Avoid the crowds: Alternative destinations this summer

Summer’s poking its head around the corner, and we all know what that means. The end of the year is full-on with family celebrations, work-dos, and mad holiday shopping sprees in jam-packed department stores. And after all that madness? It’s holiday time!

While some of us relish the hustle and bustle and the joy of 10 people sharing a meal around a table built to hold 8, a lot of us are going to want to avoid the crowds and have some peace and quiet on that long awaited end of year getaway. The end of the year is always a busy time for popular holiday locations, as travellers from all over the world collectively flock to the most sought-after destinations. To help you escape these crowded hotspots, we’ve listed the top five international and local destinations and suggested alternatives for those of you who wish to avoid the travel rush.

Top Five International Destinations

1. Los Angeles, California
Alternative Destination: San Diego, California
We recently did some research, and it appears that Los Angeles is the most popular international destination for us Aussies. But a great alternative this summer is the sprawling city of San Diego. Known as ‘the birthplace of California’, San Diego has a mild climate all year long, so travellers can easily explore the range of top attractions the city offers, such as the San Diego Zoo, Legoland and the museums of Balboa Park. And with LA just a two-hour drive away you can make a day trip to Tinseltown and be back sipping cocktails on the San Diego waterfront as the sun goes down.

Find cheap flights to San Diego Stay at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina


2. London, England
Alternative Destination: Brighton, England
Located south of the English capital, the colourful city of Brighton is ideal for an alternative destination to the Big Smoke. Known to be one of the hippest destinations in the world, Brighton’s unique setting will appeal to all interests; as mainstream or underground as you can imagine. A must-see attraction is in Brighton’s city heart; the Brighton Pavilion which was built for King George IV. If it’s retail therapy you’re after, be sure to visit The Lanes, a series of streets full of antique stores, vintage finds and cafes. In the evening, Brighton Pier is a great spot for spectacular ocean views and fun and frivolity at the amusement park.

Find cheap flights to Gatwick Stay at the Hilton Brighton Metropole


3. Denpasar, Bali
Alternative Destination: Ubud, Bali
A wonderful alternative to Denpasar, Ubud is a unique town which encompasses cultural landmarks, ancient temples and traditional Balinese craftsmanship. Enriched with Balinese tradition, Ubud is known for its spiritual outlook, dance and crafts, offering you many opportunities to immerse yourselves in incredible attractions including the Goa Gajah ‘Elephant Cave’, Gunung Kawi shrine, Ubud Monkey Forest and iconic Tegallalang Rice Terraces.

Find cheap flights to Bali Stay at the Maya Ubud Resort & Spa


4. Tokyo, Japan
Alternative Destination: Fuji Five Lakes, Japan
For breathtaking and uninterrupted views, the Fuji Five Lakes is a serene place to visit and couldn’t be any more different than the constant noise and lights of the Japanese capital. The group of five lakes was formed by multiple volcanic eruptions over hundreds of years, and all offer picturesque views of the famous Mount Fuji, Japan’s highest peak and a now dormant volcano.

Find cheap flights to Tokyo Stay at the Fuji Premium Resort


5. Singapore, Malaysia
Alternative Destination: Batu Pahat, Malaysia
For those of you who are looking for a more local Singaporean experience, Batu Pahat is an excellent alternative destination. Located a few hours away from Singapore, you can explore must-see historical attractions like the Frozen Oil Village and the Tian Pao Kong Chinese Temple, and then catch a beautiful sunset from the Lovers’ Bridge.

Find cheap flights to Johor Bahru Stay at the Pinetree Hotel

Also Read>> Find your endless summer


Top Five Domestic Destinations

1. Melbourne, Victoria
Alternative Destination: Geelong, Victoria
Located along the coast of Victoria, Geelong is a refreshing alternative from the hustle and bustle of the Melbourne CBD. Central to a few of the regional towns in Victoria such as Ballarat, Geelong has a history dating back to the Gold Rush in the early 1800’s. Only a short distance away from both the coastline and the countryside, Geelong offers a range of local attractions such as the Geelong Mill Markets, National Wool Museum and the Botanic Gardens.

Find cheap flights to Avalon Stay at the Rydges Geelong


2. Sydney, New South Wales
Alternative Destination: Palm Beach, New South Wales
Only an hour out of Sydney, Palm Beach is a great getaway to escape the crowds this summer. Its beautiful white sandy beaches are the ideal spot to relax and unwind. Aviation enthusiasts can fly directly to Palm Beach from Sydney by seaplane, and those of you who are curious about the surrounds can venture from Palm Beach further up the coast to other tranquil beach towns nearby including Sand Point, Paradise Beach and North Avalon.

Find cheap flights to Sydney Stay at the Mantra Ettalong Beach


3. Perth, Western Australia
Alternative Destination: Coral Bay, Western Australia
An escape to Coral Bay for its endless aqua blue water and white-sand beach is something you can’t really go past. Home to Australia’s only fringing reef, the bay is popular for snorkelling and scuba diving; undoubtedly the best way to experience the aquatic life inhabiting the reef. In the evening, you can enjoy stunning sunsets while dining alfresco, right on the water’s edge.

Find cheap flights to Learmonth Stay at the Ningaloo Reef Resort


4. Brisbane, Queensland
Alternative Destination: Broadbeach, Queensland
Located just an hour and a half south of busy Brisbane, Broadbeach is a great destination for those of you looking to relax and soak up the Queensland sun. Accommodation for all visitors – families, couples, and solo travellers – can be found just a short distance away from the beach, and near a variety of delicious restaurants and cafes. Enjoy a day out every first and third Sunday of the month at the popular Broadbeach Art and Craft markets.

Find cheap flights to Coolangatta Stay at the Meriton Suites Broadbeach


5. Hobart, Tasmania
Alternative Destination: Devonport, Tasmania
If you are looking for natural beauty and a remote location, Devonport is a stunning alternative to Tasmania’s capital of Hobart. Lying where the Mersey River meets the coast, Devonport provides a base to explore charming towns and historic locations, including Mole Creek Karst National Park and the Walls of Jerusalem National Park.

Find cheap flights to Devonport Stay at the Quality Hotel Gateway


Whether you are staying domestic or looking to cross the ocean, our Explore tool allows you to find alternative holiday locations close to your original choice of destination and can also be tailored for any budget or distance.

Also Read>> 6 Cool Alternatives To Popular International Destinations Right In Australia’s Backyard