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Overseas trips you can make over a long weekend (that you probably didn’t know you could)

We're not as remote as you might think we are.

Long weekends like Australia Day, Easter and the King's birthday are the perfect excuse to get away on a spontaneous trip. While exploring your own backyard on your days off is always a good idea, you might be surprised to know you can actually travel internationally for a decent 3- or even 4-day holiday from most capital cities in Australia.

And no, we're not just suggesting you pay our Kiwi friends a visit for the weekend… although there is that option.

To bring you the best destinations to jet set to, we sought out flights with a travel time of 4 hours or less because you shouldn't spend all your time flying when you should be maxing out your holiday hours.

Top overseas trips for the long weekend


New Zealand

We’re going to get this one over and done with early. Located southeast of Australia, New Zealand makes for the perfect long-weekend break due to its proximity to Australia as well as the frequency of direct flights between major cities.

Flights from eastern Australia are between 3-4 hours to major New Zealand cities such as Auckland, Christchurch, Queenstown and Wellington. The shortest direct flight is between Sydney and Queenstown at 3 hours.

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Up to 15% off select New Zealand adventures


New Zealand flights from $180


Cheap Flights to New Zealand from $182


Mercure Auckland Queen Street stay starts at $988


Up to 15% off New Zealand trips



The French Polynesian territory of New Caledonia might seem a world away culturally, but it’s only a short flight from Australia’s eastern cities. Renowned for its beaches, marine life and island culture, you can get to it for under 3 hours from Sydney and Brisbane.

Search for flights to Noumea Browse hotels


Noumea flights from $350


Cheap Flights to Noumea from $344



Australia’s love affair with Bali isn’t without reason. From its powder-soft beaches to its affordable budget flights, it’s best flown for a short trip from Perth or Darwin. If you’ve got a few more days to spare, you can get up to Bali from Sydney or Brisbane in a little over 6 hours.

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Sydney to Bali flights from $241


Last-minute flights to Bali from $181


Dili, Timor-Leste

If you’ve seen and done Bali or are looking for a more authentic Indonesian experience, try East Timor’s capital Dili. Located on the north coast of the country, Dili features pristine views of the bay and Atauro Island. Darwin is the only Australian capital that offers short, direct flights to it, with a travel time of 1 hour and 20 minutes.

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Australia to East Timor flights from $318


Cheap flights to Timor-Leste from $579



Featuring over 300 islands and a tropical landscape of sandy beaches, crystal clear waters and rugged mountains, Fiji is a relaxing outpost not far from Australia’s east coast. Ideal for young families, honeymooning couples and pure relaxation, it’ll take you less than 4 hours to fly from Sydney or Brisbane, making it ideal for a 3- or 4-day holiday.

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Cheap Flights to Fiji from $178


Flights to Fiji from $201



Much like Fiji, Vanuatu is a South Pacific Island with a lot to offer families, couples and adventure seekers. Snorkel through coral oceans, unwind in plush cabanas and uncover historical WWI relics over a short trip. You can get here in just over 3 hours from Sydney or under 3 hours from Brisbane.

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Flights to Vanuatu from $492


Cheap Flights to Vanuatu from $309


Solomon Islands

Brisbane is topping the list here for the best destination to start an international holiday that won’t waste your time to get to. On top of Fiji and Vanuatu, Brisbanites also have the option to travel to the Solomon Islands for a paradise-filled adventure that's less than 4 hours away. Dreamy, laid-back, historical and landscape rich, spend your days stretching out on the beach, swimming in lagoons or wandering volcanic rims. The choice is yours.

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Flights to the Solomon Islands from $454


Cheap Flights to Solomon Islands from $381


Port Moresby

Papua New Guinea’s largest city is accessed easiest from Brisbane and is a grittier more city-based experience. With a flight time of just over 3 hours, over the course of your 3-day holiday, you can drink up views of the bay, scour marketplaces, chow down on local eats, visit museums and play it like a local.

Flights to Port Moresby Browse hotels


Cheap Flights to Port Moresby Airport from $255


Flights to Port Moresby from $304

International flights you can take under 4 hours from Australia’s capital cities

Find out where you can go. Note, unfortunately, there are no direct, international flights from Adelaide.

FromToFlight time (direct)
DarwinDili, Timor-Leste1 hour 20 minutes
DarwinBali2 hours 40 minutes
BrisbanePort Vila, Vanuatu2 hours 50 minutes
BrisbaneNoumea2 hours 10 minutes
SydneyNoumea2 hours 50 minutes
SydneyQueenstown3 hours
BrisbaneAuckland3 hours 15 minutes
MelbourneQueenstown3 hours 5 minutes
SydneyPort Vila, Vanuatu3 hours 30 minutes
BrisbanePort Moresby3 hours 10 minutes
BrisbaneHoniara, Solomon Islands3 hours 20 minutes
BrisbaneChristchurch3 hours 30 minutes
BrisbaneWellington3 hours 35 minutes
MelbourneChristchurch3 hours 15 minutes
BrisbaneQueenstown3 hours 30 minutes
MelbourneWellington3 hours 35 minutes
BrisbaneFiji3 hours 40 minutes
HobartAuckland3 hours 30 minutes (no direct flights)
MelbourneAuckland3 hours 30 minutes
PerthBali3 hours 45 minutes
SydneyFiji3 hours 55 minutes
SydneyWellington3 hours, 15 minutes
SydneyAuckland3 hours
SydneyChristchurch3 hours, 5 minutes

Four-day weekend?

If you can stretch your holiday even further and push that flight time just a smidgen, it’s possible to make it even further north than Bali. From Darwin, you can get up to Singapore in just 4 hours and 45 minutes, and from Sydney, you can now fly direct to Tonga in 4 hours and 35 minutes.

See deals for the long weekend


Up to 25% off Australia car hires

Expires 31 Dec 2023
Available on select dates until December 2023 when you pick up a rental on Sunday, Monday or Tuesday. T&Cs apply.

10% off select hotels around the world

Get 10% off select hotels and free cancellation on selected hotels with Mate's Rates. T&Cs apply.

Up to 55% off international tours

Available for travel on select dates. Destinations include Australia, New Zealand, the USA, Greece, Japan, and more. T&Cs apply.

Mercure Auckland Queen Street stay starts at $988

Available for booking with select dates unless sold out. It includes breakfast, parking, gym fitness, and more. T&Cs apply.

Up to 71% off hotel & adventure packages

Available on select dates. Destinations include Sydney, Queensland, Brisbane, New South Wales, and more. T&Cs apply.

Up to $20 off Gold Coast theme park passes

Available for travel on select dates. Other attractions include Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World and Wet'n'Wild. T&Cs apply.

Up to 25% off Australia holiday packages

Available on select dates until 15 December 2023 when you book your hotel and flights together. Destinations include Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, and Gold Coast. T&Cs apply.

Up to 5% off Broome holiday packages

Available on select travel dates when you book your flights and hotel together. T&Cs apply.

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2 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    AnnNovember 1, 2023

    What are the covid 19 protocols for singapore
    Thank you 😊

      SarahNovember 1, 2023Finder

      Hi Ann, the current advice from the government is that all travellers can enter Singapore with no entry approvals, pre-departure tests, on-arrival tests, quarantine, and COVID-19 travel insurance required.

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