A short drive to the south west of Melbourne, is the Mornington Peninsula. One of Melbourne’s most famous attractions stretched over 100km, it feels a world away from the hustle and bustle of the city. There is so much to do here, people often come for a mini holiday, for some rest and relaxtion, spending time playing golf, visiting the vineyards, markets and spas.
The Mornington Penninsula is most well known for its vineyards especially its, pinot noir. There are more than 50 cellar door to visit which are open on most days until 5pm. Red Hill is the main area for the vineyards and the estate is one of the oldest areas in the region. Visiting the vineyards is fun whatever the weather. I went in the winter when it was rainy and cloudy in the winter, but there was an open fire inside keeping the guests toasty and warm (and yes it can get cold in Australia). Many of the cellar doors have a restaurant where customers can enjoy the panoramic views of the vineyards. In summer, there are quiet a few Melbournians who have their wedding receptions at these venues.
Happy Chinese New Year and Welcome Year of the Horse!
2014 was my third New Year in Australia and second in Sydney. Sydney has a lot of events taking place from the 24th of Jan to the 9th of February to welcome in the horse. The end of the festival concluded with the Twilight Parade down George Street and into China Town which I attended.
2014 is the Year of the Wooden Horse. Wooden Horses have a better ability to make decisions, they are strong and stable. Even if you are not a Wooden Horse, I feel it is better to make a decision then to umm and ahhh about something for weeks and months.
Were you born in the Year of the Horse? Below are the years:
1918, 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002
Having spent many New Year Eves in the cold, I was only happy to spend NYE in a warm country. Sydney is one of the first cities to welcome in the New Year and as such is well known for its fireworks. My first NYE in Sydney for years, I researched on what we could do to welcome in 2014.
Watch the fireworks
This may sound easier than it actually is. It can be very busy and NYE is a night you do not want to be travelling. For those who want to watch the fireworks in the Domain, tickets will need to be purchased. Make sure you buy the tickets in the non family end if you would like to bring alcohol with you. This site was very useful and has all info on where to go, there are many different spots north and south side of the bridge some alcohol free.
Melbourne was once the place in Australia to visit, to sample the coffee and café delights. Now Sydney has become the rival city with cafes and brunch spots springing up all over the city. Having lived in Sydney for over a year, I have had the opportunity to visit a lot of cafes. This are not an exhaustive list and I will be writing up a follow up post before I leave the city Down Under, but here are just a few of the places I visited and enjoyed in Surry Hills.
Café Con Leche
This is my local café so I should be a bit biased, but anyone who comes to Cafe con leche will love this place. Open every day from 6am – 4pm, this is a little bit of Columbia in the heart of Surry Hills. My favourite is the arepas, which is a traditional Columbian breakfast served with 2 or 3 type pancakes (with cheese, corn or plain). The arepas comes with ogao, sour cream, guacamole, ropa vieja and ajo. It costs $12 for 2 or $14 for 3. My other favourie breakfast is the Farmer Jo Muesli – served with (or without) fresh fruit, yoghurt and honey for $8.50. Drinks are very reasonable a coffee is between $3.50 and $4.00 and they also serve Colombian hot chocolate for $5.50. Fresh smoothies and fresh juice is $6.50.
Address: 104 Fitzroy Street, Surry Hills, 2010