Looking to escape the daily grind? Or explore a new place to satisfy a thirst for adventure? With transport and holiday packages now becoming more affordable, travel is fast becoming accessible for all. And by all, this includes holidays for travellers with disabilities. With many holiday destinations fast becoming disabled traveller friendly, there is a range of options to choose from for that much needed getaway.
Whether you are interested in a short term, cost effective getaway, a location that is fully accessible or a destination that purely focuses on treating the mind and body to some rejuvenation, take a look at 6 suggestions below from leisure options.
1. Great Ocean Road
Take a drive on this renowned coastal road that spans 243 km featuring the Twelve Apostles and be mesmerized by the beautiful sights along the south eastern coast of Australia. Enjoy the fully paved and accessible viewing platform and gaze upon the huge limestone formations that have been around for approximately 20 million years. Better yet, there are a multitude of tour buses and coaches that will take you here for the day, show you the best parts of this track and
2. Ocean Grove
A seaside town located on the Bellarine Peninsula, Ocean Grove holds the largest shopping centre on the peninsula. Located a few blocks away is the beach which offers recreation for everyone, and caters fun activities for people with disabilities. From beach wheel chairs and beach matting (which creates a path straight to the water), to programs that are specifically customized for children and adults with special needs, these programs teach lifesaving skills and even surfing, with the goal of encouraging confidence outdoors and in the water.
For a short getaway or a family holiday that includes children with disabilities, an all time favourite is to visit the little stars of Phillip Island. Take advantage of an exclusive disabled access viewing area to watch the Penguin Parade, a sight not to be missed, as the fairy penguins make their return to their burrows on the beach. And for those looking to spend time on the beach, there is a complimentary buggy service providing beach access to travellers with disabilities.
3. Manly Beach NSW
Situated among the Northern Beaches of Sydney, a short ferry ride from the mainland will get you to Manly Beach, so named by Capt Arthur Phillip (first governor of NSW) after the “confidence and manly behaviour” of the indigenous people. Manly welcomes not only those with mobility access issues but visitors with visual impairment as well. Its oceanway has many shops, restaurants and bars, and beach wheelchairs are available, so lounging beach side should be a breeze
4. Pattaya, Thailand
Pattaya, a popular tropical getaway for tourists, is fast becoming a hot spot of adventure for travellers with disabilities. One resort definitely had disabled travellers in mind when they designed the property to be completely accessible by connecting the entire area with ramps that stretch out over the water, so that the whole resort experience could be felt by everyone. There are also many activities all around Pattaya such as disabled diving, shows with wheelchair access into buildings and disabled access transportation that will facilitate an unhindered immersion into the local flavour and culture.
5. Bali Indonesia
Renowned for its traditional dance, art and cuisine, the island of Bali is another hotspot for tourists. Part of the Coral Triangle, an area with the highest number of marine species, over 500 reef-building coral species can be found. For travellers with disabilities, this magnificent area offers assisted diving and snorkelling with guides to aid in the discovery of this fascinating underwater world.
6. Tuscany Italy
And lastly, for the moment at least, another great accessible holiday destination would be Tuscany. Famed for the world’s most recognizable Renaissance-era art and architecture, this region has a diverse natural landscape consisting of the snow-capped Apennine Mountains, olive groves, vineyards and sunny beaches overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea.
As you can see, adventure travel for people with disabilities is now an achievable option with many specialised tour and holiday providers catering for this valuable market. The choices available for supported holidays are many and diverse and constantly increasing.