Send the books packing: Best destinations for school-leaver celebrations

On November 16, 2011 at 09:00 AM

Exams are almost over and then school is out – for good. Students all over Australia have been holed up indoors preparing and sitting for exams, but by mid-November, Aussie school-leavers will be taking a well-deserved break and having some much needed fun.

Picking a post high school holiday is like picking an elective, the choices are many and preferences vary. Some choose partying or adventure and some choose to relax and recover from exam stress. Either way celebrating the end of your school years is an Aussie tradition. And, students’ hard-earned dollars are going further, meaning sharing good times overseas is worth considering!  

Last minute schoolie packages** from Expedia:

Best for partying:

Bali, Indonesia:

Flights and fun come cheap in Bali. The hottest of Asia’s schoolie destinations, it’s perfect for surfers and party people. Students can kiss the textbooks goodbye and say hello to days filled with surfing, shopping and sun and then dance the night away.

Expedia deal: Fly Virgin Australia and stay five nights at the four-star Bali Kuta Resort by Swiss-Belhotel in Bali. Priced from $860 per person, ex Sydney.

Phuket, Thailand:

With sun, sand and a world-renowned nightlife scene, it’s no wonder that partygoers the world over flock to Phuket. Patong Beach comes alive at night with neon lights, deafening music and a mind boggling number of bars, pubs and nightclubs. Days are usually spent lounging by the pool getting ready for the next party.

Expedia deal: Fly Malaysia Airlines and stay five nights at the four-star Andakira Hotel in Phuket. Priced from $1152 per person, ex Sydney.

Best for Chillaxing:

Vanuatu:

For those looking for a traditional island getaway where exams become a distance memory, Vanuatu is a good option. There’s more to this schoolies trip than sitting by the pool with waterports galore available but it’s really for those that want time to recharge the batteries.

Expedia deal: Fly Air Vanuatu and stay five nights at the four-star Grand Hotel and Casino in Efate, Vanuatu. Priced from $943 per person, ex Sydney.

Fiji:

Pack away the school books and head to Fiji for a subdued but special way to recharge the batteries. Although it’s a tame schoolies option, those looking to experience something a little wild, can dive with the sharks – a definite “dear mum” moment!

Expedia deal: Fly Air Pacific and stay five nights at the three-star Smugglers Cove Beach Resort and Hotel in Nadi, Fiji. Priced from $626 per person, ex Sydney.

Noosa, Queensland:

No schoolies list would be complete without a sunshine-state-special. Noosa is a low-key alternative for those wishing to avoid the hordes of school leavers descending upon the Gold Coast but still want to enjoy the sun and surf.

Expedia deal: Fly Jetstar Airways and stay five nights at the four-star Anchor Motel Noosa in Noosaville. Priced from $517 per person, ex Sydney.

Byron, NSW:

For home-turf fun, Bryon Bay is a not-to-be-dissed schoolies hotspot. With some of the best surf breaks in the world, this gem is home to spectacular beaches and has a unique vibe. The town is a hub for live music, bands and DJs so check out the local bars and pubs. 

Expedia deal: Fly Jetstar Airways and stay five nights at the three-star Atlantic Byron Bay in Byron Bay. Priced from $651 per person, ex Sydney.

Best for action:

Queenstown, New Zealand:

The blood will start pumping as soon as you land in Queenstown! There are tonne of adrenaline sports but our pick of the bunch is white water rafting on the Shotover River or taking on the highest bungee in Australasia, the Nevis Bungy, which has a 134m drop and 8.5 seconds of freefall. Either way, exam stress will be a distant memory and you’ll be reliving the memories for months.

Expedia deal: Fly Virgin Australia and stay five nights at the four-and-a-half star Oaks Club Resort in Queenstown. Priced from $917 per person, ex Sydney.

Best for a girl’s trip:   

California, USA:

You don’t have to have studied economics to know that we are getting more bang for our buck in the US. Perhaps a more appealing option for the ladies, schoolies can head stateside and enjoy shopping and star spotting in Hollywood!

Expedia deal: Fly Delta and stay five nights at the four-star Hollywood Roosevelt in Los Angeles. Priced from $1861 per person, ex Sydney.

Best for a bit of everything:

Honolulu, USA:

For schoolies looking for fun in all varieties, Hawaii is a good place to go. The strong Aussie dollar makes it even more appealing. Whether it’s taking a surfing lesson on Waikiki Beach or embarking on a shopping spree at Ala Moana Center, there really is something for everyone.

Expedia deal: Fly Jetstar Airways and stay five nights at the three-star Aqua Waikiki Wave in Honolulu. Priced from $1692 per person, ex Sydney.

Nha Trang, Vietnam:

Scoring third on the Expedia® NABTravellers’ Foreign Currency Rankings*, Vietnam is the best value destination in Asia for Aussie travellers so should be considered. Maybe for the more experienced traveller, a trip to Vietnam won’t disappoint. With markets, food, beaches and history, this destination is bound to make your Facebook friends jealous.

Expedia deal: Fly Singapore Airlines and stay five nights at the three-star Nhat Thanh Hotel in Nha Trang. Priced from $1,610 per person, ex Sydney.

-Ends-

Notes to editor:

*Source: National Australia Bank (http://www.nab.com.au/) 08/09/2010 – 08/09/2011

**All package deals have been sourced from www.expedia.com.au. Prices based on travel dates from November 30 – December 6, 2011 prices correct as at 2 November, 2011.

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