Hamilton Island Dining guide

Enjoying a spectacular location in the heart of the Whitsundays is the beautiful Hamilton Island. It is the largest inhabited island in the Whitsundays. The only island in the Whitsundays with its own commercial airport, now with direct flights from Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney and Cairns.

It is one of the easiest islands to get to when choosing your Whitsunday adventure. However due to its size and amenities even when at full capacity it is still an amazing place to visit.

Hamilton Island has such a large choice of dining options for all budgets and tastes, so we put together a Hamilton Island Dining guide to showcase all the Dining choices.

Hamilton Island Dining Guide

Bommie Restaurant (Yacht Club)

  • (12 Years and over)
  • Set menus.
  • Fully Licensed
  • Open Tuesday – Saturday
  • 6pm – late
  • Smart casual (No Thongs, swimwear, board shorts or singlets)
  • $$$

If you decide to go to Bommie restaurant, you can expect an amazing menu, knowledgeable staff that take their jobs very seriously. They have a specialised menu that is either three, four courses or the chef tasting menu. If you choose the three or four-course meal you will be given a choice of about three meals per course. The food is exquisite.

When we went we choose the Chef tasting menu and paired it with the speciality wine offering. Every meal was paired with a wine that was chosen to highlight the meal.

Manta Ray

  • Marina Side
  • Reservation or walk up
  • Lunch / Dinner
  • Takeaway Pizza available between 6pm-9pm
  • Fully Licensed (Bar and meals 12 noon – 10 pm)
  • Part of the Kids Stay Eat free offer (Children 12 years and under, eat a free kids meal with a purchase of an adults meal if staying at Reef View Hotel, Palm Bungalows, or a Hamilton Island Holiday Home)

Located on the Marina side, this casual restaurant has a great view of the marina, just watch out for the cheeky cockatoo’s they like to steal your food if you don’t keep an eye on them. This is more of a problem with the tables located up against the water as they sit in the trees above and if you leave your food unattended they try to swoop in for a meal.

Falafels at Mana Ray, Hamilton Island is the largest inhabited island in the whitsundays, you are spoilt for choice with the dining options available. Our dining guide gives you all the information you need to know when making your dining choices on Hamilton Island

Hamilton Island is the largest inhabited island in the whitsundays, you are spoilt for choice with the dining options available. Our dining guide gives you all the information you need to know when making your dining choices on Hamilton Island

 

Coca Chu

  • Resort side
  • Reservation recommended
  • Dinner
  • 5:30pm – late
  • Fully Licensed
  • Part of the Kids Stay Eat free offer
  • $$$

Located on the Resort side, with a stunning view of Catseye beach is the South East Asian inspired Coca Chu. The meals are made to be shared so when going in a group expect to order a few different items for the table.

The food is amazing with very strong flavours, the service is great.

Located on the Resort side, with a stunning view of Catseye beach is the South East Asian inspired Coca Chu. The meals are made to be shared so when going in a group expect to order a few different items for the table.  Located on the Resort side, with a stunning view of Catseye beach is the South East Asian inspired Coca Chu. The meals are made to be shared so when going in a group expect to order a few different items for the table. 

Sunset cruise and dine

  • A boat trip over the amazing Whitsunday waters
  • The cruise takes about 3 hours
  • Minimum age – 6
  • Fully Licensed
  • Leave either 4:45 pm or 5:45 pm depending on sunset time.

What would be nicer than taking a sunset cruise whilst eating a gorgeous three-course meal? As you depart on the Hamilton star you are served a yummy cocktail and some appetisers. Later you a served a gorgeous three-course meal that includes, Entree, main and Dessert.

Sails

  • Resort side
  • Reservation for groups 10 or more
  • Breakfast 6am -10:30am
  • Lunch 11:30am – 9pm
  • Fully Licensed
  • Part of the Kids Stay Eat free offer

Located on the Resort side, with a stunning view of Catseye beach Sails is the perfect casual spot to have breakfast or lunch. Breakfast is your typical buffet with a collection of cold and hot food. You can also get an omelette prepared for you fresh from the chef. The lunch menu is reasonably varied serving a variety of foods from salads, burgers, curries, steak, lamb cutlets, fish and other seafood. The Moreton bay bug was perfectly cooked and was a favourite of mine this trip.

Located on the Resort side, with a stunning view of Catseye beach Sails is the perfect casual spot to have breakfast or lunch. 

Located on the Resort side, with a stunning view of Catseye beach Sails is the perfect casual spot to have breakfast or lunch. 

Marina Tavern

  • Marina side
  • Pub Meal
  • 11:30am – 9pm
  • Fully Licensed

Located on the Marina side, the Marina tavern is the perfect casual place to grab a great pub meal, a cold drink and relax with friends. The Tavern has a great variety of indoor/outdoor seating and has a great relaxed atmosphere perfect for families or to meet up with friends.

Marina Cafe

  • Cafe style Food / ready-made food
  • 6:30 am – 3 pm

Located within walking distance to where the ferry comes in is the Marina Cafe, serving delicious smoothies, fresh juices, and coffee its the perfect place to grab a quick drink. If you are after breakfast or a snack its also a great place to get toasted sandwiches, foccacias and wraps. Perfect to pack in a picnic for one of the walks on the Island.

TAKO

  • Marina side
  • Walk up no bookings for groups under ten
  • Reservation for groups 10 or more
  • Open 7 days
  • 5:30pm – late
  • Fully Licensed
  • Part of the Kids Stay Eat free offer

Located on the Marina side, on the top level gives it an amazing view over Hamilton Island’s marina. Tako is a fun, family-friendly dining experience that offers fresh tasty Mexican dinner and dessert. When ordering the food at Tako it is best enjoyed getting a variety to share. The kids have a choice of a quesadilla or a make your own taco. Our children loved TAKO it was one of the favourite restaurants for the trip and we ended up going back on multiple occasions.

Located on the Marina side, on the top level gives it an amazing view over Hamilton Island's marina. Tako is a fun, family-friendly dining experience that offers fresh tasty Mexican dinner and dessert. When ordering the food at Tako it is best enjoyed getting a variety to share.  Located on the Marina side, on the top level gives it an amazing view over Hamilton Island's marina. Tako is a fun, family-friendly dining experience that offers fresh tasty Mexican dinner and dessert. When ordering the food at Tako it is best enjoyed getting a variety to share. 

The kids’ meal comes with three wraps, however, was such a favourite that I could never take a photo with all three as soon as the plate was served they started eating.

Located on the Marina side, on the top level gives it an amazing view over Hamilton Island's marina. Tako is a fun, family-friendly dining experience that offers fresh tasty Mexican dinner and dessert. When ordering the food at Tako it is best enjoyed getting a variety to share. 

The pulled pork tacos had just the right amount of spice to coleslaw and avocado to make it a perfectly balanced taste.

Romano’s

  • Marina side
  • Pre-booking is recommended
  • Contemporary Italian food
  • Alfresco 3 pm – Late
  • Dinner – 6 pm – Late
  • Fully Licensed
  • NO Kids Stay Eat free – Kids menu $15

Located on the Marina side, on the water side. Romano’s is a lovely spot for a family meal or for large group bookings. Serving a gorgeous range of pasta, risottos, and other mains. Romano’s doesn’t disappoint. It is not part of the kids stay eat free promotion, however, the kid’s meal are very generous and only $15.

Mariners Seafood Restaurant

  • Marina side
  • Pre-booking is recommended
  • Smart Casual
  • Dinner – 6pm – Late
  • Fully Licensed
  • NO Kids Stay Eat free – Kids menu $20

Located on the Marina side, high on the second level next to TAKO overlooking the marina is Mariners Seafood restaurant. It is always very popular so reservations are strongly recommended. If you love seafood then Mariners is for you with a great variety of fish, prawns, and other seafood.

Wild Life Hamilton Island – Koolah Cafe

  • Resort side
  • 7:30 am -10 am (breakfast)
  • Buffet
  • Lunch / Light meals available
  • Fully Licensed
  • NO Kids Stay Eat free
  • Family friendly

The best place on the island to get up close and personal with the wildlife. Wildlife Hamilton Island hosts a great buffet breakfast where you can sit and eat whilst watching the koala’s snack on gum leaves beside you, with gorgeous rosella’s flying all around.  A great family friendly restaurant. Once you are finished at the cafe, grab a pass to head to the Wild Life park to see more Australian wildlife, crocodiles, snakes and so much more.

 

The best place on the island to get up close and personal with the wildlife. Wildlife Hamilton Island hosts a great buffet breakfast where you can sit and eat whilst watching the koala's snack on gum leaves beside you, with gorgeous rosella's flying all around.  A great family friendly restaurant. Once you are finished at the cafe, grab a pass to head to the Wild Life park to see more Australian wildlife, crocodiles, snakes and so much more.

The best place on the island to get up close and personal with the wildlife. Wildlife Hamilton Island hosts a great buffet breakfast where you can sit and eat whilst watching the koala's snack on gum leaves beside you, with gorgeous rosella's flying all around.  A great family friendly restaurant. Once you are finished at the cafe, grab a pass to head to the Wild Life park to see more Australian wildlife, crocodiles, snakes and so much more.

The best place on the island to get up close and personal with the wildlife. Wildlife Hamilton Island hosts a great buffet breakfast where you can sit and eat whilst watching the koala's snack on gum leaves beside you, with gorgeous rosella's flying all around.  A great family friendly restaurant. Once you are finished at the cafe, grab a pass to head to the Wild Life park to see more Australian wildlife, crocodiles, snakes and so much more.

The best place on the island to get up close and personal with the wildlife. Wildlife Hamilton Island hosts a great buffet breakfast where you can sit and eat whilst watching the koala's snack on gum leaves beside you, with gorgeous rosella's flying all around.  A great family friendly restaurant. Once you are finished at the cafe, grab a pass to head to the Wild Life park to see more Australian wildlife, crocodiles, snakes and so much more.

The best place on the island to get up close and personal with the wildlife. Wildlife Hamilton Island hosts a great buffet breakfast where you can sit and eat whilst watching the koala's snack on gum leaves beside you, with gorgeous rosella's flying all around.  A great family friendly restaurant. Once you are finished at the cafe, grab a pass to head to the Wild Life park to see more Australian wildlife, crocodiles, snakes and so much more.

Pool Terrace – Reef view hotel 

Only available to guests of Palm Bungalows and Reef View Hotel.

  • Open 7 days
  • Breakfast 6 am – 10:30 am (Only Reefview or Palm Bungalows)
  • Fully Licensed
  • Part of the Kids Stay Eat free offer (Palm Bungalows and Reef View Hotel)
  • Located in the Reef view hotel, this family-friendly restaurant is located on the pool’s edge. The Pool terrace is open for a buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Long Pavilion – Qualia 

Only available to Qualia guests.

  • Australian Menu
  • Breakfast 6:30 am – 10:30 am
  • Evening 6 pm – aLate
  • Fully Licensed
  • Child Free (16 and over)

Pebble Beach – Qualia 

Only available to Qualia guests.

  • Poolside menu 10 am – 5 pm
  • Lunch 11:30 am – 3:30 pm
  • Evening 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
  • Fully Licensed
  • Child Free (16 and over)
  • Open Wednesday – Monday
  • Smart Casual/resort wear

Beach Club restaurant 

Only available to guests of Beach Club restaurant.

  • Open 7 days
  • Breakfast 6 am – 10:30 am (Only Reefview or
  • Fully Licensed
  • Part of the Kids Stay Eat free offer (Palm Bungalows and Reef View Hotel)
  • Located in the Reef view hotel, this family-friendly restaurant is located on the pool’s edge. The Pool terrace is open for a buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Snacks and Bars

One Tree Hill 

  • Drinks and snacks
  • Family friendly

If you want the perfect spot to sit and have a light snack and drink then the bar at the top of One tree hill is well worth a visit. Whilst it has a steady stream of people, on sunset is when it gets very busy with everyone wanting to sit up the top with a drink in hand to watch the majestic Hamilton Island sunset.

The only food on offer is Antipasta plates, Turkish bread or other snacks.

If you want the perfect spot to sit and have a light snack and drink then the bar at the top of One tree hill is well worth a visit. Whilst it has a steady stream of people, on sunset is when it gets very busy with everyone wanting to sit up the top with a drink in hand to watch the majestic Hamilton Island sunset.

If you want the perfect spot to sit and have a light snack and drink then the bar at the top of One tree hill is well worth a visit. Whilst it has a steady stream of people, on sunset is when it gets very busy with everyone wanting to sit up the top with a drink in hand to watch the majestic Hamilton Island sunset.

If you want the perfect spot to sit and have a light snack and drink then the bar at the top of One tree hill is well worth a visit. Whilst it has a steady stream of people, on sunset is when it gets very busy with everyone wanting to sit up the top with a drink in hand to watch the majestic Hamilton Island sunset.

 

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Top ten things to do at Hamilton Island with Kids

There is something special about Hamilton Island, its the sort of place you can go for a romantic holiday, a girls weekend or a family vacation. Its an incredibly relaxing place to visit with (or without Children).

There are some accommodation options that are purely childfree (Qualia guests must be over 16 and Beach house guests must be over 18 years old) but the majority of accommodation is very accommodating of children, they have a great children’s kids club, and If you’re staying at the Reef View Hotel, Palm Bungalows or any of the Hamilton Island Holiday Homes children 12 and under eat free.

Our children Love Hamilton Island they have so much fun, there is always so much to do there, and we have put together their favourite activities to do on our visits.

Top ten things to do on Hamilton Island with Kids

Swimming

  • Available year round
  • Free

Our kids love water, and at Hamilton Island, there are plenty of places for you to take the kids swimming. Most accommodation has their own private pools for guests, there are also three lovely pools at Hamilton Island in the main resort area. The main pool, which includes the swim up bar, that serve mocktails, slushies, water for the kids (and a large collection of cocktails, beer for the adults.

The Bougainvillea Pool is a lovely tropical pool with palm trees all around overlooking Catseye beach. It has a great shallow area perfect for younger kids that is only 0.7m deep.

What are the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island

The other pool is the “Sails Pool” it is a deep 3m pool that is located just outside the Sails restaurant, it’s a bit quieter than the main pool and has amazing views of the blue Whitsunday water.

The perfect place to swim the 3 m deep Sails pool at Hamilton Island

Mocktails at One tree hill

  • Available year round
  • Sunset (Free)
  • Drinks $$

One of the highlights of our trip to Hamilton Island is to sit up the top of One tree hill and watch the sun setting over the beautiful water. Every day about an hour before the sun is due to set, the area starts filling up with people, families, couples, groups of friends all ready to see the iconic Whitsunday sunset.

What are the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island

But even earlier in the day its the perfect place to take your kids to grab a yummy mocktail, some antipasto or Turkish bread and sit and relax with a breathtaking view.

A mocktail at One tree hill - one of the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island A mocktail at One tree hill - one of the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island

Drive a Golf Buggy

  • Available year round
  • Costs $$

One of the most iconic things about Hamilton Island is it’s Golf buggies, instead of cars most people travel around the island on Golf Buggies. Whilst you might see a minivan occasionally, or the Island Shuttle. 95% of the vehicles on the road are 4 person golf buggies. The speed limit around the island ranges from about 16kmh to 40kmh and it adds to the relaxed atmosphere.

There is something relaxing about driving around the wind in your hair in an open buggy.

Most holiday homes come with a complimentary golf buggy, otherwise, you hire them from the Hamilton Island Golf buggy hire conveniently located in two locations near the main resort area and at the airport.  Our children loved the golf buggies they created the “James Cord in” challenge

What are the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island

Go Karting.

  • Available year round
  • Costs $$

One of our children’s favourite activity on Hamilton Island was the Go-Karting track. If your child is over 149cm they can drive around the track reaching speeds of up to 45km/h. But younger children won’t miss out with duo Karts available for children aged 4 and older.

Our kids loved it, they went multiple times each time adding a bit more confidence and getting faster lap times.

Make sure you are wearing enclosed shoes, but all other safety equipment is included.

Go Karts - one of the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island What are the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island

Have a hit of Golf 

  • Available year round
  • Costs $$

Hamilton Island is synonymous with Golfing. It is home to the 18 hole championship golf course at Dent Island. Each year it is host to both amateur events and PGA Professionals Championship finals. But the golf is not just for the adults. They have a fantastic mini-golf course that the kids will love. For those wanting a bit more of a hit take them down to the family-friendly Golf driving range.

Your kids will love hitting the ‘floating’ golf balls into the water. Seeing if they can hit them just a little bit further each time.

What are the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island

Rock climbing / Laser hunt

  • School Holidays Only
  • Costs $$

If you are lucky enough to take your kids during the school holidays they will be able to participate in the Pop-up Rock climbing and Laser hunt. Located up on one of the tennis courts, three or four nights a week. The rock climbing was a real favourite in our house there are six individual walls and one of them is timed. The kids have a great time learning how to climb the walls and then they climb the final wall and see how fast they can make it to the top.

Our kids set themselves a challenge to make it to the top in 30 seconds, and by the third visit they had made it.

 

What are the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton IslandA

Temporary tattoos / Hair Braids

  • School Holidays Only
  • Costs $$

Located near the entrance to the pools near Sails bar is the Pop-up shop that allows your children to get a temporary tattoo or hair braid. With tattoos from only $5, this is a cheap fun way for your kids to bring a bit of their holiday home with them.

The hair braids come in a variety of styles including ones that are braided into the hair, or ones that can be removed and reattached later.

The stall is not their every day so it is worth checking the weekly activity planner to see what day she is there. The tattoos last 2-4 days, depending on what part of the body they are put on. Areas that get a lot of sunscreen do wash off quicker than covered areas.

What are the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island

Bowling

  • Available year round
  • Costs $$

For a fun family activity, 9 hole bowling is a great activity located in the main resort area. The bowling alley has seven lanes, a bar with a selection of food and drinks, a fun amusement arcade.

During the day it is a lot of fun, with bright lights music playing but as the sunsets, it turns into “Glow bowling” with Glow in the dark lanes and a lot of fun.

Watersports

  • Non-motorised watersports

    • Available year round
    • Free (If staying at qualia, Beach Club, Reef View Hotel, Palm Bungalows and Hamilton Island Holiday Homes)

Our kids loved learning how to Paddleboard, snorkelling and sailing at Catseye beach. Our younger kids sat on the shore playing at the beach whilst our older kids got out in the water and had a brilliant time.

What are the top ten activities to do with your children at Hamilton Island

  • Motorised watersports

    • Available year round
    • Costs $$

This trip we introduced our two older children to the motorised watersports they had an amazing time in the jet boat, and going tubing.

Clownfish club

Hamilton Island with kids is an amazing family trip but sometimes it is nice to be able to head out just the two of us and go on some of Hamilton Islands iconic walks. The way you can achieve this is by booking the kids into the Clownfish club.  Located near the main resort complex and ran by a group of qualified child-care workers our children loved the varied program at the Clownfish Club.

You can book in for the AM or PM session, or for a full day. Split into two rooms 6 weeks to 4 years old, and 5-14 years old each group has different activities each session.

The Younger rooms always stay in the centre, however, some of the older rooms session involves fun outings to “mini golf, bowling, the beach”

The staff are lovely, well trained and very knowledgeable.

 

Have you been to Hamilton Island?

What were your favourite things to do?

 

There is something special about Hamilton Island, its the sort of place you can go for a romantic holiday, a girls weekend or a family vacation. Its an incredibly relaxing place to visit with (or without Children). Our children Love Hamilton Island they have so much fun, there is always so much to do there, and we have put together their favourite activities to do at Hamilton Island with kids.
There is something special about Hamilton Island, its the sort of place you can go for a romantic holiday, a girls weekend or a family vacation. Its an incredibly relaxing place to visit with (or without Children). Our children Love Hamilton Island they have so much fun, there is always so much to do there, and we have put together their favourite activities to do on our visits to at Hamilton Island with kids.
There is something special about Hamilton Island. We look at the top ten activities for families at Hamilton Island in the whitsundays.
There is something special about Hamilton Island, its the sort of place you can go for a romantic holiday, a girls weekend or a family vacation. Its an incredibly relaxing place to visit with (or without Children). Our children Love Hamilton Island they have so much fun, there is always so much to do there, and we have put together their favourite activities to do on our visits.
Are you heading to the whitsundays, to the beautiful Hamilton Island. See what the top ten activities are for children.

 

 

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Walking trails of Hamilton Island – Part 1 -Escape Beach

Hamilton Island has over 20km of scenic walking trails to explore, and every time we go to Hamilton Island we make sure we go and explore the majestic walking trials of Hamilton Island.

There are two main entrances to the uninhabited section of the island that the Hiking trails are located at.

You can reach the walking trails via either the Scenic head trail entrance located at the end of Catseye beach. Or the Resort trail entrance located on the hill behind the Palm view Hotel.

The Resort entrance is a little further away from all the official entrances of the individual walking trails so will add a few extra minutes on each of the trails except for the flat top Hill lookout.  If you have a couple of days to walk Hamilton Island it is well worth starting a walk from both locations, as the view from each of the different paths gives a different view of the Island.

The main walks located on the Island are;

  • Flat top Hill Lookout
  • Resort Lookout
  • Passage Peak
  • Middle head
  • Coral Cove
  • Escape Beach
  • South East Head
  • Hideaway Bay

Our last trip though was over two years ago, and since then in the wake of cyclone Debbie much has changed in the trails around the island.

I previously wrote about our walk to escape beach,  and on this trip, we ventured back and have found some great improvements on the trail.

Escape Beach 2016, the path has had so many improvements over the last two years
The old path down to Escape beach back in 2016
Escape Beach, the paths have been upgraded and its the perfect time to take a walk to escape beach.
The New path to escape beach, makes it much easier to get down to Escape beach.

Escape beach is a Grade 3 trail, this means even with the improvements, it contains some short steep sections and a few obstacles on the path.

If you decide to start at the Scenic trail lookout (Hideaway Bay entrance), the walk starts off very steep if you want to check out Hideaway Bay (I recommend it, especially at low to mid tide as you can see heaps of Mudcrabs and soldier crabs then you turn left at the Y intersection, or head right to Saddle junction to choose your path.

The Scenic trail Entrance at Hamilton Island, walk to the Eastern end of Resort Drive, and head to the junction of Coral Bay drive and Resort drive to start your epic Hamilton Island hike.

Escape Beach is on the way to South East Head so people often drop in and have a look on their way to see the view of the Linderman Islands from South East Head, however, if you only have a couple of hours to spare the walk to Escape Beach is about an hour each way, (2550m each way).

If you are going to go on your way to South East Head you will need to allow about 3 hours as it is about an hour and a half each way. (7.3km)

The distance may not seem that much, however, due to the heat and the steep hills it can definitely take it out of you, so I would recommend bringing at least 2-3 litres of water per person, you need good walking shoes there are plenty of loose rocks that you can easily slip on.

Escape Beach, the paths have been upgraded and its the perfect time to take a walk to escape beach.
Escape Beach – Hamilton Island
Escape Beach, the paths have been upgraded and its the perfect time to take a walk to escape beach.
Escape Beach – Hamilton Island

 

Escape Beach, the paths have been upgraded and its the perfect time to take a walk to escape beach.
Great updated path near Escape Beach – Hamilton Island

The best thing about the walks on Hamilton Island is the destination is only part of the beauty of the trails, as you walk along you need to take time to look around you will see so many beautiful views from the trail. The blue Whitsunday water on one side, gorgeous butterflies flying around on the other.

 

There are over 20km of scenic walks and private beaches to explore, Where else but queensland
The path to Escape beach has improved dramatically over the last twelve months, whilst still a challenging hike it is alot more comfortable.
If you are after an Escape, head to Escape Beach on Hamilton Island
The best thing about the walks on Hamilton Island is the destination is only part of the beauty of the trails, as you walk along you need to take time to look around you will see so many beautiful views from the trail. The blue Whitsunday water on one side, gorgeous butterflies flying around on the other.
Hamilton Island has over 20km of scenic walking trails to explore, and every time we go to Hamilton Island we make sure we go and explore the majestic walking trials of Hamilton Island.
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The James Corden Challenge – Hamilton Island

There is something special about Hamilton Island, it is a beautiful place to relax and unwind when on holidays.

Our children and I have been talking about what makes Hamilton Island so magical.

We put together a list of what we think makes it so magical, and what tops the list is the ability to zoom around the island in your own Golf Buggy, the wind in your hair, the view out the open sides it just adds to the ambience of the resort.

Now all the rental Golf buggies are electrically powered so every time you stop you have to plug the cord in. Once or twice we have seen people that have obviously forgotten to charge their buggies, getting slower and slower up the steep hill going up towards “One tree hill”.

So every time we arrive back at the resort the cry would ring out, Plug the cord in.

Now Master L, aged 10 loves a good pun, and loves James Corden from Carpool Karaoke fame and started saying.

“Plug the “James Cord in”.

Now the pun began to get a life of its own.

Next thing it became the “James Cord in Challenge” the Challenge to find the most picturesque places you could plug the “cord in”.

Whilst very practical the view from our accommodation is not at all picturesque, the view from the resort is nicer with views of the beach in the distance.

It took us a while but we think we have found the winner.

One tree hill - Hamilton Island James Cord in Challenge (James Corden)

If you wander up to “One Tree Hill” at the very end there is an electrical plug that if you are the last buggy parked you can power up, and the view from the plug at the top of one tree hill, is amazing. The food and the drinks there are pretty amazing as well.

One tree hill - Hamilton Island James Cord in Challenge (James Corden)One tree hill - Hamilton Island James Cord in Challenge (James Corden)

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Becoming a tourist – How to holiday from home

Becoming a tourist

Oh, the places you’ll go.” – Dr Seuss

Dr Suess Oh the places you'll go

 

I love being a tourist, travelling, exploring new places, taking photos, making memories.
When I am on holidays I morph into the paparazzi. Anyone around me takes one look and can tell I am a tourist, my Nikon SLR around my neck, my backpack on my back full of all the things I need to make the most of the experience. I have even been known to bring out the tripod trying to catch that perfect sunset, or sunrise.

Unfortunately, though, life gets in the way and we can’t spend all our time on holidays.

When I am not travelling, though I am preparing for my next trip, and that feeling of wanderlust can make the long winters at home feel even colder, the work days longer and the mundane tasks of life feel like a world away from where I want to be.

Can you relate? Do you live with the constant desire to see more, do more, experience more?

But do you know there is a solution? Become a tourist in your own backyard. Take a Journey!

tourist in ballarat Become a tourist in your own backyard

The definition of a journey is

Noun – an act of travelling from one place to another.

Verb – travel somewhere.

Taking a journey doesn’t mean you have to travel a long distance, you just have to travel from one place to another.

Whether it’s ten minutes from home or ten hours you can still make memories, and experience life, become a tourist in your own backyard. Take a holiday from home.

You don’t realize how beautiful the place you live is until you look at it, with fresh eyes. With eyes that are not busy rushing from here to there. You will learn new things about where you live, and some things might surprise you?

Be being a tourist, I learnt that there was a site only twenty minutes from Ballarat that was preserved from the National Trust, the Lal Lal Blast Furnace.

No more sitting around your house wondering what to do. No more wasting money at the shops buying stuff just because you’re bored. Instead, you will be seeing new things, doing new things and experiencing new things.

We spend a lot of time doing day trips in Victoria, our home state. People travel thousands of 1000kms to see the Great Ocean Road, we only need to travel a couple of hours.

We constantly look at Pinterest, to find the top 10 activities in towns around us. There are so many amazing things you can do locally if you just look. Art Galleries, Museums, Bush walks, Playgrounds, Botanical gardens our favourite chocolate mills.

What do you do when you are in between trips? How do you fulfil the feeling of wanderlust?

 

You don't realise how beautiful the place you live is until you look at it, with fresh eyes. With eyes that are not busy rushing from here to there. You will learn new things about where you live, and some things might surprise you?
The Local Tourist, how to be a tourist from home.
When I am not travelling, though I am preparing for my next trip, and that feeling of wanderlust can make the long winters at home feel even colder, the work days longer and the mundane tasks of life feel like a world away from where I want to be.
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Exploring Port Fairy

Port Fairy – More than just beaches.

Port Fairy a beautiful seaside town, located only 28 km west of Warrnambool.

Port Fairy is a very popular spot for holidaymakers over the Summer period. Only 3 and a half hours from Melbourne located at the end of the Great Ocean Road it is teeming with people all through the holiday period. With a population of about 3500 (before holidaymakers) this quaint seaside town streets, shops, and beaches are full of people ready to relax and enjoy summer. There are plenty of great eateries, from restaurants, pubs to great take away places including Chinese, fish and chips and pizza places. There is hardware stores, supermarkets and chemists, but if there is something else you need Warrnambool is only a short drive away.

An Icecream shop called Poco Artisan Ice cream sees people lining up out the door to taste the homemade gelato.

Port Fairy - More than just beaches

The local Surf Lifesaving club at “Eastern Beach” offers a great patrolled place to swim. It is Patrolled between 10 am – 6 pm Monday to Friday and 10 am – 5 pm on the weekends. It also has a fully licensed restaurant/cafe at the Surf life-saving club called Charlie’s on East that is open for breakfast/lunch and snacks. We spent our days wandering the beautiful clear beaches.

Port Fairy - Eastern Beach

We ended many walks along the beach at Charlie’s getting an icy pole on the way home.

It also has a great Golf Course situated right on the dunes, on Woodbine Road. Where else can you play whilst viewing the spectacular Southern Ocean? Some might say A ‘magical’ experience, befitting the name. The Port Fairy Golf course is an 18 hole natural links golf course that is listed in the top 100 golf courses in Australia.

If you are after bike riding, it is home to the Port Fairy to Koroit to Warrnambool Rail trail. A 37km flat rail trail that ranges from Dirt, gravel and sealed sections.

Port Fairy - Bike ride

 

There is great walking tracks to explore at Griffith Island, home of the Historic lighthouse, and 15 minutes out of town at Towerhill, as well as some great coastal walk, the Mahogany Ship walk, Yambuk Lake walk, Peterborough walking track. So if history and heritage is more your style there are great walks around the Town to showcase the historic features and buildings of the town.

Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve is a great place to see local wildlife. Just be careful the emu’s try to steal your food. Our attempt at eating fish and chips became quite comical when two emus came charging up and began stealing food straight from our table. We quickly had to leave our food and find comfort in our car to eat the remaining untouched chips.

If adventure is more your style then only fifteen minutes away is the 33m slide at Yambuk located on the sand dunes. Yambuk is also a very popular spot for fishing or a BBQ.

Port Fairy is A ‘magical destination’ well worth a visit.

 

 

Port Fairy, If you are after bike riding, it is home to the Port Fairy to Koroit to Warrnambool Rail trail. A 37km flat rail trail that ranges from Dirt, gravel and sealed sections.
Take a slide down the giant 33 metre slide Just out of Port Fairy, at the end of the Great Ocean Road
Take a slide down the giant 33 metre slide Just out of Port Fairy, at the end of the Great Ocean Road
Port Fairy, More than just beaches, a beautiful seaside town, located only 28 kms west of Warrnambool. A very popular spot for holiday makers over the Summer period.
Port Fairy, More than just beaches, a beautiful seaside town, located only 28 kms west of Warrnambool. A very popular spot for holiday makers over the Summer period.
Port Fairy, More than just beaches, a beautiful seaside town, located only 28 kms west of Warrnambool. A very popular spot for holiday makers over the Summer period.
Port Fairy, More than just beaches, a beautiful seaside town, located only 28 kms west of Warrnambool. A very popular spot for holiday makers over the Summer period.
Port Fairy, More than just beaches, a beautiful seaside town, located only 28 kms west of Warrnambool. A very popular spot for holiday makers over the Summer period.

 

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Passage Peak

Our Favorite walks at Hamilton Island. Part 2.

As we get ready to head up to Hamilton Island again, I thought I would put together a few of our favourite walks from our last trip. If you want to hear all about how you can walk to “Escape Beach“. A beautiful quiet beach on Hamilton Island.

Passage Peak

The walk to Passage Peak is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way.

The walk to Passage Peak on Hamilton Island is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...

We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin, just enough to time to start warming up your muscles before the steps work muscles you had forgotten existed. The walk/climb is about 2kms one way, however, we decided to walk home a different way to give our knees a little rest from all the steps downhill.

Most of the trip up is steps with a few small respites of more level sections, however, the last 950 metres is basically just steps that seem to wind on forever. Probably the most heartbreaking sign is as you are leaving the Turkey nest junction Where the paths all meet and head up the stairs with the sign clearly telling you 950 metres to go, then about 200 metres up the path you are met with another sign that also reads 950 metres to go.

The walk to Passage Peak on Hamilton Island is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...

This was the path where our heartbeats really started racing when we met a snake along our path. (Ok it was a non-venomous green tree snake) but my heart rate still jumped up about 20 beats when I saw the snake slithering only 30 CM’s away.

snake at Passage Peak Snake at Passage Peak

 

Before you walk up the final steps to the top there is a great lookout, you wander down (silently thinking to yourself that for every step down is another step I have to walk up) but at the end gives you a great view of Whitsunday Island and the resort. We were also lucky to have a kookaburra in the trees below.

Once we got to the top there are three different lookouts

One that looks out over South East head

The walk to Passage Peak on Hamilton Island is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...

Another fantastic walk you can do that is about 7kms round trip.

One that looks out over the Resort

The walk to Passage Peak on Hamilton Island is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ... The walk to Passage Peak on Hamilton Island is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ... The walk to Passage Peak on Hamilton Island is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...

We sat there for ages watching the jet skiers in the waves below, jumping over the waves enjoying not only the fun happening below but the sense of achievement that we had made it up the steps.

And then The peak itself that looks out over the Whitsunday coral sea

The walk to Passage Peak on Hamilton Island is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ... The walk to Passage Peak Hamilton Island is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...

 

We sat and watched as the rain came in across the water a welcome relief from the heat and humidity, as we got ready for the walk back.

 

The walk to Passage Peak is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...
The walk to Passage Peak is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...
The walk to Passage Peak is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...
The walk to Passage Peak is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...
The walk to Passage Peak is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way. We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin ...

 

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Top things to do in Western Australia.

Western Australia, a land as vast as it is beautiful.

Australia is the sixth largest country in the world by pure size, however amazingly 53rd by population. When you visit Australia you notice something, that most of the population seems to be within half a dozen hours of the coast, and with the beautiful beaches of the Great Ocean Road, Byron Bay, the Gold Coast why wouldn’t they.

ABS population density

 

Western Australia is the largest State in Australia it spreads out over 2,529,875 square kilometres, 33% of Australia’s landmass. But Just over 10% of the population resides there (2.6 million). Compare that to Victoria that is only 3% of the landmass, but accounts for over 25% of the population, you can see how Western Australia is an area vast in size, but still quite low in population.

When putting together our list of Top things to do in Western Australia you will see that there are often huge areas between them. Involving long drives in the car. But what you will find is even if you are sitting in the car for 1500kms as you drive from Perth to Eucla, the scenery is always changing and its worth the drive.

Whilst there are amazing things to do in Perth, like Kings Park, the Maritime Museum in Fremantle. Which we loved my list is some of the more original things to do, things you can’t do anywhere else.

1 – Eucla

Just 11Kms over the South Australia border stands this tiny town Eucla, now Eucla has a population of under 100 people and you would be remiss to just keep driving through on your journey over the Nullarbor. (The Nullarbor is the large flat, treeless plain you drive over from Adelaide to Perth. This holds the longest straight stretch of road in Australia 146km) The Nullarbor is a real right of passage in Australia’s RV community and you will often see stickers on the back of caravans, proudly exclaiming they have crossed the Nullarbor.

We have driven over the Eyre Highway a few times and Eucla is the real highlight of the trip.

So why stop at Eucla?

You stop at Eucla for one reason the Old Telegraph Station. The Old Telegraph Station is located in the middle of a huge Sand dune. You park your car and begin to wander through the sand dunes, hoping you are heading in the right direction and then it comes into focus. Half covered by sand. The remnants of the Telegraph station.

eucla Western australia

2. Gnomesville

What is Gnomesville you might ask? How did it start?

Gnoomesville is something special, it is a little village of 7000 gnomes that sprung up in Wellington Mill over 21 years ago, just 30 minutes out of Bunbury. Gnomesville is a great place to go and have a look, there is something magical about going and looking around at the 1000’s of gnomes in the area. Our kids loved it. Search #gnomesville on Instagram to see heaps more photos.

Gnomesville Western Australia Gnomesville Western Australia

3 – Busselton Jetty

Busselton Jetty is the longest wooden pier (jetty) in the world. Stretching 2kms out to sea, you will see many people wandering out to the end of the Jetty. But if walking 4kms is not how you intend to spend your day. Don’t worry they now have an amazing solar-powered train that runs up 1.7km of the Jetty and takes 45 minutes. At $13.50 for an adult, $6.75 for a child 3-14 years it is great value.

Busselton Jetty

4 – Kalbarri – Natures window

6 hours from Perth is the picturesque Kalbarri National Park. Kalbarri is a gorgeous seaside town 600 km north of Perth with a population of about 1400 people. Every morning at the foreshore they feed the pelicans, and tourists flock to the area. But the real stand out of the area is “Natures window”.

Nature’s window was formed by the wind eroding a section of the layered sandstone, that frames the Murchison river below. What has formed is a gorgeous window that allows for an amazing view of the Murchison River.

Kalbarri Natures window
Kalbarri Natures window

There is a lot of different walks in Kalbarri National Park, whether you are a beginner or experienced hiker.

Kalbarri National Park is also a great place to see Western Australia’s wildflowers. Western Australia has 800 different speicies of Wildflowers. 600 of them are only found in WA.

5 – The Valley of the Giants tree top Walk.

50 km out of Denmark is the Internationally recognised, Valley of the Giants treetop walk. As long as you aren’t scared of heights you will love walking 40 metres above the ground amongst the canopy of the huge Red tingle trees in the Walpole-Nornalup National Park. The Walk is 600 metres long as suitable for children of all ages, including strollers. However, the way you can see through the metal of the bridge under your feet does see some children (and adults) struggle with the walk across the bridge.

Valley of the Giants treetop walk

The Valley of the giants is open from 9 am – 5 pm daily (excluding Christmas Day). However, runs extended hours over the Christmas period from December 26th to January 26th and stays open until 7 pm.

Entry to the Discovery Centre is free, however, to walk across the Valley of the Giants, the admission price is.

Adults (16+) = $21

Concession = $15.50

Children (6-15) = $10.50

Family (2A + 2C) = $52.50

If you are there at 10:15 am 11:30 am or 2 pm (during school terms) join in the guided tour to find out more about the amazing tingle trees from one of the helpful guides.

The Treetop discovery centre also has a gift shop and sells refreshments.

6- The pinnacles

Over a quarter of a million people come to see the iconic Limestone formations in the Numbung National Park each year. Only 200 km from Perth this is a must see if spending any time in Western Australia. It really is a sight to behold limestone formations some reaching up to 5 metres in the sky, sticking out of the sand everywhere. The Pinnacles are accessible by both car ($12 per car) or walking from the discovery centre. It is a 4km loop. Whilst the Discovery centre is only open until 4:30 pm, there is an honesty system after 4:30 that allows you to go in and capture that amazing photo at sunrise or sunset when the shadows create a truly magical experience.

The pinnacles Western Australia

 

Have you been to Western Australia before?

What would be your must-see places in Western Australia?

Feet do travel link up Weekend Wanderlust

top things to do in wa Western Australia, a land as vast as it is beautiful.Australia is the sixth largest country in the world by pure size, however amazingly 53rd by population. Western Australia that makes up 33% in size, but only 10% in population has some of the most original places to visit. Places that you won't see anywhere else in the world. Come see what makes WA so special.
top things to do in WA Western Australia, a land as vast as it is beautiful.Australia is the sixth largest country in the world by pure size, however amazingly 53rd by population. Western Australia that makes up 33% in size, but only 10% in population has some of the most original places to visit. Places that you won't see anywhere else in the world. Come see what makes WA so special.
natural windows kalbarri
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The Beauty of Point Lonsdale

Take a journey to Point Lonsdale

Point Lonsdale, a beautiful coastal town on the Bellarine Peninsula, just over 5 minutes from Queenscliff.

I spent a gorgeous weekend there with some friends, enjoying lunch down at the Dunes Cafe in Ocean Grove (a short drive away), waking up early each morning to take a stroll down to the boardwalk. Sitting outside listening to the waves crash on the shore.

Whilst it has a great relaxed atmosphere, it also has all the important things you need on the small main strip, with a grocery store, cafes, a few cute boutiques, chemist, restaurants even an OP shop whilst still keeping its lovely relaxed feel. A great little playground across from the beach, there are three caravan parks in Point Lonsdale, so whether you are after a powered site, unpowered site, or a caravan park with its own spa.

It is a gorgeous spot to visit, it is the location of one of the Heads (Otherwise known as the Rip), that make up the entrance to Port Phillip Bay.

The heads are the triangular area water between Point Lonsdale, neighbouring Queenscliff and Point Nepean. All shipping heading into Melbourne’s port must make it through the Heads. It is quite a site to be walking along the beach and watch the large Freight boats as they navigate the channel. The same channel that during May through October you can often see gorgeous whales.

Point Lonsdale has a gorgeous walking track that runs from Queenscliff to Point Lonsdale, it is 5.5km of mostly flat terrain. The distance markers run every 500 metres.

The Walk ends up at Point Lonsdale Lighthouse, this lighthouse was built back in 1902, and although the light became automated in 1999, it is still manned as it is also the Point Lonsdale signal station, that controls the movements of commercial shipping within designated areas both outside and inside Port Phillip Heads.

Point Lonsdale

Point Lonsdale

Point Lonsdale

Point Lonsdale

Point Lonsdale

Point Lonsdale

Point Lonsdale

Point Lonsdale is well worth a visit only just over an hour from the start of the Great Ocean Road. With so many great places to visit along the Great Ocean Road, like the Cape Otway Lighthouse, Towerhill Nature reserve, Sheoak Falls and Swallow Cave, to Port Fairy, it’s well worth a visit.

 

Take a journey to Point Lonsdale Point Lonsdale, a beautiful coastal town on the Bellarine Peninsula, just over 5 minutes
Take a journey to Point Lonsdale Point Lonsdale, a beautiful coastal town on the Bellarine Peninsula, just over 5 minutes
Take a journey to Point Lonsdale Point Lonsdale, a beautiful coastal town on the Bellarine Peninsula, just over 5 minutes
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The Larder Ballarat – Macarthur Street Larder.

Macarthur Street Larder.

Affectionately known as ‘The Larder Ballarat’ down on the corner of Macarthur Street and Doveton Street North is the Macarthur street Larder. Like many cafes in the Ballarat area, this cafe is made in a converted house. However, the way they have opened up the front area means it has less of a rabbit warren feel than other converted houses. They have removed many of the walls, and the kitchen is set up in the back of the building in a reasonably open feel. Meaning as you sit and relax the smell of the food wafts around.

macarthur street larder macarthur street larder

The menu is varied, focusing on modern fresh Middle eastern inspired food. This is not the place you are going to go if you are after a Parma and Chips. This is the place you go to eat Salads, Lamb Boreks, flatbreads and Pastries. Even in the Children’s menu, there is not a nugget and chip in sight. Instead, children get a choice of toasted sandwiches, Banana Bread, Granola, Bacon and eggs. However, there is Ice-cream for dessert.

macarthur street larder menu

Following on the children’s theme, the Macarthur Street Larder is the perfect place to come with your children with one of the old rooms at the back of the building has been converted to a little playroom, with a huge variety of toys. This room opens up to another large seating area, however, the only drawback is the room outside only has two tables both reasonable size though, so you need to plan ahead and bring some colouring in, in case the tables are already in use.

macarthur street larder macarthur street lardermacarthur street larder macarthur street larder

However, if you are going without children, the front area is large and away from the Children’s room at the back, meaning you can easily sit in the front and relax drinking your coffee.

There is also a great outdoor area perfect for Ballarat Spring and Summertime.

We went for Breakfast and also had an Iced Chocolate and the flavour of the Iced Chocolate was lovely, it was not too sweet but had a beautiful flavour to it, most places you go the iced chocolates end up tasting like plain milk. It was presented lovely too.

macarthur street larder, a perfect place to have an Iced Chocolate.

Breakfast was the bacon, a great mix of fried eggs, bacon, spinach, tomatoes on Turkish Bread. We will definitely be going back to try more of their Lunch menu, I have heard the Lamb Borek is well worth ordering so can’t wait to go back and try it for myself.

macarthur street larder, The Bacon, a great mix of Bacon, eggs, spinach and turkish bread.

The Macarther street Larder Ballarat Menu

Macarthur street larder, The Larder Ballarat Menumacarthur street larder

The Larder also sells a variety of homemade Biscuits and slices at the front counter, as well as Take away coffee is available.

It has a little shop as well with a selection of bags and other handmade items for sale.

Address

451 Doveton St N, Soldiers Hill VIC 3350

Opening Hours

Macarthur Street Larder is only open during the week.

Monday – 8:30am – 3pm
Tuesday – 8:30am – 3pm
Wednesday – 8:30am – 3pm
Thursday – 8:30am – 3pm
Friday – 8:30am – 3pm
Saturday – CLOSED
Sunday – CLOSED

Payment methods

Cash, Visa and Mastercard

 

So next time you are in Ballarat make sure you head into the Macarthur Street Larder for a meal.

 

Check out our other Ballarat restaurants, Lakeview Hotel, Sporting Globe Ballarat.

 

Macarthur Street Larder. Affectionately known as ‘The Larder Ballarat’ down on the corner of Macarthur Street and Doveton Street North
Macarthur Street Larder. Affectionately known as ‘The Larder Ballarat’ down on the corner of Macarthur Street and Doveton Street North
Macarthur Street Larder. Affectionately known as ‘The Larder Ballarat’ down on the corner of Macarthur Street and Doveton Street North

 

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