Family Vacations to Australia and the Pacific

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The distant continent includes the Polynesian islands and bleak rocks like Pitcairn, but it’s the siren call of Australia and New Zealand we’re mostly unable to resist.

It takes a day or more flying to reach these fabled lands and yet, no one ever complains. Is it because air travel is wonderful or is journey’s end so thrilling the travel itself is almost instantly forgotten?

Here are a few far flung places to answer the question.

Where to Vacation with Kids in Australasia


Visiting Down Under is a truly unique experience, with destinations ranging from bustling metropolitan cities to the red dust of the Outback. There are plenty of fun activities to keep families busy in Sydney such as visits to the iconic Opera House and a climb up Sydney Harbour bridge, as well as all the usual soft play centres, playgrounds and swimming pools. Go a little more rural and you will find plenty of ‘bush camping’ opportunities, where visitors can get a feel for the wild side of Australia and enjoy the breathtaking blanket of stars that is visible further away from the city lights. Uluru and the Outback provide even more opportunities for adventure; indigenous Aboriginal people who own Australia’s national parks act as guides to teach travellers about ancient customs as well as how tribes live from the ‘bush’ in traditional ways. Wildlife native to Australia includes kangaroos, kookaburra and koalas, as well as of course plenty of snakes and spiders! The Great Barrier Reef is another of Australia’s main attractions, with divers searching for colourful fish, rays and even Great White Sharks. Flights from the UK to Australia take at least a day and a night.

Take me to Australia
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Bora Bora

Just northwest of Tahiti in French Polynesia lays the island of Bora Bora. A dormant volcano stands at the centre of the island, surrounded by the picture-perfect overwater bungalows on stilts. Sandbanks create a ring around the island and Bora Bora is home to a peaceful lagoon, protected from waves by a coral reef. Due to the crystal clear water many visitors come here for the snorkelling as well as the perfect Instagram photo! The island is very popular with honeymooners due to its privacy and tranquil vibe, but families also have a magical time and are met with fragrant flower ‘leis’ around their necks. There are plenty of watersports available from jet skiing to kite surfing as well as helicopter tours and shark feeding! Due to the location of Bora Bora authentic dishes are based on seafood, with a selection of lagoon or ocean fish. Multi-hotel stays are popular for guests who want to experience the different sides of the island. The journey to Bora Bora usually involves a stop in Los Angeles and due to its remote location, takes just over a day.

Take me to Bora Bora

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One of the first South Pacific countries that became popular with tourists, the Republic of Fiji still retains its natural beauty and laidback tropical island atmosphere. It is made up of over 300 islands, of which only around a third are inhabited. Fiji has a developed economy due to its rich natural resources including minerals and of course fish. Whatever kind of landscape takes your fancy, you are likely to find it on Fiji- from mountains to palm forests and lagoons to beaches, one of the islands has it. What is even more attractive than the scenery, though, is the people. Known as some of the friendliest in the world, Fijians welcome visitors with open hands and hearts, making everyone feel welcome. The country has a fascinating history; over half of the population are descendents from south Asia who came to work in the sugar plantations in the 1800s. Families should check out the cultural shows including fire walking, kava drinking and the warrior dances by grass-skirted Fijian men. Another long-haul destination, getting to Fiji from the UK takes around 24 hours (we promise it’s worth it!)

Take me to Fiji
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New Zealand

Only one country on earth was fantastic enough to truly convince in The Lord of the Rings. Disappointed or delighted by the movies, no one could fault New Zealand’s flawless scenery and it’s all even better in reality than it is on-screen. Naturally visitor numbers grew enormously after the brush with fame, but that hasn’t spoiled this wild and wonderful place one bit. The homeland of the Maori is loved for Alpine mountain ranges and a landscapes dotted with glacial lakes and drenched in spellbinding forests. You can drive the country from end to end in less than a week and span its width in a matter of hours. But only if you don’t want to linger over cities like Auckland and Christchurch, laze on the beach, hike in the hills, stop to watch whales or explore the vineyards and valleys of the wine country. Outdoors is where almost everything happens in New Zealand and if you and the kids are of an adventurous persuasion, it should be top of your holiday wish list.

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