Travel inspired Father's Day gift ideas to keep the wanderlust alive

Kristine Tarbert
·Senior Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
·7-min read

With various restrictions and social distancing measures still in place, Father’s Day celebrations might look a little different this year. However, families shouldn’t let this dampen the mood from celebrating.

And if like many of us, dad is having trouble keeping his wanderlust alive we’ve got some great travel-inspired gift ideas for you.

Happy father carrying daughter piggyback on the beach
Dad losing his wanderlust? We've got you covered. Photo: Getty

Indulge him with good food from his favourite place

As the saying goes, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. So why not transport him to his favourite holiday by whipping up a traditional meal from there.

Based on Expedia’s Vacation Deprivation study, 53 per cent of Aussies admit that cooking the local cuisine is a great way to keep their holiday high while at home. Try making a day out of it and theme each meal to a different country.

September is also National Bourbon Heritage Month in the US and if your dad loves a good Bourbon this one is for him. Ensure your dad has the right Bourbons on hand (or purchase him any that are missing) and let Tim Knittel – Kentucky bourbon industry insider (and certified Stave & Thief Society Executive Bourbon Steward) taken dad on a tour of the best distilleries in Kentucky. Sign up here. Or simply choose one of the FREE Crazy Cabin Fever Cocktail online vid sessions, purchase your Dad some bourbon, and get creative mixing up his fave drink with him.

Close up of woman enjoying freshly served traditional Japanese seafood donburi with chopsticks in a restaurant
Maybe a Japanese inspired dinner? Photo: Getty

Don’t forget the wine

If your father is a wine-lover but has been missing his annual fix of tastings, never fear there are a host of incredible virtual options available.

Treat dad to a selection of cool-climate Pinot Noir wines from Tasmania's Pinot specialists, Tamar Ridge. You can grab one of two Pinot Tasting Packs that are sure to spoil dad's taste buds - the Pinot Tasting Pack for $270 or the Pinot Masterclass Pack for $240 that includes a series of virtual Pinot Noir masterclasses on Wednesday 2 and 9 September where attendees will be taken through guided tastings and wine chat with Tamar Ridge head winemakers Tom Wallace.

And of course, if your state and travel restrictions allow it maybe now is the perfect time to plan a quick weekend getaway to your closest wine region.

In WA the perfect scenic route from Perth to Albany gives you the option to stop in to explore the Margaret River Region, nip into a whisky distillery or sip your way around a few wineries. You can also head to Swan Valley.

In NSW, a trip to famous Hunter Valley is never a bad idea. What better way to spend time with the family, get outside and enjoy the great outdoors and road trip your way through the local vineyards that occupy the region.

Or in SA, treat him to a wine tour of the Barossa Valley.

Lush Wine Grapes Clusters Hanging On The Vine.
Lush Wine Grapes Clusters Hanging On The Vine.

Treat him to a Dad-cation

For those able too and seeking a little getaway, now might be the perfect time for a dad-cation where he can refresh and rejuvenate.

But don’t just treat him to any old stay, seek out unique properties with great facilities such as a great bar or on-site cinema to make it the ultimate dad-cation.

In South Australia you can set him up at the Avani Adelaide Residences, where he can lounge in the private cinema or practice his swing at the on-site golf simulator. In the ACT and if it’s the social scene he enjoys, Ovolo Nishi in Canberra offers guests free in-room mini bar and also has a great bar with weekend wine tasting.

Or for a trip to the beach in NSW, ideally located just metres from Sydney's most iconic beach and a 20-minute drive from the CBD, Adina Apartment Hotel Bondi offers families the opportunity to indulge in a beachside 'bubble' staycation. And currently there is an epic deal of stay 3 nights and only pay for 2 nights including a 1pm late check-out.

Photo: Getty
Photo: Getty

Gift him an experience he’ll never forget

After months of being cooped up inside, treat Dad with a great experience or activity, so he can be a tourist in his own city and it’s a great way to support the local tour guides and companies while treating him to something he loves.

For the adrenaline junkies, this guided Jetski tour is the perfect way to see Gold Coast, or for the more daring, challenge Dad to this abseiling experience while he enjoys the beautiful views of the Blue Mountains.

A trip to Port Macquarie is also great idea – just a 4.5 hour drive from Sydney, treat Dad to entertainment, free buffet, and a glass of sparkling wine as he enjoys a three-hour river Father’s Day Cruise with Cruise Port Macquarie.

Or if it’s a waterfront meal he’s after, Matt Moran has also just reopened his Sydney waterfront venue Barangaroo House and is offering a special promo for Father’s Day. At House Bar (ground level), Dad can enjoy a free 4 Pines beer or glass of Shaw & Smith Sauvignon Blanc or wine with the purchase of any meal on Saturday and Sunday.

blue mountains nsw
A day in the Blue Mountains could be just what dad needs. Photo: Getty

Take him on a (virtual) tour

While making that physical trip overseas remains off the cards for now, there’s no stopping you from bringing Dad along for a virtual trip around the world. Whether he had a trip cancelled or has a destination on the bucket list, satisfy his wanderlust by exploring the city virtually or experiencing it online with a local.

Indulge in an interactive cooking experience all the way from Italy with Italian Chef ‘Gabi’ who reveals recipes learnt as a child from his Roman grandma, or if cooking isn’t his thing, buckle in and take a tour through the streets of Berlin instead.

It’s really easy to create that perfect virtual itinerary by picking out the best ones from Expedia’s helpful Travel from Home page.

Photo Taken In Germany, Berlin
Can't fly to Berlin right now - head there virtually instead. Photo: Getty

Travel through memory lane with a sentimental gift

For the Dad that has everything, take him on a journey around the world with a fun viewing party of all his favourite memories.

According to another study, 81 per cent of Aussies look at past holiday photos and videos as a way to tap into their holiday state of mind.

Whether it’s a digital compilation of photos and videos or flicking through physical photo albums, make a night out of it and relive the memories as a family.

photo album
Looking at happy travel moments during the pandemic. Photo: Getty

Ear-scape with an Audible gift membership

We’ve rounded up the best audiobooks from Audible to fill the overseas travel-sized void in your heart making a gift card a perfect idea. Now you can earscape to your favourite holiday destinations and not feel like you’re missing out on that overseas getaway. If your would-be holiday included Spanish tapas, Parisian culture and Santorini sunsets here are a few listens to get you closer to that European summer: Almost French, by Sarah Turnbull, narrated by Caroline Lee. If dad’s dream destination included skiing, hiking and Queenstown spas we recommend these winter warmers: Into Thin Air, by Jon Krakauer, narrated by Philip Franklin. Or maybe you were ready to hit the road across North America, hike Yosemite and live that campervan life you should download this ultimate road trip playlist: Into the Wild, by Jon Krakauer, narrated by Philip Franklin.

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