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Archive for the ‘North Coast Living’ Category

After spending more than 2 weeks stranded in Cudgen Creek at Kingscliff, the last 2 Bottlenose Dolphins were caught and successfully taken back to the ocean, where they were released to hopefully rejoin their pod. To view video footage of the rescue click here

Surfers around here are very familiar with dolphins riding waves alongside them, but there is a magical quality about encountering these unique creatures which land lovers rarely experience.

The dolphins certainly created interest for locals as we were made aware of how the unpredictable nature of the constantly changing ocean and estuary can affect it’s inhabitants – as they arrived with the high tide and were unable to leave.

They were being monitored daily by Australian Seabird RescueNational Parks and Wildlife Service and had been assessed by experts from SeaWorld. They also maintained an exclusion zone marked by buoys and anyone who violated that was warned they will be fined.

We spent some time at Cudgen Creek on Australia Day captivated by the dolphins frolicking in the water as we viewed them from different vantage points. I took many photos trying to capture an image of the dolphins suddenly appearing before submerging into the waters again. Here’s an image I managed to catch with more than one fin showing!

Dolphins in Cudgen Creek

Dolphins in Cudgen Creek, Kingscliff

It was an experience for everyone seeing the dolphins, but as the high tides came and went and the days turned into weeks, many became concerned about their welfare.

Cudgen Creek

For dolphin images and 12 Facts About Dolphins that you Must Know click here

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There’s nothing like a trip away to make me appreciate what I have at home here on the north coast of New South Wales. Since arriving home from a month’s holiday in Asia, I have been to the beach more times than I have in the last few years!

I made a commitment to myself in Thailand, that upon returning I would make the effort to enjoy all that the superb beaches here have to offer: sun, surf, swimming, strolling in the breaking waves and pure absorption of nature’s beauty and goodness.

We even dragged out our very old surf ski and had a paddle at Hastings Point estuary. We plan to be there again on Australia Day enjoying the afternoon with friends after the crowds have had their BBQ’s and headed home. To just have the time to absorb the magic and beauty the beaches have to offer is a precious experience.

I’ve also been swimming at the new Tweed Regional Aquatic Centre which is impressive and have enjoyed seeing how many laps I can do – but not timing it of course!

I’m so much healthier and happier and intend keeping it that way by regular exercise encouraged by Naturopath Olwen Anderson. She has a great blog full of health tips and information and here’s a post with a question about Our Good Health Intentions Last Year?

For a list of Australia Day Celebrations on the NSW North Coast click here


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I have to confess that I have taken Christmas off this year and left the north coast for an overseas holiday with my husband and youngest son – to fulfill a desire to visit the beautiful beaches of Southern Thailand after 22 years.

Phuket – Krabi area is famous for spectacular limestone rock towers, island out crops and beautiful beaches. We enjoyed a longboat tour of the islands and snorkelling amoungst tropical fish in the pristine waters of the coral reefs and it’s been a fantastic experience for our 13 year old son.

It took a few days to penetrate the heart of the country and find the genuine honest and kind Thai people that we remembered them to be, but I am affraid we have been disappointed by the overdevelopment and greed that has invaded this beautiful region.

The end result is realising what I already knew, that there’s no place like home. The north coast of NSW is a fantastic place to live and for a laid back lifestyle it’s hard to find better. I just have to make time to get out and enjoy the many beautiful beaches we have access to on the north coast – it’s heaven right here!

I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a fantastic New Year.
Thanks for all the support I have had for this blog and encouragement along the way.
Best Wishes to all
Fiona

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Bananas are in abundance on the north coast when it’s banana season and can be purchased very cheaply as it’s a banana growing region. Often I have peeled over ripe bananas and put them into the freezer to be used in the future for cooking.

Bananas are very versatile and are delicious cooked into cakes, bread and muffins. They can even be used in milkshakes and smoothies after freezing.

A favourite for some is Chocolate Coated Bananas which are made by inserting a skewer into the bottom of the banana, dipped into melted chocolate and put in the freezer for homemade cold treats. Kids love them!

Here’s a recipe  for an Egg Free Banana and Date Flan made with Spelt Flour that was given to me lately and is really yummy!

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Tumbulgum has always been a laid back little village on the banks of the Tweed River except on the weekends – it comes alive with boat enthusiasts, water skiing and picnickers.

I remember when the old car ferry was the only way to cross from Terranora to Tumbulgum before the bridge was built in the 90’s, and when the ferry broke down it was a long drive to get to the other side! The public boat ramp is where the car ferry crossed over to North Tumbulgum.

Here’s a photo gallery of some images of Tumbulgum.
Click on the images to enlarge.

I have often taken a detour through the village as it’s so beautiful to see the river and the view of the surrounding countryside with Mt Warning as a backdrop.

Mt Warning in Background

Mt Warning in Background

You often see houseboats taking a slow cruise down the river and can be hired at Tweed River Houseboat Hire at Tumbulgum. A great way to cruise the river for a day and learn about the history, is with Tweed Endeavour Cruises that stop at  Tumbulgum.

Tumbulgum Village

Tumbulgum Village General Store

It’s a lovely stroll along the riverside and interesting to peruse the quaint village shops and the famous historic Tumbulgum Tavern. There is also picnic facilities, boat hire, a public wharf and boat ramp.

The Poinsiana Trees on the riverside are in full bloom at the moment and look magnificent.

Tumbulgum was one of the first settlements in the Tweed Valley. To learn more of Tumbulgum’s history, click here

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Well the daylight saving season has descended upon us again and has caught many people unawares – as I’m sure it used to start at the end of October. When I found out it was upon us so soon, I like many others have said “Oh no, is it that time already?

For many people who don’t live near the border of Queensland (which does not participate in daylight savings) it’s not such an issue. But for new comers and visitors to the area, there is a lot of confusion about what time it is. Many an appointment is missed until you get into the routine of being conscious of what side of the border you are on, and what time zone the appointment is for.

My parents live on the Queensland side of the border in Coolangatta and are on daylight savings time to avoid being late to things, like the banks and shops in Tweed Heads, on the New South Wales side. On the other hand, my Mother in-law who also lives in Coolangatta, is on Queensland time.

My Sister lives in Brisbane and feels that she loses 2 ½ hours, instead of the 1 ½ hours it takes to drive to family gatherings at Coolangatta on DST time – that’s when it’s called ‘daylight stealings time!’ So when it comes to family gatherings, we all have to synchronize our timing in order to meet at the same time!

Things can get a bit crazy, but I look forward to the summer evenings where I will take the time for a walk after the heat of the day, and enjoy the magic of this area.

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In the early hours while most people are still sleeping, members of the Murwillumbah Rowing Club are getting out their flotilla of rowing boats and hitting the calm waters of the Tweed River. As the mist rises, they never know what may appear as this photo shows, what looks like a hot air balloon floating around Mt Warning.

Early morning start

Early morning start

Surrounded by sugar cane and fairly protected from wind, with fantastic views of the scenic rim and Mt Warning, it’s one of the best venues for rowing.

Teamwork

Teamwork

It’s not every day that people get to experience the exhilaration of rowing down a magnificent river unencumbered by other watercraft. There are many that regularly take advantage of the facilities that are offered by the Rowing Club which is perfectly situated on the banks of the olympian quality course, with almost 2 kms of straight river.

Community

Community

For more information about the Murwillumbah Rowing Club Click here

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