The NSW winter school holidays are just around the corner, and most parents want to find activities to keep the kids entertained, and save themselves from going stir crazy.
With two weeks away from school and routine, now is the perfect time to plan some fun. We’ve hunted down the best ways to keep the kids entertained, without breaking the bank.
1. Hit The Ice at Sydney’s Winter Wonderland
School holidays in the middle of winter can be cold - very cold. Rather than rack up a huge energy bill heating the house, why not rug up, head out, and hit the ice? Winter Wonderland is located in the centre of Sydney, right next to the famous St Mary’s Cathedral. This frosty fair features an open-air ice skating rink, suitable for all ages. For those a little less steady on their feet, try tobogganing down purpose-built ice slopes. New this year is the real snow Powder Pits. It’s perfect for building snowmen, making snow angels, and, inevitably, snowball fights. As the kids perfect their skating skills, mum and dad can watch on, armed with tasty treats and warming drinks from the European-style food markets.
2. Find a Furry Friend Featherdale Wildlife Park
Going to the zoo is a classic school holidays activity. But to make your family’s visit even more memorable, it’s best to get up close and personal with your favourite animals. Featherdale Wildlife Park is Sydney's ultimate hands-on wildlife experience. The park allows you to view and interact with over 1,700 creatures, big and small. At no extra cost, the kids can cuddle up to a Koala, hand-feed a Kangaroo and run around with Emus. Enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of one of Australia's best collections of native species.
3. Bounce off the walls at Sydney Sky Zone
School holidays can result in a build-up of cabin fever and bored kids can be quite the burden! An easy solution - head to the world’s first trampoline park, Sky Zone Alexandria. The centre boasts over 100 interconnected trampolines, letting kids literally bounce off the walls. They’ll be able to practice flips and tricks safely, knowing that cushioning their landings are giant soft mats. Once they’re done with jumping, they can head to Sky Climb - an indoor climbing arena. It’s safe, active fun for all ages.
4. Whip Up a Storm at a Kids Cooking Class
Thanks to the popularity of cooking shows, rise of celebrity chefs and abundance of great produce, it seems that Australians have an insatiable appetite for cooking. And it’s not just adults - kids love cooking too. For something different these school holidays, why not take the kids to a cooking class. There are a number of different specialty schools, each lead by professional (and patient) chefs. Classes will be tailored to different age groups. Whether it’s learning the basics of baking or making the perfect pasta from scratch, the casual, fun classes ensure kids learn plenty of skills to show off at home. You never know - you could be raising the next Nigella!
5. Ditch the Car and Go Horse Riding
Looking for a way to harness your kids’ pent-up energy? Saddle up and take them horse riding. There are several equestrian centres in Sydney, and all feature school holiday programs. The instructors go above and beyond to make sure their well-trained horses are suitable for children of all ages, abilities and confidence levels. School holiday horse riding camps teach skills both on and off the horses. Kids will learn to groom, saddle and interact with their horse. Qualified and experienced staff make sure everyone has a great time. It’s a fantastic activity, perfect for getting your kids away from the couch, and riding off into the great outdoors.
EXTRA TIPS FOR PARENTS
• Subscribe to daily deals sites like Scoopon Scoopon, to be in the loop on great bargains and discounts for activities and restaurants in Sydney. School holiday fun can be exxy when all the costs of going out starts to accumulate.
• Always pack snacks and water bottles when heading out on a day trip adventure. This is a great way to keep kids away from fast food options – it’s also purse friendly too.
• If household chores and life admin has piled up, seek out a helping hand via Airtasker Airtasker so you can spend some quality time with your children during the break.