Macedon Ranges Summer Holiday Ideas 2022/23

It’s summer! Or is it summer? It’s hard to tell with this weather. Regardless, the school holidays are here, or very close for most children across the Ranges. We have put together a list of Summer School Holiday Ideas for your children and family this holiday season

Goldfields Libraries Summer Program: There’s lots happening at our local libraries this summer and here is what is on for the kids. (These are free but check if you need to book your spot). Basic how to draw manga-style faces lessons (Thursday 12 January 1 – 2 pm) and comic panelling (Thursday 12 January 2.30 – 3.30 pm) are both at the Gisborne Library. Come and Try 3D Pens is at the Woodend Library (Monday 9 to Friday 13 January, 10 am to 12 noon). The movies Turning Red (Tuesday 24 January 11 am – 12.30 pm), Minions – Rise of Gru (Tuesday 10 January 11 am to 12.30 pm) and Lightyear (Tuesday 17 January 11 – 12.30) are all playing at the Gisborne Library. Damo – Music for Kids is on Thursday 9 January from 11 am to 12 noon at the Gisborne Library and on the same day from 2 to 3 pm at the Woodend Library.

Gisborne Writing and Illustration Challenge (for Gisborne residents): Pick up an entry form at the Gisborne Library. Create a book cover design with the theme “Gisborne’s Greatest Day” (5 – 8 years olds) or create a cartoon/manga strip of 5 frames (9 – 12 year olds). The winners for each of these will receive a $50 book voucher. There is also a short story/creative writing option of up to 1000 words (for 13 to 17 year olds) for which the prize is $80.

School’s Out Summer Program: School’s Out has an awesome Summer Program to keep your kids engaged and having fun. There is a variety of exciting days planned at the home-base, like Pirates and Mermaids, Mad Science, SchoolsOUT Got Talent, Junior Rangers and Chinese New Year. Many amazing excursions are organised for specific days too, like Alice in Wonderland, Movie Day, Pilates, Go Karts & Laser Tag, the Amazing Race, Fun Fields and Gisborne Arcade. Click the link for more details.

Picnic at a playground: Pack a picnic or purchase some food from a local cafe (see those recommended in the individual reviews) and head to some of the best parks in the Ranges: Gisborne Adventure Playground, Woodend Children’s Park, Riddells Creek Lions Park, Taradale Mineral Springs Reserve Playground, Galaxy Park in Sunbury, Community Bank Playground in Wallan, Romsey Ecotherapy Park and Kyneton Community Park.

Best bushwalks: Make the most of these sunny but cooler days by heading out for a family excursion in the great outdoors. Some of our favourite longer walks include: Hanging Rock, Black Hill Reserve Ridge and Circuit Walk near Kyneton, Sanitorium Lake on Mount Macedon, Conglomerate Gully Walking Track in Riddells Creek. Some of our favourite shorter walks (better for little ones) include: Camel’s Hump in Mount Macedon, Mount Macedon Memorial Cross, The Cascades in Metcalfe (please note parent supervision is needed here as there is no barrier near the water), Trentham Falls, Lake Daylesford, and Wombat Hill Botanical Gardens (walk as far as you like).

For wet weather days: Head to Pop Gaming in Gisborne, Readings Cinemas in Sunbury, local play centres, kid friendly cafes, Dromkeen Homestead in Riddells Creek, your local library, and local aquatic centres. For more details on these, click the link.

For hot days: If we get any hot days this summer(!), head to the local pool (Woodend and Lancefield have outdoor pools), explore indoor landmarks like the Kyneton Museum, see a movie at Readings in Sunbury or at the Gisborne Library, go for an icecream at Woodend or Gisborne Icecream Co, head to Kyneton Community Park and Community Bank Playground in Wallan which both have waterplay areas, or go for a bushwalk where there is water like Nursery Reservoir in Macedon and others (see above). For more details on these, click the link.

Bike rides: The Domino Trail in Trentham is great for mountain biking, as is La Larr Ba Gauwa Park in Harcourt (however this one is temporarily closed due to flooding – follow their Facebook page for updates). Lake Daylesford and the Campaspe River Walk in Kyneton are more family friendly and have a solid path for regular bikes, scooters and prams.

Day or weekend trips: Head out for the day to Castlemaine, Anakie, Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong, the Bellarine, and Melbourne. Click the link to read more.

Kids camp: PGL Campaspe Downs have an adventure holiday camp for 8 to 14 year olds. Head to their website for more information.

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