Any advice?

Feb 27th, 2004, 08:29 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 4
Any advice?

My friend and I are headed to Australia January 8-26th. We are flying into Melbourne, staying 7 nights, then off to Sydney for 10. I would love some recommendations for hotels (looking for one with an outside pool) and some "family" things that might be fun.
Thanks!!
andrewa is offline  
Feb 27th, 2004, 10:32 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
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Hello Anrewa,

I don't know what you mean by "family" activities. Also, I'm not in a position to recommend hotels. Although I lived in Melbourne for 2.5 years, I've never stayed in a hotel there. I'll leave it to others to advise you on that. Downtown Melbourne has a lot to offer, but the countryside in all directions from Melbourne also has a great deal to offer, so I'm hard pressed to suggest an itinerary that will leave you much time for enjoying a pool. You may or may not agree with me but, for what they're worth, here are my ideas of neat things to do.

For downtown Melbourne sightseeing ideas, I recommend you look at Mrsfletcher's and Marg's suggestions in this thread:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...=andrewa&fid=3

If you want to see the little penguins at Phillip Island, I suggest you read my own recommendations in that thread. Being in Melbourne in January, you'll be dealing with the very factors we were dealing with when we saw the penguins between Christmas and New Year (late summer sunset exacerbated by Daylight Savings Time). This would be all the more reason to spend the night somewhere in the vicinity of Phillip Island, and then use that as a jumping off point to set out on the Great Ocean Road the next morning, if you want to do that.

Here's what I suggest:

1 Downtown and close-to-downtown areas of Melbourne without car

2 Same as Day 1

3 Rent car, visit Healesville Nature Sanctuary and a winery in the Yarra Valley. Overnight in or near the Dandenong Ranges, perhaps somewhere like Olinda.

4 William Ricketts Sanctuary in the morning. Puffing Billy train ride in the afternoon. Drive to Phillip Island in the late afternoon / early evening. See the penguins. Overnight in the vicinity of Phillip Island.

5, 6, 7 Great Ocean Road and Grampians. Suggest you don't go back into Melbourne. Consider spending your last night at a hotel near the airport, which is to the NW of Melbourne.

Here's a map that shows the Yarra Valley and the Dandenong Ranges east of Melbourne:

http://www.victoriaholidays.com/yarravalleymap.html

Over to Alan et al for Sydney recommendations.

Got to run. Hope you have a great vacation.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Feb 27th, 2004, 10:35 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Grrrrrr.

The thread with Mrsfletcher's, Marg's and my suggestions is:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...3&tid=34478265
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Feb 28th, 2004, 03:10 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 114
Andrewa, can't help you with outside pool in Melbourne as everywhere I have ever stayed at have inside pools. Arriving in Melb. mid January will give you a great choice of accom in the city or StKilda (near the beach) but Great Ocean road & Phillip Island may be a little harder.
What fun things do you wish to do ? What age group ?
AussieJo is offline  
Feb 29th, 2004, 03:36 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Hi, andrewa!

Outside pools at hotels are not my strong suit, either, but for some reason when I read your post I thought of the Holiday Inn at Coogee Beach (near Bondi, but Coogee is nicer). They may not have an outdoor pool, but with the beach just across the road and (if it's still there) Wylie's Baths (that's a swimming pool) just down the road, I don't think you'd be lacking in swimming facilities. You could also try any of the hotels at Manly -- I don't know if any one is better than any other, but I do know that they're all expensive (one chain has a hotel directly opposite Ocean Beach, but, as the services which the US chain hotels offer never interest me, I have never bothered to remember which "brand" -- maybe it's Four Seasons); however, you've got water whichever way you walk, and you can choose between the calm, shark-proof inner harbour or the rougher Ocean Beach, which faces the Pacific.
Alan is offline  
Mar 11th, 2004, 11:46 AM
  #6  
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Thanks for all of the wonderful advice everyone. I'm really looking forward to the visit, and I'm sure I'll be ready to come back as soon as I have to leave ;-)
andrewa is offline  
Mar 11th, 2004, 01:02 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 57


January in Sydney there are plenty of free concerts and events because it is festival month. January 26th is actually Australia Day and there is a lot of of great stuff, can you leave the 27th?

They have not posted yet the events for Australia Day 2005 but the website is

http://www.australiaday.gov.au/whats_on.asp

Also for whats on Festival 2005 the website is

http://www.sydneyfestival.org.au/corporate/default.asp

Accomodation would greatly depend on your budget and whethewr you want to be downtown or are willing to travel to the city. Manly is nice but it is a fair time on the ferry to get to the city.
DropBear is offline  

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