The cost of holidaying in Australia.

With His Royal Highness’ FRACS exams finally over and Amanda’s school holidays less than two weeks away, we decided to negotiate the maze of options that is finding somewhere to holiday. We could stay home like we have for the past four years, but since we’re still in a celebratory mood…

Anyhow, last night, having downed our dinner of kimchee-flavoured instant noodles and microwave-steamed egg, we spent four hours toggling screens to find where we could go. His Royal Highness stumbled upon last¬†weekend’s post by the Sydney Morning Herald about the best of Australian travel¬†and for a moment, all we wanted to do was see the Mars-like surface of Mungo Lake in Southwestern New South Wales. That was until we caught sight of the pristine tranquility and escape for everyday-ness that is Lord Howe Island.

With so very many awesome places to choose from, our search came down to deciding on somewhere comfortable for this time of the year – hey, it’s winter – child-friendly and affordable; probably not the sexiest of holidays but one the whole family can enjoy.

We narrowed down our choice to skiing and went from reading up about places to searching for flights and accommodation. We were determined to introduce Amanda to the marvellous ski-fields in our own backyard. Well, the nearest one is over 1000 kilometres away, but no matter.

To our dismay, we found that since we’d left it so last minute, it’d cost at least $3k to get to and spend 3 nights at Falls Creeks and just a tad less, to holiday for the same duration in Mount Buller. To cut cost, we’d have to spend two days driving to our destination instead of flying then taking a coach, and stay in one of those loud, rowdy, youth hostels. I’m sorry folks, but we’re a bit too old for that. Plus, my only experience of staying in one gave me panda rings from the midnight street party and bottle-smashing competition other guests were having outside while I was trying to sleep. So no thanks.

High Royal Highness and I went back to the drawing board. Where could we go that was fun, safe, for families and affordable? The beaches are no good when it’s cold. Perhaps, we’re off to Goldie this weekend. How about New Zealand?

My, my, for two-thirds the price, we could have three times the holiday at Queenstown in New Zealand. Available accommodation is new, has picturesque views and is cheap. And there are other things to do besides skiing. Fantastic ! Now all we need to do is wait for His Royal Highness to get his leave approved.