DECEMBER BUCKET LIST: Balance the Christmas crazy with some Highlands chillout time this month.

 

And so this is Christmas….and what have you done? Ummm…heaps, thanks! In fact, we’re a little worn out already, just quietly. So to balance out the nutso festive yin with some relaxation yang, this month’s list is all about taking time out to recalibrate and rejuvenate.

Turn your Christmas crazy into country calm with our December Bucket List.

 

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While yoga is awesome for getting super bendy and increasing your party trick repertoire, it also calms and connects mind, body and spirit, allowing us to deal with the stresses of daily life. There are plenty of local studios and yogis where you can perfect your downward dog and seeing we’re all about yin and yang this month, how does Yoga, Flowers and Lunch in the Vines at Artemis Wines sound? If that’s not harmony in action, we don’t know what is!

 

yoga in the vines

 

Hey, did you know we have two incredible monasteries tucked away on the outskirts of Bundanoon? The Sunnataram Forest Monastery and the Santi Forest Monastery are perfect for escaping the frenetic pace of festivities this season. These peaceful Buddhist retreats run a program of guided meditations, Buddhist chanting and blessing ceremonies which visitors are welcome to attend. Or you can simply wander through the beautiful gardens, lie down and look up through the towering trees at the sky (and maybe knock out some zeds while you’re at it!).

You can also stop and smell the roses – literally! The roses are in full bloom at Harper’s Mansion in Berrima. Stroll through the gorgeous gardens or “get lost” in the maze – anything for some time out, right?

Getting back to nature is also a good way to recalibrate AND you can keep those pesky Christmas kilos at bay. The escarpment walk at Fitzroy Falls is a popular bush track (and family friendly). Take the West Rim or East Rim walking track. We say go west – life is peaceful is there. Or maybe it was the Pet Shop Boys who said that….

 

fitzroy falls

 

Morton National Park also has some awesome bush tracks. The Erith Coal Mine Track is a little steep but a challenging walk for those who don’t mind a bit of an incline. Echo Point and Lover’s Walk is an easier walk which suits kids. Just drive straight through Bundy up Church Street to enter the park.

You can also take a leisurely walk around Mittagong’s Lake Alexandra, go bird-watching in the Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve near Moss Vale, join in with Parkrun starting at Briar’s Inn at Burradoo or seeing it’s trout season, throw a line in at one of the many streams and rivers either by yourself for some quiet time, or with Angus of Bong Bong Fly.

 

fish

 

Now if you’re like us here in The Fold office, your idea of chilling out may involve a delicious wine and having someone else bring you all of the food! And we are loving all the pop-ups that are …. umm…popping up here, there and everywhere. Chef in your Kitchen’s Pop-Up is on again (be quick to book your spot for this one – the last one sold out!!), Jimmy Nardello Italian at Moonacres in Robbo, and the Pop-Up Piano Bar at Bundy is back again after last year’s success. Four Seasons Bistro has a Very Vegan/Vegetarian Christmas pop up for the month where they’re going to make us all fall in love with the Retro Nut Roast again, with chef Derek’s twist on the classic vegetarian dish. Plus there is pudding and brandy sauce too. Enough said.

 

cheers

 

And you know what else? We were scrolling through our Event Directory and were a little gobsmacked by all the amazing workshops running locally in December. Artisan cheese-making, flower crown workshops, candle-making, creating festive garlands and wreaths, how to build and decorate gingerbread houses, silver smithing – you name it, there is a super smart local sharing their knowledge with inspired and motivated Highlanders – we love it! Check out our list of all the fab workshops here.

 

wreath

 

And as tempting as it is to hide behind the Christmas tree and re-emerge some time in January, we are embracing everything Christmas! Our list of carols events is here, and check out where you can get your Santa photos done. And don’t forget our Ultimate Guide to Christmas Festivities in The Highlands to make your Christmas a little less stress and a whole lotta fest!

 

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