It’s time to officially celebrate mums around the world once again! Not that we don’t appreciate and celebrate you throughout the whole year Mum, but this is your special day where you’re treated like the queen you are. To help celebrate all of the mothers out there, we’ve put together a list of some of the best experiences to do with your mum come Sunday the 12th of May (write that down, kids!). To all of the partners and children reading this: take note, because a few flowers and some chocolate just don’t cut it!
5. Enjoy a Lunch or Dinner Cruise
With a blend of relaxation, scenery and dining, what better way to say thanks than with a scenic cruise accompanied by some delicious food? Imagine mum sitting on the open deck, wind in her hair, wine glass in hand and a big smile on her face. There are numerous lunch and dinner cruises available around both Australia and New Zealand, so no matter which state or island in which you reside, there’s the chance to book a pair of comfortable seats.
Many such cruises offer a full buffet lunch, with some even providing additional live entertainment for the duration of the cruise. However, nothing is more entertaining than simply spending time with Mum and looking out over such spectacles as the famed Sydney Harbour, glitzy Surfers Paradise, or the picturesque waters of the Great Barrier Reef – the choice is yours (or Mum’s).
Imagine mum sitting on the open deck, wind in her hair, wine glass in hand and a big smile on her face.
For those on the west coast, Perth’s Captain Cook Cruises will take you on a scenic and delicious ride along the Swan River pairing great views with delicious food and wine and you’re in for an enjoyable 3-hours aboard a comfortable boat accompanied with live entertainment.
Heading east, the likes of Sea World Cruises put on a spread with their lunch cruise departing Surfers Paradise. Spread over 2-hours, you’ll enjoy a full buffet lunch as you cruise through the Surfers Paradise canals and out onto the Southport Broadwater. From Auckland to Tasmania and everywhere in-between, check out the full range of lunch and dinner cruises available around Australia and New Zealand here.
4. Get high with a Hot Air Balloon ride
Start the day off on a high note (quite literally) with a journey among the clouds aboard a serene hot air balloon. Producing spectacular views, you and Mum will have the best seats in the house from which to watch the sun rise on yet another glorious Mother’s Day. With a wide collection of regions across the two countries offering Hot Air Balloon rides, each delivers a distinctive panorama that’s incredibly photogenic in its own right.
Various ballooning panoramas around the country are completely different to the point that no two experiences are quite the same; if you’re ballooning over Tropical North Queensland, expect a vibrant blend of vivid waters and dense tropical greenery.
Contrast this with the cityscape of ballooning over the Melbourne CBD, or even the expansive and rugged red terrain of hot air ballooning over the Australian Outback, and you’ve got ballooning adventures that are as different as they are magical. Accompany any of these with an inclusive breakfast and champagne and you’ll have one happy Mum!
Producing spectacular views, you and Mum will have the best seats in the house from which to watch the sun rise on yet another glorious Mother’s Day.
Depending on what kind of views you’re chasing, you’ll be sure to find an ideal balloon backdrop somewhere in Australia. For views of a patchwork of farmland, wineries and more, head to South Australia’s Barossa Valley.
Barossa Balloon Adventures will take you over the beautiful valley for a full hour, however, the fun doesn’t stop once the balloon has landed; upon touching back down, you’ll be whisked away to Langmeil Winery where you’ll be served a delicious gourmet breakfast followed by a range of wine tastings.
If you’re instead after a collection of colourful views all in one, trek up north to hover over the picturesque Cairns region. Combining spectacular views of the vibrant Great Barrier Reef and the lush Atherton Tablelands, you can choose from a 30-minute or 60-minute flight over the area.
No matter which one you choose you’ll be sure to see some spectacular sights that sum up the best of the tropics! See the full list of hot air ballooning experiences here.
3. Have an epic animal encounter
We’re not talking about your average trip to the local zoo – step things up a notch this year with an awesome animal experience Mum won’t forget! There are various sanctuaries and habitats spread out over both countries that allow visitors to get up close and personal with some of their cuter, cuddlier animals.
If you’re down the southern end of the country, make your way over to Phillip Island to experience the adorable penguins coming home after a long day in the water. This is one experience she won’t forget; watching these pint-sized animals waddle ashore in their daily “Penguin Parade” is a gorgeous sight to witness.
We’re not talking about your average trip to the local zoo – step things up a notch this year with an awesome animal experience Mum won’t forget!
If you’ve got a mother who’s more of a daredevil than yourself, shout her a chance to dive in the deep with some sharks at SEA LIFE Aquariums across the country such as Manly and Mooloolaba. Or if she’s even more extreme, take the plunge into the open ocean alongside Great White Sharks or sea lions off the coast of South Australia!
If mum wants to take it a bit slower this Mother’s Day, opt for a horse and carriage ride through the Melbourne CBD or Mornington Peninsula, or perhaps even cuddling up to the cute koalas at Brisbane’sLone Pine Koala Sanctuary or the Gold Coast’s Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary to name just a few. See our list of 6 awesome close-up animal encounters around Australia here for some more inspiration!
2. Take the leap and Skydive
Is Mum looking to tick an item off the Bucket List? Get that blood pumping and hook her up to an experienced skydiver with a tandem dive over some of Australia and New Zealand’s most picturesque landscapes. Most Mums might not be up for it at first, but after her feet are planted safely on the ground after it’s all over, she’ll be thanking you profusely and begging to do it again.
If this happens, you might have to remind Mum that skydiving is quite expensive and this was a one-off thing; however, if she is so eager to try it again she can at least chip in for your jump as well (thanks, Mum!). There are so many places you can take the leap and jump out of a perfectly good plane – so why not see which one is closest to you and jump on the opportunity (pun intended).
Get that blood pumping and hook her up to an experienced skydiver with a tandem dive over some of Australia and New Zealand’s most picturesque landscapes.
Across the ditch in New Zealand, adrenaline Mummas can strap themselves in and jump over some of the country’s most beautiful regions such as Queenstown, Wanaka, Taupo, Fox Glacier and the Bay of Islands.
If you’re in Australia meanwhile, look into jumping over the likes of Queensland’s Airlie Beach, Victoria’s Great Ocean Road, Western Australia’s Rottnest Island or even the Northern Territory’s iconic Uluru, to name just a few of the best skydiving panoramas. See our top 10 picks of the best skydiving spots around Australia and New Zealand here.
1. Taste your way around a winery
If your mother considers herself something of a wine connoisseur – or simply enjoys a glass or two of her favourite drop – then paying a visit to one of Australia & New Zealand’s many great cellar doors is a must.
Take the stress out of the day by embarking on an organised tour as opposed to driving yourself; this way you can all truly indulge in the delicious wines and food produced on premises. Spread across both Oz & NZ you’ll find a long list of wineries in which to sink your teeth – and indulge your palate.
Starting with New Zealand and it’s renowned wine production – there are 11 different regions in New Zealand in which you can walk, cycle or drive to vineyards and enjoy the delicious tastes they create – thanks to the maritime climate and proximity to the water.
Top NZ wine regions include Auckland, Northland, Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Gisborne, Hawkes Bay, Wairarapa, Marlborough, Nelson, Canterbury/Waipara Valley and Central Otago. All of these are known for different flavours, tastes and blends, so be sure to do your research before planning a wine tour.
Spread across both Oz & NZ you’ll find a long list of wineries in which to sink your teeth – and indulge your palate.
If you’re looking to taste some of Australia’s favourites, instead pay a visit to some of the most popular and famous wine locales around the country. From Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula and Yarra Valley to Western Australia’s Swan Valley and Margaret River, and South Australia’s Barossa Valley, Clare Valley and McLaren Vale, Australia is home to plenty of spots in which to enjoy a quality drop.
One top recommendation is Boutique Tours Australia, who conducts tours around New South Wales’ Hunter Valley, visiting up to four of the region’s best boutique wineries, with private tastings and behind-the-scenes tours at each. This small group tour will give you a personalised and intimate experience with some of the best food and wine in the region.
Over in New Zealand, you can embark on a half or full day tour around the sunny and wine-rich Hawkes Bay region with Bay Tours and Charters. Here, you’ll visit a handful of the region’s most acclaimed wineries, taste some of the rich local produce and delicious wines, and enjoy the spectacular views. View our full range of winery tours in both Australia and New Zealand here.