Escape

Alice Springs sees a mass exodus over the Christmas/New Year period with all most everyone heading to a beach. Being smack bang in the centre of Australia, Alice happens to be the closest town to EVERY beach in Australia!  It has been a number of years since we left Alice at Christmas time, so this year we packed everything up and headed south to spend Christmas at Apollo Bay and enjoy some quality beach time.

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The water at Apollo Bay is always freezing and Zelda did not take to it at all. In fact, one day she gave her self a sponge bath from a bucket of water on the sand rather than step into the water! Apollo Bay has the added bonus of having what feels like the coldest weather in Australia. So a 20 degree day, if cloudy, can feel freezing but if sunny can feel so so warm. It was rather nice to be there while Alice Springs sweltered through a week of 40+. How did you spend the Christmas break? Hope it was wonderful & am wishing you a very happy new year xx

Melbourne and Apollo Bay Family Holiday

It has felt like we haven't been on holidays in a long time, which isn't true as we were in the States in January, we had an overnight get away to Glen Helen in May  and we went to Uluru for the August long weekend, but when you live in Alice Springs you just need to get to the coast every now and then. We took the opportunity at the end of October to go to Melbourne, see Elmo's stage show and then spend a few days on the coast.

Melbourne

Stay

 We stayed in Tyrian Apartments on Johnston Street in Fitzroy. This was central to our family and a short tram ride to the city. On the way home we stayed at the Larwill Studio in Parkville. The Larwill is on the edge of the city, on way to the airport, but also close to trams, North Melbourne and has a huge playground next door. I loved both places and would certainly stay again.

Travel  

Trams are so easy to use, but if you have a pram, make sure that you are able to lift it and the baby up steps as not all Trams have disabled/pram access. You can't buy Myki (payment) cards on the tram so Nick's sister picked up some for us before we arrived, you can purchase them from any 7 Eleven.

See NGV John Olsen Exhibition in the Ian Potter Centre, Federation Square - it's on until February 12 & includes a room where you can sketch your own inspired works - Lulu loved this.

Play

There is a huge playground at Art Play behind Federation Square. If you are there Wed-Sun there are art activities for children at Art Play . I had never heard of Art Play until we stumbled across the playground. I'll be checking their website and booking Lulu into their activities for our next visit to Melbourne.

Eat

We loved Po Boy Quarter on Smith Street in Fitzroy

Apollo Bay

Stay

In these beautiful townhouses in Marengo

Travel

We hired a car from the airport - the best way to get there

See

The Beach! Marengo is good for waves, Apollo Bay is flat for the little kids. As you can see, Zelda wasn't really into the beach time as much as we were.

Play

At the Apollo Bay town park on the foreshore. Hug the big koala at the Bakery

Eat

So many yummy places to eat. We recommend La Bimba - best oysters, Scorched Grill - yummy burgers, La Casalinga - best homemade pasta, the tasting room at the pub - the only place you can get food between 2pm & 6pm, but also great cheese platter.

Happy Holidaying!

A quick trip

Sometimes you just have to get away & while this recently break in Melbourne was not by choice, it was a welcome getaway. We drove up to Apollo Bay for two nights for a chance to breathe in the sea air and catch up with Nick's sister and her partner. Then back to Melbourne for two days for Lulu to have a test at the Children's hospital.

If you haven't been to the Melbourne Children's Hospital, it really is worth a sticky beak! It has an aquarium, a meerkat inclosure and even a ice-cream shop - perfect for a little girl post slightly invasive procedure! We are hoping to get to the bottom of her respiratory issues, which keep occurring despite her not having aspirated for over a year now. We aren't really sure if this is the answer, we just keep hoping that she won't get sick again.

Back to the hospital, it also has a huge playground in the parklands next door. Scroll down for a few photos. If you are ever in Melbourne the park and the hospital are both worth a visit. And if you do go to the park with a small child, make sure you bring a change of clothes for the child! We stayed at the Larwill Studio, located at the hospital - very convenient for getting to appointments. It was a brief trip but well worth it.

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Ps Have you checked out the Christmas Kingdom Giveaway? Only 1 more day to enter!