5 great ways to up your life skills while having fun

Here are five of the best mind-expanding holiday activities that are a hoot and great value for money to boot.

A boy and a young man make cartoon figurines at the Weta Workshop in Wellington.
  • Jetstar
  • September 2019

Make the most of your vacation with these activities in Australia and New Zealand that are educational, fun, budget-friendly – and everyone in the family will love.

Go behind the scenes in New Zealand

Some of the world’s biggest movie projects have been produced in Wellington’s Weta Workshop opens in new window, a creative studio responsible for the design and manufacture of costumes, props, sets and special effects. Happily for film fans, they offer a range of tours and workshops that offer a peek into the magic of making high-tech blockbusters such as Avatar, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and The Lord of the Rings. Book the combo option (AUD $46) for a visit to a miniature set and guided tour, where you’ll learn how costumes and creatures are designed and brought to life.

Up your life skills in Victoria

If you’ve ever googled “How to make friends as an adult?” or “How to negotiate a pay rise without my boss noticing beads of sweat dripping down my face?” the Ladies of Leisure (LOL) workshop series opens in new window is for you. A creative collective run by Savannah Anand-Sobti and Sally Tabart, LOL aims to empower women with the know-how to tackle modern life through a rotating roster of workshops in their Fitzroy headquarters (costing from AUD $25 each). The workshops are also a great way to change up your holiday routine and meet locals.

Take a history lesson in the Northern Territory

On 19 February 1942, 242 Japanese aircraft attacked Darwin in what would be the largest single assault mounted by a foreign power on Australia. Learn about this dark history at the Darwin Military Museum opens in new window, where an incredible film experience immerses you in the drama of the bombing unfolding (entry AUD $20, or just AUD $10 for kids). You can also spot remnants of the air raids on the city’s foreshore during a 75-minute Bombing of Darwin cruise with SeaDarwin opens in new window for AUD $35.

Uncover reef secrets in Queensland

Always wanted to know more about the mysteries of the underwater world? At Reef Teach opens in new window in Cairns, you can join an entertaining presentation by qualified marine biologists to learn what to look for and where to find it before you head out to the Great Barrier Reef. For AUD $23, you’ll even get to handle coral and some marine specimens, including a few of the more dangerous types.

Two scuba divers explore the Great Barrier Reef.
Reef Teach in Cairns reveals the mysteries of the Great Barrier Reef.

Get the buzz in New South Wales

Love honey? It’s time to go straight to the source. You can now learn beekeeping at a workshop held by The Farm opens in new window at Byron Bay for AUD $50. One of an array of workshops offered regularly at this working farm, which is anchored by the Three Blue Ducks restaurant, the 90-minute Flow Hive Taster includes a crash course on the basics of keeping bees before moving to the apiary for a hands-on demonstration of the Flow Hive – a revolutionary new beehive invention that allows you to harvest fresh honey without opening the hive.