Australia with Toddlers - Itinerary Advice

Old Nov 10, 17, 7:14 pm
  #16  
 
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To be honest I would skip Brisbane. Depending on when you arrive, just take a train to Gold Coast immediately, or just do 1 night there to revive. I know it might sound like a slog but it is important to stay active during the day upon arrival anyway.

Stay a few nights in GC, and take a bus/shuttle to Byron Bay for 4-5 nights. There are shuttles from Byron Bay to OOL. A much better option (IMO) than Brisbane and a very different vibe than Gold Coast.
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Old Nov 10, 17, 7:32 pm
  #17  
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What do you plan to do in Brisbane?
Guess flying on Air Canada, so arrives about 09:00 (on current timetable)
The difference in time (by train) from BNE to city or the Gold Coast is not a lot considering the flight time YVR to BNE.

Originally Posted by CPMaverick View Post
To be honest I would skip Brisbane. Depending on when you arrive, just take a train to Gold Coast immediately, or just do 1 night there to revive.
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Old Nov 16, 17, 1:44 pm
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Originally Posted by Mwenenzi View Post
What do you plan to do in Brisbane?
Guess flying on Air Canada, so arrives about 09:00 (on current timetable)
The difference in time (by train) from BNE to city or the Gold Coast is not a lot considering the flight time YVR to BNE.
Only plan for Brisbane is general sightseeing. As to specifics, I haven't gotten that far yet

We figured it would be easy to get off the plane and just go right to a hotel (we will have 5 and 2 year olds with us, so the thinking was we'd maybe let them have a post-flight afternoon nap).

I'm sure we won't see much beyond the area around the Marriott on day 1, but days 2 and 3 we were planning on just exploring the city a bit before moving on to Gold Coast.
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Old Nov 16, 17, 2:05 pm
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Originally Posted by heraclitus View Post
Only plan for Brisbane is general sightseeing. As to specifics, I haven't gotten that far yet

We figured it would be easy to get off the plane and just go right to a hotel (we will have 5 and 2 year olds with us, so the thinking was we'd maybe let them have a post-flight afternoon nap).

I'm sure we won't see much beyond the area around the Marriott on day 1, but days 2 and 3 we were planning on just exploring the city a bit before moving on to Gold Coast.
Will not be a lot to see in Brisbane on day 2 & 3, or day 1 for that matter.

Oz Fest 13 was held on the Gold Coast.
Among other activates they went to https://currumbinsanctuary.com.au/. Link to post 501 photos

Originally Posted by JClasstraveller View Post
Taxi with toddlers is a real hassle as they will need car seats.
With the Gold Coast, a car is handy as some of the theme parks are a drive from the beach.
It will also not be that warm in August on the Gold Coast so a car is helpful to get to attractions not at the beach.
Assume that at some time they will be in a car (taxi or rental) so will have this a problem.
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Old Nov 17, 17, 5:11 pm
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I'm not a Brisbane local, but I have been there several times... I think you can explore the city in about 1/2 day honestly. And I'm not sure it is worth the effort.

Go ahead and research what you would like to do in Brisbane (I don't have kids, so you might find heaps more relevant to you). But I'd say again I think you'd be better off going straight to Gold Coast...
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Old Nov 20, 17, 12:52 pm
  #21  
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Thanks for your advice, everyone. Based on the comments above, I will reconsider our plans for the 3 nights in Brisbane and 5 at Gold Coast.

I'll look into the suggestion of @CPMaverick to go to Gold Coast first and then on to Byron Bay before heading off to Sydney... logistics will factor into our decision as we have to consider toting around two very young children right off a TPAC flight.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 10:04 am
  #22  
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Just circling back here to relay my experiences on this trip. Bear in mind this was a trip taken with a 5 year old and a 2 year old, so that was a major factor in all our planning decisions.

-Generally the itinerary of 3 days BNE, 5 days OOL, 6 days SYD was pretty good. From a kid perspective, OOL was hands down the greatest destination. Beaches, theme parks, resort, etc. was spot on from their standpoint.

-I'm glad we did 3 days in BNE to start. I think some people were a little hard on BNE and the perceived lack of things to do there, we had a great 3 days there bearing in mind that we lost some time due to the jetlag factor. Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary was a highlight of our trip, and the Southbank area was a real pleasure to explore.

-The new W Hotel there is obviously not aimed at kids but it's still a great place to stay. The pool area is fantastic and the location is perfect.

-Gold Coast is like the best parts of Florida but without the hassles (traffic, crowds, almost exploitative tourist-trap vibe and overall concrete jungle feeling). It was a wonderful place and we could have easily spent another 5 days there. When travelling with kids they just want to run around and play and Gold Coast delivers that in spades. The beaches are gorgeous there, and the Marriott Vacation Club was perfect for a family stay. The sandy lagoon there was one of the best hotel pools I've used. Also being the winter, there was hardly anyone there on weekdays. And Dreamworld was a blast, I went from never having heard of Bananas in Pyjamas to my toddler asking to watch them all the time.

-A car is a must in Gold Coast. I'm glad I rented one in BNE and kept it for the duration of my stay there.

-SYD is a great city with so much to explore. But even there one of the real highlights was the beach... a day at Manly Beach was a lot of fun and the kids loved it. We did what we could with the "grownup attractions" such as museums and the like, but you can only do so much with kids in tow. 6 days was good given that reality.

-The Westin in SYD was very well situated for family exploration. To be honest we probably would have been better off being a bit closer to Circular Quay or Darling Harbour, but Martin Place was still within easy walking distance to a lot of things.

Anyway, we had such a good time that we're mulling over a return trip, possibly in the Australian summer. Melbourne would be the only certainty... the rest we'd need to figure out.

Thanks for all your help planning this memorable trip!
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Old Sep 5, 18, 6:02 pm
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So glad you had such a great time. Definitely recommend a summer return trip! Melbourne, yes, but don't miss Tasmania. MONA, Freycinet, Hobart, Cradle Mountain - there is so much to explore. You and the kids will love it!
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Old Sep 7, 18, 4:16 am
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Thanks for the detailed post trip points, heraclitus. It's always good when people post about their trip. The GC is definitely great with young kids.

Originally Posted by secondsoprano View Post
So glad you had such a great time. Definitely recommend a summer return trip! Melbourne, yes, but don't miss Tasmania. MONA, Freycinet, Hobart, Cradle Mountain - there is so much to explore. You and the kids will love it!
Someone once commented that Tassie isn't great with kids and when you think about it that's kind of true. There's about one week/year that is "beach weather" and there's not much else going on for kids. I love Tasmania though, great place.
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