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What to Pack for a Winter Road Trip

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Australia can appear to be a never-ending summer adventure, but the reality is that the winter months are as varied as they come! Whether you are looking to escape the winter or embrace the cooler climates, Australia has something for everyone.

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Winter in Australia runs from June to August, and the climate will differ depending on what part of the country you’re travelling to. If you are seeking the iconic summery Australian weather, you can enjoy the mild temperatures of the winterless north in the Northern Territory, northern Western Australia, and tropical north Queensland. If you want to escape the heat and experience the winter wonderland of the alpine climate, you can venture south towards the Snowy Mountains region.

Regardless of which popular Australian road trip route or region you choose, you’ll need to pack accordingly. That is why we have put together our top tips on what to pack for a winter Australia road trip.

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Our top tips for your next winter road trip in Australia 

There are a few general things to consider when planning a winter road trip in Australia:

Plan out your road trip ahead of time 

The best part of any adventure begins with planning. Start by doing some research on what Australian attractions you want to visit and what things there are to do in Australia. This will help you decide where to go and give some insight into the climate of where you’re going.

Stock up your motorhome with fresh produce

Once you’ve collected your motorhome at your nearest maui branch, head to a supermarket or farmers market to stock up on food for the coming days.

Be prepared for all weather 

Australia in the winter tends to be warm and dry in the north and wet and cool in the south. However, Australia's weather can vary. Be sure to pack a rain jacket and light layers, and ensure you’ve got plenty of entertainment options for rainy days or evenings in the camper.

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What is included with your maui motorhome 

Before we jump into what you should pack for your road trip, it is worthwhile to know what is included when you rent a maui motorhome.

Your maui motorhome comes with an apartment-style kitchen including all the kitchen essentials, fresh linen, and more. It’s a good idea to check the full list of what’s included with your campervan hire, so you don’t double-up on your own packing.

16 things to pack for your winter road trip in Australia 

There are endless possibilities of things to pack for winter in Australia. As storage space is limited in maui motorhomes, it's important to focus on the essentials. We have narrowed down 16 of our top things to pack for your upcoming winter Australia road trip.

1. Drivers licence 

Just like you can’t forget your passport when travelling internationally, your driver's licence is essential for a road trip. Not only will you need it to pick up the motorhome, but it is a legal requirement to have your licence on you at all times while driving in Australia.

2. Layers 

When heading south for the winter season in Australia, never underestimate the importance of layers. While temperatures trend cooler in these alpine climates, this can change throughout the day depending on conditions.

This is also important in the northern states, where the weather remains warm during the day but can take a dip in the evening. Layers allow you to navigate the variable Australian weather and all it throws at you.

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3. Thermals 

If you are heading north for the winter season in Australia, then these won’t be necessary, but if you are planning a winter escape, then be sure to pack some thermals. These are a great base layer to help you regulate your temperature while enjoying the great outdoors in alpine conditions.

4. Merino socks 

Speaking of base layers, you can't go wrong with a pair of Merino Travel Socks from Kathmandu. These will help greatly when venturing outdoors, or even when seeing the sights from your hired campervan. We'd recommend any New Zealand-made Merino socks from our friends across the pond, but as long as your feet are happy on walking trails, or driving your motorhome, that makes us happy.

5. Waterproofs

Waterproofs are an obvious choice for the colder seasons but don't overlook this simple necessity. When you're in a winter wonderland without an adept, waterproof jacket, you'll wish you went the extra mile for an award-winning jacket like the Marmot Essence.

Marmot's highly specialised, super lightweight jacket (with wind- and waterproof stretch fabric) will be the difference between braving the cold and feeling brave in the cold. Now go enjoy that wonderland.

6. Hiking boots 

Whether you’re braving snowy paths or dusty climbs, hiking boots are an Australian explorer's best friend. Keeping your feet warm, dry and supported on big adventures are all great things to keep you and your travel companions happy campers.

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Top Tip: If you’re flaunting a new pair of boots, be sure to break them in before you set off on your trip to avoid blisters and achy feet!

7. Matches 

There is no better end to a day than cosying up by a fire. Winter is a perfect time for a fire - when the weather is cool and the fire risk is nice and low (be sure to check the fire bans before lighting up!).

In the northern climates, cool winter nights can get a little crisp, especially out in the desert, and nothing quite compares to a warm fire on a frosty alpine evening. So it's good to come prepared with some matches on hand.

8. First aid kit 

Never underestimate the power of a well-packed first aid kit! From scratches, bumps, bruises and cuts, it's good to come prepared with a few of the first-aid essentials. If you are heading into the outback, it’s also worthwhile doing some research on the native wildlife to steer clear of, as well as any additional first aid items you may want to bring in case of an emergency.

9. Flashlight 

A flashlight is a versatile tool for life on the road. From a night reading light to help conserve power to a guiding light for a sunrise hike, a flashlight will come in handy on any winter adventure.

10. Toiletries

One of the best things about travelling in a van is that you always have your bathroom with you. Pack your essential toiletries so they can fit nicely in the compact on board bathroom.

11. Sunscreen 

Sun protection may be the last thing on your mind during the winter months in Australia but many parts of Australia’s UV levels are 3 or above during these cooler months. You are also at higher risk if you are planning an adventure to alpine regions, where the sun reflects heavily off the snow. As such, it is important to stay sun safe in the winter and pack SPF 50+ sunscreen to protect yourself.

12. Insect repellent 

Pack a bottle of your favourite insect repellent to keep the critters at bay during the winter months in Australia. This is especially important if you are adventuring to regions where you may come across swampy or waterlogged areas where mosquitoes thrive.

13. Toilet paper

Toilet paper is an essential for adventures on the road. If you have the luxury of travelling in a self-contained motorhome, then it's important to remember to stock up so you can take full advantage of these on board facilities.

14. A good book 

Curling up with a good book inside your campervan is the perfect alternative to the outdoors for those rainy winter days. Imagine the rain on the roof, your favourite brew and a great book in front of you. Is there any better rainy day treat? You'll be praying for rainy days to help you unwind after a busy day in the great outdoors!

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15. Your favourite brew 

Some would argue tea or coffee isn't a requirement, but for many of us, we can't join the land of the living without one of these. Besides, what's better than warming up in a beautiful land with your favourite cuppa swirling in one hand?

16. A bottle of red 

Of course, if you have a favourite, why not bring a few bottles for the cold nights? Perfect for warming up the extremities. Pairs well with dinner and, of course, a slowly setting sun.

And while you're on the road, why not discover more delicious wines by staying at one of our winery havens?

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Are you ready for a winter vacation? 

If you are looking for more tips for your upcoming winter adventure, be sure to download the thl Roadtrip app. This road trip itinerary planner is the perfect companion for finding the best places to camp in Australia as well as top Australian attractions and more.

But if you are ready for a winter adventure, check out our premium range of luxury motorhomes available and book your maui camper today.