Australia in focus for 2020
By Emily Warbrick
Sprinkle a little snow and magic into your family holiday – fall in love with a snow holiday.
Australia is a perfect destination for skiers & snowboarders alike – from first timers and families to anyone wanting to get in a ‘snow-fix’ as we really do not know what is going to happen with the borders and the Northern Hemisphere snow holiday. We, like you, are praying we can get to the Northern Hemisphere Ski Season, to get you back on the slopes, however we really don’t know – will we be flying by Dec? Will Japan and Canada be an option? It is a waiting game.
What I do know is what makes Australian resorts so special is that most are ski in ski out, taking the hassle out of travelling to the slopes every day. And that’s a biggie no matter who you’re travelling with. Wake up, have your moving coffee walk 100-200 metres if that and you are on the slopes. Some chalets even line the ski runs – now that’s convenient.
I wanted to share with you my love for Australian ski resorts and have summarised what they have to offer for your forward planning.
Perisher – There is a reason Perisher is part of the prestigious Vail Resorts. Located in the Snowy Mountains, no resort in Australia compares to its sheer size combining as it does, Perisher Valley, Smiggin Holes, Guthega and Blue Cow. In fact is the largest ski resort in the Southern Hemisphere; four times bigger than any other.
There are a wide range of accommodation and lodging options to choose from. You can stay on snow or ski in and out at Perisher or Smiggins and even ski between the two when the lifts are turning. If that’s not your thing, the small villages are connected by a free shuttle bus.
Breakfast and dinner are included in most packages and if you’re staying for 7+ nights, think about taking a day trip by oversnow to the nearby resort of Charlotte Pass. It is great fun for the whole family. And if you haven’t seen the snow at Charlotte Pass you ought to!
Be sure to ask our team about the Epic Passes. The North American Epic Pass offers you unlimited skiing in Perisher as well as Whistler and Vail – connecting all your holidays on the one ski pass. For $49 you can secure your Epic pass through Snowscene and we are also making this refundable under new COVID terms.
Thredbo – Located in the Snowy Mountains and surrounded by snow gums, Thredbo is unique in every sense of the word. It is an all year-round resort with a ‘town feel’. In Thredbo Village, locals’ welcome visitors like friends. Throughout the village, dining has a warm cosy feel after blue bird ski days on the mountain skiing amongst the gums. You can choose to stay in Thredbo Village or Friday Flat depending on the experience you are looking for. The learn to ski area at Friday Flat is an ideal location for families and beginners and a short stroll or free shuttle connects you to Thredbo Village.
Thredbo won ‘Best Australian Ski Resort’ at the 2019 world ski awards, celebrating excellence on and off the mountain. So after trying the longest ski runs in Australia, enjoy the pools, slides or rock-climbing walls at Thredbo’s Leisure Centre. This is an add on to your lift pass but a must do when in Thredbo.
Thredbo is a participant in the IKON pass and is a great combination with a Northern Hemisphere resort like Aspen and Steamboat. All this can be organised through Snowscene. What I love about IKON is you can ski Australia this season or next, you have great flexibility.
Mount Buller – Being only a three hour drive or coach transfer from Melbourne, Mount Buller is perfect for self-drive travellers or those flying into Melbourne. You will love skiing from the front door of your hotel or apartment or taking a short stroll into the European style village. Most properties include breakfast or are self-contained as Mount Buller is a gorgeous pedestrian only village with 40+ cafes and restaurants not to mention the bars and après scene. It is the only resort in the Southern Hemisphere with a ‘snow guarantee’ for the complete season – with their extensive snow making facilities. Non skiers of any age are well catered for with tobogganing, AirZone, and a cinema. It is also the only resort in Australia to offer dog sledding.
Mount Buller offers early bird packages up to 30% off including lift passes, lessons and ski school when booking as a package with participating accommodation. Mount Buller have a great COVID policy in place with participating properties so you will have peace of mind in booking until the borders open.
Falls Creek – This resort in north-eastern Victoria is beginner/intermediate-friendly with accommodation in the village and ski lifts at the top of the mountain. The lay out of Falls Creek is quite unique and has a wonderful walking village. You can ski from the top of the mountain all the way down to the village into your accommodation in most cases. What a way to end the ski day!
One of the best aspects of Falls Creek village is their dining experience and everything they have to offer to suit all ages from snow tubing, tobogganing, scenic helicopter tours, backcountry tours and snowmobile tours to the view the stunning alpine views.
Mt Beauty the base town of Falls Creek is true to it’s name a gorgeous country town at the base of the mountain and being the closest ski resort to Brisbane (fun fact!) perfect stop for those who are driving.
Mount Hotham – The slopes of Mount Hotham are high in the Victorian Alps of the Great Dividing Range. Hotham Alpine Resort is located on the slopes of Mount Hotham and adjoining mountains. Hotham is a mountain suitable for intermediate to advanced skiers. As it is only 5 hours outside of Melbourne, a car rental would be the best way to go.
Hotham and Falls Creek are on the same pass so ask our team about scenic helicopter rides to ski Hotham for a day even if you are based in Falls Creek village, this is a must do weather pending.
Australia’s leading ski resorts have plenty to please every snow enthusiast – the intrepid skier, the intermediate adventurer and the curious beginner. Let Snowscene’s snow experts arrange your ski holiday package in Australia – one that is perfectly tailored especially for you.