Last year we were lucky enough to win the Expedia loyalty competition – we decided to take the kids on their first ever holiday, with a trip to the Sunshine Coast. Here are a few tips and tricks we learnt along the way – Ness

1. Leave Early

Leaving Brisbane at 8am on a Saturday morning meant we missed the traffic and were on the Sunshine Coast in no time.

2. Road trip fun

Number one tip for a hour and half car ride with two kids under six? Fully charged iPads, pocket sized colouring books and pens and snacks and drinks within arms reach of the kids! Have packets of food that can be opened by little hands and within reach of their car seats so you’re not turning around every five minutes too do it.

3. Australia Zoo

Our first stop was Australia Zoo. My advice for the zoo is take the train all the way too the back of the zoo and walk back – that way you’ll see everything without wasting time wandering all over the place. The elephants are no longer there so that was disappointing but feeding the animals and patting the koalas was great. Make sure you look at animal photo and show times before you start the day. Good walking shoes, a drink bottle and sunscreen are definitely needed as there are quite a few uncovered long walks in the sun. Bindi’s Island is one of the newest parts of the Zoo and worth checking out for the 360 degree views of the zoo.

4. Stay kid friendly

There are plenty of kid-friendly hotels on the Sunshine Coast so make sure you do your research if you’re travelling with the family. After the zoo, we headed over to the Oaks Oasis in Caloundra. Check in was easy, and the room was just what we needed. Clean, big showers, comfy bed and extremely practical. And then there’s the water park. The kids went out to play in the playground and water park on site and loved it. The water was pretty cold but they still gave it a red hot go.

5. Play dates

On Saturday night we went to the Caloundra RSL for dinner – it was pretty busy so the kids (who had eaten at hotel) went to the kids room, the Cosmic Cave Kids Club, which my god was fantastic. Face painting, video games, Lego, toys, great staff, great security; it was 10/10. Caloundra is pretty kid-friendly. Do a little bit of research before you go on which hotels and restaurants have kids menus or play rooms.

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