Australian Open – is it for little kids?

Australian Open

When: Monday 16 – Sunday 29 January 2012, grounds open at 10am, matches commence 11am

Where: Melbourne Park Tennis Centre, Batman Ave, Melbourne 3000

What: Australia’s Grand Slam Tennis Tournament,

Cost: Family Ground Pass $75 pre paid, or $80 on the day, includes 2 adults and 2 children (or 1 adult and 3 children).  Children under 3 are free, child ticket applies to 3-16 years.  For ticket costs to main arenas click here.

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Taking the kids to the Australian Open – well it really depends on what you want to get out of the day.. and how old your kids are.

We went today, day 1, and there were heaps of kids 10 years plus roaming about in pairs sans parents.  There were also quite a number of younger kids enjoying the tennis with their parents.  A couple of years ago we took Immi (aged 4) with us to the tennis, and while she was well behaved and enjoyed herself (to a point), the downside was she had a limited attention span when it came to watching a match, wasn’t too good at walking long distances and was pestering for ice-creams.  So if you want to sit and watch an entire match quietly, without packing a bag of supplies for every scenario, I recommend a day off from the kids – as I enjoyed with my husband today.  (Thank you Allsportz and grandparents!)

HOWEVER taking your kids along can be fun – as long as your expectations are realistic.  If you’re looking for a family outing, going along to experience some live grand slam tennis can be lots of fun; there is plenty of atmosphere to soak up and when you need a break from the tennis there are loads of free fun activities for children of all ages to try out in an area new for 2012 (between Rod Laver Arena and the Hisense Arena) called the Grand Slam Oval.  I have attached some photos of some of the activities so you can get a taste of the off court entertainment.. and I should also mention there were roaming entertainers and a number of the major sponsors had great give-aways available at their pavillions (ANZ – mini fans, Medicare – water bottles and packets of refreshing wipes, Boost – chocolate, Dove – body cream, deodorant and other samples, MLC – neck coolers).

One thing you should also note is that if you are visiting the tennis with a ground pass then there are limited areas you can go to get shade – so you should factor this into your plans when attending with small children… especially on days like today, as 33C feels a whole lot hotter when it’s without relief!