5 things to do over summer break

The warmer months are upon us, so it’s time to start planning summer activities to make the most of your summer. Some things, like learning to surf, working, or going camping don’t need tonnes of planning in advance, but if you’re thinking of au pairing, or travelling internationally, then you’ll need to start the planning process now.

Here are some ideas for the summer:

Be a Beach Bum
Whether you’re lounging on the beach or learning to surf the waves like a pro, the beach is a classically Aussie place to spend the summer. The top beaches to visit, and some of the best locations to learn to surf in Australia are: Bondi Beach, Point Break (Noosa, QLD), Byron Bay, the Northern Beaches, Bells Beach (VIC), Crescent Head (NSW) and Margaret River (WA).

Get Back to Nature
Now, I’m not that great with bugs (I go a little nuts with the Aeroguard), so I loathe camping, but admire anyone who can pee behind a tree. If you want to get back to nature, and get in some hiking, canoeing, and/or sightseeing, there are great camping spots all around Australia, including: Bonnie Vale (Royal National Park, NSW), Acacia Flats (Blue Mountains National Park, NSW), Bellarine Bayside (Portarlington, VIC), Wye River Reserve (VIC), Boreen Point (Sunshine Coast, QLD), Borumba Deer Park (Gympie Area, QLD), Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park (WA), D’Entrecasteaux National Park (WA).

Make Some Moolah
For me, the summer holidays are all about working, working, and working. Last year, I was lucky enough to work Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Years Eve, AND New Years Day. The bad thing about those shifts? A lot were midnighters, and I missed a lot of fun holiday time. The good part? Money, people, money. There’s plenty of public holidays during the summertime, and that means public holiday rates! Which means it’s the perfect time to work your butt off, plus it sets you up for the year ahead, and may let you have a mid-sem break getaway later on.

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Live The Nanny Diaries
Ah, the glamorous life of an au pair, travelling overseas, living in a house for free, and looking after kids to make money. It doesn’t sound too bad, but it can go awry quickly. A friend of mine decided to go au pairing, and found a family with good references, but when she got there, she was given a room in the basement, the family was rude, and lastly, refused to pay her. She had been counting on that money to get her through the trip, and struggled for the rest of her time there. The lesson: always take enough money to last you the whole trip, don’t count on anything. You may not like the family, the accommodation, or the work, and may have to abandon au pairing. That said, I’ve also heard great stories, from people who loved it, so do your research and hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

Grow Your Good Karma
Volunteering or doing charity work is very fulfilling, and it can be lots of fun, as well as great work experience (gotta think about that resume!), so find something you’re passionate about, and go for it! I suggest: animal shelters, environmental clean up, or the various elephant and turtle sanctuaries in South East Asia.

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