9 epic activities and day trips to take over the 2021 Christmas holidays

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·Lifestyle Reporter
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Friends holding up wine glasses at a winery
Whether you're discovering on your own or going in a group, there's plenty to explore this summer.

This summer is the summer to go on adventures; book tickets, pack the car, tell your friends, let your hair down. You need it. We all need it.

Discover hidden gems in the city, explore untouched landscapes interstate and feel the rush of adrenalin when you experience something new and exciting.

Now that most of us have the freedom to explore, we invite you to catch up on lost time and spend this summer getting together with your loved ones or even embarking on a solo adventure to fully immerse yourself.

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Need a bit of encouragement? Take a leaf out of The Adventure Challenge book (also a great Christmas present) which provides a list of fun, exciting and even romantic activities for you or your loved one to tick off at a moment's notice.

But if you're wanting more specific ideas where you can score some amazing sales, then look no further than our list below which features some of the most exciting, fun, enjoyable activities around the country.

Sydney Harbour Cruise with 3 Course Lunch

Starting with the waterfront city, enjoy multi-million dollar views as you cruise around the iconic and extremely beautiful Sydney Harbour. Currently on sale for $185 per person, book tickets for two people to enjoy a three hour, three-course a la carte lunch with personalised service on the upper deck of the cruise where you'll have uninterrupted views of Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge, just to a name a few. With over 600 high reviews, we're sure this experience will be one you won't forget.

A white cruise ship on the Sydney Harbour at sunset with an orange sky behind the Opera House
Take in Sydney Harbour's breathtaking scenery with a luxury three-course meal. Source: Red Balloon

Hunter Valley Hot Air Balloon Experience

Perfect as a romantic getaway for couples or even enjoyed on our own, take in the picturesque views of Hunter Valley with this breathtaking sunrise hot air balloon flight. Watch the vibrant orange, pinks and golden rays burst through the sky in this incredible one hour experience before sipping on a glass of champagne and eating a sumptuous breakfast at Peterson House afterwards to take it all in. Tickets start at $269 per person including transfer service.

A hot air balloon sits in the sky on the top right with the green, grassy landscape beneath it.
Start the day in luxury with a champagne breakfast over a sunrise hot air balloon experience. Source: Balloon Aloft

Jacob's Creek Picnic Perfect in the Barossa Valley

Wine-lovers, this one's for you. Make a trip out of it and explore the gorgeous vineyard of Jacobs Creek in the beautiful Barossa Valley. Your all-inclusive $118 ticket will give you a breathtaking picnic on the grounds of Jacobs Creek featuring food from local producers as well as a glass of vino from the Jacob's Creek vineyard. You'll also be treated to a tasting flight featuring Barossa's best wineries to truly soak up the atmosphere. Perfect as an experience for couples or friends, everyone will enjoy this day out.

A couple sit on a picnic rug on the grass with their backs turned, looking out to a vast vineyard.
Lay back and enjoy being wined and dined at Jacob's Creek vineyard in the stunning Barossa Valley. Source: Jacob's Creek

Perfume Making Workshop

Want to bypass the big brands and create a scent that is unique to you? Here is the perfect opportunity to design the *perfect* scent that you've been looking for. Now on sale for $113, spend two and half hours learning about and exploring various scents to craft your own signature perfume. This experience is wonderful as a gift or to book with friends to enter summer in style, as you'll be able to take home two 30ml bottles of your bespoke perfume.

A group of people smiling holding their small glass bottles of perfume.
Create your bespoke signature scent at a Perfume Making Workshop. Source: Red Balloon

Melbourne cocktail making course

Victoria's capital is known and loved for its culinary scene, so it's the perfect place to sign up for a cocktail making course. With hundreds of bars and companies to choose from, you won't go wrong when you go to Polly's on Brunswick Street in Fitzroy. In fact, Time Out have named the award-winning cocktail bar as one the most popular cocktail bars in Melbourne, saying, "Polly takes the crown, being the clear winner in 2016’s People’s Choice Award." With over 20 years of serving exceptional cocktails, $80 for a two hour class sounds like a steal.

An orange Old Fashioned cocktail in a cystal cut tumbler
Learn to master cocktails this summer with a fun and immersive cocktail course at Melbourne's award-winning bar, Polly. Source: Getty

Camping at The Basin

Nestled discreetly in Sydney's northern beaches is The Basin camping ground; a leafy, family-friendly camping ground flowing onto the scenic Pittwater shores. For locals of the area, it has a reputation for being one of the most popular camping destinations for its easy access and good facilities as well as offering stunning scenery. Arrive by car from Terrey Hills to set up your tent and supplies before sitting back, cracking open a drink and watching nature pass you by. Need to stock up on some equipment? Shop BCF's camping catalogue with huge discounts, making your next sleep under the stars easy and comfortable.

An image of the sand and rocks in the foreground going onto Pittwater's blue, flat water
The Basin camping ground is a favourite destination among Sydney-siders offering a tranquil, waterfront setting. Source: Trip Advisor

South Coast Skydiving

Looking for that adrenalin rush? Tick this off your bucket list when you sign up to Wollongong's South Coast skydiving. Now on sale for $339 per person, this incredible opportunity offers the wow-factor on every scale. Enjoy unparalleled views of the stunning South Coast coastline in the plane as you reach optimal altitude, before launching out of the plane at 15,000 feet with an experienced dive instructor, experiencing the unrivalled feeling of free fall for 60 seconds reaching speeds of up to 220km/h. Book this amazing experience as a gift or for yourself with the company open seven days a week.

A person is skydiving above an ocean with a blue and yellow parachute.
Skydiving on New South Wales' scenic South Coast is sure to 'wow' on every level. Source: Red Balloon

Rottnest Island Ferry and Bicycle Experience

If you're in Western Australia and looking for a beautiful, relaxing escape, look no further than Rottnest Island's Ferry and Bicycle Experience. For $88, board a ferry from Perth to the picturesque Rottnest Island where you can pick up a bike and cycle through the island's 22km of cycling trails, or explore the beauty that the landscape has to offer at your own pace. With over 60 beaches to see and 20 stunning, crystal clear bays, you will feel like you're in heaven. The ticket includes a return trip back to mainland and any transfers to get you back with ease.

A couple standing on bikes stand with their backs facing as they look out to the ocean on a pale concrete bike track.
Take in the raw beauty of Rottnest Island with a scenic bike ride along its 22km of cycle trails. Source: Rottnest Express

Great Barrier Reef Cruise with Lunch and Snorkelling

One for the Queenslanders - at $199 per adult or $109 for children, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get up close with the Great Barrier Reef's marine wonders in complete luxury. Departing from Cairns, hop aboard the catamaran to float along the scenic waters of the Coral Sea where you'll be served a delicious lunch.

An expansive white pontoon sits on the clear turquoise ocean of the Great Barrier Reef.
Explore the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef with this unique cruise including a gourmet lunch, snorkelling opportunities and more immersive activities. Source: Travel Online

For those wanting a more immersive experience, step onto Moore Reef's state-of-the-art pontoon where you'll be provided with a wetsuit and snorkelling equipment to dive in those turquoise waters and experience the World Heritage Site in person. There are plenty of other activities to choose from, including a presentation by an onboard reef marine naturalist to explain unknown facts and information about our own natural underwater kingdom.

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