Australia is home to diverse landscapes & climates from beaches to tropical rainforest and desert to snowy alpine peaks. While Australia is known internationally for its pristine beaches, the Great Barrier Reef, and generally warm weather, this rugged country also offers a variety of options for skiing and snowboarding each winter.
While many Aussies choose to head overseas to ski each year, there are definite advantages of skiing domestically! Flights run frequently from hub cities and are often well priced, the frequency and price make it viable to do more frequent trips, shorter stays and cut down the time you spend travelling, which means more time on the slopes.
Another advantage of skiing in Australia is that there are no language barriers, no passport requirements, and confusion around the currency! Avid skiers and snowboarders often want to ski more than once a year, so Australian ski resorts are a great way to keep their skills up during the Northern Hemisphere summer. Unlike our neighbours across the ditch, some of our we have the option of on-snow accommodation at most domestic ski resorts. For that true ski in, ski out accommodation experience we recommend Hotham and Falls Creek.
New South Wales ski resorts
are easily accessible from Canberra and Sydney, making them really popular for city-slickers taking weekend trips & families on school holidays. The two most popular ski resorts are Perisher and Thredbo, both offer excellent facilities, a great selection of accommodation and activities. On-snow accommodation can be a bit expensive, so if you are on a tight budget, you can stay at Jindabyne and travel to the 30-ish kilometres to either ski resort each day.
Located in the Kosciuszko National Park 6-hours from Sydney, Perisher
is the largest ski resort not only in Australia, but the Southern Hemisphere. Boasting 3000 acres of terrain across four resort areas Perisher Valley, Smiggin Holes, Blue Cow and Gutherga there are 47 lifts to choose from. The resort has incredible beginner facilities, ski school and lots of instructors as well as excellent terrain parks for more advanced riders to practise their skills.
Also 6-hours from Sydney, Thredbo
offers 14 lifts and about 1200 acres of terrain, and a fun après ski scene. The mountain offers longer, stepper runs, less crowds and a great selection of restaurants, bars, and cafes. Thredbo also boasts the longest run in Australia ‘the Thredbo Supertrail’. We highly recommend a trip to the top of the Kosciuszko Express to the Eagles Nest, the highest restaurant in Australia, you will not want to miss this incredible view! Families visiting Thredbo love the leisure centre for off-snow days with heated pool, waterslide bouldering wall, trampolines and more.
Victorian ski resorts
are accessible via Melbourne with the closest (Mt Buller) being only 3 hours away. A great option for a short trip or if travelling with children.
Due to its close proximately to Melbourne, Mount Buller
is easily the most popular ski resort in Victoria, and can be busy on weekends and during school holidays. Mt Buller offers 740 acres of skiable terrain and is home to the largest lift network in Victoria, the ski resort is also the best place in Australia for dog sledding (in our opinion). Mount Buller ski resort is an excellent family-friendly winter holiday option, but also has vibrant après scene, with 30+ bars to choose from.
Often referred to as the most picturesque ski field, Falls Creek
ski resort is only 5.5-hours from Melbourne and has a vibrant, pedestrian only ski village. Offering a true ski in, ski out experience, Falls Creek is the largest of Victorian ski resorts.
is ideal for the more advanced skier or snowboarder, with its village on top of a mountain, instead of at the base of the mountain, you ski downhill to get to the chairlift. Hotham is best for people seeking a self-contained accommodation experience, on top of the Victorian High Country.
Top 10 things to do in Winter in New South Wales
- Take the Kosciuszko Express to the Eagles Nest
- Visit Thredbo’s leisure centre for family fun
- Visit the Wildbrumby Schnapps Distillery
- Channel the ‘Cool Runnings’ vibes and bobsled at Thredbo
- Explore the Yarrangobilly Caves
- Fish for trout in Lake Jindabyne
- Stop for a cold one at the Kosciuszko Brewery
- Take the family to the Snowy Hydro Discovery Centre
- Pamper yourself at a day-spa
- Explore the Kosciuszko National Park
If you are heading to Victoria
, we recommend adding an extra night in Melbourne before or after your ski holiday. Explore the city, enjoy incredible food and coffee and hit the winter night markets. If you choose to visit Mt Buller,
dog sledding is a once-in-a-lifetime experience to add to your itinerary.
Home to the Great Dividing Range, the Australian Alps and the Snowy Mountains, Australia has some great domestic ski resorts across New South Wales and Victoria within a driving distance from Melbourne, Sydney, or Canberra airports. If you are not keen on driving in the snow, take advantage of a scheduled ski shuttle service.
Ski shuttles leave on specific schedules, running only on set days and at set times. If you are travelling inter-state, sometimes and overnight stay may be required to connect with early bus departures. Generally, services to the NSW Ski resorts run Fridays and Sundays. You can travel from Canberra to Jindabyne, Perisher and Thredbo using Snoexpress on Fridays and Sundays. Buses to VIC ski resorts run Friday – Monday. Have a chat to our ski specialist and they will assist you in booking a smooth ski holiday!
Australia’s ski season runs from June-September each year, skiing domestically is a great way to get your snow fix, without the need for a passport or long international flights and due to the accessibility of the resorts many people visit more than once a year!
Due to the accessible location of Aussie ski resorts, many people drive up just for the weekends which can be busy, so if you can be flexible, take the week off and enjoy less crowd’s midweek, making weekdays often the best days to ski.
The snow season in Australia from June-September. Snow in June and September is somewhat unpredictable, and therefore travelling over those months can be significantly cheaper, but risky!
The average snowfall at ski resorts across Australia is 1.5m-2m, but that does vary per resort. Major resorts run with the assistance of snow making machines. The great thing about skiing close to home is that if there is an incredible forecast, you can drop everything and head to the slopes.
Temperatures in winter at popular ski resorts generally ranges from -5C up to 7C