WINTER SCHOOL HOLIDAYS DURING COVID - WHAT'S OPEN FOR KIDS?by GREAT OCEAN ROAD
Planning for the winter school holidays usually means thinking how to keep the kids happy and moving, while at the same time keeping warm and dry. These winter school holidays it is a little different because now we need to plan ahead and think about what’s open during this time.
Most things have opened back up and are welcoming your visit, we do recommend that you get in touch directly and book a spot just to make sure you don’t miss out though.
To make life a little easier, we have put a list together with just a few of the many things to do during these winter holidays around the Great Ocean Road with kids that are open for business. Even if there are some COVID restrictions in place, you’ll still be able to enjoy your time here, to relax, while still being able to run the kids around safely!
Climb a lighthouse in Aireys Inlet and Cape Otway
Lighthouse tours are back open! Lighthouses have a unique and interesting history and not to mention provide a stunning view from the top. The kids will love trying to spot a whale from the up there too, it’s a perfect vantage point. We recommend the iconic Split Point Lighthouse Tours at Aireys Inlet or Cape Otway Lighthouse Tours. Be sure to book online or call ahead.
Get active amongst the treetops in Lorne, Yeodene and Beech Forest
The kids will be excited to know that Live Wire Park in Lorne, Otway Fly Treetop Adventures in Beech Forest and Trees Adventure - Yeodene Park are all open these school holidays (with new measures in place to ensure your families health). Everyone in the family can get active amongst the trees; get your adrenaline pumping with zip lines, or if a leisurely stroll is more your thing, you can opt for a breathtaking treetop walk. It’s easy to spend half a day or more at either of these spots - or for the active adventurer, try all three! They are stacks of fun and you’ll definitely feel like you’ve earned yourself a break afterwards. Make sure to call ahead and book in a spot for your family so you don’t miss out.
Planet Mud in Yeodene is as fun as it sounds
After your treetop adventures, make the most of it, stick around and check out Planet Mud in Yeodene for paintball games, globeriding and nature segway® adventures! Paintball can get pretty crazy at times, but don't worry, Planet Mud has the younger ones covered with 'Young Gunz' - the fun, safe way for anyone under 16 to enjoy paintball without the heavy impact (kids must be 10 or above). You can hire all the gear when you're there and parents, if it's time for a break, there's a designated (and paintball free) zone you can watch from while the kids run amok. Now, what is 'globeriding' we hear you ask? Planet Mud's globe is an 11 foot high inflatable transparent sphere which you can ride inside - definitely a fun way to roll!
Get up close with wildlife in Princetown
While the adults in the family are awestruck by the sweeping cliffs, wild ocean and limestone stacks that the Great Ocean Road is most famous for, the little ones are usually more excited by the prospect of meeting one of our furry native friends. The Great Ocean Road Wildlife Park is only 10 minutes away from the 12 Apostles in Princetown and is sure to delight every member of the family. Get up close with wallabies, wombats, kangaroos and learn all about dingoes with their guided dingo encounter. Your kids can even feed and pat their pet alpacas!
See the Great Ocean Road from the sky in Apollo Bay or Port Campbell
If getting up in the clouds is more your thing, why not tick something off the bucket list and take a once in a lifetime helicopter tour above the Great Ocean Road with 12 Apostles Helicopters or Apollo Bay Aviation. These tours will leave you awestruck at the spectacular views, and during the winter, you may even spot a whale from up there!
Grab lunch at a café and be a local
After your exciting morning activities, it’s nice to sit down, relax, grab something to eat and catch up with the family on everyone's favourite parts of the day so far. Most of the cafes and restaurants along the Great Ocean Road are open and welcoming your visit. They have gone to every effort to make sure you're family stays safe, so you can grab yourselves a table and enjoy a meal. With social distancing in place, the number of people allowed to dine-in has reduced, so we recommend you get in touch directly or online, just to make sure your kids don't miss out on that burger they've been looking forward to all morning!
There is something for any craving, whether it’s delicious homemade baked goods and warm salads at Ginger Monkey Café in Torquay, the classic chicken and chips at the iconic Jums Chicken Anglesea, a gourmet jaffle and coffee from HAH Lornebeach, a good old bakery pie from Little Crumb Bakery in Apollo Bay or even a sneaky icecream at The Timboon Ice Creamery (yes, even when it's a little chilly, here are 4 creative ways you can enjoy ice cream in winter!). Most places have seating restrictions in place to ensure your family can dine in and be safe, so if you’re planning on stopping in for a sit-down meal, it’s best to call ahead. If you’re just stopping in for a coffee and some food to-go, it’s easy to grab a takeaway just about anywhere – don't forget your reusable cups!
Enjoy some winter bliss in Warrnambool
The Sanctuary at Deep Blue Hot Springs in Warrnambool is open and welcoming the whole family, kids included. If your family could use some chill out time, this is the place to be - just think slowing down, warmth and relaxation. Kids from 5 years old are welcome to come and rejuvenate during the new morning and afternoon sessions, with family passes available for 2 adults and 2 kids to make life easier. If you've got teens in tow, the twilight sessions are now welcoming teens from 16 years and up. Make sure you pop into their Nourish Dome after your session too, a beautiful, warm space to enjoy a wholesome meal from their new menu. Make sure to call ahead or book online to reserve your Sanctuary spot.
We would love to see you again and we so look forward to seeing your families' smiling faces. We do recommend you call ahead before your designated stops though, just to make sure you can secure yourself a spot, whether that be at a café table, a spot on a tour or where you are staying for the night, otherwise takeaways are easy to come by just about everywhere now! Everyone is welcoming your visit with open arms, we just need to do a little extra planning than usual during this time and we are grateful for your understanding and support. We can’t wait to see you soon!