4 Fresh Finds: New things to try on the Coast
Have you noticed how the Central Coast is continuously stepping up its game as a top place to explore in New South Wales?
Sure you have! That's why you're here, checking out exactly what's new and exciting on the Coast this month...
With the Central Coast's celebrated status as a certified ECO Destination, finalists in the National Banksia Sustainability Awards, 3rd year in a row in the International Green Destinations Top 100 List, and recognition as an Outstanding Region in Australia's most prestigious food award...
...There's many exciting natural, culinary, creative and cultural experiences emerging across the region in 2023!
With more than 40 beaches to wade into, a network of wildlife-rich lakes, lagoons and waterways for the aqua-enthusiast, five national parks and five state forests with walking and cycle trails, seaside villages dotted with casually-cool dining and al fresco bars, a produce-rich hinterland and variety of accommodation styles from holiday properties, hotel resorts, tiny homes and boutique stays. There is just SO MUCH to choose from when exploring the Central Coast right now.
We've simplified your research and each month your planning can start with 4 fresh experiences. Take your pick of what’s new below to dot your Spring calendar with the best places to enjoy something different on the Central Coast.
Fresh Find #1 - Something new to do
It's only a train ride away
Along the trainline on the Central Coast, overlooking Brisbane Water are two locals who have made it their passion to fuel locals with the wholesome recipes passed down from their parents and grandparents, and their Riverina and South African roots. The Locomotive Station at Tascott is more than just a coffee shop, it’s a licensed café with a range events and foods ready to eat at home.
During the morning and up until lunch time, fresh sustainable coffee is served along with baked daily goods, like fluffy scones and savoury brunch delights such as South African Bunny Chow with vegan options available too. While customers are popping in for their morning caffeine hit, some are also collecting their dinner too ordered from the specials announced at the start of week depending on what local seasonal produce is available. Or, pick up a Taste Local experience pack and let the Locomotive Station put together a food experience to treasure. Choose from Oyster Pack of fresh local oysters from Westray Oysters, a Fireside Picnic pack for a fancy night in or a get together with friends or perhaps a local Brunch Box with everything you need for a breakfast-lunch feast. For those that need a rest from the daily grind, be sure to see their evening events including Sundowners where you can 'eat local' sampling local produce from Kulnura, Somerbsy, Woy Woy and Erina Heights or enjoy a cocktail making class! Keep an eye on their website for other one off events too.
One thing for sure, is this dynamic duo love nothing more than bringing the community together and feeding the locals with their home cooked recipes that they grew up on while keeping their grandparent’s cookbook close to their hearts.
Fresh Find #2 - New places to eat and drink
Coffee in the Coast's National Park
Tucked away under the trees of Bouddi National Park on the Central Coast is a new café space that has opened in Killcare Heights. Serving delicious local Ukuzala coffee from their stylishly retro coffee van, it really is a must visit for your morning coffee.
With Ukuzala’s modern approach to roasting coffee and old school values of caring for people who drink it, Arnie’s Espresso Bar is nurturing community connections for local and visitors. Featured on the Central Coast Edible Garden Trail, these sustainable focused coffee roasters produce roasted coffee in small batches from their rustic shed onsite at their property. Their approach to roasting signature blends for allows consumer feedback so they can tweak their roasting profiles, making them a real consumer focused business – which we love! The team are heavily environmentally conscious using home compostable bags and reusable canisters for their beans.
With Arnie’s Espresso Bar being the face of the business, there is more to come from this innovative operation. In 2024, barista training will be offered to train the future coffee makers in our region.
Stop in for a coffee under the shade of the native bushland or grab a bag of beans to go!
Fresh Find #3 - New maker & creator to explore
Proud Darug and Darkinjung woman Kyralee Shields is a contemporary Aboriginal ceramic artist and painter living on the Central Coast. Her works are creations of inspiration celebrating the freedom to express her cultural identity. Her contemporary art aims to represent and applaud the traditional form that is so important to her. She soft colour palette is reflective of the nature, fauna and floral around the country.
Kyralee’s hand crafted ceramic wall hangings and ornaments take inspiration from the Corrobborees where men and women would get painted in ochre for ceremonies, initiation and celebrations, womens meeting places where they would gather for secret women’s business and message sticks sent between tribes. She also creates a range of stunning vases with colours that echo the native flora growing here on the coast and beautiful highly decorative platters and trinket dishes inspired by gatherings with loved ones.
Her original artworks tell a story of gatherings around the Central Coast with her works often depicting yam daisies and bush berries, mountains of Darkinjung Country, the Hawkesbury River and the Corroborees that take place where Dreamtime stories are passed down to younger generations. This successful local artist is often commissioned to paint huge canvas however some of her paintings are for sale on her website and some are made into limited edition prints.
Fresh Find #4 - New places to stay
Slow travel retreat
Amidst the untouched bush, set on idyllic private property on 105 acres in the Central Coast Hinterland, you will feel a million miles away from the churn and grind of everyday life as soon as your feet hit the ground of this sanctuary.
Ironbark Ranch Co. at Mangrove Mountain, is an idyllic getaway and wellness retreat for anyone needing to take a moment to breath and break from their busy lives. The location itself is a hidden gem and the impressive ranch allows you to choose your experience and create your adventure. Ironbark offers women and Mumpreners the chance to reset and refocus with specialised tailored 1 and 2 night retreats where mind and body are treated to holistic healing through slow movement and nourished with wholefood. There are also workshops and self-development days for men and teenagers too.
For larger families or friends wanting a slow travel holiday, the 6-bedroom farmhouse ranch with its contemporary rustic charm allows you to unwind in the spacious property and take in the breathtaking views of paddocks, damns and wildlife. Rise early to catch the morning sun rise with a cup of coffee in hand or mediate on the back deck ready to start your day. For self-sufficient campers wanting to be even closer to nature, bring your tent, set up and take a moment to ground yourself as you take in the beauty of the wide open space.
With Popran National Park surrounding the retreat, waterfalls and wilderness waiting to be explored, the ranch truly is the place to reconnect, rejuvenate and reenergise.
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Do you have a fresh suggestion we’ve missed, or want to see your local business featured? We'd love to hear it – simply get in touch here with a few lines about your idea, or jump on our radar by creating a free Central Coast business or event listing here.