Top places to celebrate Christmas in July in Australia

A round-up of the top places around Australia that are warm, cosy and full of Christmas spirit in winter.


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Holiday dinner with stuffed turkey and side dishes

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Dreaming of a white Christmas? You may be in luck because across Australia, cities and regions take advantage of the cooler weather by hosting Christmas in July celebrations. And even if they aren't having any "official" celebrations, the colder weather in general still brings with it a special level of cosiness.

Here are a few of the most magical places to have yourself a merry little (early) Christmas in Australia.

Blue Mountains, NSW

July weather can be frightfully cold in the Blue Mountains. But that's honestly a nice excuse for hotel lobbies to fire up their fireplaces for you to snuggle up in front of.

Add in a touch of snow capped landscape and you've got the ultimate Christmassy setting.

As a bonus, venues across the region host Yulefest and channel the warmth of Christmas to keep themselves cosy.

Christmas trees glow and festive feasts abound. For example, the Carrington Hotel hosts a Saturday Gala Yulefest Dinner and the Hydro Majestic hosts a Christmas feast at its Wintergarden restaurant.

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Dandenong Ranges, Victoria

The deep, crisp and even Christmas carol quality of the Dandenong Ranges in July is all you need for seasonal cheer.

And the locals know it with its eateries inspired to put on a Christmas festival every year.

Venues like Sky High Mt Dandenong, The Cuckoo Restaurant, Marybrooke Manor, The Pig & Whistle Tarvern, The Ivy, Miss Marple’s Tea Room and the Wild Oak often offer festive lunches and dinners.

Think turkey with all the trimmings, plum pudding and other belt-busting treats.

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Thredbo, NSW

What would a wintery Christmas be without snow? Nothing, that's what.

So for the true white Christmas experience head to Thredbo to hit the slopes.

If you're lucky a flurry might even fall and jingle bells may ring as you catch a few snowboarders carving it up in a Santa suit.

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Sovereign Hill/Ballarat, Victoria

The temperature may be hanging around 10℃ mark in Ballarat but the city and its tourist attractions have all the historic charms to fill your heart.

Because isn't that what Christmas is all about?

For a real taste of the olde lifestyle, Sovereign Hill Historic Park is the place to be. This living history museum winds back the clock to the 1850s gold rush era and has horse drawn carriages and costumed characters.

During winter it often hosts a Christmas in July Winter Wonderlights festival where visitors can listen to brass bands playing carols, watch festive plays like Dickens' A Christmas Carol and see Main Street illuminated with fairy lights and moving Christmas images every night.

This year's festival has been cancelled but the park is still open, from 27 June onward and is accepting up to 1,000 visitors per day.

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Southern Downs, Queensland

For a Christmas of wintery bliss in the sunny state of Queensland, you'll have to head quite far south.

As far south as Southern Downs and the Granite Belt. This is the coldest place in the state with the thermstat dropping to 17°C by day and 3°C by night in July.

So it's little wonder that the region uses this as an excuse for many a Christmas in July celebration.

Restaurants take to the occasion with themed menus. Abbey of the Roses in Warwick is one of the most famous, annually serving up a three-course Christmas dinner with Christmas trivia every Saturday and on the last two Fridays of the month. You can even Finder Hotels.

Granite Belt Brewery, Golden Grove Estate, The Wineyard Cafe, Glen Alpin Gardens and R on the Downs are also choice options for an incredible Christmas feast.

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Training of a dog for truffle hunting

Canberra, ACT

Head out of the big smoke and pay your local wineries, farmers and restauranters a visit this year. Their warming winter meals won't disappoint and are sure to give you all those Christmas in July feels.

Winter is also truffle season where you can dine on truffle infused meals and partake in a truffle hunt. If that's more your style.

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Gold Coast, Queensland

OK sure, the Gold Coast isn't the first place you think of when you hear the words "Christmas in July" but the city does come to the party on this occasion.

Throughout the month you'll notice red and green crop up in a number of its big hotel restaurants.

This year's events have yet to be confirmed but in the past we've seen the QT Gold Coast, Harvest Buffet at The Star, The Collective and Tees Clubhouse at the RACV Royal Pines Resort serve up indulgent warming meals.

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Mr and Mrs Claus with a dog at the Queanbeyan Christmas in July festival.

Queanbeyan, ACT

It'll begin to look at lot like Christmas from 4-19 July in Queanbeyan this year.

It's all thanks to the the annual Winter Dream festival which features 150+ festive market stalls selling everything from hearty Christmas food to art.

Plus, there will be a fake snow area and an appearance from Santa, Mrs Claus and a few cheeky elves.

Early Christmas Presence Passes are available to minimise the number of people on site, in respect to COVID-19 gathering limits.

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Hunter Valley, NSW

Hot crackling fires, full-bodies wines and small cottages. Who wouldn't love heading to the Hunter Valley during winter?

It's got everything you need to make you fall in love with the season. And who knows? Your stay may even erect a Christmas tree just for you.

For an extra Christmassy feel, the Hunter Valley often hosts a Snow Time in the Gardens festival with ice skating, tobogganing, live entertainment, face painting and hearty meals served out of market stalls. Sadly, due to COVID-19 the event has been cancelled. However, it will return in 2021.

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Coastal view of Geelong in Victoria.

Geelong, Victoria

The coastal city of Geelong might be more of a summer destination to be honest, but here us out. It really does love a good event.

For the ultimate in winter transformations, head to Geelong Brewery Village. Its Winter Wonderland festival is on 21-22 July and promises to have all those warming feels with mulled cider for the adults and warm Chocolate Fondu for the kidlets.

The entertainment is also very family friendly, with a Frozen jumping castle and live ice sculptors by day and DJs spinning decks by sundown.

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Falls Creek, Victoria

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow. Victorians out hunting for powder that'll make you start singing Christmas carols no end can find all that and more at Falls Creek.

Head to the slopes to carve up your winter wonderland. Or, book a cottage in town and warm up to a crackling fire. Both work.

Annually, Falls Creek has a sled dog classic even that showcases Siberian huskies, Alaskan malamutes and Alaskan huskies as they race through the streets towards Slalom Plaza in search of victory. This year's event has yet to be confirmed.

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Mount Hotham, Victoria

Expect to wake up to snow capped mountain views when you make your July destination Mount Hotham.

That's because the resort is right at the top of the mountain.

So have yourself a very merry one and spend your days barrelling through that powder and then warming up with some (Christmas) cheer at the local pub.

It's how Santa would do it, too.

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