booking.com – Christmas in the Shire

Research conducted by Booking.com reveals half of Australians feel they’re missing out on a magical Christmas by living in Australia. More than a third saying we don’t have the same level of decorations ( ie. lights, tree and mistletoe) compared to other countries, which they feel creates a genuine Christmas atmosphere.

So, Booking.com is bringing the ultimate Christmas experience to you at North Cronulla Beach – a destination site representing the epitome of what an Australian summer Christmas is!

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Featuring a life-size ‘White Christmas Snow Globe’ with all the Christmas trimmings, including snow and a real Santa Claus inside, experience Cronulla Beach in a whole new way this festive season.

A white christmas is something out of the movies for us down under while the other side of the world rugs up fighting the cold, we’re soaking in those scorching rays!

Sleigh bells ring, are you listening? On the beach, sand is glistening, thanks to Booking.com Sydney we’ll be walking in a Winter wonderland!

Joseph Lloyd, Freelance Writer
Photo Credit: booking.com

Date: Friday, 14 December
Time: 9am – 12pm
Where: North Cronulla Beach
Cost: Free of Charge

Western Sydney Beach @ Macarthur Beach Club

So you thought you would need to travel into Sydney for a taste of the beach! Now you can get a beach club vibe in the heart of Campbelltown, Western Sydney at Macarthur Square.

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Image credit Ash Marr

Macarthur Square is a huge entertainment precinct with shopping, bars, restaurants, ten pin bowling, the cinema, and now it has been transformed into A BEACH. Macarthur Beach Club has launched and it is open daily until Sunday evening of the 14th October.

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Image credit Greg Fonne

Take the kids down for fun school holiday activities such as a huge bright blue ball “sea” pit, sandpit and deckchairs. What a unique way to have fun in your own “backyard”, western Sydney siders.

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Image credit Greg Fonne

When you pay a beach a visit, you also must order an icecream, right? Well here, everyweekend you can find one of 200 “credit cards” buried deep within the sandpit. These credit cards are redeemable for a free ice-cream from the ice cream ATM. How cool is that? From “The Scoop Gelato” you can get that sugar fix on your summer escape!

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Image credit Ash Marr

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Image credit Greg Fonne

Worth a visit too for those wanting to snap a new insta pic!

This Saturday 6th will be a beauty event hosted by Michelle Crossan to get us ready in time for summer. On from 3pm-4:15, get down for some beauty tips.

On the final weekend of the beach, on Saturday 13th, there’s also a giant sand sculpture reveal so don’t miss out on that.

Macarthur Square Shopping Centre

Kellicar Lane, Macarthur Square

 

Rhonda’s Terrigal – newly revamped!

Rhonda’s bar and restaurant is back open! It is a newly revamped venue in the heart of the Central Coast, close to the Crowne Plaza hotel, Terrigal. It is a top destination to visit for a weekend or easy enough to head up for the day. 

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The restaurant itself is a large fresh bright open space, beautifully styled with decking and wooden & wicker furniture and the decor is apt for the area. Rhonda’s also has a rooftop bar with ocean views. This makes Rhonda’s the perfect spot for a bite and some beverages whilst enjoying the sea breeze and stunning view. 

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Rhonda’s has extremely personable staff, good vibes and a great playlist. You would find this a great venue for afternoon drinks, dinner or even a party with friends.

The bar is well stocked, so take your pick of a craft beer, wine or a cocktail. With a cocktail menu designed by Quynh Nguyen one of Sydney’s finest cocktail curators, you will find many a great drink and in particular, they have some original cocktails that are a must. 

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The ‘Garibaldi Punch’ made using four pillars gin, campari orange, marmalade and rosemary bitters was a great gin based cocktail. 

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The ‘Rosetta’ was savoury tasting cocktail of campo de encanto pisco, fino sherry, strawberry cherry tomato, rose and basil and was beautiful mix of flavours. 

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We also enjoyed Rhonda’s take on an old fashioned, called the ‘Sicilian Godfather’, this choc orange cocktail consisted of monkey shoulders whisky, drambuie, solerno, blood orange, balsamic, choc bitters and it was a quality version of the old fashioned food.

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We thoroughly recommend visiting and catching up with friends for a drink or two here.

Food wise, you’ll find authentic Italian, served is made using premium quality local ingredients and the menu offering antipasto, wood fired pizza and pasta made from scratch.

The Antipasto share board will get you in the mood for your dining experience. The array of delights includes a mix of quality cured meats including; salami casalingo, brescaola and Parma ham. There is also light a creamy buratta, artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, zucchini and fresh grissini bread. Other entrees include foccaia, olives, king prawns or bruschetta. Perfect to accompany your cocktail or glass of wine. 

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Rhonda’s have a range of tomato and white base woodfired thin crust pizza, made using wholemeal flour, a great option to share or enjoy your own. The ‘La Diavola’ is always a go to and did not disappoint, topped with buffalo mozzarella, pepperoni, Sopressa, chilli and rocket. There are plenty of options to choose from, whether you prefer chicken, mushroom or the classic margherita. Cooked in the authentic Italian way in the wood fired rotary oven. 

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The pastas are made from scratch, using Stagioni flour and these are produced into classic combinations with phenomenal flavour. We loved the squid ink fettuccine, served on a vibrant blue glazed plate and was one that pleased all diners. The dish was very inviting with a delicious tomato based sauce, cherry tomatoes, a generous serving of sweet spanner crab meat and topped with fresh basil.

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Gnocchi is another go to, this dish was comforting with its pillow like dumplings, served with cubes of tender porkbelly and porcini, in a rich well balanced parma ham broth with truffle oil. Writing this post has me salivating about the flavours of this dish over and over again. 

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To finish, we made room for dessert inspired by the nutella ravioli. With a crisp fried outer shell and then there is an explosion of nutella when you bite into it. A berry coulis cutting through the richness of the nutella and the vanilla ice cream complementing this dessert. They also have gelato made in house using seasonal flavours.

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As an added bonus they have a $12 Pasta special on Saturday 12noon till 5pm and $12 Pizza special on Sunday from 12noon till 8pm.

The food here is outstanding and perfectly apt for the clientele and location by the sea. We thoroughly recommend for you to head out of Sydney to visit the beautiful beach of Terrigal on the central coast and be sure to pop into Rhonda’s.

Rhonda’s

3 – 5 Kurrawyba Avenue Terrigal, NSW, 2260 Australia

Email: dine@rhondas.bar 

Phone: (02) 4385 3100

Monday – Friday: 5pm – 1am

Saturday – Sunday: 12pm – 1am

Thank you for the hospitality provided by Rhonda’s, and for the invitation from Way to Blue.

Rhonda's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Adventure time @Cairns Adventure Group

Active Tropics Explorer – Tour Guide Karl

We were in Cairns for a holiday away and decided that a tour was the best way to sea the wonders of the North Coast of Queensland.

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Before heading up to Mossman Gorge we participated in a welcome to country smoking ceremony, led by an Aboriginal guide, of the Kuku Yalanju people, who also explained the uses of some local plans and natural ochres. This ceremony was to protect us whilst on our journeys.

The bus then took us up to Mossman George where we walked through the rainforest and had the opportunity to swim in local creeks.

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Departing here, we drove through the sugar canes and stopped to go on a crocodile tour. The boat driver was extremely informative and we were lucky enough to see 6 crocodiles on this tour, including a 450 kg called Scarface. On the one hour cruise, it is also possible to see tree snakes and the Ulysses blue butterfly.

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The bus then drove up to Cape Tribulation where we had lunch (included on the tour) and walked down the beautiful white beach.

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On the Marjja Botanical Boardwalk, we were guided through the rainforest with explanations as to what the specific plants can be used for and also the dangers to be aware of.

On the final part of the trip we were taken to Floravilla, an Ice cream shop to try some of the organic ice cream using natural flavours and no preservatives; mango, honey and yoghurt, guinness. You name it, they have it. I just wanted traditional vanilla and it was smooth and creamy.

The trip then headed back to our hotel with a drive up to Alexandra Range lookout and through Port Douglas.

Karl had been working for the company for a year, mostly doing white water rafting guiding. He was extremely good at this guiding. Very knowledgeable about plants and animals and the area and very explicit in his instruction. He was passionate about his job.

A lovely day out in a small group of 25 with an extremely knowledgeable driver and guide. At $169 per person, it is worth the money spent.

Cairns Adventure Group