Life on the fringe has never been so good.
Parramatta, and neighbouring Harris Park, have a lock on EAT some of the best Indian food in Sydney, from dosa to biryani; try Ginger Indian Restaurant for delicious North Indian curries. There is no signage at Uncle Kurt’s; it’s hidden below a car DRINK park (Horwood Place). If you do manage to locate it, you will find a graffiti-daubed space serving up serious cocktails and NY deli fare. What with a revamped Tropfest film festival (tropfest.org.au) PLAY that took place in Parramatta Park this year; the Sydney Festival program getting bigger and better here each year (including the ever popular Spiegeltent); the Riverside Theatre (riversideparramatta. com.au) attracting artists and performers from all over the world; and the colourful Parramasala festival (parramasala.com), a three-day celebration of the diverse cultures that thrive in the greater Sydney area, there’s never a dull moment in Parramatta, literally!
Learning to surf is almost a rite of passage for Australians given our land is girt by sea, and a favourite place to learn some board basics is on the sands of the celebrated northern Sydney beachside suburb of Manly. Lessons at Manly Surf School (manlysurfschool.com) are stacks of fun, with adult and kids’ lessons throughout the year. Then dry off and head to one of the many cafes serving up serious coffee and beachside cool: the lovely Boathouse at Shelly Beach (theboathousesb.com.au) with its Instagram-worthy interiors; the Nordic cool of Fika Swedish Kitchen (fikaswedishkitchen.com.au); or Barefoot Coffee Traders (barefootcoffee.com.au) and Showbox Coffee Brewers (showboxcoffee.com.au), always packed with locals.
BURLEIGH HEADS, QLD
“I escape to Burleigh at any opportunity I can get. To me, it is the capital of the newera Gold Coast. It has such a positive pull, a real sense of community and a very relaxed atmosphere. Burleigh has been revitalised into a dynamic and contemporary destination, whilst effortlessly paying tribute to its glittering 1960s surf town history.” Kara Rosenlund, travel, documentary and lifestyle photographer
A Indian Ocean alternative to its Bondi big sister, Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe is staged on the beach here each March. Founding director David Handley explains why you should visit this Per th suburb for longer. of Australia’s most stunning beaches with views to COTTESLOE IS ONE the horizon that seem to stretch forever – and Perth has arguably the best sunsets of any major city in the world. The amphitheatre looking onto the beach from under the shade of the pine trees gives you a different perspective of the walk to compare with when you walk along the sand. come from all across Perth and south-west OVER 200,000 PEOPLE Western Australia to see the exhibition. Each Friday to Sunday evening Cottesloe Beach becomes Perth’s giant passeggiata with thousands of people wandering among the sculptures on the beach as the sun sets over the Indian Ocean. It is the most extraordinary relaxed community vibe. you should visit two or three times as the sculptures MOST PEOPLE SAY and the atmosphere change at different times of day. My favourite times are to beat the crowds with an early morning wander around the sculptures followed by a swim and then breakfast at John Street Café. Or arrive around 5pm to soak up the atmosphere of the sunset crowds on the sand before heading to Il Lido for drinks and dinner. Make sure you drop into ‘Sculpture Inside’, our exhibition of small indoor works in a large walk-in marquee on the Sea View Golf course across the road from the beach. I am jealous of everyone eating fish and chips under the trees watching the sunset before or after a beer at the Cottesloe Beach Hotel.
The south-western Sydney suburb of Cabramatta, located roughly 30 kilometres from the city, serves up a cultural melting pot of ethnicities, cuisine and culture. Here, five spots to sample on your next visit: of Sydney prides itself on its WHILE THE REST coffee culture, tea is hero here. Teabags T-shop serves sweet, refreshing fruit teas served in easy to carry zip-lock bags. with the local cuisine by GET HANDS ON ordering the DIY rice paper rolls option at various eateries in and around John Street; Phu Quoc is a favourite with locals. waiting for IF THE SIZE OF THE CROWD tables is your metric of how good a restaurant is, Pho Ann might be the best around, with locals milling patiently at the entrance watching those inside slurp up bowls of the delicate broth. Sieu Thi Dong EASTLAND SUPERMARKET Khanh has aisle after aisle of Asian staples, from fresh noodles to spices to gleaming woks. are another specialty, festooned FABRIC SHOPS with colourful bolts of fabric outside, with everything from zippers to thread spools inside.
This charming beachside suburb 14 kilometres from the centre of Adelaide has something going on all year round. SEMAPHORE SUMMER CARNIVAL takes place from mid-December to the last Sunday in January, with fireworks on New Year’s Eve and Australia Day. SEMAPHORE GREEK CULTURAL FESTIVAL, held in mid-January, will celebrate its 40th anniversary in 2019. ADELAIDE INTERNATIONAL KITE FESTIVAL is a riot of colour on the beach – and in the skies – over the Easter long weekend. , held on the SEMAPHORE MUSIC FESTIVAL Labour Day long weekend in October has performers, food trucks, rides and craft beers. is a day of family SEMAPHORE STREET FAIR fun taking place along Semaphore Street on the last Sunday in November.
Never heard of the south-east Melbourne suburb of Balaclava? Well, here are a few facts to enlighten you on the subject. by many to be St Kilda’s IT IS CONSIDERED slightly cooler cousin given it is bordered by the eternally hip bay-side suburb, but remains largely undiscovered by the weekend hordes. Jewish Orthodox community THERE IS A HUGE here, reflected in the presence of stores like Glick’s, a local institution, opened in 1969 by Mendel Glick, and still producing chewy bagels and all manner of breads and bakes. is concentrated THE LOCAL COFFEE SCENE along Carlisle Street and nearby Inkerman and William Streets, while a cold beer on a hot day can be had at The Local Taphouse.
With its eclectic, bohemian personality, this inner-city Melbourne suburb is a riot of street art, cafes and shopping. The best place to start any exploration of these parts is on Gertrude Street, off the main drag of Brunswick Street. Find a table at South American diner Sonido BREAKFAST (sonido.com.au; No. 69) and order an arepa, a round patty made from maize, and topped with everything from cheese, eggs, beef or chorizo. Cottage Industry (No. 67) is a small TIME TO SHOP boutique filled with fashion and homeware pieces that have been designed and made in Fitzroy or sourced from around the world; Pickings & Parry (No. 166) has menswear and accessories imbibed with quality and craftsmanship. As the name implies, Archie’s All Day (No. 189) LUNCH (archiesallday.com) serves from early to late, with the lunch menu of burgers and comfort food kicking into action at 10am so there is no pause in proceedings. Obus (No. 226) is the work TIME TO SHOP SOME MORE of fashion designer Kylie Zebst, whose wearable designs are influenced by her travels; Little Salon (No. 71) has girly frocks, accessories, homewares and Lovehate jewellery. Chef Andrew McConnell’s Cutler & Co (No. 5557) DINNER is a local institution housed in an old metal works.
A funky collection of cafes, eateries, shops and galleries has been retro-fitted into the area’s charming historic buildings.
If the worth of a suburb is measured by the talent and passion of the people who choose to be there, then Kalamunda’s cachet is on the up and up. Located in the eastern suburbs of Perth, at the very edge of the metropolitan area, the location saw significant development in the post-war era, especially during the ’60s and ’70s, and now boasts a population of over 62,000 people, including a few significant transplants from the CBD: two of the headlining eateries here, Mason & Bird (masonandbird.com.au) and Chatford & Co Cafe, are helmed by ex-Rockpool Bar & Grill Perth alumni. At Chatford & Co Cafe it’s ex-head pastry chef, Gavin Chater, while over at Mason & Bird, former Rockpool managers Matt Nguyen and Jaclyn Noel have teamed up with Brad Johnston.
NORTH HOBART, TAS
You don’t really know North Hobart unless you know to (cheekily) call it NoHo. Alliterations aside, this suburb has seen a mini boom over the last few years as rental returns in our southernmost state climbed and climbed, and ‘mainlanders’ started discovering the allure of a more Tasmanian pace of life. Suddenly its slightly pedestrian main street, Elizabeth Street, located up the hill from the more sparkly waterfront of Salamanca Place, was transformed into a funky collection of cafes, eateries, shops and galleries retro-fitted into the area’s charming historic buildings, many of which date back over 100 years. So now NoHo is des-res in the extreme.