So you’ve decided to go on holiday in Australia and you know you don’t want to break the bank doing it. Next step: choosing which resort is best for you and your family. Read our list of the best family resorts in Australia four stars and under to help decide!
Australia’s Best Family Resorts: 3-star & 4-star
This perpetual favourite is celebrating its 11th year in the top spot of this category. But this winning streak is hardly a surprise as this resort has it all, and then some. The only retreat in Australia with a water park, ice rink, laser tag, kids’ club and teen zone, it also boasts activities for all ages, including a miniature train, teddy-bear workshops and movies. Add family rooms catering for up to six kids plus wine tastings for parents, and you’ll never want to leave, despite its location just minutes from the Gold Coast’s beaches and the heart of Surfers Paradise.
2Oaks Sunshine Coast Oasis Resort
From its waterpark and stunning resort-style pool to its putt-putt golf course, sandpit, climbing frame and giant Kangaroo Jumper, Oaks Sunshine Coast Oasis Resort is made for kids. If you can tear the little ones away from the incredible facilities and activities on site, and you’re an Oaks Discovery member, under five’s get to eat for free. With its awesome location, close to the beach and the bustling hub of Caloundra, you’ll find plenty of opportunities for boating and swimming in the sheltered waters of Pumicestone Passage.
3Reef View Hotel
With its large, well-appointed rooms – all offering private balconies looking out over the sparkling Coral Sea or Hamilton Island’s tropical gardens – the Reef View Hotel offers a stylish, family-friendly stay. It’s easy to get around with the island shuttle, but guests never have to venture far thanks to easy access to catamarans, windsurfers, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards and snorkelling equipment at the resort. Best of all, kids up to 12 years sharing a room with their parents stay and eat free at participating restaurants, but terms and conditions do apply.
4Novotel Sunshine Coast Resort
There’s so much to do at Novotel Sunshine Coast Resort. At this classy, feature-packed resort you can sail a catamaran on the private lagoon, enjoy a round of mini-golf (or 18 holes of actual golf), take a dip in the resort pool, roll out on a Segway tour, or relax with a luxurious spa treatment. If you want to get out and explore, you are just metres from the beach and the Maroochy River. Head out on the water in a kayak, or just spend some time wandering along the beach.
5Kingfisher Bay Resort
If there are little eco-warriors in your family, a stay at Kingfisher Bay Resort is a perfect choice. Running every school holiday, the property’s Junior Eco Rangers Program provides interactive wildlife experiences for kids aged five to 12, for a small added fee. Activities include fishing frenzies, scavenger hunts, bushwalks, stargazing, plus campfires with stories, songs and marshmallows – kids will have a blast! Meanwhile, parents can relax at the Island Day Spa, go on their own island adventures, or indulge in native delights during the Bushtucker Talk & Taste experience.
If you are on the road with kids, East Hotel has you covered. This chic hotel, located between the vibrant hubs of Kingston and Manuka, is a five-minute drive to all of the top tourist sites in Canberra, including the kids’ favourite, Questacon. The stylish one- and two- bedroom apartments are perfect for families, especially the adjoining Kids Cubbies fitted out with bunk beds, beanbags, toys, games and even a kid-friendly mini-bar. Bikes for both children and adults are available for hire, offering the ideal way to explore the shores of the nearby Lake Burley Griffin.
7Crowne Plaza Terrigal Pacific
NSW CENTRAL COAST
Forget VIP, Crowne Plaza Terrigal Pacific is all about VIK (Very Important Kids). Kids can enjoy the pool, nine holes of mini golf, and arcade games by day, then settle in for their very own happy hour with a free poolside ice block. The child-centric celebrations continue into the night at the Kids’ Zone, where movies, games and karaoke disco nights are on offer during school holidays. Meanwhile, parents can indulge at endota spa or wander through the shops at Terrigal village.
8Tangalooma Island Resort
Uncomplicated and packed full of adventurous things to do, Tangalooma Island Resort is paradise for active families. Sitting pretty on Moreton Island, just 40 kilometres off the coast of Brisbane, the resort boasts an eco centre, tennis and squash courts and so much more. Here, your kids can tour an old whaling station, feed kookaburras, find out about dolphins, helicopters and learn how to sail a catamaran. That’s not even mentioning the other amazing activities and tours available for a small fee, including clear bottom kayak tours, whale watching, sand dune safaris and helicopter flights.
9The Islander Noosa Resort
Centrally located and just a short drive from Noosa Beach, The Islander Noosa Resort offers a riverside retreat tucked away amid more than 1.5 hectares of tropical gardens. Take the plunge into one of three outdoor pools, including a Lagoon Pool with a waterfall and bridge – bound to be a hit with the kids. Or, have a hit on the tennis courts; connect with other families at the Clubhouse; and explore the nearby Noosa River, national park and main beach.
=10Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley
Relax with a glass of wine in hand knowing the kids are also having a holiday to remember at Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley, located two hours north of Sydney. The Water Dragons Kids Club, operating over the school holidays, is a mini-resort for children aged three to 12, while a teen lounge, games room and outdoor heated swimming pool provide year-round entertainment. Join in on the kids’ fun and hitch a ride on the traditional mini train that rolls through the streets of the resort, or a go for a spin on the merry-go-round.
=10BreakFree Aanuka Beach Resort
Soak up some Coffs Harbour sunshine at the beachfront BreakFree Aanuka Beach Resort. Choose from modern studio hotel rooms, spa bures and two-, three- and four-bedroom villas – all nestled within tropical gardens. The onsite wellness spa will have you feeling pampered, and offers a glittery manicure and mini facial so little ones can feel spoilt too. There are also plenty of fun recreation facilities for the kids. Spend your time at the tennis and beach volleyball courts, rock pool, mini-golf course or the children’s pool and play area. And don’t forget Diggers Beach, just a short stroll from your accommodation.
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