3 Long Weekend ideas on a budget

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There’s nothing like a long weekend to break up the repetitive rhythm of daily life. With one extra day off, suddenly you find yourself wanting to make the most of the time off and head out of town. A prospect that can be tricky on a budget.

Fear not, for the great weekend getaway is still possible without blowing the bank.

VIC – Follow the Great Ocean Road

Photo credit Getty/Manfred Gottschalk

The iconic Great Ocean Road drive is a must-do if you haven’t already. Stretching 400 kilometres, the road starts in Torquay, just over an hour and a half from Melbourne CBD, and wraps around the coast all the way to the SA border.

Surfers will be in for a treat at the famous Bells Beach, home to the Rip Curl Pro Surfing Competition. The granite spires of the Twelve Apostles are yet another wonder of nature you can see for free.

While there are plenty of options for reasonably priced accommodation along the Great Ocean Road, you can also try your hand at hiring a campervan. Bear in mind that you’ll need to book in at registered campsites each night, as parking your van or pitching a tent in beach reserves or other public land is illegal.

NSW – Central Coast

Photo credit Getty/Veni

If you fancy skipping the big smoke in Sydney, take a trip to the Central Coast, where the beaches are beautiful and atmosphere is laidback. Meander up the coastline, starting off at Patonga or Woy Woy and working your way up towards Lake Macquarie. If you aren’t convinced by Central Coast’s stunning shoreline, there are plenty of awe-inspiring walking tracks to discover, from the Great North Walk to the Somersby Walking Track just out of Gosford.

While you’re here, don’t forget to visit one of the great markets that the region is known for, such as the Gosford City Market for fresh produce or that next great find to bring back home.

QLD: Gold Coast

Photo credit Getty/Az Jackson

The Gold Coast, just south of Brisbane, summons up visions of glamour, but it doesn’t have to blow out the budget either – if you’re willing to find accommodation outside the city centre, you can uncover a few bargains, and the star attraction, the beach, is naturally free. While you’re here, you can break up the beach time with a wander into the lush Hinterlands on one of the city’s fantastic cycle tracks.

Away from Australia and missing the sounds of home? Check out our Australian homesick hotline.


TID is an Australian online travel insurance company.


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