Get dad on the move

From hik­ing to cruises, there’s some­thing for ev­ery in­ner trav­eller

Life & Style Weekend - - ESCAPE - with Ann Rickard

IN­STEAD of giv­ing dad some­thing ex­pected on Fa­ther’s Day – the usual socks or tie – you could think out­side the box and give him the gift of travel. The sim­plest form of travel gift is to take dad to lunch, down the road or out of town.

A Bris­bane city lunch, and there are myr­iad places to choose from, could also in­clude a visit to the Queens­land Mu­seum where Gla­di­a­tors: He­roes of the Colos­seum is on show.

The ex­hi­bi­tion fea­tures more than 100 orig­i­nal arte­facts in­clud­ing pieces of the Colos­seum.

If you are up to go­ing fur­ther afield, or­gan­ise a spring mini-break for dad.

With the Gold Coast, Sun­shine Coast and By­ron Bay all eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble and brim­ming with ac­com­mo­da­tion op­tions and leisure ac­tiv­i­ties, a week­end es­cape is just a mat­ter of plan­ning around his likes.

Or how about a hike? The next few months are the per­fect time for hik­ing, be­fore the heat and hu­mid­ity set in.

Queens­land abounds with beau­ti­ful na­tional parks, but if you want the ul­ti­mate hik­ing ex­pe­ri­ence it should be Cra­dle Moun­tain in Tas­ma­nia.

The Cra­dle Moun­tain Over­land Track is renowned for be­ing Aus­tralia’s most fa­mous bush hike with its pris­tine en­vi­ron­ment and nat­u­ral beauty.

A cruise voucher is an­other great gift idea. Watch out for the cruise sales – all the big com­pa­nies have them – and pick up a bar­gain. South Pa­cific cruises are easy, and a seven-night get­away could feel like a month-long hol­i­day if dad gets into all the on-board ac­tiv­i­ties. And you get to go – al­ways a bonus.

Closer to home, a half- or full-day fish­ing cruise would make a de­light­ful gift.

There are plenty of com­pa­nies who would take dad fish­ing, whale-watch­ing or just sail­ing.

A win­ery tour is an­other idea for a gift with a dif­fer­ence. If you don’t want the ex­pense of trav­el­ling to some of our great in­ter­state wine re­gions, the Gran­ite Belt in Queens­land is just a drive away.

A cy­cle trail from Stan­thorpe to Bal­lan­dean will give a good view of the de­light­ful spring coun­try­side.

Wine tast­ings, hot air bal­loon­ing and dozens of ac­com­mo­da­tion op­tions from bud­get to high-end mean you can open your imag­i­na­tion and plan a re­ward­ing visit.

A Rail Europe gift card – they range from $25 to $500 – is a prac­ti­cal gift idea if your dad is plan­ning a trip to Europe. He can plan his train jour­neys with­out wor­ry­ing about cur­rency ex­changes or de­ci­pher­ing in­struc­tions in a dif­fer­ent lan­guage.

A spa gift cer­tifi­cate will en­sure your dad takes time out when he’s ready to en­joy a mas­sage, fa­cial or an hour in a flota­tion tank.

Most dads never treat them­selves to a spa day so this gift idea will en­sure he re­ceives an ex­pe­ri­ence new to him.

All the big ho­tel groups have gift cer­tifi­cates, which makes buy­ing easy for you. It’s only lim­ited to your bud­get and imag­i­na­tion.

If your dad is more an arm­chair trav­eller, get into your near­est book­shop and search the travel sec­tion. Bill Bryson’s hi­lar­i­ous travel nar­ra­tives are al­ways in print and they will have most read­ers guf­faw­ing at ev­ery page turn.

Then there are dozens of gift ideas for the trav­eller fa­ther – from qual­ity headphones that will block out all noise and dis­trac­tions on his next flight to smart new lug­gage.

If your bud­get al­lows, splurge on a GPS. It en­sures no more ar­gu­ments in the car.

If your bud­get is tiny, a snazzy toi­letry bag would work a treat. Even less ex­pen­sive, a block-out sleep­ing mask.

The gift of travel is al­ways ex­cit­ing so any­thing you give is cer­tain to make your dad a happy bloke on Fa­ther’s Day.

PHOTOS: THINKSTOCK AND FILE

In­vest in a hik­ing hol­i­day, like the Cra­dle Moun­tain Over­land Track in Tas­ma­nia, for your dad this Fa­ther’s Day or, be­low, whale watch­ing or fish­ing might be more his style.

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