Australia is a hugely popular choice for international tourists because of our major attractions, our climate and our friendly population. But sometimes, you don’t want to be where lots of people are, and you just want a little time away where it’s peaceful and there’s room to spread out.
Shopping centres, movie cinemas and busy public swimming spots don’t have to be where you spend your holidays! We’ve come up with six quiet holiday destinations in Australia to avoid the crowds.
Nestled in the Freycinet National Park on Tasmania’s east coast is Wineglass Bay, a breathtaking peninsula framed by gorgeous pink granite mountains. Shaped like a wine glass, hence the name, the bay is a popular destination but it never gets so crowded that it spoils anyone’s visit.
You can stay in a backpacker hostel, pitch a tent, drive around in a campervan or treat yourself to a luxury resort. Go rock climbing, bushwalking, sea kayaking, bird watching, swimming or fishing.
Experience beautiful solitude on the clean, white, open beaches. Marvel at the turquoise colour of the shimmering ocean. Buy some local cheeses, bread and wine and have a picnic on the shore.
Made famous by the popular TV show River Cottage Australia, Tilba had its moment in the sun and now it’s mostly gone back to its former wonderful anonymity.
This farming community offers everything you could need to be happy on holidays; wineries, cafes, shops, galleries, cheese factories, rolling hills, lovely gardens and really friendly people (it’s one of our hidden gems!).
You can really get away from it all and stay at an authentic country farmhouse, where you can kayak on the lakes, go fishing or even go whale watching (June to November).
There’s also an 18-hole championship golf course and plenty of opportunities to explore the bush thanks to the stunning nearby national parks. Tilba is situated 363 kilometres south of Sydney.
Just a couple of hours or so from Brisbane is the Mary Valley and its Scenic Drive. It’s a countryside journey that winds through pretty grazing pastures, the little village of Imbil, Borumba Dam and plenty of other points of interest. Pack a picnic for a day trip or check in to a cosy cottage for a long weekend.
Billed as “south east Queensland’s most untouched natural playground”, the Mary Valley is deceptively fascinating.
You can go horse riding, mountain biking, trail biking, bushwalking and fishing. Visit tall-tree forests and cavernous gorges, crystalline creeks and tumbling waterfalls. When you’re hungry, you’ll find an abundance of cafes, all serving fine local produce, or stop in to the Imbil Railway Hotel for a pub lunch. There’s also a Country Club, a bowls club and plenty of other options.
Your private cabin will provide you with all the peace and solitude you desire but you can also head to the dining or bar car to meet your fellow passengers and watch the scenery go by.
Depending on which package you choose, you may stop in Katherine and Alice Springs, and even visit the fascinating underground town of Coober Pedy. Travel at an average speed of 85 kilometres per hour in the 30-carriage train and enjoy the lovely service and hospitality that goes with it. Begin in Darwin or Adelaide and travel one way or round trip.
How would you like to go houseboating on Lake Eildon? Equipped with everything you could need for a few days’ of quiet holiday time, you only need to bring your food, your clothes and a book to read. On board, you’ll find a gas barbecue, comfortable beds, bathrooms with hot running water and an electricity generator.
Float around the lake, throw a line in to catch a fish for lunch and just relax and take in the scenery. Lake Eildon has other accommodation too, such as pretty cottages, an eco-retreat, resorts and hotels, and the township of Eildon itself offers lots to do.
You could have a go at catching a fish at the trout farm (83 percent of Australia’s trout is from this region), go bushwalking in Lake Eildon National Park or visit one of the scenic lookouts. As for food and drinks, the region is known for grapes, truffles, olives, honey, snails, berries, sourdough bread, pork, capers and more. Eildon is located 141 kilometres north-east of Melbourne.
Picture yourself camping – no, ‘glamping’ – among the sand dunes on the beach. It’s just you and only a handful of other camping parties because there are only sixteen tents in total. Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef is a unique holiday experience known as a luxury beachside safari camp.
It’s set in the remote location of Western Australia’s Cape Range National Park … where the outback meets the reef. You can swim with some of the ocean’s mightiest creatures; whales, whale sharks, manta rays and dolphins. Go snorkelling or kayaking on the water or head inland and try to spot kangaroos, goannas, echidnas, wallabies and exotic birds.
Mouth-watering food is prepared freshly for you and you can sit and watch the sun set in one of the world’s most spectacular locations, with a glass of wine in your hand. Fly from Perth to Exmouth’s Learmonth Airport and the Sal Salis team will pick you up.
Travelling to get away from the crowds is easy in a country like Australia, even with our large tourist numbers. Our population is small compared to so many other countries and yet our land is so vast. You only have to use your imagination, enlist the help of a travel agent and do a little research. If a quiet holiday is important to you, you will absolutely find the nirvana you’re looking for!