Where to explore in King Valley

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Bag: Cult Gaia, Top: COS, Trousers: Marcs, Boots: Tony Bianco, Sunnies: Karen Walker, Watch: Coach, Necklace: H&M

King Valley

The King Valley is a beautiful wine region northeast of Victoria with some well-known winemakers, like Brown Brothers. The region also has quite a well-established Italian culinary scene. So as you can imagine my weekend away in King Valley with my family was filled with wine, pizza, pasta and coffee.

We visited the Del Zotto winery, the Brown Brothers Winery and the King Valley Dairy Farm:
·      Del Zotto is the perfect setting for an outdoor lunch and wine with beautiful views of luscious green grass, creeks, hills and of course never-ending vineyards.
·      The Brown Brothers Winery is a must-visit. The winery maintains a farm-like style with a beautiful barn for functions, a windmill, copious amounts of outdoor fire-pits and even a giant outdoor chess set. 
·      The King Valley Dairy Farm produces a wide-range of wonderful butter. All I can say is, you must get the salt and black truffle butter!!

My Instagram and Facebook feed always features a few photos every weekend of people dressing up and visiting wineries. The classic photo of girlfriends wearing big floppy hats, flowy dresses and ankle booties epitomises the style in our wine regions. Stylewe and Just Now Fashion are both stocked with so many great winery outfits. There are so many gorgeous printed dresses and wrap skirts, screaming to be taken out for some yummy food and wine. Just Now Fashion are also having an instagram dress giveaway.

What wine regions are your favourite? What do you usually wear to a winery?

 Thanks for reading!
Nat xx

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What to wear and where to eat in Byron Bay

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What to wear:

I love the style in Byron Bay. While the people in Byron are a mixed bunch, the coastal free flowing style remains largely widespread. Byron style = light fabrics, linen, whites, denim, sandals, and coloured tassels - everything that screams SUMMER!

I found so many beautiful items on Zaful that emulate Byron's summer style - simple colourful prints, mini skirts and flowy fabrics.

Here are my favourite picks:
In order of appearance
Click item names to check size and prices


Places to eat:

Beach Hotel

The Beach Hotel overlooks the main beach of Byron Bay and really lives up to its name. There is a large outdoor area ready for you to soak up the sun or enjoy the fresh ocean air in the evening.

The night we arrived in Byron, we decided to go to this classic Byron institution and coincidentally the Sneaky Sound System were having a concert that night. So we paid $20 entry, ordered the cocktails on tap and danced the night away.

Balcony Bar
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If you're looking for contemporary coastal décor inspiration, then you need to go to Balcony Bar. The Balcony Bar is an oasis of blue and green and just everything nautical.

The best part would have to be their cocktails and oysters! A full page of yummy refreshing and cheap cocktails (hallelujah!!) and also fresh yummy oysters. We went there during oyster happy hour and got a dozen oysters for $1 each, wowzers! 

Combi
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Combi is a mix of Byron's beach life and Melburnian hipster café culture. Unsurprisingly there is a Combi in Melbourne. Think refreshing summer menu featuring vegan brunch, matcha everything and the obligatory options of almond milk and soy milk, all a five minute walk from the beach.

Three Blue Ducks
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Three Blue Ducks is the delicious restaurant at The Farm Byron Bay. I had a delicious filtered coffee and all four of us ordered the tasty pork burger.


 The Farm is a must visit in Byron Bay. You can get a wonderful meal followed by some gelato from the ice cream cart, then wander around the farm and greet the animals. Oh and before you farewell The Farm you can pick up some pastries, local produce and flowers. It's got everything!

What are your favourite food spots and outfits when you're staying at a coastal town? 

Thanks for reading!
Nat xx

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An Australian icon: Cape Byron Bay

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Byron Bay, NSW, Jan 17'

After our cruise ship from New Caledonia docked at Sydney Harbour, Ivor and I said farewell to my family and hopped onto a plane from Sydney to the iconic Byron Bay.

This was my first time visiting the much loved Australian holiday spot. The long white-sand and turquoise coastline is set upon rich green hinterlands. Sprinkled among the beautiful natural surrounds are trendy cafes, restaurants and bars, all of which have a coastal flare to them where everyone is wearing sandals and comfy yet stylish summer outfits.

The locals and holiday goers at Byron are a very eclectic bunch, from hippies, schoolies partyers (students finishing high school) to posh Sydney and Melbourne-siders.

I loved the coastal, but also multifaceted vibes of Byron. In the town's centre is streets lined with boutique clothing and homeware stores that range from low-priced souvenirs to upmarket designers. When you walk through Byron you never know what to expect, one night we stumbled upon a Sneaky Sound System concert and on another night during sunset we came across a vibrant drum circle on the beach.

Byron is a wonderful place to just wander around and is filled with beautiful spots such as Cape Byron Bay, which involves quite a windy drive to reach. Once we got up the cape, we saw an old cottage next to a picturesque white lighthouse. The views from up here of the ocean meeting the sand were incredible.

Byron Bay is a place where you must go if you are exploring New South Wales!

My next post will be on the great places to eat in Byron.

Thanks for reading!
Nat xx

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A must visit: Yejele Beach, Lifou Isle

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Yejele Beach, Lifou Isle

So far in my documentation of this cruise trip to New Caledonia, I have without a doubt overused the world 'beautiful' and exhausted the use of the phase 'crystal blue water' (I should really work on expanding my vocabulary). Sorry for the tautology that's about it happen, but Yejele Beach was so beautiful with unbelievable crystal blue water, definitely the most beautiful and most blue beach out of the entire trip (wow yes I really need to expand my vocab).

It was quite a hot day when we visited Yejele beach, so I couldn't wait to jump into the water. Before that, we were welcomed into a hut with delicious looking local food and given a much needed beverage and flower crown. After that, I slapped on some more sunscreen (although there was no saving my lobster red skin), ran down the soft white sand, plunged into the warm clear ocean and stayed there for the afternoon.

As you can see from these photos the beach was vibrant colours of blue and green, it truly felt like being in paradise for the afternoon.

Dos:
  • VISIT YEJELE BEACH - It's quiet and as mentioned at least twice, beautiful with crystal blue water.

Donts:
  • Another repeated narrative in my chronicles of this cruise trip : DON'T FORGET TO WEAR SUNSCREEN. Don't use the spray stuff, it doesn't do jack. Slather yourself in thick SPF 50+ cream.

After this beachy cruise trip, I hopped on over to the Northern Hemisphere for some shopping and skiing. Look out for my Hong Kong and Japan blog posts.

Thanks for reading!
Nat xx

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Maré Island, New Caledonia

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After the long bus ride through immense greenery, grass the height of a person and beautiful tropical trees we made it to a crystal blue beach on Maré. We settled down under a tree, then dived right into the pristine water with our snorkels and swam among the colourful fishes.

Behind the beautiful beach was a strip of huts with local vendors selling food. There seemed to be no electricity in sight, so each hut had a fire pit with a pot of oil over it frying up some chips or cooking chicken over the fire. My mum got into conversation with one of the vendors so I popped over, ordered some of the delicious chicken and veggies satays and got into my first proper French conversation outside of class with the loveliest local. It felt nice to know the last three years of learning another language, wasn’t a waste of time. Oh and the chicken and veggies were delicious, I still think about it. The satay was marinated in a beautiful sauce and served with bread on a banana leaf that was ripped off the tree just moments before they bought it out for me. I'll never forget Maré.

DOs
  •  Speak to the locals – they’re wonderful and most speak two or three languages (so jealous)
  • Go snorkelling
  • Eat the food – the chicken satay is amazing!
  • Drink/eat the coconuts – the coconuts were a tad sweeter and had softer flesh than the ones in Vanuatu
  • Put sunscreen on!

DONTs
  •  Go barefoot on the beach – the sand is a bit rough
  • Forget a towel to lay down on the sit on the sand


Thanks for reading!
Nat xx

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Mystery Island, Vanuatu

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Hat: Sportsgirl (similar), Bikini top: NLP (similar), Shirt dress

Mystery Island, the beautiful island of mystery, where there are no inhabitants other than tall palm trees and fine white sand. Stories of cannibalism and other taboos scared locals away from the island. Nowadays the locals reside at a nearby island but travel out to Mystery Island during the day to sell products to the tens of thousands of tourists visiting every year.

The fact that no one lives on the island and that there is no electricity makes it even more beautiful. While there is a market in the middle of the island for tourists and boats in the ocean for various activities, everything else looks untouched. Your feet sink into the white fine sand and the water is a clear crystal blue that invites you to swim among very visible fish and coral. When you're in the ocean and look back onto the island all your see is white sand and luscious green trees - not an electricity pole or building in sight. In the wise words of Chris Martin this is my "para para para paradise".

DOs in Mystery Island:
  • Go for a walk around the island, it only takes 30mins
  • Take a dip in the beautiful water
  • Go snorkelling - the water is so clear and swallow, it's so easy to swim among the fishes
  • Put sunscreen on! 
  • Explore the markets and their handmade goods (Australian dollars are accepted but make sure you have small bills on you, don't use coins).


DONTs in Mystery Island:

  • Eat the coconuts - they're so tangy (unless you like that)
  • Waste your money on a clear glass boat ride - get some snorkels, go in the water and do it yourself (unless you can't swim)



Thanks for reading!
Nat xx

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Nouméa, New Caledonia

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Hat: Sportsgirl (similar), top: Third Form (similar), Necklace: market, Sunglasses: Karen Walker

After three days at sea on a cruise ship, we arrived in Nouméa, New Caledonia, on the first day of 2017. For the past three days, all that surrounded us was sea, so the sight of land was greatly welcomed. The city is made up of concrete buildings, some of beautiful bright colours, others keeping to the original grey. The French influence in Nouméa is omnipresent, from the language, people to the supermarkets (Carréfour).

Unfortunately we couldn't do a great amount of exploring, eating or shopping as everything was closed, due to the fact that it was new years day. Everybody in New Caledonia was probably nursing their hangover, as were all the people on the cruise.

We relied on the sightseeing bus and hop on hop off bus to get a taste of Nouméa. We went to some spectacular viewpoints, drove past prominent government buildings and spent the afternoon sitting on Citron beach absorbing the beautiful air.

DOs in Nouméa:
  • Hop on hop off bus - drive along on the beautiful coastline
  • Citron beach - calm water with a diving station in the middle of the water, great place to just sit, read a book and relax
  • Sun protection!

DON'Ts in Nouméa:

  • Go on New Years Day



Thanks for reading!
Nat xx

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