Mind & Body

Best 8 holiday road trip destinations within a 1 hour drive from your nearest capital city


Whether it’s over the New Year holiday break or to bookmark for later, these holiday spots are perfect for a quick getaway. Plus, they’re all only an hour from each capital city. 

The holiday season is approaching and although overseas trips and luxury Australian getaways are off the cards, a short weekender or ‘save for later holiday’ can have you looking forward to something while taking a more affordable break.

No flights required, these road trips are about an hour (or so) from your capital city and are special enough for one night or a long-term stay.

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Capital city: Melbourne

Portsea Village
Just over an hour from Melbourne CBD on the Mornington Peninsula in Portsea is this boutique resort. There’s pools, spas, a sauna, gym, tennis and squash courts and it’s a hop, skip and jump from the beach and historical Portsea Pier. It’s also close to the Peninsula Hot Springs – for when you need some self-care or a detox on the way home.

Stay: From $150, at Portsea Village Resort

Capital city: Tasmania

The Islington
Located just outside of Hobart, if you’re looking for something different, rich in history and pleasing on the eye – look no further than this Tasmanian gem. A former stately home built in 1847, this curated hotel now boasts 11 rooms with views of Mount Wellington. Packed with art and antiques, it’s for guests 18 years and over and is home to an extensive wine cellar.

Stay: Visit The Islington Hotel for pricing.

Capital city: Sydney

Barrenjoey House
Located about an hour from Sydney CBD in the picturesque beachside town of Palm Beach, Barrenjoey House is everything you want in a seaside-stay. This boutique offering has seven rooms to choose from, including The Loft. Equipped with their signature décor, a shared lounge area and restaurant, you can walk directly across the road for an ocean swim before a sunset drink.

Stay: The Loft from $650, Guest Rooms from $400, at Barrenjoey House

Skye Suites
This literal urban oasis in the heart of Sydney’s CBD gives you access to everything the city has to offer – and it’s close to some of the best beaches, too. Nestled next to the latest foodie hub Skittle Lane (with restaurants like Meu Jardim and bars like PS40) and around the corner from Pitt Street Mall, the QVB and Barangaroo you’re in the middle of all the action. Rooms are equipped with everything you need for a long or short stay, there’s a pool and gym too.

Stay: Drive and Dream from $240, at Skye Suites
Includes overnight accommodation, parking, breakfast for two, complimentary minibar and 12pm late checkout.

Capital city: Perth

Warders Hotel
Having opened just this month, set in old limestone cottages steeped in history (we’re talking built in 1851 and a historic landmark) and less than an hour from the CBD, the refurbed rooms and cottages are modern and minimalist. Head out to explore Fremantle’s cultural offering and Instagram-worthy beaches because heading in for a complimentary evening cocktail and dinner in the courtyard restaurant.

Stay: From $299, at Warders Hotel
Includes complimentary light breakfast, evening cocktail, sparkling water and mini bar.

Capital city: Adelaide

The Villas
Sitting in the village of Marananga in the Barossa Valley and walking distance from cellar doors and restaurants, this upmarket farm stay is fully equipped with everything you need for a 5-star stay (think linen sheets, a big bath to soak in, kitchen and lounge area and floor to ceiling windows). Sit back with a big glass of red and get back to nature.

Stay: From $400, at The Villas Barossa

Capital city: Brisbane

The Sails Motel
Stretching a little more than an hour (and sitting in NSW) from Brissy, The Sails Motel and Pool Club in Brunswick Heads is an old-school beachside motel that’s been given a Miami-style makeover. Located in Byron Bay’s cooler, younger sister, Brunswick hosts a great pub, a handful of top-notch restaurants and both the river and the ocean for premium swimming spots.

Stay: From $175, at The Sails Motel and Pool Club

Capital city: Canberra

Little National
Smart, efficient and cool, the Little National Hotel has serious Public Hotel New York vibes. In the heart of Canberra, it’s ideal for both work and play stays with a lounge and library offering you won’t want to get up from. There’s even multiple health and wellness facilities to choose from. The rooms offer smart luxury, so you can sleep and shower before getting on with your next adventure. Plus, there’s a range of packages to choose from to suit your speed and needs.

Stay: Bed and Breakfast for Two Package, from $149, at Little Nation Hotel
Includes À la carte breakfast in Ostani and parking.

Capital city: Darwin

Wildman Wilderness Lodge
Technically closer to two hours drive from the CBD, but absolutely worth it. The Wildman Wilderness Lodge sits on the Mary River Wetlands, halfway between Darwin and Kakadu. The sustainable and environmentally sensitive accommodation boasts a big lodge, cabins and safari tents all with luxury amenities (and air-con). There’s also an in-house restaurant and bar, as well as a handful of scenic environmental tours and activities to choose from.

Stay: Visit Wildman Wilderness Lodge for pricing and packages.

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