Are you struggling to find somewhere unique to travel? Holidaying is always awesome, but sometimes you get tired of walking the same beaten track as everyone else – you want something new. Something fresh. Something unique. When you travel with Wyndham Timeshare, it’s travelling made easy, but it’s also travelling made different.
With 32 Club properties across the South Pacific at your fingertips, you’ve got options, including secluded getaways that lie well outside the usual tourist hotspots. We’ve put together a list of our three favourites, as well as their highlights and their top attractions. Enjoy Australia's hidden gems, and get inspired.
Australia's Hidden Gem #1: Seven Mile Beach
Located on Tasmania’s southern coast, Seven Mile Beach is peaceful seclusion that’s just a stone’s throw from Hobart. Broad, golden beaches are backed by expansive stretches of wilderness, and, in the distance, blue-hazed mountains complete the picture. Its proximity to Tasmania’s capital means visitors can enjoy the best of both worlds – the beautiful isolation that characterises a good beach holiday, and the inner-city vibrancy that means you’ll never get bored.
Nothing says ‘getaway’ like having a strip of beach all to yourself. Seven Mile Beach isn’t private, but it’s isolated enough that you and your fellow Wyndham members will be able to enjoy near-complete privacy. You won’t be bothered by reams of traffic, and you won’t have to put up with any annoying inner-city noise. Club Wyndham Seven Mile Beach is Tasmanian seclusion done right.
Proximity to Hobart
Club Wyndham Seven Mile Beach is just 22 minutes from Tasmania’s capital city, Hobart, meaning guests have full access to all of the city’s most interesting attractions. Soak up the maritime charm with a stroll along the docks, explore Salamanca Market, or browse through the city’s various arts-and-crafts outlets.
The beautiful natural landscapes surrounding Seven Mile Beach make the area a destination for nature-lovers. Arguably, all of Tasmania is lovely, but the state’s east coast has a much gentler feel than the harsh terrain found in places like the Walls of Jerusalem and Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers. There’s plenty of stunning beaches virtually ignored by tourists, so finding your own slice of paradise isn’t hard.
With a choice of beautifully-appointed, self-contained apartments on offer, Club Wyndham Seven Mile Beach is an eco-friendly accommodation option designed to provide you with the ultimate Tasmanian vacation experience. With facilities ranging from a gym to a dry sauna to bike hire, it’s an easy way to ensure you maximise your holiday pleasure.
Tasmania wouldn’t be Tasmania without its incredible seafood. This tiny state is renowned for its tasty marine chow, and some of the best can be found on the East Coast. Slurp down oysters, devour tender hunks of fish or bite into fresh-caught prawns.
Self-described as “a museum, or something”, MONA is everything you’d expect a modern art gallery to be: spacious, brooding and startlingly complex. With constantly-changing exhibitions and a commitment to provocation and inspiration, this incredible centre is a must-visit on your Tasmanian holiday.
Hobart’s green-shrouded crown, Mount Wellington towers above the city skyline like a brooding parent. This massive mountain is threaded with walking trails and bike tracks, so you won’t struggle to explore it. Its summit offers incredible views of Hobart and the surrounding landscape – make sure you get to the top!
First established in 1824, the Cascade Brewing Company is Australia’s oldest beer manufacturer, and you can explore their brewery (built in 1832) via guided tours that showcase brewing techniques and let you sample a variety of beers.
Freycinet National Park
It’s not as wild as the national parks in western Tasmania and it’s not quite as spectacular as Mount Wellington, but Freycinet National Park is still definitely worth a visit. With the jagged spine of the Hazards mountain range dominating the horizon, visitors can check out places like Freycinet Marine Farm and the Friendly Beaches.
The Drunken Admiral
Nautically-themed Hobart restaurant The Drunken Admiral is a staple of the Tasmanian food scene, and, if you enjoy seafood, this is one dining opportunity you simply can’t miss. With a playful, creative menu and heavy-hitting dishes like chargrilled eye fillet and the Sydney to Hobart Seafood Platter, it’s definitely a culinary highlight.
Australia's Hidden Gem #2: Shoal Bay
Nestled on the flank of Port Stephens, Shoal Bay encapsulates the charm of northern New South Wales’ beautiful coast. White sand, calm turquoise ocean and rugged green hills characterise this postcard-perfect location. Sprawling Tomaree National Park is a haven for hikers and photographers alike, while the bay itself is perfect for swimming, kayaking and paddle boarding. This gorgeous little destination might not have the international presence of places like the Gold Coast and Perth, but it’s definitely one of Australia’s top coastal getaways.
Shoal Bay Highlights
Shoal Bay’s biggest drawcard is its sheltered harbour. Bookended by two juts of headland, this beautiful stretch of water is protected from the aggressive breakers and dangerous rips that plague other coastal destinations. This makes it perfect for families – kids can splash in the water as the adults sunbake on the beach or enjoy a stand-up paddle boarding session.
One of the loveliest things about Shoal Bay is its unspoiled natural beauty. It’s quite common for seaside areas to be shrouded in a concrete jungle of high rises and luxe beachfront clubs, but you won’t find anything like that at Port Stephens. Wander between eucalypts and wattles, and see if you can spot any koalas feeding on swamp mahogany.
Proximity to Port Stephens
Shoal Bay is directly adjacent to the Port Stephens township, with its thriving eco-tourism industry and charmingly small population. Explore what Port Stephens has to offer, or range further afield to discover the region’s array of fascinating attractions.
If you’re looking to decompress or catch a break from the stress of inner-city living, Shoal Bay is an excellent holiday choice. You’ll rarely encounter traffic, and there’s something deeply soothing about the Bay’s tranquil atmosphere. It doesn’t matter whether you want to go hard and do loads of activities or just lounge in the sun – just being in Shoal Bay is enough to help you reset.
With daytime temperatures sitting at around 30°C during summer and 18°C during winter, Shoal Bay generally has pretty perfect weather, with its wettest months being April, June and November. Even if it starts to get a bit humid, a quick dip in the ocean is a great way to freshen up.
Shoal Bay Attractions
Tomaree National Park
Tomaree National Park is one of Shoal Bay’s most interesting attractions. The park’s rugged mountains plunge directly into the ocean, and visitors can explore it via a number of walking trails like the Tomaree Head Summit Walk. Keep your eyes open for kangaroos, whales and the area’s historic gun placements (built during WWII as part of Fort Tomaree).
Worimi Conservation Lands
Managed by the Worimi Traditional Owners, the Worimi Conservation Lands are a sprawling swathe of sand and bush. Explore the Southern Hemisphere’s largest mobile sand dunes, or go horse riding, 4x4 driving and fishing on the area’s broad beachfront.
Tomaree National Park is one of the best places for spotting whales and dolphins. From mid-May to early October, you’ll be able to spot southern right and humpback whales from the shore or on a guided cruise. Alternatively, over 140 bottlenose dolphins live permanently in the area – if you’re feeling adventurous, go swimming with them.
Club Wyndham Shoal Bay offers bike hire as part of its extensive facilities range, so make the most of it and go exploring on two wheels. There’s plenty of bike-friendly footpaths around Shoal Bay, and a day spent pedalling is a great way to bond as a family.
Relax around the resort
A coastal holiday wouldn’t be complete without a little time spend basking in the sun. Club Wyndham Shoal Bay offers a great line-up of on-site amenities to complement your holiday experience, including a 25-metre indoor heated pool (for when it’s raining/cold), three spas (for when you’ve just popped a bottle of bubbly) and a beachfront restaurant (for when you’re feeling hungry).
Australia's Hidden Gem #3: Ballarat
One of Australia’s most historically-significant cities, Ballarat might not be small, but it’s certainly overlooked by travellers. As the epicentre of the Victorian gold rush, it was the site of the Eureka Rebellion, an act of defiance by gold miners against British colonial rule, which sparked the birth of Australian democracy. Today, it still retains its proud, rebellious bush spirit, and visitors will be intrigued by the pockets of history scattered around its streets.
If you haven’t been to Club Wyndham Ballarat before, you’re going to be simultaneously amazed and enthralled by this 1878 heritage-listed mansion. Surrounded by manicured gardens, the unique atmosphere of Club Wyndham Ballarat recalls an earlier, slower time. With a host of amenities like a fitness centre, playground, indoor pool, tennis courts, spas and a sauna, it’s the perfect base for exploring Victoria’s heartland.
Ballarat’s history is definitely its biggest highlight. During the Victorian gold rush, it was transformed from a tiny outback community to one of the state’s largest towns, and this turbulent era shaped the town’s spirit for decades. Although its fortunes declined during the 20th century, it’s currently Australia’s third-largest inland town.
Undoubtedly Ballarat’s biggest attraction, Sovereign Hill is an incredible, multi-sensory experience that delves deep into the town’s gold-mining past. With a recreated gold-rush-era town, costumed actors and authentic craftspeople, as well as options like the Gold Museum and AURA, this is one thing you can’t pass up on your Ballarat holiday.
Ballarat Wildlife Park
Ballarat Wildlife Park is designed to showcase the best of Australia’s wildlife. With species like the spotted-tail quoll, the Tasmanian devil and the splendid tree frog, this is your chance to meet and learn about some of our nation’s most incredible animals. You can even see lethal predators like the inland taipan, the common death adder and the Mozambique spitting cobra.
A unique Ballarat attraction, Kryal Castle probably isn’t what most visitors would expect to find in an outback gold-mining town. This replica medieval castle is designed to transport you into a world of knights and dragons, wizards and maidens. Visit attractions like the Tournament Arena, the Jester’s Theatre and the Archery Range, or explore creepy sections like the Torture Museum and the Maze.
Black Hill Reserve
Bare minutes from the Ballarat CBD, Black Hill Reserve showcases remnants of the town’s goldfield era. Explore steep walking and biking trails, or peer down preserved shaft mines. Even if history doesn’t interest you, the reserve’s beautiful scenery is definitely worth a look.
This artificial lake (created when a wetland was dammed in 1851) is home to a huge variety of wildlife, like black swans, silver gulls, ducks, moorhens and more. This natural haven is girded by a footpath, which is perfect for cyclists, runners and hikers; alternatively, go kayaking or boating on the lake’s mirror-like waters.
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