous Bondi Beach. It may get a little crowded during the height of Summer, but with the water, waves and white sand, the crowds shouldn’t worry you too much. Linger a little longer and enjoy a leisurely lunch at any number of cafes fringing the beach.

If you enjoy a good walk then head off on the Bondi to Coogee Coastal Walk which is absolutely stunning. There are plenty of things to see and do along the way. A great place to finish your walk is Coogee Pavilion, one of our favourite places to eat in Coogee with excellent food, a great atmosphere and an entire area up the back for the kids to play in. You can reach Bondi Beach on a 30-min bus ride from the CBD.

Sydney for kids - Coogee Beach

End your walk with a swim at Coogee Beach

Manly Beach

Step off the ferry at Manly and you’re a short stroll from another of Sydney’s most popular beaches.  If it’s time to eat, there are heaps of kid-friendly choices– fish and chips, burgers, Thai food. If you’re planning a picnic lunch by the beach, there are a couple of supermarkets between the wharf and the beach.

Sydney has so many other fantastic beaches to enjoy with kids including Tamarama, Bronte Beach, which has rockpools that kids will love, Palm Beach and Shark Beach.

Australian Museum

Kids will love exploring the ancient world of dinosaurs at the museum, with its 10 complete dinosaur skeletons, and high-tech interactive displays. There is also a huge room full of animals from today’s world which we loved exploring. You can also learn about our Indigenous heritage (the boys loved the spears and shields) plus so much more. If you’ve got little ones then a visit to Kidspace for under 5’s is a must. Located corner of College St. and William St, in the CBD, across the road from Hyde Park.

Sydney for Kids - Australian Museum dinosaurs

Powerhouse Museum

All the cool kids are heading to the Powerhouse Museum for a dose of science, design, technology, and FUN. There’s a replica of a NASA Space Shuttle, plus The Lab, a hands-on multimedia space where kids can explore digital technologies. Entry is free for all kids under 16 years. 500 Harris St, Ultimo, a short walk from Darling Harbour precinct.

Darling Harbour

Spend one perfect day at Darling Harbour, Sydney’s waterfront dining and entertainment precinct. There are dozens of cafes and restaurants to choose from, including a Hard Rock Café, and no less than 6 different ice-cream shops. There’s a huge children’s playground, and an old-fashioned carousel, the National Maritime Museum, a branch of Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, the SeaLife Aquarium, a flight simulator experience, a bowling alley, jet boat rides, laser Skirmish – and much more! The precinct is open daily, early til late. Located across the Pyrmont Bridge from the CBD.

Royal Botanic Gardens

Bring a picnic and choose a patch of lawn for a little respite from attraction hopping. These vast gardens, established in 1815, are a popular spot for tourists and locals alike. Gates to the gardens are open daily from 7:00 am to dusk. There are multiple entry gates; near the harbour-front, opposite the art gallery, and from the city side on Mrs. Macquarie’s Road.

Spit Bridge to Manly Coastal Walk

If you’re a family of keen trekkers, this walk is highly recommended for breathtaking views of the harbour, and the chance to enjoy a dip in seclusion at one of the hidden beaches. Take a bus from the city to Spit Bridge, where you pick up the well-marked trail to Manly (or in opposite direction, leaving from Manly). The walk is 10 km long and will take 3-4 hours. From Manly, you can take the Ferry back to the city.

Justice and Police Museum

If your child is interested in bushrangers and policing, then go and check out the Justice and Police Museum near Circular Quay. Here they can put their parents in the dock in the courtroom, walk into a real police cell, find out about bushrangers, crime and policing.

Sydney Tower Eye

Another fantastic vantage-point for 360°views of Sydney, and out to the Blue Mountains is to take a ride up to the Sydney Tower Eye observation deck, 258 metres above the city streets. There are interactive touch-screens throughout to provide information about the views.

Sydney Aquarium SeaLife

Kids can take an underwater adventure through the Sydney Aquarium at Darling Harbour, where they’ll see penguins, dugongs, sharks, turtles, stingrays, and many other kinds of fish. A great wet-weather activity for younger kids.

Luna Park

The kids will love an afternoon at Luna Park amusement park, with the Wild Mouse rollercoaster and the Hair Raiser drop. At a much slower pace, the 40m high Ferris Wheel has fantastic views over Sydney Harbour, especially at night. Opening hours vary seasonally. Located at Milsons Point, under the northern end of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Art Gallery of New South Wales

Arty kids will love the art gallery, where they can see some of Australia most famous artworks. There are drop-in workshops inspired by the Gallery’s collection, held on the first and third Sundays of every month and during school holidays. The workshops are open to all ages and enable kids to get hands-on with different art techniques. Located on Art Gallery Rd, The Domain (opposite the Royal Botanic Gardens).

Woolloomooloo Wharf

Kids will love racing along this 410m long wooden wharf, where all sorts of boats are docked; Australian Navy warships and yachts. If everyone’s hungry, you can’t go past a meat pie piled high with mashed peas at Harry’s Cafe de Wheels, a Sydney institution.  You’ll spot the kiosk near the top of the wharf. The wharf is located at the bottom of the tall stairs leading down from the Art Gallery of NSW.

Hyde Park Barracks Museum

Primary school aged kids will be fascinated by a visit to this museum where they can check out all the treasures hidden under the floorboards by the resident rats back in convict days. Listen to stories about what it was like to be a convict, try on some leg irons and convict clothes, and even take a rest in a convict’s hammock. Queens Square, Macquarie St, in the CBD.

St Mary’s Cathedral

If your young ones are musically inclined they may like to visit St Mary’s Cathedral to listen to the bell ringers on practice night. The 14 bells located in the cathedral’s central tower peal out a spine-tingling sound in the key of C# major. If they sing in a school choir they may also enjoy hearing the resident Saint Mary’s Cathedral Choir. Located at St Marys Road, in the CBD.

Best area to stay in Sydney with kids

The Rocks is a fantastic area to stay in Sydney with kids. Situated on the periphery of Circular Quay, not only will you wake up to the iconic image of the Harbour Bridge, but the many cafes and restaurants provide awesome breakfast choices and lunch options. Plus, it’s a lot less busy than the CBD: practical with kids. Take a look at the family-friendly accommodation on offer at The Rocks, including the latest prices.

Know before you go

Food for kids in Sydney

Sydney’s rich multicultural population means you can eat some of the tastiest (and most authentic) food from around the world. China Town is chock-full of incredible food, Darling Harbour has a line-up of bistros and restaurants while the city centre boasts everything from Peruvian to Vietnamese to Australian fusion (which is just a fancy way of saying a mash-up of flavours).

Getting from Sydney airport to Sydney CBD

Sydney Airport is located just 8km from the Sydney CBD, which means it’s about a 25-minute drive to the city centre in light traffic. Taxi and rideshare services are available to and from the airport and will cost about $45-$55 one-way. Trains and buses are available both ways – Airport Link offers a fast and convenient way to reach the city and suburbs with trains running about every 10 minutes.

Public transport in Sydney

Taxis, Ubers, trains, buses and ferries make getting around Sydney super easy. Grab an Opal pass and tap on and off the public transport of your choice (excluding taxis and Ubers, of course!). Ferries will ferry the family to any number of suburbs on the harbour, but they are also an awesome way to sightsee the harbour.

Car rental in Sydney

Rent a car and set your own travel timetable; perhaps even venture into the World Heritage-listed mountains behind Sydney. Check here for the latest prices.

Parking in Sydney

While there are a number of parking facilities throughout Sydney, they are expensive. CBD street parking is scarce, and again, expensive. If you want to visit the likes of Paddington, Mossman, Double Bay or Woolhara, street carparks are rare. Unless you have car parking at your hotel and you need to venture out of Sydney, then it’s best to grab that Opal Pass and catch public transport.

Weather in Sydney

Sydney’s weather is true to the seasons: meaning hot summers and cold (but not too cold!) winters, and mild in between. Summers usually hit the early 30s (about January) while winters can dip to single digits (generally only for a few days during July). With 340 days of sunshine every year, Sydney’s climate makes it ideal to explore all year round.

Favourite Family Events in Sydney

Vivid, Kidtopia Festival, Fireworks on Sydney Harbour at New Year’s Eve, Chinese New Year Festival, Sydney Royal Easter Show, Sydney Festival, Sydney Family Show, Carols in the Domain.

More things to do in Sydney with kids

22 of the best beaches for kids in Sydney – by Adventure, Baby

Fruit picking with kids near Sydney – by The Kid Bucketlist

Top 5 things to do in Sydney with boys – See My City – on Travel with Boys

Discover where to get the best views of Sydney Harbour without the huge price tag – by Officer Travels

Before you hit the beaches of Sydney, take a look at our Aussie beach survival guide for great tips and tricks, with everything from chafing to stingers, sand to sunburn.

Now all you need to do is get there!

Disclosure: Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. This means, at no additional cost to you, if you book after clicking on a link, we may earn a small commission. We book our travel through these companies, so please consider booking your travel through these links as it helps buy us much-needed coffee, so we can continue providing you with the best information on family travel.

Images by Travel with Boys and Tourism Australia

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Family fun at Rydges South Bank Brisbane Review

Family fun at Rydges South Bank Brisbane Review

Recommended family accommodation Brisbane

If you’re heading to Brisbane, Australia to see the latest theatre production, big sporting game, festival, or you’re visiting just to check out some of the fun family attractions, then staying in the South Bank precinct is perfect.

We spend a lot of time in Brisbane every year and more often than not, we end up somewhere in or around South Bank, because that’s where most of the attractions are. With the likes of the Sciencentre and Museum, Queensland Performing Arts Complex, the Brisbane River, and South Bank Parklands with its beach, playgrounds, eateries and entertainment, you’ll definitely never be bored. Plus, if you need some retail therapy, South Bank is an easy 15-minute walk across the river to the CBD and main shopping area.

best family accommodation Brisbane

Our stay at Rydges South Bank Brisbane

We recently stayed the night at Rydges South Bank Brisbane and were thoroughly impressed. I had always thought of Rydges South Bank as being somewhere to stay for business, but strangely I hadn’t even considered it as being somewhere to stay for a fun family weekend. How wrong was I? When I asked around my friends, many recommended Rydges, so we asked Rydges if they would put us up for the night, so we could tell you all about it.

Rydges has recently completed a $30 million upgrade of all their rooms, which is wonderful for guests because everything is sparkly and new.

best family accommodation Brisbane

We stayed in a Junior Suite and had a fantastic view overlooking the Brisbane River, South Bank Parklands and the Brisbane Wheel. The Junior Suite has a bedroom with a really comfortable king sized bed (essential for every parent suffering from a lack of sleep), television, balcony, and a bathroom with a shower, toilet, and basin.

Rydges South Bank Brisbane family accommodation

There is a separate lounge room to relax in during the day in between activities, and then converts into a room for the kids to sleep on the convertible queen sofa bed.

I’ll do just about anything to avoid sharing a room with my kids (as much as I love them), so a Junior Suite is a good compromise. They might take over the lounge room at night but there is still a big TV and a balcony in the main bedroom, meaning we parents can have time to ourselves without having to tiptoe around.

Rydges South Bank Brisbane family accommodation Brisbane

In the room there is also a minibar fridge, microwave, nice glassware, tea and coffee making facilities, plus a small table and chair. You’re not going to be able to cook up a storm but there’s space enough to keep the kids happy with cereal, snacks and a microwave meal. There are so many amazing food outlets at Rydges and close by, save yourself the mess and go out to eat. (See our restaurant recommendations below).

Check availability and latest prices at Rydges South Bank Brisbane

kitchenette Rydges South Bank family accommodation Brisbane

Why Rydges South Bank is great for families

For us it is all about the fantastic location being close to a huge number of attractions, the staff were very helpful and friendly, the rooms were extremely comfortable and clean, and there are lots of amazing places to eat in and around the hotel.

Where to eat near Rydges South Bank Brisbane

Now finding a great place to stay is one thing but having plenty of choice when it comes to food is essential when travelling with the family.

Well, the choice of family-friendly restaurants and cafes within easy walking distance of Rydges is huge, with our favourites being Mucho Mexicano, Julius Pizzeria, and the amazing Nitrogenie ice cream.

If you’ve ditched the kids for the weekend, you’re in for a treat. Start your stay with a drink at the Soleil Pool Barand then head over for dinner at the highly acclaimed Bacchus Restaurant at Rydges. Make sure you make a dinner reservation well in advance. We tried to make a reservation at Bacchus and a number of other nearby restaurants a few days before our visit and they were all booked out. Busy place! We did finally find a lovely French restaurant along the river.

Some of our favourite places to eat without the kids include Stokehouse, The Jetty, Popolo, Chu The Phat, South Bank Surf Club, or The Charming Squire for a drink.

Now my husband and boys love a good breakfast buffet but I have never liked them. Never, ever! But in the spirit of travelling and trying new things I gave the breakfast buffet at Bacchus Restaurant at Rydges a go and was absolutely blown away. It was the best hotel breakfast I’ve ever eaten (and I’ve eaten a lot). Will I go back and eat there – absolutely!

Best accommodation for families with…

  • Kids of all ages – babies to teenagers
  • Smaller families of up to 4 plus a baby (larger families will need two rooms – make sure you ask for adjoining rooms)

What to be aware of

  • If you have a toddler and a room with a balcony, be aware the small table and chairs would be easy to move to the railing for a better look over the edge – aargh! This is the case in most hotels, so the usual toddler proofing comes into play.
  • To park your car at the hotel or in a nearby car park is expensive (around $40) and there is no long-term street parking. The cheapest place nearby is the Convention Centre at $30 a day.

Attractions nearby Rydges South Bank Brisbane

Take a look at our story on all the free things to do for families around South Bank or see what piques your interest in the list below.

Facilities at Rydges South Bank Brisbane

  • Pool and Soleil Pool Bar
  • 24-hour reception
  • Concierge
  • Undercover car parking (paid)
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Gymnasium
  • Spa and sauna
  • Bacchus Restaurant and Bar
  • Business centre
  • Guest laundry on-site
  • Same day dry cleaning
  • Currency exchange

In-room facilities

  • Air conditioning
  • Mini-refrigerator
  • Tea and coffee facilities
  • Shower
  • Hair dryer
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Television
  • In-room movies
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Telephone
  • Safe
  • Room service
  • Work station

Some rooms also have:

  • Kitchenette and microwave
  • Balcony
  • Bath tub

Check availability and latest prices at Rydges South Bank Brisbane

Getting around

Rydges South Bank is within walking distance to a huge number of attractions but if you need to go further, it is close to the South Brisbane train station, public bus stops and City Cat terminals. Taxis and Ubers are also very easily accessed from the area.

Where to find Rydges South Bank Brisbane

9 Glenelg Street, South Brisbane, Queensland 4010, Australia

Disclosure: We were guests of Rydges South Bank. The opinions expressed are solely ours and were in no way influenced by the hotel.



Your Guide to the Best Things to do in Hobart with Kids

Your Guide to the Best Things to do in Hobart with Kids

Best Things to do in Hobart with Kids

It’s so easy to get lost in Hobart Tasmania. Lost in its history and its architecture. Lost in its quietly buzzing city centre. Lost in its charm and its big heart.

Part of Hobart’s allure is that it doesn’t feel like a capital city. It’s small (population is a little over 200,000), relatively inexpensive, secluded and has a real chilled out coolness. It’s that part of Australia too many people forget about when they are looking to organise a family trip.

But don’t for a second think Hobart is boring, because it’s anything but. There is so much on in Hobart for kids and parents, it’s just a matter of deciding what you want to do.

Nestled among the foothills of Mount Wellington on the south-eastern corner of Tasmania, Hobart is often touted as one of the top spots to visit in the world. There are tops of mountains to hike to and bottoms of lakes to explore, laneways and shopping nooks to weave in and out of, historic guided walking tours in the city to take, and the harbour to relax at.

If you haven’t been there (why not?), get down to this amazing holiday spot quick sticks.

Below you’ll find our top things to do in Hobart with kids as well as heaps of other practical information to help you plan your trip including our top recommendations for the best family accommodation in Hobart, what the weather is like in Hobart, and even how to get from the airport.

Mount Wellington kids activities hobart

Top things to do in Hobart with kids

Love a good hike? Tasmania has some of the best in Australia. Hit the summit of Mount Wellington (1270m) for spectacular, sweeping views over the city and harbour. Next, try Mt Nelson Signal Station, followed by lots of trails and tracks in between. Kids will be totally tuckered out at days end.

Take it a bit slower and stroll through Battery Point, a historic district with narrow laneways and colonial-era cottages including buildings dating back to the first European settlement in Hobart Town.

About 90 minutes south of Hobart is the Hastings Caves State Reserve. Thread your way through the darkened caves with a guide and find yourself at the thermal springs at the end – a steamy 28-degree natural water bath.

You can’t visit Hobart on the weekend without wandering through Salamanca Markets. Every Saturday, 300 stallholders converge on Salamanca Place to sell Tasmania’s finest local produce including wine, cheese, breads, and a great selection of locally made products including hand-worked glass and timbers, clothes, jewellery, artworks, and ceramics.

If you’re interested in art then MONA (Museum of Old and New Arts) is absolutely the best place to go. There’s plenty for the kids to see and do, but make sure you get a map so you don’t wander into some of the more controversial adult rooms.

While you’re in Hobart, visit Mawsons Hut Replica Museum; check out endangered specie, the Tasmanian Devil plus a host of other cool creatures at Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary; walk over the forest (literally) on the suspended bridges at Tahune Air Walk; or feed the fish at the Salmon Ponds. If you’ve got time head off on a day trip to explore Australia’s convict past at Port Arthur; or enjoy the Derwent River on a traditional tall ship (check out Windeward Bound or the Lady Nelson).

Have you heard about the Southern Lights that can be seen not far from Hobart? Why travel all the way to the likes of Norway or Canada (for the Northern Lights) when there’s a slim chance you can witness Aurora Australis 40km outside of Hobart. It’s possible (not probable) you might see the Southern Lights all year round however your best chance is around March and September during the Equinox.

Family accommodation Hobart

If you’re looking for great family accommodation in Hobart then you’re in luck as the Tasmanians offer a great range of self-catering apartments, luxury hotels and budget accommodation for families. If you can we recommend you stay on or near the harbour or Salamanca so you can easily walk to many of the attractions and eateries. We also love anything looking over the water so you’ll have plenty to choose from either in the city or in the suburbs.

These are out top picks of family accommodation Hobart.

Apartments are one of our favourite places to stay when we travel as they allow you space to not be on top of each other, the ability to cook and wash some clothes (even though it’s the boring stuff). We love Salamanca InnandSullivans Cove Apartmentsin Hobart.

Going a bit smaller and cheaper is Quest Serviced Apartments Waterfront, which is still close to all the action and food, but better for a shorter stay with only a kitchenette and one room.

If you’re after something a little different and a bit more homely, then take a look at the beautiful Old Bishop’s Quarters Hobart.

For those on a tight budget, check out the cabins at Discovery Parks Hobartor get a room (or house) with a view at the Riverfront Motel and Villas.

Check here for latest prices and availability of top-rated family accommodation Hobart

Where to eat in Hobart

Discover a side of Tasmania where old-world charm and new-school cuisine meet straight up for a truly tasty time. Over the past few years, a swarm of foodies from the mainland have landed in Hobart to really get the restaurant scene roaring. Take a look at Zomato to see the best places to eat in Hobart.

Getting from the Hobart airport

Hobart International Airport is located in Cambridge, 17km northeast of Hobart. To get to your hotel or the city you can take the Redline Airport Shuttle, a taxi (about 20 minutes to the city) or you can hire a car and go wherever you’d like.

Public transport Hobart

Get your sneakers on, because there is plenty to see just by walking around. Buses are run by Metro around Hobart and of course, they hit all the top spots. One-way cash ticket prices vary (one zone: $3.30 up to all zones for $6.90). Buy a rechargeable Greencard in various locations or online for a 20% discount on regular fees.

Also keep an eye out for the free bikes around the city you can use.

Car Parking in Hobart

Street, off-street and multi-storey car parks are located at strategic points throughout the city. Check them out here so you know where to go.

Hobart Weather

Like the rest of Australia, January is the hottest month of the year – but unlikethe rest of Australia, it is pretty darn mild – about 20 degrees. July is the coldest time with single digit degrees. So, rug up big time in winter, and take a cardi and a few other layers in summer, because nights can still get pretty chilly.

Favourite Family Events Hobart

Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, MONA FOMA, Festival of Voices, penguin breeding and whale watching.

Image courtesy of Tourism Australia


Best Gold Coast playgrounds for kids

Best Gold Coast playgrounds for kids

Best playgrounds Gold Coast

Finding a great playground is like finding gold when you’ve got kids, so have we got a big pot of gold for you with our round up of the best playgrounds, Gold Coast style. We’ve got the low down on what you can see and do at each of these five Gold Coast playgrounds, insider tips from locals who visit these parks all the time, plus you can take a look at what attractions and accommodation are nearby.

Southport Broadwater Parklands

Broadwater Parklands Gold Coast playgrounds kids Travel with Boys

Southport Broadwater Parklands is an excellent spot for a family day out. There are several play areas for children, lots of open spaces, places to swim, and plenty of barbeques to cook up a storm.

Take a look at what’s on offer for your visit:

  • Let the children run and play in the playground where you’ll find a flying fox, bouncing pillow, bike track and ‘monorail’ bikes.
  • Take the whole family for a swim in the netted area of the Broadwater
  • Let the little ones splash about in the Broadwater Parklands man made rock pools
  • Take the family for a walk, run or bike ride on the long, wide paths
  • The bigger kids will love jumping around on the Broadwater Parklands water park Aqua Splash which is open during the warmer months. You need to book and pay for a session.
  • Broadwater Parklands is always bustling with entertainment for families. Take a look at the Broadwater Parklands events calendar.

If you’re hungry there is a cafe near the rock pools – Fish Shak and Shak Express, plus barbeques and shelters if you want to bring your own picnic. Be aware that you’ll need to pay for car parking here.

Click here to see where the park is on the map and discover what’s nearby.

Pirate Park Palm Beach Parklands

Gold Coast playgrounds Pirate Park Palm Beach Parklands

Looking for a great adventure park for the whole family with plenty of entertaining options? Palm Beach Parklands, otherwise known as Pirate Park Palm Beach has it all. Imagine open space, a treasure island, eco-trails, safe calm waters for the kids, and surf for the board riders all in one location.

This open space parkland overlooks Palm Beach and is a great location to take the family for a fun day out. The parkland has plenty of seating areas, so make sure you pack a picnic or barbecue. It is large enough for a fun game of footy and has easy access to a dog-friendly beach, and footpaths wide enough to take your bikes and scooters for a ride.

The Treasure Island themed playground is designed to keep the kids busy with imaginative play. The large pirate ship has inbuilt slides, spinners and rockers, and there are areas for the kids to dig in the sand and search for treasures, which means endless hours of playtime!

The on-site Dune Café offers breakfast and lunch from 7.30am

Pirate Park gets packed on weekends and school holidays, so make sure you come early to secure parking as they are hard to come by. If you don’t mind a little bit of a walk, save yourself the stress and park across the road.

This park is not fenced and is right on the waterway, so please make sure you watch your kids. Also bring some insect repellent, as there can be an influx of midges/sandflies.

Click here for more tips and to see what’s nearby.

Laguna Park Palm Beach

Laguna Park Palm Beach best kids park Gold Coast kids

With a fantastic array of interactive equipment to suit kids of all ages, Laguna Park Palm Beach is definitely one of the best Gold Coast playgrounds! Your kids will have hours of fun playing in the adventure playground, pretending to be pirates aboard the pirate ship, taking on the slides and rockers, funny face interactive boards and so much more.

If you’re after a workout while you’re at the park you can join the kids on the monorail and use some serious pedal power to get yourself around the course.

The entire playground is fenced, which provides a safe area for the littlies, and it also includes a Liberty Swing for kids in wheelchairs. The park overlooks a lake and has several barbecues and undercover picnic areas, as well as a new amenity block and plenty of parking.

If you’re after a coffee or bite to eat, there is a café/takeaway shop a short walk away from the park.

Click here to see where the park is on the map and discover what’s nearby.

Justin’s Park Burleigh Heads

Justins Park Burleigh Heads Gold Coast kids Travel with Boys

The kids’ playground at Justin’s Park Burleigh Heads is a favourite with the littlies. All the traditional play equipment is there, with swings, slides and climbing frames, as well as a balance beam, spinning teacup and more!

Located on the foreshore of Burleigh Beach, Justin’s Park has plenty of picnic tables and park benches, making it the perfect place to just sit, listen to the rainbow lorikeets, and watch the world go by! Make a day of it and bring a picnic, or grab some fish and chips and soak in the rays.

Justin’s Park overlooks the world famous Burleigh Beach, so make sure you pack the swimmers and if you are an exercise fanatic, bring your runners and combine your day with a walk or run along the Oceanway or join in in one of the City’s free Active and Healthy programs on Monday to Wednesday mornings.

If you’re lucky enough to be there on the last Sunday of the month, wander over to the Art and Craft Beachside Markets between 8.30am to 2.30pm.

Click here to see where the park is on the map and discover what’s nearby.

Kurrawa Pratten Park, Broadbeach

Kurrawa Pratten Park Broadbeach best playgrounds Gold Coast

In the heart of Broadbeach lies the beautiful Kurrawa Pratten Park, ready for action or relaxation.

Spend the morning swimming at the beach, light up the barbie and play a game of cricket in the beautiful open space park, or take the children to the playground. With an abundance of outdoor activities for the kids to run around and enjoy, you’re sure to keep them entertained and tired out by the end of the day.

The playground is in a fenced area, so its safe for the children to play whilst the parents sit and watch. Toilets are next to the playground, there is some free parking available, and when you get hungry, the new Kurrawa Surf Club will be ready and waiting for you.

If you need (or want) to do some shopping, wander down the nearby Broadbeach Mall, or you can go further and do some serious shopping at Pacific Fair Shopping Centre. You’ll be spoilt for choice!

Click here to see where the park is on the map and discover what’s nearby.

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Get your viking on at the Scandinavian Festival Brisbane

Get your viking on at the Scandinavian Festival Brisbane

Scandinavian Festival Brisbane 2018

What better way to spend a Sunday than finding your inner Viking at the Scandinavian Festival Brisbane on Sunday 9 September 2018. This free event is great fun for the whole family, bringing the best of Scandinavia to Brisbane.

The food alone is reason enough to go. You will want to arrive with an empty stomach, so you can fit in a hot jam donut (unbelievable), roast pork sandwich, Swedish hotdog, Danish pastries, Norwegian waffles and so many other delicacies. There’s also plenty to drink with wine, Danish beer and soft drink.

When you’ve had enough to eat, there is a lot for the kids to do. In previous years they’ve had the Lego playroom, Viking painting studio, Swedish floor ball and much more will keep them busy. We’ve taken the boys in previous years and they had so much fun. Their favourite parts were dressing up as Vikings and playing Swedish floor ball.

Now in its seventh year, the Scandinavian Festival brings together the local clubs of Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Estonia. This year looks to be bigger and better than ever with many more exhibitors.Brisbane Scandinavian Festival traditional dancing Family travel 2015 travelswithboys.com

While the kids are happy, hopefully you’ll find time for shopping with some fantastic Scandinavian brands coming along. There is a unique array of clothing, babywear, handmade Christmas decorations, jewellery and furniture.

Brisbane Scandinavian Festival crowd Family travel 2015 travelswithboys.com

Scandinavian Festival, Brisbane

Date: Sunday 9th September

Time: 10.00am – 4.00pm

Location: Perry Park (34 Folkstone Street, Bowen Hills)

Are you dreaming of visiting Denmark?

Take a look at these stories from Travel with Boys.

Best things to do in Copenhagen with kids


Where to stay at LEGOLAND Denmark

The best of Lolland-Falster for families

Frikadeller recipe – the best Danish meatballs

Aebleskiver recipe – delicious Danish goodness

We were not paid in any way to promote the Scandinavian Festival. We just love it.

Your Guide to Adelaide with Kids

Your Guide to Adelaide with Kids

Your Ultimate Guide to Adelaide with Kids

Adelaide was recently voted as the world’s fifth most liveable city and was in the top five must-see regions in the world. Yes, IN THE WORLD! So it’s true that you really need to visit it. We swear that you won’t regret visiting Adelaide with kids.

Located at the bottom of Australia, Adelaide is home to almost two million people. It’s cosmopolitan, coastal, cultural and very cool. Brimming with family-friendly stuff to do, it’s a great place to visit for the kids, both little and big.

First things first: it is a wine lover’s dream destination. Encircling Adelaide in almost every direction are world-class vineyards (McLaren Vale, Coonawarra, Clare Valley). But don’t go thinking visiting a vineyard is just for the adults – most wineries cater for children with tours, activities and food just for them. Many are easy drives for day trips, or wend your way from winery to winery over a weekend.

Adelaide has also been called the city of churches. Kids might roll their eyes at having to visit a church for recreation, but there really are some magnificent ones in the city. Pick one or two, and then call it a day.

The beach, the museums, the parks, the suburbs, the outdoor adventures… you could never get bored in Adelaide with kids.

Now do you get why Adelaide is up there with the world’s best?

Best things for kids to do in Adelaide

The Adelaide Zoo and its neighbour, the Botanic Gardens, will take up a whole day (mind you, half of it will be watching the pandas at play. Seriously cute.)

In keeping with the animal theme, take a swimming safari with sharks, seals, dolphins or whales, it’s up to you.

The Big Pelican (actually, there are two…), The Big Olives, Rooey II (the big kangaroo), The Big Ant and the Big Rocking Horse. There are a lot of “big” icons in Adelaide to check out.

Glenelg is crammed with kids activities. It’s a great beachside suburb to visit for a day with awesome café options, lots of beach activities and indoor play gyms to choose from.

There are so many things for kids to do in Adelaide, you shouldn’t have any problems keeping them busy and interested. And when you’ve seen what you want to in Adelaide, then it’s not far to the incredible destination of Kangaroo Island.

Where to stay in Adelaide with kids

If you are looking to stay in Adelaide with kids then the beachside suburb of Glenelg offers up some of the best family apartments and hotels in our opinion, and most with friendly prices. Our favourites are Seawall Apartments, Oaks Plaza Pier, Oaks Liberty Towers, Lights Landing Apartments or the Stamford Grand Adelaide.

Know before you go to Adelaide with kids

Eating in Adelaide

Cheese. And wine. And tapas. Sure, there are plenty of food options in traditional restaurants and cafes, but a lot of them are also catering for bite-sized, lazy afternoons sipping wine and watching the kids at play. Now that sounds like a holiday! Take a look at The Urban Lists top spots to eat in Adelaide.

Getting from Adelaide airport

About 15 minutes from the heart of Adelaide, the Adelaide Airport offers plenty of options for getting in and out. Adelaide Metro offer an express double decker bus service (JetExpress) to and from the city while JetBus services Glenelg, West Beach and the CBD. Ssingle trip tickets can be purchased straight from the driver. Read more on Adelaide airports transport options.

Public transport Adelaide

There are buses, trains and trams in Adelaide and tickets can be purchased for single use or day tripping (for use with all forms of public transport) using a Metrocard. Economically priced, any one of the public transport options will get you where you want to go. Plan your trip here.

Driving in Adelaide

Adelaide is a pretty cruisey place to get around in when you’re driving. Street signs are highly visible and roads and freeways are well laid out, making it super easy for holidaymakers to get around.

If you need to hire a car, we’ve found the best place to book is through RentalCar.com as they provide highly competitive prices for all the major car rental companies plus they make it easy to see what is and isn’t covered in the price.

Parking in Adelaide

Long-term and short-term parking is everywhere in Adelaide. Best to check out where you are going and find the most convenient parking station. Street parking is easy, but like all major cities, can be expensive if you are staying for longer than a few hours. Read more about parking in Adelaide city.

Adelaide Weather

Layer it up in winter, and then peel them off in summer. Winters are cold, cold, cold and summers are hot, hot, hot. From June to around August, maximum is about 15 degrees and the minimum is a rather chilly 7. Summers feature a very dry heat, spiking at the height of the season in the 40s.

Favourite Family Events in Adelaide

Dream Big Children’s Festival, WOMADelaide, Adelaide Festival, Christmas Pageant, Adelaide Fringe Festival, and Barossa Vintage Festival, plus plenty of sporting events like the Adelaide 500, Adelaide Motorsports Festival, watch an Adelaide Crows or Port Adelaide AFL game.

Images courtesy of Tourism Australia.

Disclosure: Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. This means, at no additional cost to you, if you book after clicking on a link, we may earn a small commission. We book our travel through these companies, so please consider booking your travel through these links so we can continue providing you with the best information on family travel.

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