Keep the chil­dren amused

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - Escape - - FRONT PAGE -

Day­dream be­liev­ers

There prob­a­bly isn’t a place with a more in­con­gru­ous name than Day­dream Is­land, in the Whit­sun­days. Day­dream­ing is pretty much the only thing kids won’t have time to do on this is­land par­adise, be­cause there’s so much they’ll want to be get­ting into. The 4.5-star Day­dream Is­land Re­sort and Spa has an in­cred­i­ble ar­ray of free ac­tiv­i­ties to keep the kids busy, in­clud­ing scav­enger hunts, an open-air cin­ema, beach volleyball, kayaks and cata­ma­rans, even ed­u­ca­tional talks about the Reef and shark, stingray and bar­ra­mundi feed­ing ses­sions. Oh, and a kids’ club, too. Liv­ing Reef ( adults $ 20, kids $ 12) al­lows the lit­tle ones to get up close and per­sonal with baby sharks and stingrays. You may even find time to sneak off to the spa. Sunlover Hol­i­days ( 138 833 or www. sunlover­hol­i­days. com. au) has a pack­age deal of­fer­ing three nights’ ac­com­mo­da­tion at the re­sort in a gar­den bal­cony room – with a bot­tle of sparkling wine on ar­rival to re­ward you for be­ing such awe­some par­ents – and full buf­fet break­fast daily. The pack­ages, for travel un­til De­cem­ber 11 and from Jan­uary 8 to March 31 next year, are $ 750.

How’s the Seren­ity?

There is noth­ing – ab­so­lutely noth­ing – half so much worth do­ing as sim­ply mess­ing about in boats,’’ said Ratty to Mole in Ken­neth Gra­hame’s The Wind in the Wil­lows. Most kids will agree whole­heart­edly – and for a real Huck­le­berry Finn, Swal­lows and Ama­zons-style ad­ven­ture for the rug rats, one of the best places in Aus­tralia is the Mur­ray River. For 560km of its 3000km jour­ney from the Snowy Moun­tains to the sea, the mighty Mur­ray carves its way through South Aus­tralia’s tow­er­ing cliffs, stately red gums, cit­rus or­chards and green vine­yards. You don’t have to be an old salt to take the tiller of your very own house­boat here – just a driver’s li­cence will do – and Mur­ray River House­boats ( 1300 665 122 or www. house­boat­book­ings. com) has ev­ery­thing from two-berth boats to 12-berth fam­ily leviathans at moor­ings all along the river, fully equipped with all the com­forts of home. They have

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