One of my favourite places in the world – Kings Park

Whenever I go to Perth and need some time to myself, I head to Kings Park. This amazing park has been my favourite since I was a child. Kings Park helps me clear my mind, and relax, escaping the hustle and bustle of everyday city life. It was originally opened in 1965 and has been one of my favourite parks in the world. I would rate it an equal first to New York’s Central Park. When you stand opposite the modern Fraser’s restaurant, you can see the spectacular views of Perth city and the Swan and Manning rivers.

What I love best about King’s Park is the Botanical Gardens. There’s 17 hectares of wonderful garden displays to enjoy and has the largest display of Western Australian flora in the world. One of my favourite garden displays is the Conservation Garden. The plants are grouped according to their region or type of country and was designed to preserve Western Australia’s precious biodiversity. I love taking photographs of these garden displays, enjoying the beautiful colours.

      

Also when I need time out to clear my head, I like going on long bush walks in Kings Park. There’s the Bushland Nature Trail which is about a 1km loop walk with raised sections of boardwalk and is assessable to all the park users. When you take this walk you would need to wear appropriate footwear as it’s very sandy and bushy. I like taking my time doing this bush walk and just stroll, enjoying the peacefulness and mother nature at its best. Many others who visit this area like to exercise by jogging or cycling by.

   

Kings Park also has two wonderful art galleries. First, the Aboriginal Art Gallery which has traditional Aboriginal art exhibited. It has beautiful paintings, sculptures and sometimes pottery. And on some days you can actually meet the Aboriginal artists and observe them as they work or listen to their intriguing stories. It transports me to their land whenever I go inside and talk to them. This gallery has a high reputation and is substantially recognised in the Aboriginal community and amongst collectors of fine Indigenous art from around the world. There’s also the Aspects of Kings Park Gallery, which is more modern and commercial. I love spending a good hour here, looking at their unusual gift collections. They have unique books, homewares, jewellery, stationery – especially cards and trinkets. I always end up buying one or two items here for my friends as gifts.

Whenever family and friends arrive to visit me in Perth, I always take them to the Botanical Cafe for lunch and we can just sit outdoors for a good two hours and talk and enjoy the view over Perth city and the Swan River. They’re open from 7am to 6pm, breakfast, lunch and dinner. My favourite food on their menu is the Beef burger and the beer battered fish and chips. They’re both priced around the $20 mark and are delicious. All my family and friends who dine here with me say this is one of their favourite dining out places in Perth, not only because of the company, but because of the good service and the outdoor views – it’s spacious and the decor is casual, giving you that home-away from home feeling.

For families with children, there are a lot of picnic areas around the beautiful fountains and gardens and a lot of people pack blankets and picnic baskets full of foodie treats and enjoy the trees and just sit and talk for hours. This is total bliss for me. Personally I love lying down on the luscious green grass and breathing in the fresh outdoor air. And depending on what season you visit Kings Park, you can sometimes smell flowers like lavender. Research shows that the scent of flowers and walking through nature, like a park, can help you feel calmer and happier and that spending time in fresh air, surrounded by nature, increases energy in 90 percent of people. “Nature is fuel for the soul, ” says Richard Ryan (Researcher and Professor of Psychology).

So, if you’re ever heading to Perth and need time out to relax….head on down to Kings Park for the day. There’s so much to do and explore. I highly recommend this – it’s one of my favourite places in the world!

My Top 10 Favourite Blogs & Sites

Here are my top 10 favourite blogs and sites. They range from food, spirituality, fashion, writing, art, children and education, people and life, creativity and so on. I love reading and learning new things from them and hope you do too…spread the joy!

Foodie Blogs & Sites

1)   http://www.noodlies.com/

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Noodlies uncovers authentic, culturally diverse food and culture around Sydney. Thang Ngo is a regular blogger who is from Western Sydney and blogs about good quality food, cafes, restaurants and eateries that are unpretentious and affordable.

“Thang Ngo reports on popular restaurants as well as hole-in-the-wall eateries which still serve exciting authentic food. Vietnamese, Chinese, Lao, Thai, Cambodian, Iraqi, Lebanese, Italian, Chilean, Korean… he’s eaten, blogged, and lived to tell the tale.”  SBS

 

2) http://www.everydaycook.com.au

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Jacqui G is Australia’s version of Martha Stewart! Her passion and love for baking is evident in everything she cooks. Her food presentation has great finesse and she’s a regular blogger. Her blog also includes wonderful recipes.

 

3) http://www.bizzylizzysgoodthings.com

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Good Things is a collection Liz’s favourite recipes, together with quirky stories; news on food and cooking; postcards and morsels from her travels; and snippets about her Magyar heritage. Her focus is recipes for all seasons. What I love best about this blog site is that it’s conversational and has wonderful anecdotes, you feel that you’re right there with Liz as she takes you on foodie adventures.

Fashion

4) http://www.garypeppergirl.com/

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This is a glamourous blog by Nicole Warne, which not only has beautiful photos from her fashion shoots but also amazing photos of her travels, often taken by her photographer boyfriend, Luke Shadbolt. Many photographs of her travels focuses on the scenery rather than the focus being on her. I also like how she writes short anecdotes about her travels and is often reflective about life, whereas a lot of fashion / model type blogs and sites often display nothing but “vanity.”  I don’t think this blog / site gives that impression. Her website also includes vintage shopping – bags, shoes, tops, bottoms, dresses etc.

Books, Writers & Spirituality

5) http://www.waltermason.com

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Walter is a writer, a spiritual tourist and a lifelong dilettante. He’s a regular blogger who blogs every week about authors, writing tips, writing events, spirituality and new book releases. What I like best about this blog is that he’s genuinely trying to help emerging writers and authors. His blog often has useful life and writing tips that can help everyone.

Art and Design

6)  http://http://www.facebook.com/Mahshar.Design/

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This is my favourite art and design web page. It has unusual photographs, architecture, geeky gadgets and homewares and so on. I find it inspiring and highly creative.

Geeky (great things to learn)

7) http://www.lifehacker.com.au/

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Lifehacker provide tips for technology and for life which you can use to make yourself more productive. Their tips are sorted into seven main categories CommunicateDesignFix,MoneyOrganiseTravel, and Work. I think this is a great website, full of information and things for you to learn from.

Children and Education

8) http://www.happychild.com.au  

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This website has great quality information about parenting and education, with a focus on social and emotional wellbeing of children. There are online seminars, information about children with special needs, latest articles about raising children with emotional intelligence, parenting tips and popular parenting and book reviews.

Retail, Shopping and Business solutions

9) http://www.magnoliasolutions.com.au/

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This is a wonderful blog and website by Nancy Georges which includes topics such as marketing, social media, retail solutions, business ideas and ways to improve customer service and your business. I find this very informative and I particularly love the events Nancy puts on as she is a wonderful host, always full of ideas. I particularly love her positivity.

Creativity

10) http://creativemornings.com/

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Creative mornings is a breakfast lecture series for the creative community. The organisers put on wonderful monthly events with great creative speakers who share their ideas with the public. They often broadcast these monthly talks on this website because places for these events are limited and often sell out within the hour.