All my friends are getting grandies. And they’re whipping this empty-nester back into their school holiday orbit with chatter about what’s on to keep the little ones occupied.
Get ready to stave off any hint of holiday boredom with this round-up of what’s on the radar in Geelong and The Bellarine for the upcoming autumn and Easter holiday break.
Grab a cuppa and have a browse – there’s more fun than you can poke a Mik Mak at!
Craft, science and critters as you cross the Bay.
Searoad Ferries school holiday activity program is all aboard fun! There's Professor Brains with a science show, upcycled craft activities and live aquatic animals. Check their website for days and departures.
Hang out with the Hippos!
Head to Werribee Open Range Zoo for a Hippo Keeper Talk brimming with insights about hippo habits, healthcare, personalities and feeding. Daily at 1.10pm.
All aboard The Bellarine Railway
Give the kids (or the grandies) a steam train experience they’ll never forget: a Day Out With Thomas (8 & 9 April), an Easter Bunny Special (15 & 16 April), a good ol’ Good Friday Train Ride (14 April) or a heritage trip between Drysdale and Queenscliff stations (most days). Book ahead online and climb aboard.
We are sailing!
Teach the little tackers how to sail. Royal Geelong Yacht Club is running Tackers, an intro program to the basics of sailing and water confidence, suitable for 7-12 year olds (3-7 April).
Away with the ferries
Embark on your family’s maiden voyage with Port Phillip Ferries from Portarlington to Docklands (or if you're in Melbourne, come in this direction!) Kids cruise half price during the holidays (and then fly for free on the Melbourne Star-Observation Wheel alongside a paying adult).
National Wool Museum
Turning on a full-featured holiday program for busy hands and busy minds. Drop-in for free themed craft activities on weekdays 11am – 1pm, suitable for early years to primary school ages. Or book in for a Pirate Pantomime Workshop (5 April), a nature-inspired creative writing workshop (12 April) or a free Pirate Easter Egg Hunt (16 April). More.
Sea All Dolphin Swims
Share in an unforgettable experience: snorkelling Popes Eye then getting up close and personal with fur seals and dolphins in their wild environment. Half-priced kids’ holiday fares. Lock it in: book online for instant confirmation. More.
Get up close and personal with aquatic life at the Marine and Freshwater Discovery Centre including fishy tales and ocean art. Open every day of the holidays with activities running until Thursday 13 April.
Saddle up for a full-day horse riding camp suitable for ages 7 and above (yes, big kids, too). Book your saddle spot at Saddle On, Lovely Banks (3-6 & 10 April).
Beauty and the Beast at the Potato Shed
Intro the kidlets to grass roots theatre with a family pleasing performance full of colour and movement, catchy tunes and bundles of audience participation. Two shows daily (1-13 April). More.
Curiouser and curiouser!
Let imaginations (young and old) run wild at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party at Mansion Hotel and Spa, Werribee. It’s an Easter high tea with all the trappings including an egg hunt and fun kids’ activities (16 April).
Discover an ancient culture
Take the munchkins on a guided “Experience Narana” cultural tour to learn about traditional Indigenous ways of living (weekdays 3-13 April). More.
Get amongst the Easter excitement
A rite of passage for all kids! Visit Fairy Park for a special Easter experience in a fairytale setting: magic shows, balloon art, Easter Bunny appearance and face painting (15-17 April).
Storyfest, Central Geelong
I would’ve had my kids to this in a heartbeat! A multi-arts storytelling festival for children. Daily at multiple venues across Central Geelong (1-13 April). More.
Batwatch at Geelong Botanic Gardens
Share in a unique sunset batwatching expedition. Watch the fruit bats fly out en masse from their daytime roost. Bring a torch, warm clothes and a picnic to share in the park before the spectacle begins. More.
Smurfs and the Easter Bunny.
At Waurn Ponds Shopping Centre, dive into daily Smurf-themed craft activities as part of the We Are All Smurfs Exhibition (3-7 & 10-15 April, ex Good Friday). Line the littlies up to have their photo snapped with the Easter Bunny (10-15 April, ex Good Friday).
Market Square Shopping Centre
Check online for details of the centre’s dazzling diary of free kids’ events including games, magic, music, craft and shows. And, it's all FREE!
Storytime Ballet: The Nutcracker
The Australian Ballet presents the Nutcracker at GPAC in the second week of the hols. Perfect for the budding ballerinas in your life! More.