Great Australian beaches to visit with kids

If you decide to visit Australia with your family, you won’t regret it. The country offers a unique experience with wildlife, nature, and cultural heritage. Even spending time on the beach is anything but an ordinary day of sunbathing and swimming. 

Australia has access to three oceans and the same number of seas. It also has rivers and lakes that are favourite spots for both tourists and locals. Here are great Australian beaches to visit with kids that will have you come back again.   

beaches Australia

Twilight Beach, Esperance

 

Tamarama Beach, Sydney

Tamarama Beach, Sydney Photo by Larry Snickers from Pexels

When you think of Sydney’s beaches, probably the first thing that comes to mind is Bondi Beach. However, it tends to be crowded so we recommend going to the nearby Tamarama Beach where your kids can build sandcastles in peace. It’s perfect for small kids since it has shallow tide pools that will keep them away from the ocean waves, as well as on-site bathrooms.  

Tamarama Beach is full of families so your children will always find friends to play with. Close by Tamarama Park has a grassed area, covered tables, and a great playground popular for barbecues and picnics. Anytime you want a change of scenery you can walk to Bronte Beach on a paved path but keep in mind it has a few stairs that kids are usually not too fond of. 

 

Cossies Beach, Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Cocos (Keeling) Islands are a remote Australian Territory in the South Pacific where you can have a tropical family holiday without breaking a bank. This destination has 27 coral islands, two atolls, and an ivory shoreline by the tranquil water. It’s a bit of a secluded location considering you will have to take an over four-hour flight from Perth to get here, making it calm for travelling with kids.

Cossies Beach is surrounded by coconut palms, has several walking trails, eco-friendly toilets, and barbecues only allowed using wood. We recommend you arrive here by boat, anchor it for a few days, and camp on the beach. However, make sure to bring your food and beverages since Cossies Beach offers an undisturbed environment without accommodation, restaurants, and any other hospitality establishments.    

 

Barwon Heads Beach, Melbourne

Just like with Sydney, families staying in Melbourne can choose from a slew of beaches. Our favourite is Barwon Heads, some hour and a half from the city by car, right by the Great Ocean Road. The spot got its name from the Barwon River that flows into the ocean where the beach is found. It’s a serene, waveless beach with shallow water, making it safe for kids. 

For this reason, the locals created all sorts of attractions for families on the Barwon Heads Beach, like a playground and public bathrooms. You can go kayaking, snorkel, play ball on the sand, or use the available grill to prepare the fish you caught when fishing on the river. Kids will have a blast if you take them to the Jirrahlinga Koala and Wildlife Sanctuary to see koalas, dingoes, snakes, kangaroos, possums, birds, and other wildlife native to Australia.     

 

Twilight Beach, Esperance

Twilight Beach near the small town of Esperance in Western Australia brings both luxurious feels of tropical islands and a fun environment for holidays with kids. Some even compare it with Seychelles because of the bluest hue of the water at this side of the coast. The shore is flat and covered with pearly sand so it’s safe for toddlers and small children.

If you have teenagers, they might be interested in swimming to the nearby granite rocks, climbing up, and jumping into the sea. There is always a lifeguard on duty so you can feel somewhat relieved if they go surfing and swimming without you. Esperance is a great town to discover with your family — it has a Stonehenge replica, sunbathing kangaroos, safari huts, and Aboriginal tours.        

 

Streets Beach, Brisbane

Streets Beach is a man-made spot in Brisbane located on the South Bank of the Brisbane River. The area offers large playgrounds and a lagoon safe for swimming thanks to regular patrols. When it comes to food, you can either have a picnic on the beach or visit one of many family-friendly restaurants nearby.

If you want to take a break from beach-time, you can stop by the Queensland Museum with exhibitions dedicated to science, cultural heritage, and natural history. Kids will be especially interested in riding the Channel Seven Wheel of Brisbane that offers a 360-degree panoramic view from 60 meters above the ground.  

 

Torakina Beach, Brunswick Heads

Another family-friendly river shoreline, Torakina Beach, is in New South Wales, in the town of Brunswick Heads. Families have been coming here for decades because of the gentle waves, great to teach your kids to swim. The water is so clear that you can easily mistake it for the ocean, although it can get murky after the storm. 

Kids will love seeing pelicans and dolphins that like to frequent Torakina Beach and greet the visitors. Since the area has a car park, you can come close to the beach, but it’s small and you have to arrive early to find a spot. This is also important since you have to bring your sun umbrella, toys for kids, food, and water boards. Torakina Park around the beach has everything you may need for a comfortable stay, like toilets, showers, freshwater taps, tables, and BBQs.   

 

Wineglass Bay, Tasmania

Tasmania has many gorgeous and peaceful beaches ideal to spend quality family time, but Wineglass Bay beats them all. This shoreline is located in the Freycinet National Park, promising more than just time on the beach. The lookout is perfect for picnics, overlooking the whole area while going south will give you quite a view of the famous pink granite peaks called the Hazards.  

But don’t hurry to pack up your and your kids beach towels since clear turquoise water will keep you all occupied with snorkeling, kayaking, and sailing. When it comes to wildlife, you can encounter Tasmanian devils, wallabies, and wombats, especially if you go on a bushwalk. The capital of Tasmania, Hobart, is a couple of hours away so you can take your kids there for some city fun.   

 

Noosa Main Beach, Noosa National Park

Sunshine Coast in Queensland is home to spectacular beaches, like Noosa Main Beach. Part of the Noosa National Park, this beach is a wonderful place to teach your kids (and yourself) to surf. It hardly has any waves so insecure swimmers can relax and even boogie board. 

Since Noosa Main Beach goes along the shopping strip in the Noosa Heads town, you won’t have any trouble finding restaurants and coffee shops. The good news is that it also means you can rent beach equipment instead of bringing your own, like paddle boards and surfboards. Other attractions here are kayaking on the Noosa River and visiting other beaches in the area, namely Little Cove and Tea Tree Bay. 

 

Turquoise Bay, Cape Range National Park

If you want to show your kids Australian coral reefs, go to Turquoise Bay in the Cape Range National Park. This Western Australian beach has access to Ningaloo Reef, a World Heritage-listed site that more than 250 species of coral and 500 species of fish call home. 

Both kids and adults love to snorkel here and be close to the magnificent marine life of the area, like sea turtles and harmless reef sharks. The water is so clear that you can see a lot of it just by looking down during swimming. The popular activity here is drift snorkeling when you let the natural current take you from one place to another, in this case from south to north. 

 

Whitehaven Beaches, Whitsundays

The Great Barrier Reef is the most famous and biggest coral garden in the world with enormous significance for the environment. To get a better look at it, make your base at the Whitehaven Beach in Queensland’s Whitsunday Islands. Kids will love an opportunity to see it and find out more about efforts to restore it. For insecure divers or those not good at it, you can take a seaplane ride over the area to see the reef and much more.

Take a walk to Tongue Point to see the sands of Hill Inlet or go to the northern end of Whitehaven Beach to see it in person. Hill Inlet is also a nursery for marine life so you can spot baby lemon sharks and baby stingrays, as well as take pictures of them swimming around your feet. Whitsundays is a beautiful place to pamper yourself in one of the luxury resorts, but you will find a lot of accommodation within a modest budget, especially on Hamilton Island. 

 

All in all

With almost 12,000 beaches in Australia, it’s not an easy decision where to take your family. These are some of the great Australian beaches, but once there you will find more on your own to visit with kids. Just remember to make time for other attractions, like visiting wildlife reserves, museums, bushwalking, and learning about Aboriginal culture. Most of the beaches are part of national parks or cities that have rich cultural heritage and history, as well as ongoing efforts to preserve nature and the environment.

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