If traveling in the winter months of Australia, the Blue Mountains are well worth a day trip, at an easy two-hour drive out of the Sydney city. Instead of hibernating like the rest Australia, the arty Blue Mountain folk liven up their lives with a fantastic Winter Solstice Festival on the shortest day of the year. Held annually, stalls line along the main street of Katoomba, selling an assortment of treats. You’ll find homemade warming foods, arts, crafty wares, hand-made soaps and candles, and aromatic coffee stalls aka hot chocolate stalls.. mmmm. This festival is a good opportunity to stroll through the town and local gift shops, while talented locals serenade Katoomba with violins or (as spotted) a guitar made out of a wooden box. At midday, the parade with possibly the best dazzling costumes you’re likely to see in Australia, will descend along the main street. People from near and far gather to watch (perhaps with a spicy chai tea or warm mulled wine in hand, plus scarves and beanie’s) as the parades pass by. The annual Winter Solstice Festival in the Blue Mountains is a daytrip your itinerary will thank you for. If it could speak.
Website for more info: www.wintermagic.com.au