Whale-watching

5 Things To Do In Sydney In Winter

If you live in Sydney, you are very lucky. It is one of the most beautiful and exciting cities in the world and there is always something to do, but seemingly, more so during summer. With some of the most amazing beaches and the stunning harbour, Sydney has plenty to offer during the warmer months, but what about winter?

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If you’ve spent too much time curled up under a blanket in front of the TV lately, take some inspiration from the following list of things to do in Sydney in winter:

1. Bondi ice rink

You think Bondi is only good in summer? Put your ice skates on and change your mind! From June 20 to July 12, Bondi Pavilion will transform into a winter wonderland with its own ice rink. Enjoy the view on beautiful Bondi Beach while showing off your skills on the ice.

2. Art Gallery NSW

There’s nothing better than escaping a cold, rainy winter’s day and entering the magical world of a museum. The Art Gallery of NSW located in Sydne’s CBD offers over 30,000 artworks to inspire you and you don’t even have to spend a cent to see them. General admission to the museum is free!

3. Whale watching

If you’ve always wanted to see a whale but you don’t want to go on a whale watching cruise, then Sydney is the place to be in winter. Between May and November, thousands of whales are migrating and passing Sydney, so just keep an eye out! There are plenty of good vantage points; we especially like the many scenic lookouts around Watsons Bay.

4. Hire an igloo

Want the ultimate winter feeling? Gather your friends and hire an igloo as part of Sydney’s Winter Garden Festival. Ok, so the igloos aren’t made of ice, they’re inflatable. That doesn’t make it less fun, though!

5. Explore the Blue Mountains

Yes, you’ll need a warm jacket, but hiking in the Blue Mountains is a beautiful winter activity as the crisp winter air makes for an even more spectacular scenery than in summer. And if you’re lucky, you might even see a bit of snow falling from the sky!

Image via firstdegreepr.com

June 20, 2015

Whale-Watching Sites Around Australia

It’s a truly amazing spectacle to see and hear the whales which migrate around the coast of Australia in cooler months. It’s a great free activity for all nature lovers. Some areas are better than others, so we’ve put together a list of the best places in each state or territory to take a peek.

Northern Territory

Spotting whales in our beautiful top end can be tricky. It’s often more miss than hit. In May 2014, False Killer Whales were viewed in shallow water around Garig Gunak Barlu National Park, north-east of Darwin. This was unusual, as these creatures are usually found in much deeper waters. If you are looking for whales in NT waters, check recent reports.

Queensland

There are a number of places to do some whale watching in QLD. The following list includes locations and the peak season:

  • Gold Coast – May to November
  • Hervey Bay – July to November
  • Brisbane – June to October
  • Sunshine Coast – June to October
  • Cairns – July to September
  • Whitsundays – May to September
  • Great Barrier Reef – March to October

New South Wales

NSW has multiple locations. The following list has been compiled as a guide, based on peak season times, May to November, with the exception of August:

  • Port Stephens
  • Jervis Bay
  • Coffs Harbour
  • Nelsons Bay

September to November:

  • Merimbula
  • Eden

June to November, excluding August:

  • Port Macquarie

June to November:

  • Byron Bay

June to October:

  • Tweed Heads

Victoria

By far the most popular whale watching area in Victoria is Warnambool. Peak season is from June to September when Southern Right Whales make the annual migration to give birth to their young, along the sheltered coast. Some people have been lucky enough to spot the whales else where around the state, but these sightings are fairly rare.

Tasmania

Tassy isn’t a prime whale watching location, however Bruny Island is known for annual sightings. They pass by during May to July and again during September and December. Once there, some whales congregate for up to five weeks. Humpbacks and Southern Right Whales are regular visitors, while Pygmy Right Whales, Minke Whales and Orca’s or Killer Whales can be seen as they migrating along the coast.

South Australia

SA has two prime locations, where whales are guaranteed to visit each year. From May to October, Southern Right Whales can be witnessed frolicking, mating, calving and nursing their young. The head of the bight, apparently has the best views, as whales are often viewed as close as 100 metres off the shore.

The second region is along the coastline from Victor Harbour to Goolwa Beach. Middleton, which is located in the middle, is a quaint surfing cove where commuters often view the whales whilst driving past. Once again Southern Right Whales dominate the area. July or August is the peak time, however you might snag you a peak during cooler months.

Western Australia

Albany and Broome are the hot spots around WA. Between June and November Humpback Whales are spotted as they migrate north-west to Broome, while Southern Right Whales migrating from Antarctica are know to visit Albany’s southern bays to mate and give birth.

Image via legendcharters.net.au

By Kim Chartres

August 9, 2014