For many, Easter is a time to enjoy a few days off work, relaxing in the company of family and friends with a mountain of chocolate Easter eggs.

But for those who aren’t planning on kicking back at home, Easter is a super popular time to pack the bags and hit the road. After all, it’s the last long weekend for a while, so you may as well take advantage of the time off with an exotic mini-break – all without leaving the comfort of our island home.

So as a little treat, we’re listing some of our favourite locations for an eggs-cellent Easter escape.

Low-key Launceston

Tasmania is one of the most easy-to-navigate states in Australia, and it’s the perfect place to visit for a long weekend getaway. But if you don’t know where to start, why not try Launceston? This northern city is an underrated diamond in the Apple Isle’s relatively small geographic area.

Situated on the Tamar River estuary, this waterside city is a thriving shopping hotspot with an extensive range of trendy cafes. Known for their top-quality food and coffee, these eateries are just waiting to fill you up before you set off to explore the Launceston region.

One of the most popular day trips in the area is the Cataract Gorge Reserve. The river gorge is a stone’s throw from the city of Launceston (just 1.5 kilometres, in fact – so why not walk?) and features stunning cliffside walks and lots of natural bushland. There’s also a chairlift for spectacular views of the region, and even a funicular railway reminiscent of many European cities.

To get to town, you can fly into Launceston airport, drive up from Hobart (about 200 kilometres away), or take the well-known Spirit of Tasmania from Melbourne to Devonport and drive over. Whichever you choose, it’s definitely worth the trip.

Thrifty has convenient locations in both Hobart and Launceston, so book a rental car today to make the journey enjoyable and stress-free.

The magnificent Macedon Ranges

Victoria is packed full of spectacular natural areas, and the Macedon Ranges are just one of many. Located less than an hour’s drive from the Melbourne CBD, you’d be fooled into believing you were in a whole other world, far away from civilisation.

Home to the mysterious Hanging Rock, made famous by the book and film, visitors from all over flock to climb the rock and discover its magic. And while you’re in the area, make sure to tick Macedon Regional Park, Hanging Rock Winery and the township of Woodend off your list. A visit to local Kyneton makes for a relaxing day trip too.

Dotted with charming country towns, the Macedon Ranges are the perfect spot for your Easter long weekend getaway – without being too remote to manage.

Luxurious Lord Howe Island

If you’re keen to escape the Easter crowds and indulge in the island life for a few days, consider a trip to the little-known beauty, Lord Howe Island. With a permanent population of just short of 400, tourism is big business for this tiny island in the Tasman Sea.

Lord Howe Island is accessible via plane from Sydney, Brisbane or Port Macquarie airport. It’s only a short flight, and as soon as you step off the plane you’ll be greeted by the most incredible natural wonders. Think secluded beaches, coral reefs, massive mountains, and the local masked boobie population – a seabird species that lives on the island. If you really want to put your feet up and relax this long weekend, there’s nowhere better.

So now you’ve got some inspiration, why not make this year’s Easter a memorable one by escaping to one of these Aussie gems?