This post is brought to you with Nissan
A beach house holiday is an annual Australian tradition. As much as I love a stay at a hotel, it’s hard to beat bunking down in a beach house with a group of friends or family. I’ve had some great beach house holidays, whether it’s my annual summer holiday in Lorne or the luxury beach house I hired at Peregian Beach through Airbnb last year with friends. The benefits of a beach house holiday are that it’s great for a big group and you get to stay somewhere unique, cook your own food and bring your own drinks. The downside is that it takes a bit more organisation, which is where these tips come in.
1. Book as far in advance as you can
I once tried to book a beach house in Noosa the week before I wanted to go there. Everything online was gone and when I tried ringing, some estate agents basically laughed at me over phone. Organisation pays off here as beach houses can be booked out months in advance, particularly over the Christmas period. Make sure you get in early.
2. Compare online sites
Good sites to check for beach houses are Airbnb and Stayz, as well as local real estate agents. Some beach houses are only listed in one place so it’s best to check a few. Look carefully at the photos and read through any online reviews of the places you have shortlisted. I’m always a bit wary if there are no photos of the kitchen or bathroom, as this means they may be pretty dingy. Photos of only the outside of the house are also a warning sign.
3. Sort out your transport
This summer I was spoiled with the loan of a compact SUV from Nissan to get myself beachside. Unlike hotels which are generally in the centre of town, beach houses are often out of the way so you’ll want your own wheels. The Nissan QASHQAI is a stylish SUV which is perfect for a holiday getaway. I loved the in-built satellite navigation which made it easy to get to exactly where I wanted. No more pulling over to consult the iPhone for directions. The panoramic sun roof (seriously cool) made the journey there a real adventure, with the sun shining down on us as we made our way beachside.
4. Watch out for hidden costs
Beach house holidays are often more economical than staying at a hotel because you get to split the costs, but just remember to check exactly what is included. Is there an additional cleaning fee or is this part of the upfront cost? Some beach house rental fees include sheets and towels while others don’t and you are expected to bring your own. Make sure you check this first as it can be uncomfortable (and expensive) to turn up to a beach house where the beds are bare.
5. Pack almost everything beside the kitchen sink
Meat-and-Three-Veg always groans at the amount I pack for a beach house holiday, but I find that (a few!) extra additions besides your bathers and towel make the holiday even better. I tend to do more cooking over the holidays with more time on my hands, so I like to bring one or two cookbooks and of course a decent knife. Beach house kitchens are notorious for having blunt knives. Pack as much food and booze as you can fit because prices are often high and supply limited in little beach towns. The Nissan QASHQAI saved me here as the boot space of this SUV is brilliant with the Divide-N-Hide™cargo system which means you can fit lots in. If you really do want to pack the kitchen sink, the back seats fold down flat.
Thanks to Nissan for partnering with me for this post.