9 REALLY Good Reasons You Should Spend This Winter in Australia

Planning a backpacking trip to Australia can be a big endeavor. Despite reading a guidebook from cover to cover, there are some things you just won’t find out until you’re actually on the ground. These are the 14 things I wish I knew before traveling to Australia.

Because let’s be honest: it’s just too damn cold in the Northern Hemisphere.


It's Summer!

Miserable in New York
Miserable in New York. Photo credit: Dan Nguyen

When this is happening in America…

This is happening in Australia.

Having fun with some ladies
Having fun with some ladies!

Winter in the northern hemisphere means it’s summer in the southern hemisphere. Every city and beach in Australia becomes a buzzing and vibrant hotspot for both travelers and locals, making it the perfect port of call for just about anybody who’s looking to escape the cold.


Christmas on the Beach

Christmas on the Beach

You could be wearing santa hats and drinking beer on the beach. Every year, all the major beaches in Australia (like Bondi and St. Kilda) fill up with Aussies and travelers alike, celebrating Christmas by wearing santa suits, swimming in the ocean, playing volleyball and drinking beer! Not a bad way to spend a day in December, whether you celebrate Christmas or not!


New Years Eve in Sydney

New Year's Eve in Sydney
New Year's Eve celebrations in Sydney

The most spectacular New Years Eve party in the world? It happens in Sydney. Every year, Sydney’s bridge, harbor and skies become illuminated by air shows, water shows, light shows and fireworks! It is truly one of the most stunning visual exhibitions in the world.


Scuba Diving on the Great Barrier Reef

Scuba diving in Australia
Scuba diving in Honduras in August.

During Australia’s summer, the water temperature goes up and the visibility increases, making the months of November to February the absolute best time to go scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef.


Movies in the Moonlight

Ben & Jerry's Openair Cinema in Adelaide
Ben & Jerry's Openair Cinema in Adelaide.

You, a cute sidekick and a bottle of wine watching a movie under the stars. Brisbane, Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra and Perth all have Openair Cinemas. Just lay out a blanket and watch movies on an open air screen once the sun goes down.


Dirt-Biking in the Wilderness

Dirtbiking in Cape York
Dirtbiking in Cape York.

Far North Queensland has almost every type of terrain imaginable and is the perfect destination for adventure sports like four-wheeling and dirt biking. Just north of Cairns, Cape York is the best spot to rev up and let loose in some thick red mud or a dense jungle!


Music Festivals

Stereosonic. Photo credit: Ryan Polei

Get your groove on! This season brings about some of the best music festivals in Australia, and even the world. No matter what kind of music you’re into (but let’s the honest, electronic festivals are the best!), Australia has it.


Make Friends

Friends on Fraser Islans
Friends on Fraser Islans.

If you’re searching for a great vibe and you want to meet other travelers, this is the time! Summer in Australia is the most popular time to visit, so be sure to book your budget accommodation with YHA Australia well in advance!

And last but not least…


Because Why Not?

Three Days on the Great Ocean Road

With the ease of acquiring a working/holiday visa, traveling to Australia is almost hard to say no to. Especially given the option to work while you’re there, if you want to take an extended vacation, there’s really nothing stopping you!

About the Author

Jeremy Scott Foster

Jeremy Scott Foster is an adventure-junkie, gear expert and travel photographer based in Southern California. Previously nomadic, he’s been to ~50 countries and loves spending time outdoors. You can usually find him on the trail, on the road, jumping from bridges or hustling on his laptop working to produce the best travel and outdoors content today.
  1. Great Jeremy, I was sold already between this is happening and that! I have actually spent one winter in New Zealand and Australia a few years ago and I have to say, I didn’t miss the cold weather at all. Only Christmas at the beach is something I can’t quite get used to, but maybe I just have to try again… 🙂

  2. *sigh* yes please 🙂 Could definitely use some of that sun — haven’t seen a single RAY of sun here in Munich for three, going on four weeks. But I really shouldn’t complain because just before that I spent two weeks in sunny, sunny Thailand 😀

  3. Jeremy!

    We are SO missing the Southern Hemisphere now! 1 month ago we were in Sydney for a day, flying from Fiji to Bali. The weather was amazing….so much warmer than when we stopped there in June, when it was cold, and almost wintry. Missing it, missing it, missing it…..and yes, I’m in chilly NYC right now as a storm makes its way here lol.

    Aussie-land is awesome and that region in general is awesome. Can’t wait to get back.

    Thanks Jeremy 🙂


  4. Gah! Summer in Australia looks SO much better than here in New York (ugh horrible) – I need to get myself on a plane right now!

  5. Why would you want to spend Christmas in Australia when you could be living it up in the freezing cold in London, struggling through the hordes of shoppers? OK I’m joking, sounds amazing!

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

  6. All great reasons to go, especially the last one! Always interesting to experience a holiday abroad. Thanks for sharing!

  7. We traveled to Australia and the South Pacific last February from Canada. Was absolutely amazing! Can’t wait to return and I agree, a great country to spend the winter in!

  8. Hi, Jeremy, I would like to spend more time in Sydney this year, I was living there a bit, a couple years ago!! That’s a great city!!

    Greetings from Spain!!

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