JC Travels: A warm Australian Christmas – the Itinerary
I’ve been yapping on about my Australian holiday for ages now, so I thought a post was in order to actually let you know what the plan is. This is going to be my first hot Christmas in ageeees, and as the theme for this months travel link up was all things festive, I thought this would fit in quite nicely. When I was growing up, we would do every second Christmas in England, the rest in New Zealand. English Christmas’ were always quite the traditional affair, in grey Manchester, full of twinkling Christmas lights, lots of big meals and seeing all the family.
My New Zealand Christmas in contrast were very different! It’s usually the middle of summer and pretty warm, we’d spend the run up to Christmas spending a lot of time by the waterfront and going for long walks. As it was often only the 4 of us for Christmas, we would often have Christmas dinner out at a restaurant – as my mum is a vegetarian, there was just no point in cooking any big bits of meat for three of us. After my sister moved back to the UK and my parents moved to Australia, sometimes it would just be three of us and we’d often go out for a fancy meal before coming home and falling asleep in the front of the TV.
I love both of my Christmas experiences equally, I love mixing it up and doing different things from one Christmas to the next. That said, I’ve had 3 Christmas’ in a row around the UK, so I thought it was about time to mix it up and have a warm one for once! Though with the flight prices, I don’t see us doing another one any time soon, I’m all for flying off season now!! Anyway, onto the trip.
1st Stop – Jakarta
Our first stop, albeit not on purpose, is Jakarta. We are flying via Indonesia and as the airlines decided to move their flights, it ended up with us having 36 hours in the city, landing at 5pm then heading off on the second leg at midnight the next day. Although it annoyed me at first, it will be nice to break up the flight and hopefully it will help with my jetlag too. We’ve booked a fancy shmancy room at the Shangri La, mainly as you can get a 5* room for the price of a 3* from anywhere in Europe! It has a heap of restaurants and a big pool / spa. Paul is planning on going out exploring but I have a slight feeling I may just end up spending my day lounging by the pool and getting a lot of sleep!
2nd Stop – Canberra
Whilst we land in Sydney on Friday morning, we will then go straight to Canberra for the weekend. My parents live in Canberra and this weekend will mainly be lounging by the pool, seeing the cats and enjoying the sunshine. It always takes me a few days to get over my jetlag so these are the perfect lazy days.
3rd Stop – Sydney
We then pop back to Sydney – it’s only a 3 hour drive to meet up with my lovely New Zealand besties! The 4 of them are coming over and I’m SO EXCITED! We haven’t all been together since my 21st birthday which was a fair few years ago now. We have a big air Bnb and 3 days to explore Sydney together. It’s going to be epic. I’m not sure what I want to do in Sydney as I have been a fair few times now, but I’m looking forward to going back, especially as I can now blog about it after for the first time!
4th Stop – Canberra
Then right back to Canberra! This time for a few days and to actually have Christmas! My bestie and her husband are coming with too, so it will be 6 of us. I’m looking forward to spending some quality time with my family and friends. We have a fancy meal planned and I’ve promised my dad we will play a game of poker. It used to be a bit of a family tradition to play poker over Christmas and new year whilst we were all together, but we haven’t really done it for the last few years. Since moving here, dad has rediscovered his love for poker. Mum says he’s obsessed with playing on Casinochan au at the moment. So I think it’s only fair to give him a game and see if playing online has brushed up his technique! I will have a few days to show Paul the sights of Canberran too. It is a small city but there are still quite a few things to do – mainly lots of walking in the outback and maybe even a tour of the Australian parliament if we get lucky with the dates.
5th Stop – Byron Bay
After Christmas is done, it’s time for the next holiday to begin! We are heading off with my parents on the big long drive to Byron Bay, stopping off in the middle for a break. We are in Byron for 5 nights at a really lovely villa, it’s an area I’ve not been to before so I look forward to exploring the surrounding area. We are there for New Years too so I bet that will be awesome. If you have any recommendations for that area in Australia, please do let me know!
6th Stop – Brisbane
Our final stop is Brisbane for a couple of nights before we fly back out from here home. I have been to Brisbane but it was when I was very young, so looking forward to going back. Like Byron, if you have any recommendations for me to try while I’m there, please do let me know. We then fly out from Brisbane via Singapore – this time without a layover all the way home. Luckily, I then have 3 days to recover before going back to work!
Phew, it does sound like a busy itinerary, but honestly, it’s 3 and a half weeks and I think the majority of that are going to be lazy days reading my book in the sun by the pool – just what I need! Now I just need to get through my last exam and a bit more work before heading off!
What have you got planned for Christmas?