The holiday season is coming up and it’s a great opportunity to get away from it all. But if you haven’t got anything booked yet, don’t panic!

Getting away doesn’t necessarily have to mean a flight to an extravagant holiday destination, or blowing the family budget on a trip overseas. We’re fortunate to live in a beautiful country with many wallet-friendly options right in our own backyard.

Here’s our guide to last-minute travel you can fit in this season without breaking the bank.

Road Trips

What could be better than piling your friends and family into the wagon with a cooler full of cold drinks and a playlist packed with sing-a-long classics? Road trips are a great way to get to know each other all over again, reminisce about old adventures and have some new ones too.

But where should you drive to? If you need a point of interest to aim for, why not check out one of Australia’s many ‘big things’? According to Wiki Travel’s free travel guide, there were 150 to see, with New South Wales and Queensland being particularly well represented. Our favourite is the classic Big Banana.

How many can you tick off in one trip?


A few nights under canvas is a great way to get back to basics and forget about the stresses of modern life. Leave your laptop at home, turn your phone to airplane mode for a while and enjoy a digital detox.

Plus, camping is a great way for kids of all ages to learn new skills, from pitching a tent to purifying water. While every state has many great camping spots, here are our picks without venturing too far off the beaten track:

  • New South Wales - South West Rocks

  • Victoria - Port Fairy

  • Queensland - Lake Moogerah

  • South Australia - Angorichina

  • Western Australia - Kununurra

  • Northern Territory - Ormiston Gorge

  • Tasmania - Fortescue Bay

Be a tourist in your own town

Sometimes it takes an out-of-town visitor coming to stay to make you actually visit tourist attractions that other people travel thousands of miles to see. But you don’t have to wait for someone to visit to visit your local tourist sites. Taking the time to be a tourist in your own town is a great way to look at it with fresh eyes and get a renewed love for it.

Think you’ve seen everything your town has to offer? Just google search ‘unusual tourist attractions near me’ and you’ll be sure to find some lesser-known and quirky activities to keep you entertained.

Local tours

Taking an organised tour is a great way to plug-in to local expert knowledge and learn more about your local area. There are a range of tours available to fit any interest, and they can also be a great way to try something new too:

  • Eco-tours - visit pristine and relatively undisturbed natural areas, often away from the usual tourist trails.

  • Photography tours - improve your photography skills while being shown some of the most visually interesting parts of your town.

  • Foodie tours - learn more about your local food and beverage scene, sometimes including hands-on workshops.

  • Ghost tours - find out about the haunted history of your town - always a favourite with kids!

  • Bus tours - a surprisingly great way to get a well-rounded overview of any area.

Before you embark on any local tours, it can be a good idea to go to your local tourism office to find out what’s available and see if a city tourism pass is offered. These cards often allow you to see a wide range of local attractions for free or reduced prices and can be your way to see your local sites on a budget. They aren’t just for out-of-town tourists!

Wherever you live in Australia, there is plenty of last-minute, budget-friendly family fun to be had! And while going abroad to experience other countries and cultures is great, you can enjoy just as much of a holiday experience by making the most of your home territory. Have fun!


Qudos Mutual Limited trading as Qudos Bank ABN 53 087 650 557 AFSL/Australian Credit Licence 238 305. The information in this article is of a general nature and has been prepared without considering your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on the information, consider its appropriateness to your circumstances.