Five regional destinations to visit this summer

From gorgeous secluded beaches to grand colonial pubs, ancient indigenous rock art and the world-famous Great Barrier Reef, Australia’s incredible attractions are on full display in the warmer months. Here’s our pick of five of the top regional destinations for an unforgettable country getaway this summer. 

Barmera, SA

landscape image of the shore of a lake with old trees and a vn in the middle
Visit the beautiful Riverland of Lake Bonney. Image from Liam Pearson.

Known as the ‘Jewel of the Riverland’, Barmera is famed for its relaxed lifestyle and spectacular freshwater Lake Bonney. Spend your day canoeing, boating and fishing around this natural attraction, which is fed by the mighty Murray River. Savour a local drop or two at the Banrock Station Wine and Wetland Centre, only 15 minutes from town, where the vineyards yield high-quality varietals next to protected wetlands – explore the surrounding beauty on the boardwalk. At the Barmera Markets, held every month, you’ll also find delicious produce as well as artwork, coffee and entertainment. 

Where to stay:

Relax in comfort at Comfort Inn & Suites Riverland, where you’ll enjoy country hospitality with golf course views, a seasonal outdoor pool and grassed tennis courts.

Broken Hill, NSW

Couple enjoying the Drag Bingo night at The Palace Hotel, Broken Hill.
Enjoy a night out at the Palace Hotel. Image from Destination NSW.

Australia’s first heritage-listed city, Broken Hill is an grand outback destination set in spectacular landscape. Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure, food and wine or art, you won’t be left wondering what to do in Broken Hill. Start your adventure by wetting the whistle at a grand old Palace Hotel, made famous in the cult Australian film Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Enjoy some of the surrounding vistas by exploring the stunning Desert Scultpures in nearby Living Desert State Park. For a burst of colour and creativity, check out Pro Hart’s famed landscapes and paintings at the Pro Hart Studio

Where to stay:

Right near the heart of town, Comfort Inn Crystal offers everything you need for a comfortable stay – including the Golden Lotus Room Restaurant. 

Lake Entrance, Vic

arial view of a town with a lake on the boarder
Visit Lakes Entrance this summer! Image from Visit Victoria and Ben Savage.

Situated at the idyllic meeting point of Gippsland Lakes and the Great Southern Ocean, Lakes Entrance is an undisputed waterway capital. Let time slip away as you swim, kayak and waterski over the sparkling Gippsland Lakes. Over a wooden footbridge you’ll find the stunning Ninety Mile Beach, patrolled by lifesavers during summer. Soothe the mind with a stroll along the Marsdenia Rainforest Walk, only 15 minutes from town. The Entrance Walk is another one of the many scenic things to do Lakes Entrance, winding along the shores of Lake Cunningham to the Gippsland Lakes entrance.

Where to stay:

The Comfort Inn & Suites Lakes Entrance offers relaxing lakefront accommodation at Lakes Entrance within easy walking distance to local shops, restaurants and the beach. 

Bundaberg, Qld

Outside view of The Bundaberg Rum Distillery
The Bundaberg Rum Distillery. Image from Tourism and Events Queensland and Narelle Bouveng.

Home to the white-sand beaches, delicious food and the world-famous Great Barrier Reef, Bundaberg delivers summer on a plate. Slip into the warm waters on one of the nearby islands and explore the reef as you snorkel alongside giant, majestic turtles on a turtle encounter tour. No visit would be complete without a stop at the iconic Bundaberg Rum Distillery, which has been creating its bold spirit since 1888. The magnificent Bundaberg Botanic Gardens are another top hit, with orchards, Japanese Gardens, woodland walks and a train ride the kids will love.

Where to stay:

Located in the heart of Bundaberg, Econo Lodge Park Lane boasts comfortable rooms as well as a large outdoor pool, on-site restaurant and adjacent parks. 

Karratha, WA

Eye level view of Ngurrangga Tours Hearsons Cove, near Karratha
Come visit Karratha, WA. Image from Tourism Western Australia.

Take your pick of gorgeous beaches, great restaurants and unforgettable nature on the West Pibara Coast – there are plenty of things to do in Karratha. Explore the region’s incredible Aboriginal rock engravings on an Ngurrangga rock art tour, which takes in some of the world’s largest rock art collections. Dip a toe into the inviting waters at Honeymoon Cove, surrounded by fascinating rock formations, or jump aboard a boat trip to the secluded beaches of the Dampier Archipelago. Wind down at the end of the day with an award-winning Blanche Bar cocktail. 

Where to stay:

Only a few minutes from the town centre, and close to Hearson’s Cove, Comfort Inn & Suites Karratha offers a great base to explore the area.

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