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Your Australia-wide guide to 2023 school holidays

Looking for a summary of the 2023 school holidays in Australia? You’re in the right place. No matter if you’re in NSW, VIC, QLD or any other Aussie state or territory, we’ve mapped out the holiday dates so you can get planning adventures for 2023.

With the rising cost of living a real consideration for so many of us in late 2022, planning good value family holidays in 2023 has been a frequent topic of conversation amongst my friendship circles this holiday season.

For those who don’t need to travel during school holidays, knowing when they are around the country will help you find some great low or shoulder season deals. For those who can only holiday between terms, the further in advance you can plan, the more likely you are to find a good deal.

So spread out your calendars, travel guides, Instagram inspo and mood boards – we’ve got some dreaming to do for the 2023 school holidays!

It might just be time to head overseas again when 2023 school holidays roll around. Credit: Janeece Keller

Mark the following dates in your diaries. Then check out these month-by-month suggestions for your 2023 school holidays:

Australian summer school holiday dates 2022-23

Most people will have these holidays already sorted and international travel has definitely been an option for many (despite the crazy flight prices).

NSW21 December 2022 to 26 January 2023
Victoria21 December 2022 to 29 January 2023
ACT17 December 2022 to 30 January 2023
Tasmania22 December 2022 to 7 February 2023
South Australia17 December 2022 to 29 January 2023
Western Australia16 December 2022 to 31 January 2023
Northern Territory16 December 2022 to 30 January 2023
Queensland10 December 2022 to 22 January 2023
You can confirm the specifics at each state government’s department of education website (links to each at the end of this story)

Things to do in the Australian summer 2022-23 school holidays

With a whopping 6 weeks to play with, and the fun and frivolity of the festive season to fuel you, many families prefer to avoid the holiday price hikes overseas and take longer breaks at home in Australia.

In NSW the 2023 school holidays are a great time for a South Coast road trip. If you’re thinking about Queensland fun, think Noosa or Fraser Island over the summer break. The Tassie temperatures are certainly alluring at this time of year. Go for a dip in Cataract Gorge or delve into the MONA air con to make the most of your school holidays in 2023.

Read more: the top 10 sizzling summer destinations in Australia

MONA, just outside Hobart is a fun family day out in the Apple Isle. Credit: Tourism Tasmania & Rob Burnett

Australian autumn school holiday dates 2023

NSWMonday 10 April to Friday 21 April 2023
VictoriaFriday 7 April to Friday 21 April 2023
ACTFriday 7 April to Friday 21 April 2023
TasmaniaFriday 7 April to Tuesday 25 April 2023
South AustraliaMonday 17 April to Friday 28 April 2023
Western AustraliaFriday 7 April to Friday 21 April 2023
Northern TerritoryFriday 7 April to Friday 14 April 2023
QueenslandMonday 3 April to Friday 14 April 2023

Remember, Easter falls within these school holidays so there are lots of public holidays. Book accommodation and experiences early to avoid disappointment.

Things to do in the autumn 2023 school holidays

If you’re sticking down under during autumn, consider regional NSW for your 2023 school holidays – it’s a great time of year to road trip to Dubbo and visit Taronga Western Plains Zoo. Or venture to regional Victoria and Queensland for an outback adventure or farm stay.

If you’re travelling with teens, this is a great time to tackle a multi-day hike or test drive a new city.

April is also ideal in the Kimberley, where you can explore the Bungle Bungles and Lake Kunanurra. Or head to Broome, where, if you time it right, you might just get to see the staircase to the moon.

The unusual sight of the Bungle Bungles is one for the bucket list. Credit: Shutterstock

If you’re keen to head overseas around Easter, Japan beckons with the pink of cherry blossoms. And South-east Asia enjoys the last of its dry season, with mild temperatures in Cambodia and Laos.

school holidays
Like something out of a fairytale, Japan’s shrines and castles turn magic in cherry blossom season. Credit: Shutterstock

Australian winter school holiday dates 2023

NSWMonday 3 July to Friday 14 July 2023
VictoriaMonday 26 June to Friday 7 July 2023
ACTMonday 3 July to Friday 14 July 2023
TasmaniaMonday 10 July to Friday 21 July 2023
South AustraliaMonday 10 July to Friday 21 July 2023
Western AustraliaMonday 3 July to Friday 14 July 2023
Northern TerritoryMonday 26 June to Monday 17 July 2023
QueenslandMonday 26 June to Friday 7 July 2023

What to do in the 2023 Australian winter school holidays

Many families who reside in the southern half of the Aussie map dread the winter school holidays. It signals the time to don woolly hats and rug up for winter.

For some schools, the winter 2023 school holidays are a luxurious three weeks long, providing lots of opportunities for families to venture a little further from home.

Some of my favourite options are:

Great Barrier Reef school holidays
Maybe you’ll be lucky enough to snorkel with turtles on the Barrier Reef. Credit: Shutterstock

Read more: Top tips for skiing with kids and teens or Where to ski in Australia and New Zealand

Fiji and the pacific islands are perfect places to escape to the sun over winter. This is peak season for Aussie families, so book early to get the best airfares and hotel deals.

Read more: Why Fiji is the best place for families

If you’re planning a staycation over the winter holidays here are some ideas to help you keep the kids entertained at home

Fiji family hotels
Fiji is known for warm hospitality and great kids activities. Picture: Radisson Blu Fiji

Australian spring school holiday dates 2023

NSWMonday 25 September to Friday 6 October 2023
VictoriaMonday 18 September to Friday 29 September 2023
ACTMonday 25 September to Friday 6 October 2023
TasmaniaMonday 2 October to Friday 13 October 2023
South AustraliaMonday 2 October to Friday 13 October 2023
Western AustraliaMonday 25 September to Friday 6 October 2023
Northern TerritoryMonday 25 September to Friday 6 October 2023
QueenslandMonday 18 September to Monday 2 October 2023

Note: For a number of Australian states Monday 2 October 2023 is a public holiday,

Things to do in the 2023 spring school holidays

Australia blushes with the springtime colour as Canberra hosts the Floriade Festival and Western Australia’s wildflower fields bloom.

It’s the end of the whale watching season on the NSW coast and some of the best viewings are down south around Merrimbula and Eden.

Fields of tulips with Ferris wheel in background at Canberra Floriade school holidays
There is plenty for families at Floriade Credit: Fon Hodes/Shutterstock

If you’re considering an international trip for the spring school holidays, families will enjoy fewer crowds and cooler weather in China and Taiwan.

If you’re feeling more adventurous, consider tapping into the festival season in Nepal, which celebrates Dashain, Diwali and Tihar in October.

Alternatively, make the most of Europe’s shoulder season in the quaint English Cotswolds, and enjoy Oktoberfest in Germany.

The Great Wall of China.
Make sure the Great Wall of China and Forbidden City get on your itinerary. Credit: Alison Godfrey

Australian summer school holiday dates 2023-24

NSWWednesday 20 December 2023 to Monday 29 January 2024
VictoriaThursday 21 December 2023 to Monday 29 January 2024
ACTMonday 18 December 2023 to Monday 29 January 2024
TasmaniaFriday 22 December 2023 to Tuesday 6 February 2024
South AustraliaMonday 18 December 2023 to Monday 29 January 2024
Western AustraliaFriday 15 December 2023 to Tuesday 30 January 2024
Northern TerritoryMonday 18 December 2023 to Monday 29 January 2024
QueenslandMonday 11 December 2023 to Friday 19 January 2024

With lots of public holidays falling across December and January, this is the busiest holiday period of the year for Australian families so make sure you book travel and experiences as far in advance as possible.

Things to do in the Australian summer 2023-24 school holidays

We’re crossing our fingers that by the summer 2024 school holiday all Covid-19 challenges and disruptions will be a thing of the past. And the cost of living challenges will have eased, which puts bucket list trips back on the radar.

January is prime Northern Lights viewing season in Scandinavia, Christmas mayhem in Austria and ski madness in Switzerland. (And for the non skiers, here’s 7 things to do in Switzerland in winter without skiing)

Experiencing the magic of the Northern Lights is a once-in-lifetime experience Credit: Shutterstock

Skip Sri Lankan monsoon season by surfing and snorkelling in January instead, or luxe it up in the Maldives.

Or how about a trip to Canada? It’s a great place to teach the kids to ski, spot killer whales off Vancouver Island or check out Niagara Falls.

Links to the individual state education department websites with all the 2023 school terms (and holiday) dates

NSW school terms and holiday
Victoria’s school term
ACT school term
Tasmanian school term
South Australian school term
Western Australia school term
Northern Territory school term
Queensland school term

If you’re looking for extra school holiday 2023 inspiration, have a read of these:

Why you should avoid ‘vanilla holidays’

24 famous landmarks to tick off your bucket list

11 travelling families on Instagram

Where are the Disneylands?

School holidays on a shoe-string

Top Aussie destinations for large group holidays

How to find a good coffee while travelling

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