The sniffles have set in, you're 100% up-to-date with everything on Netflix (though that's not necessarily a terrible thing) and getting out of bed in the morning is pretty much impossible — sound like you? Well, it's time to get out of that winter funk. The chilly season isn't all bad; there are roasts in the oven, Game of Thrones is back and some of your favourite pubs now feature open fires so you can warm the cockles over a pint by the fire. To those naysayers who think that winter marks the end of fun activities in general, we're about to show you how wrong you are. We've joined up with Hahn to round up a bunch of places you can escape to in your city on the weekend or on a needed personal day. Plus, these escapes won't even involve long drives and heated arguments about the speed limit on the Hume Highway. So, grab your coat and gloves and trot off to some fun winter adventures in your own town. Escaping has never been so easy.
THE BARBECUE ESCAPE
There's nothing like a huge amount of hot, chargrilled meat to warm you up from the inside out. You can try to avoid any winter rain showers to get all the snags cooked at the same time on the barbecue, or even better, get someone else to do the barbecuing for you. Opting for the latter, you can sit down and relax with a frosty cold Hahn while someone else smokes, grills and barbecues some tasty meats for you. Also, like any good barbecue joint, the convivial atmosphere should warm the heart, too.
Your morning run is a lot harder now that it doesn't get properly light until like midday, we know. But don't fret; there are still ways of keeping active that won't have you freezing your extremities off. The trick here is being inside. Think mini golf with a bar thrown in, so you can reward yourself with a few beers after a tough game against your Bumble date, or even rock climbing you can do safely in wet weather with mobile reception, too. You could also consider a proper competitive sport session like badminton or table tennis to get those endorphins up, and work out your frustrations over how loudly your colleague Tina chews.
Head to Holey Moley, a mini-golf bar located in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. You can have a game of badminton or table tennis at Sydney's Olympic Park Sports Halls, and climb away at Sydney's Nomad, Melbourne's Hardrock and Brisbane's Urban Climb.
THE WATER ESCAPE
Not much can beat a hot bath in winter. It's okay if you can't fit a bathtub in your apartment though, because sourcing a large, hot body of water in your city is actually pretty easy. Though a visit to some natural hot pools is the dream winter activity, don't underestimate the heated regular pools you can access during the colder months. Head to an indoor — or even some outdoor — heated pools for a cruisy, wonderfully warm dip, or maybe a few lazy laps. It's also a good time of year where treating yourself to a spa day is less of an indulgence and more necessity, so go for gold.
Take a dip at the outdoor, heated Fitzroy Swimming Pool in Melbourne, the Ian Thorpe Aquatic Centre in Sydney (which also has a sauna and steam room) and the super retro Spring Hill Baths in Brisbane. Spa-wise, head to the star-speckled Day Spa by Chuan at The Langham in Sydney, Japanese oasis Onsen Ma Spa in Melbourne or try a float session at Brisbane's Beyond Rest.
THE HOTEL ESCAPE
The classic indulgent getaway, of course, is shooting off to a hotel for a night — and the ultra-indulgent way of doing it is to chuck a sickie and go mid-week. Even if you live pretty close to the city, there's nothing wrong with a minor change in scenery for a night. A staycation is a completely valid life choice and there are plenty of luxe hotels from Brisbane to Sydney to Melbourne that'll make you feel like you're living the high life — that beer-and-room-service-in-the-bath life. Another viable option is to pack your own slab of beer and check into an Airbnb instead. There's no room service, but you'll get the whole place to yourself.
Book into this super lush apartment at Potts Point in Sydney, The Olsen in Melbourne for a boutique, arty feel, and Spicers Balfour Hotel in Brisbane for an art deco-inspired space with a modern twist (and rooftop bar).
THE ART ESCAPE
Art galleries and cinemas were built for the type of people who like being inside when it's raining (which is quite possibly all of us), so they're the perfect option for a daytime escape. Art galleries set in gardens just outside the city limits, or cinemas showing foreign films not found anywhere else, are all excellent options for a bit of cultural development. See some art or cinema you normally wouldn't on your next day off — take in a bit of modern art or an obscure German film to really make you ponder your existence as a storm wails outside. Plus, most cinemas these days are licensed too, so for an extra good time you can even take a beer along with you.
See modern art, architecture and gardens at the Heide Museum of Modern Art in Bulleen in Melbourne, discover abstract art space Factory 49 in Marrickville in Sydney and check out Australian and international contemporary art at TWFINEART in Fortitude Valley in Brisbane. For arthouse cinema, your best picks are Cinema Nova in Melbourne's Carlton, Golden Age in Sydney and the Regal Twin cinema in Graceville, Brisbane.
Plan your winter escape, and make sure to grab a cheeky Hahn or two on the way.