School holidays are almost here. It can be hard to keep the kids entertained and avoid the “I’m bored” tornado.

We’re here to help. We’ve listed our 3 top picks in every capital city which kids of all ages will love, plus some great at-home activities. The kids will be entertained, happy and well behaved (maybe that last one is wishful thinking).

    Victoria (17 September to 2 October)

    • Melbourne Royal Show: From 22 September to 2 October, immerse yourselves in the fun and fanfare after a 2-year hiatus. Avoid having to take out a new mortgage by buying food there – bring your own snacks and lunches. Check out our 10 minute apricot bliss ball recipe to get you started.
    • Bricktionary: For all of the LEGO lovers, the Bricktionary exhibit at the Melbourne Museum features more than 150 models from ‘The Brickman’ himself, Ryan McNaught.
    • Queen Victoria Market: From 20 -29 September, your little ones can participate in a range of cooking and gardening workshops.

    Queensland (17 September to 3 October)

    • Strawberry picking: A fun-filled adventure for everyone. After many strawberry picking adventures ourselves, our favourite way to extend the life of the ones you cannot eat is to make jam, freeze or dehydrate them. Dehydrated strawberries make the perfect toping for muesli, yoghurt or granola bars. Don’t forget your gumboots!
    • Flagstone Adventure Park: Burn off all of their energy out of the house, and pack plenty of snacks, hats and sunscreen.
    • SWELL Sculpture Festival: You’ll need to be quick though, the awe-inspiring sculptures are only on display until 18 September. If you miss out on the sculptures, there’s always the Spring Fair at Dreamworld for an entertaining day.

    New South Wales (24 September to 9 October)

    • SEALIFE Aquarium: Aquariums never fail to entertain (unless your 3yr old decides it’s too small – a story for another day), and they make the perfect rainy-day activity.
    • Western Sydney Treetop Adventure Park: Suitable for ages 3 and up with a choice of age-appropriate courses, it’s a fun day out for everyone. Unless of course you’re like me and are absolutely terrified of heights.
    • Australian National Maritime Museum: Make you way through the water adventure exhibitions and team it up with the available workshops and craft activities.

    ACT (24 September to 9 October)

    • The National Dinosaur Museum: Open every day from 10am – 5pm, you can let your dinosaur obsessed kids explore until their heart’s content. After a trip to the museum, you could build your very own chocolate T-Rex!
    • The Magic Academy: The international award winning Melbourne Magic Academy is coming back to Canberra these school holidays for a week of non-stop magical learning from 9am-3pm daily.
    • Questacon – National Science and Technology Centre: Immerse yourselves in the wonderful world of STEM and interactive learning.

    Northern Territory (24 September to 9 October)

    • Crocosaurus Cove: Unless you’re like me and absolutely terrified of crocodiles, Crocosaurus is the place to go in the heart of Darwin.
    • Palmerston Water Park: There’s nothing better than a free water park experience complete with slides, water canons and a shallow wading pool.
    • WWII Darwin Oil Storage Tunnels: Explore Darwin’s rich history from WWII and explore the underground tunnels. It’s a fun day out for the entire family.

    Western Australia (24 September to 11 October)

    • The Royal Show: A childhood favourite of ours, and a guaranteed way to put a smile on your little one’s faces, no matter their age. Avoid the cost and hassle of buying food by bringing your own.
    • Mini golf at Wanneroo Botanical Gardens: Whilst it may be a bit of a drive, a gorgeous tropical oasis awaits with endless activities and mini-golf.
    • Outback Splash: With the water park attractions opening for the Summer season just in time for the holidays. If it’s too cold for swimming, head off for a round of mini golf or get lost in the maze.

    South Australia (1 to 16 October)

    • Hahndorf Farm Barn: Take a trip to the stunning Adelaide hills and enjoy the unique blend of farm life and wildlife park.
    • Adelaide Zoo or Monarto Safari Park: Both offer school holiday programs and are always the perfect way to spend the day.
    • Scoffed Cooking Classes for Kids: Cooking classes are a great way to teach important life skills whilst having fun along the way. Suitable for kids aged 5+, there’s such to be a class suitable for all ages.

    Tasmania (1 to 16 October)

    • Hastings Caves and Thermal Springs: If you’re up for a drive, the Hastings Caves and thermal spring fed swimming pool is an excellent way to spend the day. With the pool remaining a warm 28 degrees all year round, you can take a comfortable dip any time you like.
    • Hobart Aquatic Centre: Open 7 days a week and located less than 1 km from the Hobart CBD, it’s a great day out no matter the weather.
    • Westbury maze or Tasmazia: Weather permitting, mazes offer a brilliant way for kids to run off steam, whilst the parents relax with a cuppa. What could possibly be more refreshing.

    Fun at Home

    School Holidays don’t have to be about extravagant adventures, particularly with the cost of living rising and for those working parents with limited annual leave.

    If the weather isn’t fab, or you really just can’t be bothered (which is totally ok!), why not grab some paint sticks or beeswax crayons and kraft wrapping paper and get a head start on the recyclable wrapping paper for Christmas (yes, I did just mention that word).

    Kids don't like craft? There’s always our trusty go-to, Connetix. With a multitude of ways to build new masterpieces each and every day, let their imaginations run wild. Just a tip – the parents may or may not be able to peel themselves away from it (or maybe that’s just us).

    For those budding Masterchefs, there’s a huge range of cookie cutters, stampies, mini rolling pins, aprons, reusable baking mats, muffin cups and kid-safe knives to choose from.

    If you’re on the road these holidays, or simply heading out for a bite to eat, don’t forget to pack your HeyDoodle reusable silicone drawings mats so that you can actually enjoy your coffee in peace.

    September 14, 2022 — Michelle Leach

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