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Perfect Picnicking

8 Jan

Sydney has got to be one of the most picnic friendly cities in the world. Dotted all around the place are hundreds of green spaces, a large majority of them enjoying ocean or harbour views. To save you the trouble (and to give myself a pretty awesome research assignment) I have come up with a list of the best places in town to bring along a blanket and basket.

The Bleeding Obvious

Highlights: This place is freaking huge. You could have a picnic here every Sunday afternoon for a year and still have plenty of spots left to chose from. There are half a dozen ponds, cute gardens, open fields and thick groves of trees. It’s also super close to Oxford Street so you can pick up some food and coffee on your way if you can’t find the energy to make it yourself.

Lowlights: The place is swarming with armies of stroller wielding families come the weekend. Probably best to avoid the ponds as there will always be at least one little boy throwing things at the ducks. Which reminds me, THE BIRDS! So many birds! They all want your food and will do whatever it takes to get it from your grasp. Avoid ibis birds at all costs.

Highlights: The 30 minute ferry ride over offers a convenient opportunity to pick the house you’ll live in once you become a millionaire. The island itself is a giant playground for adults. There are so many weird old buildings scattered around the place, you probably won’t get a chance to explore them all before the ferry home arrives. Also, some genius recently realised that the island’s awesome factor could be increased 200% with the addition of a bar.

Lowlights: The bar is expensive. It may lure you in with the smell of wood fired pizza, but stay strong!

Highlights: Here you can expect the most amazing view of Bondi. It can get fairly busy by the water, but North Bondi is rarely as choked up as the main beach. There are a few cafes nearby, as well as an incredible look out just up the road. Plus setting up camp on this nice grassy spot ensures your day at the beach won’t involve sand in your food or nether regions.

Lowlights: This patch of grass is damn popular during Summer. Unless you’re here at the crack of dawn you probably won’t get a spot. Also there’s no shade so bring sunscreen or prepare to be mistaken for a lobster.

Sort-Of-Hidden Gems

Highlights: Remember getting the ferry to Taronga Zoo as a kid? You were probably too excited for the animals to notice the secluded beach just around the corner from the wharf. Once you get to the wharf take to path on your left down to Whiting Beach. Although on the harbour and fairly close to the city, the water is surprisingly clear. The beach is bordered by dense bush and there are even remnants of indigenous art to found. Top that off with panoramic harbour views and you have yourself a pretty sweet spot.

Lowlights: Your view may be blocked by a group of rich jerks who park their fancy pants boats nearby.

Highlights: The water is beautiful, so beautiful in fact that this is a very popular spot for snorkelers and divers. The bay is lined with hundreds of big rocks that serve nicely as a platform on which to soak up sun, have a bite to eat and watch the water. It’s much nicer than setting up camp on the sand, which is usually covered in seaweed.

Lowlights: If you’re coming from Clovelly, beware! Battling the giant flight of stairs in 30+ degree heat is not fun. Come via Coogee instead, it’s not so steep, a little more shady and there’s a nice lookout just up from Dunningham Reserve.

Highlights: Situated on the tip of South Head, Hornby Lighthouse and the surrounding national park offers an amazing view of both the harbour and the ocean. Getting there is a mini adventure, with the scenic walk from Watson’s Bay taking just over an hour.

Lowlights: On your way you may notice Lady Bay, one of Sydney’s oldest nudie beaches. You may think that sounds cool now, but the bathers there probably won’t be as hot as you’d hope.

So there you have my picks, please recommend some more!

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This week: Goodbye Freaky Tiki, Time Out does Jurassic Lounge, Vogue’s FNO 2011

6 Sep

Ok, so it’s mid sem break, the housework’s done and a batch of cookies are baking in the oven. FINALLY! I have time to blog in the first time in ages. Soo, what’s happening then?

SMH

Freaky Tiki is closing down this week! Boo! But at least that means it’s going to be a pretty awesome place to be all week with different themes every night, $3 drinks all night Tuesday (yes, as in tonight) and complimentary drinks and food during Sunday night’s closing down party. From what I’ve gathered it’s not the last of Freaky Tiki, the owners are just closing the place down for a few months for renovations. Huzzah! But considering that the owners are the Keystone group (Gazebo, The Winery, Cargo bar etc etc) it’s probably a safe bet that this might be the last we’ll see of the astro turf =(

The Thousands

Jurassic Lounge is being curated by Time Out mag tonight! Expect crazy burlesque performers, a contortionist, video installations, karaoke, zine making and a silent disco amongst the dinosaurs. $15 at the door gets you entry plus one free drink! If you haven’t been yet, hurry up and hop to it! The program ends Sept 20.

Vogue’s Fashion Night Out is on again this Thursday. I started going through all the retailers to tell you guys where all the best stuff is happening, but there are way too many stores getting involved! I’ll just give you the gist; some stores will make you pay $300 before you get anything free (looking at you Mimco!) others have pretty good discounts all night (20% off all stock at Kookai, Glue, Nine West, Sportsgirl and probably some others) and sooo many other places are enticing shoppers into their stores with free food and drinks all night. If you’re broke like me, it’s still worth going for all the free food. Just roam around the Pitt Street Mall/QVB and your bound to end up with a cupcake in one hand and some champers in the other.

Aaaaand my cookies are ready. Have a good week!

10 things to do during mid-year break

18 Jun

The Grates

June 24

It’s Friday night and exams are officially over! Huzzah! Come celebrate with the most overly perky band on the Australian music scene; The Grates! The band will be playing an intimate show over at the Oxford Art Factory to launch their new album. Tickets are $30 with Guineafowl and Big Scary supporting

 

Dendy Winter Wonderland

June 27

The Dendy Opera Quays are showing a different classic film every Monday morning as part of their Winter Wonderland series. This week’s is the classic “Singin’ in the Rain”. What better way to snap out of your exam misery than with a cheery Hollywood musical?

 

Art After Hours

June 29

Every Wednesday the AGNSW opens its doors till late for a very rad and very free after hours program. Every week features a different line up of guest speakers, musical performances and film screenings, as well as access to all the exhibitions. They’ve also thrown in a bar and courtesy bus! This week Bonnie and Clyde (1967) will be screening, along with talks and tours around the new contemporary collection space.

 

Chinatown Night Markets

July 1

If you find yourself near Chinatown on Friday night, head over to Dixon Street Mall. From 4pm until 11pm each week you’ll find best and cheapest dinner you can get anywhere in the city. Alongside cheap clothing, jewelry and giftware, the markets also offer a wide range of dishes, with Japanese, Chinese, Malaysian and Korean stalls all at hand.

 

Good Food & Wine Show

July 3

If you’ve been drooling over Masterchef for the past couple of weeks than this event is for you! There will be markets, celebrity chef cooking demonstrations and even a few master classes. You’ll be able to learn everything from what to look for in a good merlot to how to make fancy cupcakes and chocolates.

 

The Real Story of Super Heroes

July 6

This highly acclaimed exhibition has arrived in Sydney and will be sticking around for the rest of the semester break. Celebrating the notion of unsung heroes, photographer Dulce Pinzon has portrayed Mexican immigrant workers going about their daily lives in full superhero garb. The free exhibition will be taking place at the Australian Centre for Photography in Paddington.

Bondi Bergstation

July 10

Ice-skating, Gluhwein & Bratwurst! No it’s not Bavaria, strangely enough this is all happening at Bondi. Featuring a alpine food stalls, DJs and ice-skating perfromances, the 2011 Winter Festival will be setting up camp by the Bondi Pavilion until July 17

 

The Last Ever Harry Potter Movie!

July 12

No matter what age you are you can’t not be excited about this! There will be midnight screenings happening all over the place; Randwick Ritz is already selling tickets for a double bill of both parts! So get your robes on and wands out because you’ll most likely be duelling over the best seats. Also, what’s all this about pottermore.com? Apparently Rowling is announcing something big on the 23rd of June. Keen!

 

Lady Gaga

July 13

Love or hate her, you can’t deny she can pull off a meat dress like no one else. Lady Gaga is set to return to Sydney for an exclusive one off show at Sydney Town Hall in July for just 1000 die-hard fans. How to score tickets? Easy, just head to the Facebook page from June 8 and post a picture of yourself doing something insanely Gaga-esque. Nothing a couple of prime rib steaks couldn’t win you!

Reservoir Bazaar

July 16

Held at Surry Hills’ The Winery, Reservoir Bazaar is quickly becoming known as one of the best and quirkiest markets around town. Here you’ll find everything from vintage comic books, wood framed sunglasses and gourmet muesli. Just make your way down to the Crown Street establishment every Saturday between 10am and 4pm.

 

Happy Holidays!

This place needs jazzing up.

22 Apr

Hmm, it’s been two months since I kicked this thing off and it already feels a little old! Apart from the weekly “what’s on” style posts I’m thinking of maybe adding a weekly diary/review, maybe a photo blog or some day trip plans, but I would really love to know what you readers might like. Feel free to to let me know what you might find interesting or useful and I’ll try my best to get it on here!

(anything that would make it compulsory for me to go out and eat, drink and dance a lot on your behalf will be strongly considered!)

P.S If you haven’t yet seen the making of  Darcy Prendergarst’s radtastic stationary model 3D model of the city (as seen in the above featured image!), check it here

What’s On This Week

23 Mar

Samba Thursdays @ CarnivArgyle

The weekend’s been and gone and seems to have taken with it any doubt that summer is over. If the grey skies are getting to you, never fear! Samba Thursdays at CarnivArgyle will give you the injection of colour you need. The Argyle has been celebrating Brazilian style all March and this will be one of the last few times you can join in on the feathery fun. There will be free Samba classes and tequila tastings from 8pm, as well as a BBQ feast in the courtyard from 6pm. And what better way to wash down all those meat skewers and churros than with two-for-one cocktails? Brilliant!

http://www.theargylerocks.com/

 

Street Art Tours

Lurking around laneways isn’t the sort of thing respectable young students such as ourselves should be doing in our spare time, but here’s a very good excuse to do so. As part of this month’s Platform Hip Hop festival, street art tours are being run to showcase the amazing works that are hidden around our inner west laneways. Local graffiti writers will be guiding you through the city’s most iconic street art sites, featuring work by both international and local artists. For those of you new to Sydney, or even those who have been here forever, it’s a great way to explore a new part of town and discover a few hidden gems. Tours leave Newtown station at 10am, 12:30pm and 3pm and tickets are $10. Places are limited so head to the website to book! http://www.platformhiphop.com.au/?page=Event&event=Graffiti-and-Street-Art-Tours&website=platformhiphop.com.au


 

On This Week

15 Mar

Ok, I know this seems a bit lazy but I long longer have the time to kill on this blog that I used to. Therefore, I’ll probably just be posting my Mediate column here. Seems like I’m cheating, but meh.

What’s on This Week

Breaking Australia’s Silence: WikiLeaks and Freedom

Listen up future hard-core journalists! Have you been following all this wikileaks hoo-hah recently? Well if you’re still keen to hear more about it, be at Sydney Town Hall this Wednesday (16th March) at 6:30pm for “Breaking Australia’s Silence: WikiLeaks and Freedom”. The public forum will include former intelligence officer and independent MP Andrew Wilkie, award winning journalist and documentary maker John Pilger as well as human rights lawyer Julian Burnside. The night’s set to be full of great discussion about freedom of speech, the democratic role of journalism, and the responsibility of government to protect journalists. So head along and voice your opinion, or sit back and listen to some really interesting speakers.

Absolut Art Exhibition

Generations upon generations of artists will tell you art & booze go down swell together, so it’s no wonder the world famous Absolut Art Collection’s stop over in Sydney is stirring so much hype. The exhibition features more than 20 renowned artists, including Andy Warhol and Louise Bourgeois, who have contributed their own vision of the iconic Absolut bottle. If that’s not already enough, this night time only event will also include local and international DJ sets, live installations, film projections and a cocktail bar to keep you entertained. Starting this Friday the 18th at Ray Hughes Gallery in Surry Hills, the exhibition will be running until the 27th between 6-10pm Tuesday – Friday, 2-11pm Saturdays, and 2-10pm Sundays

YouTube Symphony Orchestra @ SOH


“Classical music? Cool? Pffftch, never!”

Well that was before YouTube got involved.

This month, the Sydney Opera House will be playing host to the YouTube Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra is completely made up of musicians from around the world who were hand picked to play in Australia after their performances were seen on YouTube. If you’re not so keen on the music, there’s still plenty to do. The Western Foyer will be transformed into a YouTube Lab, where visitors can explore the ways social media and technology are changing the ways we create and access art, music and film. There will also be a Festival Bar, nightly performances from local acts, as well as real time projections of the concerts across the sails of the Opera House. The festival kicks off on Tuesday so head along to the website to see what’s on! http://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/youtubesymphony/default.aspx

Hello, nice to meet you. We’re aroundsydney!

23 Feb

Who: aroundsydney

What: A new blog about the awesome things that are constantly happening in and around this beautiful city

Where: Here at http://aroundsydney.wordpress.com/

When: Check in every week for new events, reviews and news.

Hello there fellow young Sydney siders. Welcome to aroundsydney!

Are you stuck in your dreary bedroom with nothing better to do than browse aimlessly around the interwebs? Sucks, dunnit? Well no more! You have come to the right blog. Here I will be sharing with you all the amazing things you could be getting up to, from parties, exhibitions, festivals, sales and neat little outings you can do yourself.

Wether you’re bored out of your mind or just unable to get through the crazy amount of event emails you’ve signed up for in the past, this is the blog for you. Just check in each week to find out what’s going on in, around and about town.

And please, if you know of anything rad happening in our fair city drop me a line so we can share the love.

Your friends,

aroundsydney