Friday, 21 December 2012

How to find calm in Sydney

Ah Sydney, my second home. An utter diamond of a city thrusting up out of the East coast of Australia. My heart flutters with endless possibilities every time I visit. It has a wonderful night life, fabulous shopping, a great art scene that just keeps growing and a steady bustle of people. There is no such thing as a quiet Tuesday night at the Pub in this town, it is always in party mode. At this time of year there are fireworks going off around the Harbor every night of the week.

Some days however when I'm in town I crave a slower pace. Here are some of my most loved relaxing adventures in this crazy hustle bustle town.

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Boat Harbour Opera House Bridge

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Harbor Boats View

If you havent visited Sydney before I highly recommend doing what the locals do & catch a Ferry from Circular Quay to Watsons Bay. Not only will you see the gorgeous Harbor from the water but also some of the most enviable real estate in the Southern Hemisphere. Hop off at Watsons Bay and grab some Fish & Chips from Doyles. Doyles is an institution in its own right and incredibly popular so you have the option of dining in the pricey Restaurant or from the Cafe on the Jetty. Pick a shady spot in the Park overlooking the Harbor to sit and you have officially found the best relaxing spot to while away a few hours.

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Harbor Jetty Legs

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Blue Mountains

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Blue Mountains Waterfall

If you have a whole day or weekend to spare I recommend escaping the the city entirely via hire car & head to the Blue Mountains. It is a bit of a long trip but its well worth the effort. It will provide you with spectacular views, quaint small towns that serve you a high tea style afternoon tea and the lush national parks filled with hiking trails.

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Beach Water

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Manly Beach Lifesavers

But to be honest, if you truly want to do what the locals love you need to hit the beach. Sydney has the best beach culture in Australia. Being quite fair in complexion I've always had to avoid the dangers of the Aussie Sun which meant a whole lot of slip, slop and slap. I had never been much of a beach babe preferring to keep out of the sun until I lived in Sydney.

There is a beach or cove close by to most suburbs and the locals are fiercely proud of their sandy spot. Bondi and Manly are the main beach attractions (& well worth checking out) but I prefer the secluded spots. My personal favourite sandy bum spot is Camp Cove. Nestled in between limestone cliffs just inside the Harbor entrance you can swim in the water without being pounded into the sand by strong waves. Lots of history (Captain Cook camped here when he first discovered the Harbor) and the walk there is as much fun as being at the beach.

Pineapple Dazzle Sydney Harbour Bridge Opera House View

I love Sydney's hustle and bustle. But if you are caught up in it all and feeling quite stressed it really doesnt take much to step away from the rat race pace. All you need is your bathers, a ferry ticket and a sense of adventure and you can be suddenly a million miles away.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

The Grinch who stole Christmas

Christmas is the time of year where the rest of the world falls in love with snow, egg nog, lavishly large hot family dinners, daggy sweaters, romantic comedies and twinkly lights. It is utterly foreign to me and there is zero appeal.

My earliest memory of this forced institution involved me being trapped sitting on a sticky & sweaty lap of Santa who was wrapped in a red velvet suit. 40C with no air-conditioning makes for one stinky and scary Santa.

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments
Yes, I am a Grinch. I dont put up decorations. I dont subscribe to buying a Christmas CD so I can listen to carols whilst driving my car. I hate wrapping 100's of presents. It does not give me Christmas Cheer. It is a waste of money, a stressful day and no matter how big a smile I plaster over my face I cannot wait for the 25th December to be over fast enough.

So it was with huge amounts of joy  when my eyes saw these lovely images by Alan Sailor, (thank you Expundit) . He has quite literally done what I've only ever dreamed of doing - vaporising Christmas into a billion little pieces.

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments

Pineapple Dazzle Art Alan Sailor Exploding Christmas Ornaments

Check out the full list of images on Flickr.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Let there be light

Recently I got a ticket to attend the Adelaide Festival 2013 Season Launch. Under the applause and hushed vibe the poster was lavishly presented to the crowd. It is eerily dark and temptingly inviting at at once. I wanted to crawl inside the light square box and see what was inside. All the launch was missing was a Wolf howling to the moon & I would have had goosebumps.

Pineapple Dazzle Art Yellow Rhino

It was love at first sight, again. I knew at once that I'd seen the work of this artist before - Benoit Paille.

Benoit Paille is a Canadian Artist who takes incredible thought provoking photos. I particularly love her illuminated landscape images. So enchanting you feel like you have stepped into another world. I cannot believe that they have not been edited digitally later in Photoshop.I was able to find some of her work on This is Colossal. I recommend you check out their cool blog.

Pineapple Dazzle Art This is Colossal Benoit Paille

Pineapple Dazzle Art This is Colossal Benoit Paille

I am really looking forward to the Adelaide Festival in March 2013. Known for being the risk taking Art Festival in Australia it dares to be different. I have traveled to festivals interstate and you can definitely tell where Adelaide dares and succeeds, the other festivals follow.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Summer tunes

Summer time for me means riding my bike home at night, playing frisbee in the park, BBQ's at friends houses and turning the music up loud.

What does summer time mean for you? Happy Friday peeps! 

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Outbound with the In Crowd

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

I am completely head over heels in love with the work of Artist, Shag. His brightly coloured retro inspired world is pure hedonistic fantasy. 

My taste in art has developed overtime but there is something cheeky in Shag's work that keeps me coming back.  One day I can only dream that he gets inspiration in the form of a bedazzled pineapple. Until then I will send him Jedi mind control thoughts.

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

Pineapple Dazzle Shag Retro Art

If you are in Sydney (or Melbourne) check out Shag's latest exhibition, Outbound with the In Crowd at OutrĂ© Gallery

Monday, 3 December 2012

Choose Your Own Adventure in Turkey

Pineapple Dazzle Istanbul Blue Mosque

Earlier this year I jumped on a plane and flew to Turkey for my Honeymoon.
It completely blew me away. The people were generous & kind. The food was addictively good. The weather was warm and I barely saw a single cloud in the sky the 3 weeks we were there.

Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Hot Air Balloons Cappadocia
Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Hot Air Balloons Cappadocia
Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Stop Sign CappadociaPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Rock Formations Landscape CappadociaPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Adventure Cave Explore

One of the highlights of our trip was taking a hot air balloon ride over Cappadocia. At one point when we were floating over the land we were up in the sky with another 50 balloons. I took as many photos of the balloons (250 photos in 2 hours) as I did the alien landscape.

Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Flowers in Oil CansPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Beach Pebbles Butterfly ValleyPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Boat Cruise LoungingPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Beach Hut Kabana AntalyaPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Ancient Ruins Hot Water Springs

My personal highlight was our boat cruise down the Turkish coastline from Fetiye to Olympos. Our days were spent swimming in the warm buoyant Mediterranian water or climbing over small remote islands scattered with ancient ruins. By the end of our cruise I had turned a gorgeous honey brown colour from all of sun. Absolute heaven.

Pineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Ancient Ruins St Nicholas IslandPineapple Dazzle Turkey Adventure Travel Holiday Antalya City Garden

I will always remember how Turkey made me feel. The sweet smell of the orange tree's lining the streets. The comforting & mood lifting apple tea. The quiet solace of a tap dripping in a Public bath. A refreshing chill creeping up through my feet from cool floor tiles.

It truly is an old ancient place where old superstitions die hard and the land offers up so many unique almost mystical natural wonders.

I tried to bottle up a small amount of Turkey and take it home with me but it was hard to recreate in the cold dark days of winter. Now that summer is finally here I can stand outside in the sun, shut my eyes and dream that I'm back climbing up the side of a mountain, walking through a field of wild growing thyme in search of another lost city.