Trading places: Amazing alternatives to the usual suspects

Skip the hustle of Byron Bay and head to Blueys Beach instead. Picture: File
Skip the hustle of Byron Bay and head to Blueys Beach instead. Picture: File

Swap the usual suspects for an equally great holiday destination.

Byron Bay? Try Blueys Beach

Less crowded and star-studded than Byron Bay, Blueys Beach also boasts kilometres of sea and sand, as well as views of Seal Rocks.

Framed by Booti Booti, Wallingat and Myall Lakes national parks, Blueys Beach has all the laid-back allure of its more famous big brother without all the influencers. Pop in to Blueys Yoga Studio to completely ground yourself with salt-air vibes.

Melbourne? See also: Canberra

Canberra is handy getaway.

Canberra is handy getaway.

After being locked away from the rest of the country, Australia's unofficial art capital will undoubtedly be overrun with tourists come summer.

If jam-packed Melbourne galleries aren't your idea of fun, see what Canberra has to offer. Pop in to the Burrunju Art Gallery, Canberra Glassworks or Canberra Contemporary Art Space. A recent addition is Tributary Projects - a space run by and for creatives in a range of artistic mediums.

The Daintree? Discover Litchfield National Park

Florence Falls in Litchfield National Park. Picture: Shutterstock

Florence Falls in Litchfield National Park. Picture: Shutterstock

Litchfield has all the waterholes and waterfalls of the Daintree but it's in the Northern Territory.

The monsoonal vine forests contrast with enormous termite mounds making for an outback getaway and tropical escape in one. There's some crystal-clear swimming spots (Wangi Waterfall and Buley Rockhole), as long as you do your research and keep an eye out for anything green and scaly.

Hunter Valley? Check out Orange

Vines as far as the eye can see at Orange. Picture: Shutterstock

Vines as far as the eye can see at Orange. Picture: Shutterstock

From vineyards-with-a-view to Australia's only carbon-neutral winery, the Orange wine scene is severely underrated.

As Australia's highest-altitude wine region Orange produces delicious cool-climate wines. Enjoy the small-country-town hospitality as you tour the vineyards. Be sure not to miss Mortimers, Bloodwood, Nashdale Lane and Patina. Stock up on local produce before you leave.

Hamilton Island? Try Fitzroy Island

Snorkelling at Nudey Beach on Fitzroy Island. Picture: Shutterstock

Snorkelling at Nudey Beach on Fitzroy Island. Picture: Shutterstock

Only accessible by ferry or your own boat, Fitzroy Island is smaller and more peaceful than bustling Hamilton Island.

Fitzroy is open to day-trippers and the one resort is affordable and family-friendly. Keep an eye out for birds and wildlife as you explore the island's peaks and beaches. The giant ocean trampoline provides hours of fun for children and secluded Nudey Beach is perfect for snorkelling.

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