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Port Macquarie for BBQs, bands and billycarts!

farm gate

BBQs, bands and billycarts all feature in a bumper line-up of eclectic events in Port Macquarie this year. Plan your visit around one of the many foodie, cultural and sporting fixtures that will spice up any weekend in this gorgeous coastal town. Here are 7 to ponder:
1. Slice of Haven (29 May) – spend your day by the Camden Haven River and meet over 80 local producers of nuts, cheese, wine, beer, vegetables and bush-foods. This year’s ‘Magic beyond the plate’ theme will feature cooking demonstrations, workshops, dancing, quirky stilt walkers and games. 10am-4pm. Entry via gold coin donation. www.sliceofhaven.com.au
2. Hastings Landcare Farm Gate Tour (11-13 June, long weekend, pictured) – learn where your food comes from at this unique event run by Landcare that visits around 12 farms that aren’t normally open to the public. From the oyster farms of the Hastings River to the lush grazing valleys of the Wauchope hinterland, see cows being milked, chickens free ranging and baby animals being fed. www.hastingslandcare.org.au
3. Jazz in the Vineyards at Bago Vineyards (monthly, every second Sunday) – a fixture now for 15 years, Jazz in the Vineyards is the best way to experience the magic of this hinterland winery. Live jazz, cuisine from XS Foods and great wine combine for a relaxing afternoon outdoors, while the kids can get lost in Bago Maze. www.bago.com.au
4. Port Macquarie Beer and Cider Festival (24 September) – enjoy tastings from around 50 beer and cider makers, live music, a beer garden and fun games including the Beer Keg Toss competition, inspired by the long tradition of the Highland Games. Westport Park. www.portmacbeerandciderfestival.com
5. Ekam Yoga Festival Port Macquarie (18 September) – a day of music, play and connection, this event features talks by some of the most senior yoga teachers in Australia, plus classes, workshops and a sustainable living and natural health expo. Ekam, meaning one, is about coming together as one for the day. It is held at the Glasshouse. www.ekamyogafestival.org.au
6. Beechwood Billycart Classic (5 November) – the gorgeous town of Beechwood, just 7km from Wauchope, is home to this hilarious and fun day out. Watch the thrills and spills as kids and adults race down Mt Pappinbarra with speeds of up to 100km/hr, finishing at the Beechwood Hotel, a great landing place for post-race festivities. www.billycartclassic.com.au
7. Hello Koalas Sculpture Trail (daily) – now a permanent event, this free, tourist trail features 50 one-metre high hand-painted koala sculptures set up at various locations including attractions, wineries, beaches, parks and hotels. www.hellokoalas.com
8. Ironman Australia (1 May) – one of IRONMAN’s original events steeped in triathlon history and a must-do for sport-lovers. This year the inspirational Turia Pitt will make her debut return to the field at one of the most scenic Ironman circuits in the world. www.ironman.com

Port Macquarie is a 4-hour drive North of Sydney or a 1-hour flight from Sydney and Brisbane with connections to the rest of Australia. 

Award-winning writer, editor, photographer, videographer and owner of October Grey Media. Specialising in travel, music and lifestyle content. Content strategist and bestselling author of books including Icons of Australian Music: Jimmy Barnes, 101 Great Websites To Save You $$$, and global smash Conversations With Mediums. Follow on Twitter & instragram #scottpodmore

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