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10 Best Places to Visit in Australia this Winter

Van in tropical north QLDImage source: thl content hub

Whether you’re looking to enjoy an endless summer in the north, retreat to the cooler climates of the southernmost states or simply enjoy Australia’s top attractions without the premiums and the summer crowds - Australia in winter really does have something for everyone.

Australian winters - between June and August - are as diverse as they come. In the most northern parts of Australia, you will experience the very peak of the dry season when the sun is high, and the humidity is low - making for the ultimate tropical retreat. While in the south, you are within arms reach of Australia’s 16 ski resorts and the perfect cosy winter escape.

No matter what climate you are chasing, there is so much to see - let’s dive into the 10 best places to visit this winter.

The best way to travel in Australia

Van great Ocean roadImage source: thl content hub

If you’re interested in ticking off several Australian bucket-list destinations, there is no better way than hiring a campervan and hitting the road this winter. Travelling in a van means that you will always have everything you need at your fingertips. You’ll be able to cook meals in your fully equipped kitchen and travel with toilet and shower facilities on board. Enjoy not having to deal with the hassle of packing and unpacking the car every night when you're checking out of a hotel, it really is the best way to travel in Australia.

If you’re looking to get the most out of your Australian road trip, then be sure to download the thl Roadtrip app. This road trip itinerary planner is a one-stop-shop to help plan your trip. On it, you will find everything from free campsites, water fill-ups, campgrounds, Australian attractions, and more.

What to pack for the Australian winter 

Planning what to pack for your winter escape will depend heavily on what parts of Australia you will visit. If you’re heading north, it's worthwhile treating it as a summer vacation. Like a summer holiday, the weather stays warm during the day, but the evenings can get quite cold, so pack a few light layers.

If you’re travelling to the south of Australia, be sure to prepare for the colder climate. Although, your campervan packing list will vary depending on where you're going and what activities you choose to do, consider packing essentials like a beanie, rain jacket, boots and warm layers etc.

Top 10 places to visit in Australia this winter 

1. Darwin, NT 

Darwin signImage source: thl content hub

Experience the very best of Darwin in the winter months. With beautiful bluebird days and temperatures reaching 30°C, this is the perfect escape from the winter cold. Spend your days exploring the many things to do in Darwin, including seeing crocodiles at Crocosaurus Cove, exploring the heritage of Darwin Aviation Museum, sampling the food at Mindil Markets and enjoying a legendary Darwin sunset with a Darwin Harbour Cruise. While the dry season is beautiful with mild temperatures during the day when the sun sets, it will get cooler, so be sure to pack some warmer clothes for the evening.

2.  Australia’s Red Centre, NT 

The Red Centre is located in Alice Springs in Australia’s Northern Territory, where summer temperatures bring extreme heat and sticky flies. This makes the winter months the perfect time to visit this outback landscape. Spend your days learning about the world’s oldest culture at the Warradjan Aboriginal Culture Centre, experience a world-famous sunrise/sunset at Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, and roam amongst the equally impressive neighbouring domes of Kata Tjuta/the Olgas.

3. The Blue Mountains, NSW 

If you love exploring the great outdoors without the summer crowds, look no further. Escape to the cool, crisp air of the Blue Mountains, located just two hours from Sydney. Enjoy a slower pace of life as you roam through the heritage buildings of the surrounding villages, go for a bushwalk in the cooling canopy of the eucalypt forest and visit the iconic cliffs of the Three Sisters.

4. Whitsundays, QLD 

The Whitsundays is a collection of islands located around the Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef. This tropical paradise with its dense forests, hiking trails, and picture-perfect white sandy beaches is the perfect oceanside destination to explore the Great Barrier Reef in the winter months. Grab your snorkel and marvel at the sea life that resides in these pristine waters. If you time it right, take the chance to go whale watching to see these huge mammals in their natural habitat.

Great Barrier Reef snorkeling turtleImage source: Queensland image gallery

5. Melbourne, VIC 

Melbourne is buzzing with cosy bars and restaurants, making it an epic city to explore in the cooler months. Explore Melbourne’s art galleries, get a taste of Melbourne’s famous cafe scene, and spend some time window shopping in Brunswick. As the most southern city on Australia's mainland, Melbourne does get quite cold in the winter months - so pack a good winter coat!

6. Twelve Apostles, VIC

12 ApostlesImage Source: thl content hub

Make the most of your camper and travel down one of the world’s most famous coastal drives - the Great Ocean Road. This iconic drive is a 240 km stretch of road that showcases some of the most incredible views in the country — making your journey just as jaw-dropping as your destination. Twelve Apostles is a collection of limestone rock pillars that were once connected to the mainland cliffs. Years of wind and waves have carved them down into 45-metre tall columns that are a sight to see.

7. Warrnambool, VIC 

Continuing along the Great Ocean Road, you will arrive at the seaside town of Warrnambool. Warrnambool is Victoria’s fifth-largest city and the largest town on the Great Ocean Road. Whether you’re looking to soak up the heritage, catch the surf or unwind at a spa, this scenic city has something for everyone.

8. Kangaroo Island, SA

Kangaroo Island is located just off the coast southwest of Adelaide in South Australia. Park up your camper for the day and take the short 45-minute ferry from Adelaide to experience Australian wildlife like never before. Tick off one of the 17 hikes on the island, sit back and relax at a private wine tasting or spend some time getting to know the local wildlife.

9. Broome, WA 

Cable Beach - Camels on beachImage source: Western Australia image gallery

Broome is a beach resort town in the Kimberly region with enviable views of the sun setting over the Indian Ocean. With winter temperatures ranging from 14°C to 30°C, you can escape the cooler weather in this winterless northern Australia paradise. This beach town is known for its epic sunsets, so be sure to park up and unwind with a sea view or enjoy a bucket list camel ride along Cable Beach. Spend your days by the beach, take a tour of the pearls of this region, and marvel at the red rock and dirt in contrast to the vivid blue ocean.

10. Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse, WA 

Cape Leeuwin is located in the Margaret River region of Western Australia, at the southernmost tip where the Southern and Indian Oceans meet. Here you can see the stunning surrounding landscape from above and take a trip through maritime history. It is also home to the tallest lighthouse in mainland Australia. This small-town on the edge of this coastline is a perfect contrast to the hustle of the Margaret River region, but if you have the time, it's also worth checking out one of the best surfing spots in Australia up in Margaret River.

Ready for your next Australian adventure? 

There is such a wide range of stunning winter escapes all around Australia, ready to be explored. If you’re looking to rent a van for an upcoming campervan trip, be sure to check out all our latest deals and book your Mighty camper today. If you’re looking for more travel inspiration for your journey, you can read more on our blog.