If you're planning to visit the Fraser Coast this summer, we've got everything you can do in this guide to the summer school holidays in Hervey Bay. Don't spend hours planning, we've done all the hard yards for you and compiled the best activities for every type of adventure. It's full of great ideas and awesome family attractions, plus all the best family-friendly places to stay.
Family adrenaline fun
Because it's school holidays and because it's the beach, FUN will be top of the list with your kids. So here are some adrenaline packed ideas that big kids will enjoy as well:
- Wetside Water Park - a popular eco-friendly water park in Pialba for a cheap, fun and very wet day out. Parking's free, entry's free and there's a Flipside Boardride wave machine for the older kids that's just $6 a ride.
- Hervey Bay Scenic Flights - take the family on a 10-minute private scenic flight and see the sights as you fly over Hervey Bay, the Great Sandy Strait, the Mary River and the stunning surrounds of Fraser Island.
- Fraser Island Jet Ski Tours - choose from three different guided tours departing from Hervey Bay (ride solo or tandem) and explore the beautiful coastline of Fraser Island by jet ski.
- Hervey Bay Go Kart Track - burn rubber on this 650 metre long go kart track in Pialba or relax with a cold drink on the observation deck while the kids have maximum fun (minimum driver height 1.5 metres).
Laid back attractions
Holidays should be about everyone's enjoyment, so here are a few less hectic attractions that allow you to sit back and smell the roses:
- Sand between your toes - the beach at Pialba is the perfect place to relax and read a book while the kids play. There are two adjacent playgrounds on the foreshore plus bbq's, picnic tables and toilets and when they're done playing, you can take off your shoes and explore the rock pools together at low tide.
- Nikenbah Markets - held on the first and third Sundays of each month at the Hervey Bay Animal Shelter, the market features numerous stalls selling fresh local produce and hand crafted products plus great food and a relaxed, pet-friendly atmosphere that'll have you browsing for hours.
- Torquay Pier - take a leisurely family stroll on Torquay Pier and along the Esplanade, where you'll find fishing and photo opportunities galore and some great little cafes to relax in.
- Hervey Bay Botanic Gardens - 26 hectares of beautiful gardens in Urangan that provide an oasis of peace and tranquillity. Chill out with a family picnic or use one of the bbq's provided and relax while the kids check out the ducks, turtles, goldfish and other wildlife.
As well as the humpbacks during whale season, the Fraser Coast has some of Australia's most fascinating wildlife and if your kids are eco-minded, they'll want to check out these natural attractions:
- Swim with dolphins and seals - if your kids are strong swimmers, they're bound to love this! Moonraker Dolphin Swims is an ecotourism company in Torquay that takes you where the action is and lets you get up close and personal with wild seals and dolphins in their natural environment.
- Reefworld Aquarium - if getting into the water with them is a bit too extreme, a trip to Reefworld Aquarium in Urangan provides the next best marine life encounter. A natural aquarium situated right on the beach, it includes a variety of sea life plus shark feeding, turtle touch pond and more. The onsite Waterfront Restaurant is also open for breakfast and lunch and has a takeaway menu for kids.
- Fraser Coast Wildlife Sanctuary - a not-for-profit sanctuary in Maryborough where you can meet and greet a variety of wildlife including kangaroos, wallabies, cockatoos, kookaburras, dingoes, reptiles and snakes. And with bbq facilities and a canteen, a great family day is assured.
- Arkarra Lagoons - an Aboriginal word for "place of many ducks", this is a top spot to get back to nature with a bush walk and a picnic lunch (there's also a café). Home to more than 170 species of wildlife including wallabies, birds, goannas, echidnas, turtles, eels and fish, Arkarra Lagoons is an easy drive from Hervey Bay
Where to stay
If your family holiday to the Fraser Coast is more than just a day trip, you'll need a base camp to explore the region. And the area has plenty of family-friendly accommodation options for all budgets including;
- High end if you want location plus all the little luxuries, there are a variety of world class resorts on the Marina in Urangan including Akama Resort, Ramada Hervey Bay, Breakfree Sandy Straits and Mantra Hervey Bay.
- Mid range more affordable family-friendly accommodation includes Grange Resort, Main Street Motel, Emeraldene Inn & Eco-Lodge, Shelly Bay Resort, Kondari Resort, Pialba Motel, Hervey Bay Motel, Boat Harbour Resort, Sunseeker Motel and Delfinos Bay Resort.
- Budget if you're holidaying on a budget or prefer the laid back caravan park lifestyle, try the multi award-winning Happy Wanderer Village in Hervey Bay or the Big 4 Point Vernon Holiday Park.
And remember, while you're on the Fraser Coast, make sure you call into Pialba Place shopping centre, where you'll find plenty of great shopping and dining options plus a ton of free school holiday fun for the kids.
|Posted in: Summer Holiday Fun!|
Everyone likes giving presents, but who can be bothered wrapping them?
Thanks to the Hervey Bay Lioness Club, we're saying sayonara to the sticky tape and tricky ribbon - they'll be here from the start of December, wrapping your gifts for a gold coin donation.
Show your support for our local community, and take (some of) the stress out of Christmas shopping!
Mon 3rd Dec to Mon 24th Dec
9.00am to 4.00pm daily
Big W Mall
|Posted in: Charity Gift Wrapping|
Santa will be at Pialba Place from Monday 3rd December and will be here everyday until Monday 24th December.
Santa will be waiting in his grotto in the Coles Mall. Bring your own device and lots of smiles and snap away.
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday: 10am - 3pm
Tuesdays: 12pm to 3pm
Saturday and Sunday: 10am - 2pm
Sensory Santa joins us inside Coles for Quiet Hour on Tuesdays in December giving families with additional needs the opportunity to have a photo with Santa in a quieter environment.Sensory Santa Times:
Tuesday 4th, 11th and 18th December from 10.30am to 11.30am.
All children will receive a FREE activity pack when they visit Santa and your kids will love Santa's craft table. Stocks are limited.
|Posted in: Santa will be at Pialba Place|
The Earth is ever-changing, so that means life as a nature photographer is never boring. Be it wildlife or landscapes, there's always something new and exciting to capture, especially when you grab your camera and head to Queensland.
The beauty of Queensland
Queensland is a big state, which means it's home to a variety of landscapes. You'll find vast coastal sand dunes, mangrove forests and mudflats. There's also extensive heathland, rainforest, vibrant coral reef and deep shadowy gorges.
For most people, capturing the natural beauty of Queensland starts with Australia's "Nature Coast". Located in the Sunshine Coast and Fraser Coast, the Nature Coast offers incredible natural settings, with some of the world's most diverse and pristine National Parks, rainforests and waterways. From the breathtaking Glass House Mountains in the south to the coral cay of Lady Elliot Island in the north, it's a nature photographers playground.
With that in mind, here are some destinations you really must capture.
Glass House Mountains
The quiet beauty of the Sunshine Coast is where Australia's Nature Coast begins. Home to the iconic Glass House Mountains that were formed 26 million years ago, you can lose yourself in the natural serenity.
There are many lookouts where you can capture the Glass House Mountains and each one is as spectacular as the next. Mount Beerwah is among the favourites, being the highest of the ten volcanic plugs. The climb to the summit isn't for the inexperienced though, as rock scrambling is a must. For a quicker and easier snap, head to Wild Horse Mountain.
Pumicestone Passage houses a unique ecosystem, so marine life is in abundance and can be easily found. From turtles and bottlenose dolphins to dugongs, all of whom call the Passage home all year round, there's always something to capture.
If you'd prefer to capture birds through your lens, the Passage is also home to about 1,500 resident shorebirds and nearly 20,000 migratory birds. It's one of the most significant birds and marine habitats in Australia, and you can view it all from the shorebird watching area.
Rainbow Beach sits at the southern end of Fraser Island and the northern end of Cooloola National Park. Cooloola National Park, together with Fraser Island, forms part of the world's greatest sandmass - the interaction of the wind and vegetation has moved the sand around for more than 400,000 years, forming it into an incredible wind-sculptured paradise.
You can 4WD along the Great Beach Drive and pass the towering coastal sand cliffs. Complete with coloured sands, these sand cliffs make for some spectacular photos. As well as snapping the sand cliffs, be sure to check out the Carlo Sand Blow.
Fraser Island is the only place in the world where you'll find tall rainforests growing on sand dunes. This makes for incredible scenery, no matter where you are on the island.
But perhaps the most photographed part of Fraser Island is the awe-inspiring beauty of Lake McKenzie. Lake McKenzie is a clear lake and whiter than white sand. It's also insanely pure as it's a 'perched' lake (meaning it contains only rainwater), and this means it supports very little life.
Hervey Bay is the stepping-off point to Fraser Island and is the place to go if you want to watch humpback whales at their happiest. Hervey Bay also happens to have some of the safest, family-friendly beaches on the Queensland coast.
To capture Hervey Bay at its finest, the months between July and November are when you should go. This is the time to enjoy an up close humpback whale encounter, which will present you with a once-in-a-lifetime photography opportunity. Winter and spring are also great times at Hervey Bay to photograph the Tooan Tooan Creek Flying Fox Colony and the ospreys from Gables Point.
Lady Elliot Island
Located within a highly protected 'Green Zone' approximately 80km north-east of Bundaberg, Lady Elliot Island is a small coral cay island and a sanctuary for over 1,200 species of marine life. To make the most of photographing LEI, the Canon Collective Team will take you to the island for five days of snorkelling, diving and aerial photography from a C210 plane.
Beyond the Nature Coast
If you find yourself taking photos in and around Hervey Bay, be sure to drop into Pialba Place for food and drink as a quick break from all the incredible natural surrounds and a refuel so you can continue with your photography.
|Posted in: Capture the beauty of Queensland|
Research tells us that Australians have a bad habit of staying back at work late. If you're nodding your head because this sounds like you, you probably find yourself running straight from the desk to dinner too. With that in mind, here are some tips to help you get creative with your wardrobe so you can transition from desk to dinner in style.
What is "desk to dinner" styling?
Desk to dinner styling is a day-to-night styling that transitions a professional ensemble to after-hours perfection. It describes what you can do using staples and how accessories can be a late worker's best friend. Let's have a look at some of the staples that are a must.
Staple 1. The little black dress
Just about every woman has a little black dress in their wardrobe, because on its own it's great for just about every occasion and is super easy to style. To make it appropriate for work you can add a tailored blazer with some classic pumps. Carry with you a black tote and chuck on some pearl studs to really nail the professional persona. Before you leave the office: Gold chandelier earrings add instant drama to a little black dress. Switch your feet into a funky pair of heels and pop your essentials into a clutch bag and you're good to go for the night. Pick up a little black dress and matching accessories at Savvy Gal.
Staple 2. The pantsuit
If you have a strict dress code at work you probably have a professional-looking pantsuit in your wardrobe. A bluish charcoal colour is a modern approach when paired with a green silk blouse, creating a colour block effect that looks great. Before you leave the office: Ditch the blazer part of your pantsuit and pop in some brightly coloured drop earrings. Pack your belongings into a resort-style clutch and slip on some lace-up heels. Pick up a silk blouse at Rockmans.
Staple 3. The button-down shirt
A white button-down shirt is one of the most versatile items you can own. Worn with a pencil skirt, a structured bag and a simple pair of heels, a white button-down shirt looks classic and elegant. Opt for pastel accessories in spring and summer. Before you leave the office: Unbutton the first two buttons of your shirt and show off a statement necklace. If wearing pastel/nude shoes, choose a piece with an element of mint. Swap the structured bag for a nude clutch, pop your hair in a high top bun and you're good to go. Pick up a button-down shirt at Millers.
Staple 4. The fabulous blouse
A fabulous blouse with a dramatic detail - think slashed sleeves, ruffle front or jewelled button - can be discreetly hidden under a jacket or knit for the office. Worn with a pair of black pants you'll look ever the professional. Before you leave the office: Getting ready to go out to dinner doesn't come easier than this. Simply take off your jacket or knit and pop in a pair of statement studs. Let your hair down and give it a ruffle to be ready for the night ahead. Pick up a fabulous blouse at Savvy Gal.
Staple 5. Tweed skirt
A mini tweed skirt can easily venture into date territory, but it can also be made work appropriate with the right style, tights and low-key flats. Wear with a peplum blouse and an oversized shoulder bag in the day and your hair in a tight bun. Before you leave the office: Slip on some Converse shoes and your favourite lightweight jumper, and pop your essentials into a small cross-body bag. Let your hair down loose and you're ready for a casual dinner on the coast at Giovanni's Pizza Bar. Pick up a mini skirt at Black Berrie.
Learning the basic rules
If darting from the office is a regular thing for you, consider these basic rules of desk to dinner styling whenever you get ready for work.
Rule 1. Choose simple
Simple pieces act as a backdrop for the look you're trying to achieve. Items with clean lines, a simple silhouette or somewhat fitted are best. Think of your staples as your blank canvas in which you will layer and load with interchangeable accessories.
Rule 2. Respect office expectations
Sensible shoes and a tailored, well-put-together look is always best for the office. Layer sleek blazers or relaxed cardigans, finish with a headband or tights, and tie everything together with a belt. You can strip all this off when you're ready to go.
Rule 3. Pack for later
Keep a bag in your car that has a playful pair of heels, a clutch or small cross-body purse, bright lipstick and an edgy jacket in the cooler months.
Rule 4. Freshen up
Powder your nose, add a fresh swipe of mascara to your lashes, gloss your lips, roll over some deodorant and give yourself a spritz with perfume. You'll feel so much better for it.
Rule 5. Clock out with ample time
Getting refreshed for dinner is pointless if you're going to run the three blocks to get there. Allow plenty of time to get to your dinner date and if you're lucky you can sneak in a cocktail before the others arrive. Your friends will be impressed that you managed to work late AND arrive early.
Know where to find your staples
The bottom line is - think ahead if you're jumping from desk to dinner. Having certain staples in your wardrobe and understanding the rules will ensure you look great wherever you are. If you're looking for the perfect clothes and accessories that will help you style from desk to dinner, visit Pialba Place for a range of retail stores.
|Posted in: Desk to Dinner Styling Tips|