Along the Away

travel, dream, create, inspire, appreciate

My sister and I made an impromptu, last minute decision to get out of the city for New Years and instead retreat to the beautiful Blue Mountains for a few days.

Don’t get me wrong, Sydney is one of the best places on earth to celebrate the New Year arrival – our harbour fireworks are crazy beautiful. But as I live here I guess I feel I can miss one here and there :-)

Last year a group of friends and I camped out all day at Blues Point so we could watch the fireworks from one of the best views along the harbour. To get anywhere along the water you have to claim your spot early morning on New Year’s Eve and then hope you have good weather all day!

We had this gorgeous view (while sweltering in 40+ degree heat):

Sydney Harbour New Year's Day Eve 2012

But those 8 minute fireworks sure are worth it (for the 6.8 million dollar price tag, yo).

Sydney Harbour Fireworks New Year's Eve 2012

Sydney Harbour Fireworks NYE 2012

It’s a hardcore effort though, not something you want to do every year. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, 2 million people watched the fireworks from along the harbour foreshore this year. Now, given the harbour’s extensive coastline this includes a lot of vantage points in all directions, but far out – that is a lot of people and goes to show why a Sydney Harbour NYE requires an all day stake-out.

This year, both my sis and I were craving something more low key and reflective. A getaway to the mountains was perfect and although last minute, the universe smiled upon us, we found perfect, affordable accommodation with only a few days notice.

And such a sweet place – a cozy rental called Apple Blossom Cottage.

Along The Away - Apple Blossom Cottage, Wentworth Falls

Along The Away - Apple Blossom Cottage, Wentworth Falls

Along The Away - Apple Blossom Cottage, Wentworth Falls

It was homey, clean and well stocked, a little lived-in with borderline grandparent holiday house decor, but we were having a bit of a nana new years anyway, so whatevs, it worked.

Along The Away - Apple Blossom Cottage, Wentworth Falls

After checking out our humble abode we drove to Leura, a charming little village with painted street murals, boutique stores and cozy cafes.

Leura Street Brick Murals

Painted Brick Murals in Leura

Leura Street Brick Murals

I just adored how the real trees standing next to the wall created a 3D effect in front of the mural, and their shadows spilled down over the painting and across the footpath… just beautiful.

Leura Street Brick Murals

We ate lunch at Wayzgoose Cafe and it was yummy and relaxing. We discovered a delicious Ice Tea called Stolen Recipe, both of us tried the Lemon Lime Peppermint – yum! In Woolworths later we discovered they sold litre bottles of it, I have never seen it in Sydney before. A quick google tells me it is stocked at Thomas Dux at Crows Nest, awesome!

Along The Away - Sisters Lunching in Leura

We did that sort of anti-social sister thing where we both sat at the table sorting photos on our phones and didn’t talk to each other. I listened to the entertaining waitress exasperatedly banging around and exclaiming in the kitchen and at the counter. The male waiter kept catching my eye with a smile every time she was particularly dramatic – I don’t blame her, it was 3pm on New Year’s Eve.

Along The Away - Sisters Lunching in Leura

So we settled in and then headed back to our cottage for a relaxing New Year’s eve night in. We listened to music and drank Moet. We watched some BBC Pride & Prejudice – nana New Year’s OK?

We did light sparklers and toasted midnight with champagne, and talked about all our goals and hopes for 2014. We were excited to get up early on the first day of 2014 to get out into the mountains. It was that kind of New Year’s and I loved it.

The best part of the cottage is that it is in Fletcher St in Wentworth Falls – literally a few minutes walk to the Conservation Hut where so many of the waterfall walks start and finish. We did heaps of bushwalking whilst away, I will share some tales and photos soon!

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Sydney based, coastal dwelling. When I'm not at work I'm somewhere outdoors, or in the yoga studio, or at my local cafe, or pottering at home.

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