Family ski holidays: activities for the kids
We've found some of the top family friendly activities to keep the kids happy when you're not on the slopes together. Make the most out of your next family holiday to the snow by taking advantage of the great kids programs and activities on offer at Australia's main ski resorts.
The following ski resorts in Victoria and New South Wales have plenty of fun activities and events to take advantage of after a long day of skiing or if the kids would prefer to do something off the slopes.
Snowman building competitions are a great opportunity for kids to show off their skills and attempt to sculpt the winning snowman. The competitions are free to enter, and take place on Wednesday and Saturday evenings from 4:30pm in the Village Bowl.
After dark, enjoy the fanfare of the Falls Creek night shows, featuring the Fall's Creek mascot, Pete the Dragon, skiing demos, synchronised snowmobiles and everyone's favourite, a spectacular fireworks display. The show begins at 8:00pm on Thursday nights during July and August.
Adults and kids alike will love a game of Snoccé in the snow. Snoccé is the Falls Creek adaptation of the much-loved Italian ball game, Boccé. Played on the groomed Snoccé courts in the Village Bowl, Snoccé games are free and can be played from 4:30pm on Wednesday and Saturday eveningsi.
On-site childcare at Slalom Plaza is available for kids between the age of 12 weeks and five yearsii.
Mount Hotham Alpine Resort
On Wednesday and Saturday evenings, Mount Hotham comes alive with an extravaganza of singing, dancing and games in a stage show hosted by Harry the Dragon. The show is free and most suitable for three to six year olds, who will also receive a free show bag. The show begins at 4pm on the stage outside the Big Diii.
If you have time to spare, why not treat the family to a once in a lifetime experience by taking a sled dog tour? The kids will love being pulled through the snow by Siberian Husky dogs, and learning about the tradition of sled dog racing in Australia. Tours are run by Australian Sled Dog Tours, with discounted prices available for familiesiv.
Hotham Daycare run full day and half day sessions for kids aged three months to five years old. Day Care Skiing Programs are also available for children aged two or older. The skiing programs are a great way to help your kids improve their skiing ability and confidence on the slopesv.
Mount Buller Alpine Village
The Gnome Roam, a self-guided tour of the magical gnome world of the mountain village, is a must-do for families with young kidsvi.
After a long day on the mountain, why not relax with the kids in the comfort of the onsite cinema? The cinema is located in Alpine Central and usually screens two movies a night, including a family friendly movievii.
The Buller Kids' Centre offers a crèche service for kids between the ages of three months and three years, and also runs the popular Bunyips Ski Program for kids between the ages of three and six yearsviii.
Mount Baw Baw
During the school holidays in July, Mount Baw Baw puts on a great show for the kids with their Christmas in July spectacular. Kids are treated with a visit from Santa, free activities such as snowmen building competitions, toboggan races, face painting and even marshmallow toasting. Sit down for breakfast with Santa himself on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays in the Village Restaurantix.
For a fun and exciting experience, take a ride on the Sherpa Snowmobile for a 20-minute trip around the village and cross country trails. Bookings can be made in advance at the administration buildingx.
While there are currently no child care facilities at the resort, a Kids Club is run over weekends and school holidays with plenty of activities to keep the kids happy and occupiedxi.
New South Wales
On Saturday nights, the whole family can enjoy Thredbo's exciting flare run and fireworks display. Watch as skiers with flares snake down the Supertrail - a great spectacle that can be seen from all over the villagexii. The kids can also try out a flare run for themselves and show off their skiing or boarding skills in the Kids Fibre Optic Flare Run on the Friday Flat. The Kids Fibre Optic Flare Run is held every Thursday night during snow season from 4:30pmxiii.
If you're planning to put the kids in Snow School, then Family Fun Nights are a great way to come together as a family after a long day on the slopes. Watch the kids demonstrate their skiing and boarding techniques in the twilight, play with the Thredboland animals or share stories by the fire pit. Family Fun Nights are free, and start at 4:30pm every Thursday in July and Augustxiv.
Child care is available at the Thredbo Child Care Centre for kids between the ages of six months and six years, with full and half day programs on offerxv.
For the opening weekend of the snow season, Perisher plays host to the Perisher Peak Music Festival with entertainment for the whole familyxvi. As an added incentive, kids of 14 years and under get in for free.
On Tuesday nights, Perisher lights up during a brilliant free fireworks display from 7:20pm. Why not get the best possible view of the fireworks by skiing or snowboarding with the kids from 6:00pm to 9:00pm on the Front Valley? Night skiing and boarding is held on Tuesday and Saturday nights from July to Decemberxvii.
Perisher offers a wide range of programs for kids and teens, including special programs run over the school holidays. For younger kids between the ages of six months and three years, child care is available at the Snowy Discovery Centrexviii.
Charlotte Pass also holds a famous Christmas in July festivalxix,xx. The resort is decorated with tinsel and Christmas trees to celebrate the traditional white Christmas, and Santa skis by for a visit.
Pack your best 'onesies' and take part in the fun of Onesie Wednesdays, or enjoy a free snow cone on Monday afternoonsxiii.
The Kosi Kids Club is also an excellent option for kids aged three to eight years. The all-day ski program is designed to help your kids increase their confidence on the snow, with half day and full day options available.
Take a day trip with the family to the Snowy Hydro Discovery Centre in Cooma for a fun-filled day exploring the centre's models, exhibits and interactive displays. Kids will enjoy riding the 'power bikes' to see how much energy they can generate, while adults will be fascinated by the history of the incredible Snowy Mountains Scheme. The Snowy Hydro Discovery Centre is open seven days a week and is free to visit.