Explore ideas for destinations to build your travel bucket list.

Discover the magic of Mary Poppins at The Story Bank

Visiting The Story Bank in Maryborough, Qld, is like discovering a secret realm steeped in magic, mystery, and nostalgia.

Here you’ll find a unique selection of stories unlike anywhere else—the story of Mary Poppins being the most enchanting among them.

The characters, stirring messages, and timeless themes woven throughout the Mary Poppins books and movies have captivated families for generations.

Whether you’ve visited The Story Bank before or are just now hearing about it for the first time, one thing is certain: You won’t forget what you discover there!

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, Jocelyn earns from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

The Story Bank - statue of Mary Poppins

A statue of the famous nanny Mary Poppins stands outside The Story Bank in Maryborough, Queensland.

Step inside The Story Bank

The Mary Poppins tale began at the former Australian Joint Stock Bank on the corner of Richmond and Kent Richmond streets in Maryborough, Qld.

This heritage-listed building is where Helen Lyndon Goff was born; better known to us as P.L. Travers, author of the classic Mary Poppins story books.

Fraser Coast Regional Council bought and restored the heritage-listed building to create The Story Bank, which showcases the story of P.L. Travers’ life, her family, and the influences on her writings.

Today, you can step inside The Story Bank for a world that invites you to take part in stories, trade tales over tea, or spin yarns fit only for legends.

An enchanting experience is sure to captivate anyone who enters its doors.

Visitors to The Story Bank can interact with displays of P.L. Travers’ life and her magical Mary Poppins stories as well as:

  • View images and documents from the P.L. Travers estate,
  • Delve into the Cabinet of Curiosities and the Library of Inspiration,
  • Open an account and discover the art of storytelling by depositing your own creations,
  • Share in stories crafted by Artisans of Story Telling in the Theatrette and Gallery, and,
  • Find unique gifts and books in the retail cottage.
The Story Bank - two men and two statues of children

Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour (back) and Councillor Paul Truscott unveil the statue of Mary Poppins children Jane and Michael Banks in 2018.

Visitors flood into The Story Bank in 2022

Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour said COVID restrictions and floods were not enough to keep visitors away from The Story Bank in 2022, with over 15,000

The Story Bank - man and statue of the bird lady

Artist Willie Paes sits with a statue of the Bird Woman in front of the mural of St Paul’s Cathedral that he painted.

people going through the interactive museum.

“Visitor numbers were down at the start of 2022 when Maryborough experienced multiple floods, but numbers rebounded in the latter half of the year with over 2000 visitors in July – the most visitors in a single month since The Story Bank opened.

“Each year visitor numbers have grown from just over 11,000 in 2019 to 15,236 visitors in 2022.

“Most of the visitors, at least 80%, come from outside of the region.

“The figures not only point to the facility’s popularity, but also reinforce our belief that the Story Bank would attract people to the region, especially the Maryborough CBD.

“There is no doubt that visitors to The Story Bank contribute significantly to tourism and the local economy.”

During 2022, The Story Bank also hosted 15 school groups with 677 students and 20 special interest groups with 319 attendees.

New programs to further boost visitor numbers

Cr Seymour said new programs would be introduced in 2023 to boost visitor numbers even more.

“The Story Bank staff are constantly innovating and introducing initiatives – such as Story Time for preschool-aged-children; Lawn Games in the garden during school holidays and Yarning Circle activities – to attract visitors,” he said.

“The Story Bank team has also worked hard aligning educational programs with curriculum content to better support our region’s educators.

“There is a focus on small group activities and play-based learning so that students have an engaging and enjoyable visit whilst still taking on board key concepts about storytelling.”

Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymoure at The Story Bank, Maryborough, Queensland. PHOTO: Fraser Coast Regional Council.

The Story Bank - heritage building

The $1.5 million project to restore the former Australian Joint Stock Bank in Maryborough, Qld, to create The Story Bank was undertaken with $395,000 funding from the Queensland Government and $395,000 funding from the Australian Government.

The Story Bank - Mary Poppins statue silhouette.

A Mary Poppins statue silhouette on the corner of Richmond and Kent Street, Maryborough, Qld. PHOTOS: Jocelyn Watts.

If you go

Maryborough is about 255 kilometers north of the Queensland capital, Brisbane.

For information on opening hours, admission prices, and programs at The Story Bank, visit:

For further details, visit:

VISITING MARYBOROUGH AND WANT ACCOMMODATION? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Where to next?

Wherever you want to go in the world, don’t forget to check out Booking.com.

With so many amazing deals on accommodation, flights, car rentals, attractions, and airport taxis, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for – and more!

So, what are you waiting for? Click the links here to visit BOOKING.COM today and start planning your next trip!

Home of Australia’s vital loggerhead turtle rookery

Want to experience a destination dedicated to sustainable practices and environmental conservation?

Then look no further than the Bundaberg Region, Australia, the southern-most destination on the Great Barrier Reef and the home of the nation’s most significant endangered loggerhead turtle rookery.

Recently awarded fifth EECO Destination Certification from Ecotourism Australia (25/2/2034), the Bundaberg Region is teeming with vibrant wildlife and crystal clear coastal waters.

Perfect for ecotourists looking to learn more about sustainability while enjoying the breathtaking sights of nature, this region offers something truly unique.

From idyllic parks preserving centuries-old trees and fauna to sweeping coastlines bordered by wild flora – you won’t want to miss out on all the Bundaberg Region has to offer.

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, Jocelyn earns from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

Bundaberg region - turtle swimming amongst coral

A Green Sea Turtle swims over a reef next to a coral bommie at Lady Eliot Island. PHOTO: Shutterstock.

Australia’s fifth locale with CEO Destination Certification

The globally recognised ECO Destination Certification process through Ecotourism Australia is complex and recognises the efforts of the tourism industry, local government, and the entire community towards all aspects of regional sustainability, and the Bundaberg Region is the second destination in Queensland and fifth in Australia to achieve the prestigious credential.

Following independent assessment across 91 criteria, the region achieved the certification at the Ecotourism level which is defined as a nature-based tourism destination with a strong commitment to ecotourism principles.

This involves cultural and natural interpretation and education for visitors, and local business engagement in sustainability.

Located about a 4.5-hour drive north of Brisbane, the Bundaberg Region is home to some of the most lauded eco-certified experiences on the Great Barrier Reef including Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort, Lady Musgrave Experience, Mon Repos Turtle Centre, and Kellys Beach Resort.

WANT ACCOMMODATION IN BUNDABERG? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Mayor Jack Dempsey said Bundaberg Regional Council had led the certification process with support from a range of stakeholders including Bundaberg Tourism, PCCC, and local operators and organisations.

“It is a massive coup for the Bundaberg Region to achieve ECO Destination Certification and sees our community become one of only a small number in the country to do so,” Mayor Dempsey said.

“This achievement demonstrates our community’s respect and care for the natural environment and will ensure we continue to grow in a sustainable way into the future.

“Ecotourism Australia’s independent auditor had some wonderful feedback for our region in making their decision and commended Council for its proactive approach to sustainability.

“This achievement has obvious benefits for our economy but it will also benefit our environment by providing a framework to constantly maintain and improve sustainability practices.

“It is also wonderful for our community members who can be proud of the role they play in preserving and protecting this place we are lucky enough to call home.”

Of the top five Bundaberg Region attractions and traveller favourites on TripAdvisor in 2022, three were nature-based and included Mon Repos Turtle Centre, Bundaberg Botanic Gardens, and Alexandra Park Zoo.

Bundaberg region - Turtle on a beach

A female Loggerhead Turtle flicks sand over her eggs to bury them after laying over 100 eggs above the high tide level at Mon Repos beach. PHOTO: Shutterstock.

Get up close and personal with nature in the Bundaberg region

Fulfilling global best standard sustainability requirements was no small feat, Ecotourism Australia CEO Elissa Keenan said.

“Since beginning its sustainability journey in 2020, the Bundaberg region has made significant strides to achieve ECO Destination Certification at the Ecotourism level,” Ms Keenan said.

“Bundaberg’s application demonstrated a passion for and dedication to holistic sustainability within the region, championing initiatives such as the One Million Trees Project and the popular Milbi Festival.

“Achieving ECO Destination Certification not only supports local Ecotourism Australia certified operators but inspires local tourism businesses to implement sustainability and achieve certification.”

Bundaberg Tourism played a key role in supporting the ECO Destination Certification process.

CEO Katherine Reid said, “The tourism industry of the region has long believed that experiencing our internationally significant but fragile natural assets is the greatest way to educate people about the need for conservation.

“The community and our tourism industry take great pride in our role as custodians of the Great Barrier Reef and the precious land, water, and sea country of the Traditional Owners on which we live, and ECO Destination Certification is a formal acknowledgment of this.

“The Bundaberg region continues to shine as one of Australia’s most exciting emerging tourism destinations, with people flocking from around the nation and the globe to experience our unique offerings, and the knowledge that their holidays are underpinned by respectful, sustainable, and in some cases regenerative business practices will only strengthen our desirability as a destination.”

WANT ACCOMMODATION IN BUNDABERG? VISIT BOOKING.COM

What is an ECO Certified Destination?

The ECO Destination Certification program assures travellers that certified destinations are backed by a strong, well-managed commitment to sustainable practices and provide high-quality nature-based tourism experiences within the region.

Becoming a certified ECO Destination means regions will be demonstrating internationally recognised ecotourism credentials to visitors, stakeholders, and the community in a manner that is credible and authenticated.

In other words, it’s not just regions saying they’re sustainable; it’s independently assessed, verified, and audited.

Bundaberg region - Lady Musgrave Island

Aerial viewpoint over tropical waters at lady Musgrave Island, Great Barrier Reef, Australia. PHOTO: Shutterstock.

About the Bundaberg Region’s Ecotourism Experiences

World-famous Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort is considered the home of the manta ray and holds multiple Ecotourism Australia certifications including Advanced Ecotourism, Climate Action Leader, and Green Travel Leader.

The Resort is located on the southern-most island of the Great Barrier Reef and has received multiple international accolades including being placed in the Queensland Tourism Awards Hall of Fame in 2022 for successive wins in the Ecotourism category.

Lady Musgrave Experience offers full-day eco-tours and pontoon glamping experiences at the second coral cay of the Reef and holds three Ecotourism Australia certifications – Advanced Ecotourism, Climate Action Certified Business, and Respecting Our Culture.

In 2022, the Experience was awarded bronze in the Ecotourism category of the Queensland Tourism Awards.

The Mon Repos Turtle Centre’s ranger-led encounters with nesting and hatching sea turtles and long history of marine turtle research, protection, and education have earned it three Ecotourism Australia certifications – Advanced Ecotourism, Climate Action Certified Business and Respecting Our Culture.

The region is also home to the Southern Great Barrier Reef’s first mainland eco-certified accommodation, Kellys Beach Resort, which holds Nature Tourism and Green Travel Leader Eco Certification.

WANT ACCOMMODATION IN BUNDABERG? VISIT BOOKING.COM

About Eco Tourism Australia

Ecotourism Australia is a non-government, not-for-profit organisation, established in 1991, that promotes and supports the ecotourism industry in Australia through building capacity and actively promoting sustainable tourism operations and systems.

Ecotourism Australia is acknowledged globally for its industry standards and recognised by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC).

Recognised as the credible, national peak body for sustainable and nature-based tourism, their key program–ECO Certification–was the world’s first national ecotourism certification program.

Bundaberg: The perfect destination for eco-conscious travellers

The Bundaberg Region has something for everyone, whether you’re looking to relax on the beach, explore cultural attractions, or get active in nature.

And with so many eco-friendly accommodations and activities available, it’s the perfect destination for the environmentally conscious traveler.

So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip to the Bundaberg Region today!

Where to next?

Wherever you want to go in the world, don’t forget to check out Booking.com.

With so many amazing deals on accommodation, flights, car rentals, attractions, and airport taxis, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for – and more!

So, what are you waiting for? Click the links here to visit BOOKING.COM today and start planning your next trip!

How Melbourne couple Bryan and Lyndel did it!

Have you ever dreamed of packing it all in and exploring Australia with a caravan?

Melbourne couple Bryan Crow and Lyndel Harris did just that—quit their jobs as a florist/funeral director and business administrator to chase their dreams of adventure.

After six amazing years on the road, they’ve set up a home base on a riverside property near Bundaberg in Queensland, but won’t be stopping for long.

They’re now launching adventure tours for other New Age caravan owners who want to find out how they too can live on the open roads.

So, if you’re looking for some travel inspiration or tips, why not join the New Age Caravans Social Club on their adventures?

But first, let’s look at how they got to where they are now.

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, Jocelyn earns from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

New Age Caravans - four people near a beach

Bryan Crow (left) and Lyndel Harris, and fellow caravanners Kaye Browne and Brian Pickering catch up for lunch in Hervey Bay, Qld. PHOTO: Jocelyn Watts.

Bryan: Funeral director and florist

Bryan’s florist business led him to funerals—an interesting pairing, but one that makes sense when you consider the common ground they share.

After growing up in a flower market garden, it seemed a natural choice for Bryan and his sister to go into the floristry business.

“We had florist shops for years. In fact, we still own a flower shop on the Mornington Peninsula,” Bryan said.

“I started out doing floral arrangements for funeral directors.

“I’d be delivering flowers to the funerals and the directors would say to me, ‘Bryan, can you get here a bit earlier so you can help me unload the coffin and put it here, or there, and do, this or that?’

“So, my funeral business evolved from that. Even when I was a funeral director, I was still doing all the floral tributes that go on top of the caskets.”

Lyndel: Queen of Can-do

Lyndel was a real force in the business world. She worked in administrative roles and even took her career one step further by co-owning a computer franchise.

“I preferred to work behind the scenes, where other staff would ask: ‘Lyndel, can you book that? Lyndel, can you follow this up? Lyndel, can you get me this, or that?’

“So, I became known as the Queen of Can-do!”

Ballroom dancing was also part of her life in Melbourne for many years—an enjoyable pastime she was passionate about.

WANT TO BOOK AN ATTRACTION IN MELBOURNE? VISIT BOOKING.COM

The ‘bizarre’ story of how they crossed paths

A funeral parlor might seem like an odd place to meet, and Bryan and Lyndel’s story of how they crossed paths is nothing short of bizarre.

New Age Caravans - Couple next to a beach

Bryan and Lyndel in Hervey Bay, Qld.

“How we met was bizarre really,” Lyndel said.

“It was in December 2001. My dad passed away and as a family, on Christmas Eve, we contacted the funeral director we’d driven past. That was Bryan’s funeral home.

“We walked in there as a family, and Bryan did all the arrangements.

“I found I could talk easily to Bryan, but I didn’t have a thought in the world about meeting up for, you know, coffee or anything afterward.

“Anyway, some years later, again as a family, we walked into Bryan’s funeral home again. He greeted us at the door, and I could see him wondering about who was missing.

“That was my eldest brother, 52. Bryan did the arrangements for his funeral too.

“On the night before my brother’s funeral, I had a phone call saying my brother’s partner’s son had also died.

“He came from Queensland to support his mum at the funeral, but he died in a trail bike accident.

“So, here I am, on the phone at 11.00 pm on the night before my brother’s funeral to Bryan, trying to say, hey, listen, this family will be in turmoil tomorrow.

“We had two family funerals within five days of each other, but got through it ok.

“Then about a week after that, or thereabouts, Bryan rang up and said if I’d like someone to talk with, to just come and have a coffee.

“So, we did the following day, and basically things progressed from there.”

Retirement started looking more luxurious

Bryan and Lyndel are no strangers to adventure.

“As a scout leader, I’ve done lots of camping, but I got to the stage where I’d had enough of tents and thought if I’m going to be camping in retirement, I’ll do it with a bit more luxury,” Bryan said.

“At that stage, Lyndel had an on-site caravan out in Daylesford, Victoria, but it was not getting enough use.

“We just looked at our lives and thought, ‘We should get out and enjoy life while we’re still young and healthy enough to do it.’

“So, we sold Lyndel’s van and then talked about the funeral business going up for sale.

“We started looking at big motorhomes, but people said don’t buy a motorhome—you’ve still got to tow something.

“Then we looked at caravans and they all seemed to have that horrible old brown timber inside.

“Eventually we looked inside a New Age caravan that had full white laminate inside and… wow!

“At that stage, they were building New Age caravans in Melbourne, but the only place you could buy them was on the Gold Coast, and we weren’t going all that way just to buy a caravan.

“So, we kept looking at other brands and talking to other companies, asking if they could make us something.”

“They said yes, but some time down the track, we still hadn’t heard from them.”

Eventually, Bryan and Lyndel spotted a showroom being set up in Epping, just out of Melbourne.

“It was a humongous, purpose-built showroom, and they were rolling out the red carpet as they were pushing caravans into position.

“We were the first to see it; two weeks before it opened. They invited us to the grand opening, and there we placed our order.

“The 21-foot New Age caravan we bought was their top-of-the-range model.

“When we picked it up, they were having an end-of-year sale and asked us if we’d take it home, dress it up, and bring it back to put on display as a showpiece. So that’s what happened.

“We were there on the Saturday and Sunday, talking to people and telling them how wonderful the lifestyle will be, before we’d even slept in it ourselves!”

WANT TO BOOK AN ATTRACTION IN MELBOURNE? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Why they hit fast forward on their retirement plans

Bryan, then 62, and Lyndel, 58, had planned to work well into their sixties, but buying New Age caravans inspired them to make their retirement plans happen sooner rather than later.

“So often in Bryan’s industry, he’d see a brand-new caravan sitting in a driveway, and the bereaved partner would say, ‘Oh, we were going to do the big lap next year’,” Lyndel said.

“Well, we’d rather have the pleasure of walking on grass than pushing it up.”

They’ve been on the road now for over six years, travelling an average of about 20,000 kilometres per year, and have no regrets.

Bryan said they take breathers from travelling occasionally.

“Last year we settled down in Sydney where I worked at a dealership for six months, just as something a little different.

“We knew 2022 was going to be a full year on the road with the number of vans that were being sold.

“So, we stayed off the road and away from the mayhem and earned some money.”

Bryan predicted that with international travel now resuming, there’d be a gradual return to the normal number of RVs on Australian roads.

“When Covid shut down international travel, people spent a lot of money on caravans, some about $80k, plus brand-new cars to tow them.

“Their investments have been huge, so they’ll probably get four or five years out of their vans, then it’ll be back to cruising… if their health allows it.

“If you see a guy that’s out there still towing a caravan in his 80s, you know he’s been doing it a long time. That’s about the age when they downsize to a smaller motorhome.

“We’ll probably keep doing it for as long as our bodies let us.”

How to choose between caravan or a cruise.

Get insider tips through the New Age Caravans Social Club

Bryan and Lyndel knew little about caravanning when they first started out.

For six years, every weekend off, they’d take their New Age caravan to the Mornington Peninsula, where it was an exciting learning experience meeting other caravanners in the area.

That’s how their idea of forming a social club/owners’ club came into being—they believed that with other experienced folks around, they could learn valuable lessons from them.

And voilà… they sent out invitations asking owners to register their interest in the new venture.

Next, the fledgling club became known as the New Age Owner’s Club.

“We organised an event to be held at Phillip Island and catered for breakfast and dinner,” Bryan said.

“We had to advertise it, and because I’d done a website for my sister’s florist shop, I built a website and registered it. Nearly 30 caravans attended that event.

“The next event was a few months later, and the numbers skyrocketed to about 120 from different parts of Australia.”

Bryan said they started going to major caravan shows throughout Australia.

“New Age would fly us to Adelaide, Brisbane, Launceston, Sydney, and Perth for weekends so we could talk with people who were buying caravans.

“Basically, we’d say, ‘We’ve got a social club and these are the benefits of membership. It’s a way to learn, to meet new people, and get out and see the country.

“Today, the club has over 2000 caravans throughout Australia and holds regular events.

“This year, Victoria alone has seven events happening, plus a New Age Murray River Adventure Tour.

“Initially, we’d get 20 to 30 vans together at one place for a weekend, but now most people try to rock in on a Wednesday and leave on a Tuesday, so it’s grown from two-day events to four or five-day events.

“The caravan parks love it because it means people are booking in for several days.

“That makes it worth it for retired people because, say in Queensland, they might never have been to Bundaberg, or have just passed through.

“So now, they have more time to do the turtle things, or the Hinkler thing, or go to the Bundy rum or Kalki Moon gin distilleries.

WANT TO BOOK AN ATTRACTION IN BUNDABERG? VISIT BOOKING.COM

New Age Caravans - Turtle on a beach

New Age caravanners may see the turtles at Mon Repos beach in Queensland if they take an adventure tour in that area. PHOTO: Shutterstock.

 

“Or, if people just want to sit under their annex all morning and chat, that’s fine too.”

Lyndel said joining the club was a great way to meet new people or rekindle old acquaintances.

“We wouldn’t have met the people we have if not for this club.

“For example, we were in Charters Towers speaking with other club members that were there, and one of them, as an 18-year-old in the final year of her hairdressing apprenticeship, used to cut my hair!”

Explore unknown places in your caravan

Whether you want an immersive three-week holiday or just a quick two-night trip, New Age Adventure tours have something for everyone.

Bryan said caravanners joining the tours would explore Western Australia, and South Australia, and then start a breathtaking journey along the Murray River in June/July.

Soon after, they’ll embark on another adventure that takes caravanners along tracks less travelled to Bathurst in time for the 2023 legendary motor race.

Plus, Bryan said early indications were that a gathering may happen at the Bundaberg Showgrounds in August 2023 (yet to be confirmed).

So, there’s plenty for New Age caravanners to get excited about in 2023.

WANT TO BOOK AN ATTRACTION IN BATHURST? VISIT BOOKING.COM

New Age Caravans - Bathurst motor race

A New Age adventure tour later this year will finish at Bathurst in time for the annual motor race. PHOTOS: Wikimedia Commons (above) and Shutterstock (below).

New Age Caravans - Aerial view of Bathurst

Adventure tours designed for busy people

Bryan and Lyndel have come up with an exciting way to make joining New Age Caravans Social Club events easier.

They’ve developed tours that allow folks to hop on for a weekend or commit longer, visiting pre-selected locations.

Bryan said people would often say they’d love to join the club’s events, but wouldn’t be in the particular area until the following week, or it wasn’t worth travelling to for just a weekend.

“So, we approached New Age management about running adventure tours, or tag-along tours, so people could join for just a weekend or for a week or more, whatever suited them,” he said.

“They’re not like traditional tag-along tours where everyone hooks up their vans at 9 o’clock in the morning to form a convoy of 15 to 18 vans and drive to the next town just 60 kilometres down the road.

“It’s about people being able to choose where they want to go and what to see.

“Nor is it free camping. We call it ‘off-the-grid’ camping, which means we’ll stay at venues like showgrounds where there’s a small fee of $10 to $15.

“If we say it’s free camping, people think there’s no money involved, but there are small fees. Caravanners just need to be self-sufficient, with their own power and water.”

The company agreed and the tours are getting underway this year. Among them is the Murray River Adventure in June / July.

The tour will journey from Albury/Wodonga to Chiltern, Howlong, Corowa, Rutherglen, Yarrawonga/Mulwala, Tocumwal, Picola, Nathalia, Tongala, Echuca/Moama, Cohuna, Kerang, Lake Boga, Swan Hill, Robinvale/Euston, Mildura, Wentworth, Berri, and Renmark.

For more details visit https://newagecarasvans.com.au/social-club

New Age Caravan tour - Murray River tour map

WANT TO BOOK AN ATTRACTION IN THE MURRAY RIVER REGION? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Explore Australia with friends

Bryan and Lyndel prefer the company of other caravanners when they explore new destinations.

“Nothing beats seeing our country with some caravanning friends,” Lyndel said.

“About five years ago, we did a three-month trek around Tasmania with five vans.

“Two years ago, we came up to Bundaberg in Queensland. There were three of us Victorians plus a couple from Bundaberg and we travelled up to Townsville, across to Darwin, and down to Alice and Uluru.

“Because of Covid, two on the trip returned back to Bundaberg, and we kept going to South Australia.

“That was a four-month trip. Each year, we’ve basically spent 8 to 10 months on the road.

Lyndel said that going back eight years ago, she never would have imagined herself living the grey nomad lifestyle.

“If anyone said I would, I’d have thought they were crazy.

“Doing this off-the-grid style camping in tours, we’re able to encourage others that have never done it before.

“They might be unsure of what to do away from caravan parks or know how long their water or power is going to last.

“So, it’s not just about seeing the towns, but it’s also a learning exercise, and we love meeting people if they want our advice, helping them get the best from their caravans.

“For example, there was a single guy driving across to Perth who asked us to check out his van.

“He called himself a keen cook and was travelling with many cast-iron pots, cookers, and a lot of other stuff he didn’t actually use.

“He would say, ‘I’m a chef, you know’.

“But he was actually living on takeaway or frozen food!

“So, we looked through his caravan and suggested he get rid of a lot of the stuff he wasn’t using.

“It’s about travelling minimally while maintaining comfort.”

WANT TO BOOK AN ATTRACTION IN SOUTH AUSTRALIA? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Bryan and Lyndel, living on their terms

Bryan and Lyndel’s story is one that exemplifies courage and resilience—traits we could all use more of these days.

Despite having no prior experience living full-time on the road or organising caravan tours around Australia, Bryan and Lyndel jumped into their current New Age caravan without hesitation—and made it work.

Their journey serves as an inspiration for caravanners everywhere who are considering taking a leap of faith themselves, proving anything is possible if you put your mind to it.

 

New Age Caravan - paddle steamer on a river.

The New Age Caravan Murray River Adventure Tour in June/July 2023 will pass through Echuca where participants can stop to take a paddle steamer ride on the Murray River. PHOTO: Jocelyn Watts

WANT TO BOOK AN ATTRACTION IN THE MURRAY RIVER REGION? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Where to next?

Wherever you want to go in the world, don’t forget to check out Booking.com.

With so many amazing deals on accommodation, flights, car rentals, attractions, and airport taxis, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for – and more!

So, what are you waiting for? Click the links here to visit BOOKING.COM today and start planning your next trip!

Travel back in time on a classic steam train

Have you ever wanted to travel back in time? If so, and you’re in the Sunshine Coast or Gympie areas, then you’re in luck… well, almost.

Riding the iconic Spirit of the Mary Valley Steam Train is the closest I’ve come in recent years to experiencing an authentic railway journey in the Gold Rush era. It was the next best thing to actually being onsite in the 1800s.

And, I didn’t need a DeLorean time machine as seen in the 1985 American science fiction film Back to the Future to get there!

I travelled from Hervey Bay to the Gympie Historic Railway Station in my 10-year-old black Nissan X-Trail, picking up my daughter and three of her children along the way.

Nestled in the heart of the Sunshine Coast hinterland, the Mary Valley Rattler runs between Gympie and Amamoor stations.

This vintage C17/967 locomotive and wooden carriages take passengers on a journey through picturesque rural landscapes and quaint country towns, providing a uniquely charming experience that is not to be missed.

So, jump on board with us and enjoy the ride!

Mary Valley Rattler - Gympie Station

Waiting to board the Mary Valley Rattler at the Gympie Historic Railway Station.

 

NEED ACCOMMODATION ON THE SUNSHINE COAST? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

A Brief History of the Mary Valley Rattler

The Mary River line, launched in 1881, was an important transport link in the region’s Gold Rush era for transporting materials and equipment in and exporting the gold out from the area.

As the golden era ended, local calls for the railway line to be expanded through the Mary Valley to cater to the fast-developing agriculture, dairy, and timber industries.

In 1915 the rail line was extended to Brooloo, which led to the establishment of small townships at Kandanga, Imbil, Amamoor, and Dagun.

The line operated for nearly 100 years before being closed in 2012 for safety reasons.

However, thanks to the Gympie Regional Council providing funds and a passionate group of volunteers putting in the hard yards, the Mary Valley Heritage Railway was restored as a major tourist attraction.

They were successful in getting the heritage-listed railway up and running again in 2018 and now tourists can enjoy all the Mary Valley Rattler offers while supporting a vital piece of Australian history.

Whether you’re a railway enthusiast or just looking for a unique way to see the stunning Mary Valley region, the Mary Valley Rattler is sure to be a highlight of your trip.

You’ll love the Rattler’s friendly, casual atmosphere

There’s no need to worry if you’ve never been on a heritage railway before—the friendly Mary Valley Rattler staff are more than happy to help you with anything you need.

When we arrived at Mary Valley Rattler’s historic railway station in Gympie, a friendly volunteer was there to greet us. She even offered to take our photos with our cameras in front of the entrance.

Inside, a welcoming attendant checked our bookings and gave us an overview of what was available at the station while we waited for our three-hour Classic Rattler Run to start.

The Rusty Rails Café had delicious food options for breakfast or lunch. We could also choose a Rattler Railway Company Coffee or other beverage.

The gift shop was stocked with railway souvenirs and the museum with memorabilia from bygone eras. There was even a porter in a period costume who was happy to be photographed.

As a not-for-profit organization, any Mary Valley Rattler purchases we made supported its ongoing restoration and preservation, so the future of this historic rail experience is ensured.

Mary Valley Rattler - Boarding

Boarding the Classic Rattler Run from Gympie to Amamoor and return.

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT GYMPIE? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Visiting the bygone era of coal-fired locomotives

Once we were settled in our seats, we sat back as we waited for your journey through the scenic Sunshine Coast hinterland to begin.

Soon, the smell of burning coal filled the air, steam hissed and the engine tooted as the train pulled out of the station.

We were on board one of several vintage carriages filled with visitors from Mackay, Maryborough, Hervey Bay, Gold Coast, and New Zealand.

Pulling us was the C17/967 locomotive that was built in 1950 at Walkers Limited in Maryborough, Queensland.

Mary Valley Rattler - Google Maps

As Jeff, the volunteer carriage attendant, punched holes into our vintage-style train tickets, he fueled the kids’ anticipation by telling them about the Harry Potter-like tunnels they’d see on this trip through the Mary Valley.

Another volunteer asked around for any birthdays, anniversaries, or other celebratory milestones that anyone onboard was having on or near that day.

Our Mr 13, who was about to turn 14, ducked for cover, anticipating that everyone onboard singing Happy Birthday to him would be embarrassing!

However, a number of other passengers volunteered to tell of their special days.

Looking around the carriage interior, our trio – Mr 6, Miss 9, and Mr 13 nearly 14 – were fascinated with the polished brass railway luggage racks overhead, the leather 1950’s bench-style seats, and other historical fittings.

Mary Valley Ratter - Amamoor platoform.

Amamoor platform.

Through the open-air windows that had wooden shutters, which could be pulled down or up to open or shut, we watched the world go by.

As we crossed old wooden bridges and went through tunnels, pulled along by a full-scale, genuine steam locomotive we felt like we were travelling back in time.

The rolling hills blanketed with farmland and quaint townships offered us a visual escape from our fast-paced lives, adding to how brilliant this adventure felt.

For the next hour, the train rattled along, taking us on an enjoyable journey through the township of Dagun and on to Amamoor, a quaint little town filled with old-fashioned shops and market stalls.

There we watched as the rail staff turn the C17/967 locomotive around on a huge turntable before heading back to Gympie.

Mary Valley Rattler - Amamoor

Turning the Mary Valley Rattler at Amamoor.

Dagun, the next stop on the Rattler’s journey

The ‘All Aboard’ call came sooner than expected and we were soon back in our seats, anticipating our next stop at Dagun where the locals welcomed us with live music and market stalls, as well as delicious tastings of local wine and cheese.

There were also old-time games available to play, making this a perfect opportunity to enjoy the company of friends and/or family while exploring what makes these places special.

All too soon, again, we were back on the Rattler returning to Gympie.

As we rolled into Gympie, the town that is reputed to have saved Queensland, it was time for one of nature’s greatest shows: the annual display of jacaranda flowers.

We were treated to an amazing Spring show of purple blossoms. Miss 9 was especially pleased to see the display… every year in early October, in the lead-up to her birthday, jacaranda trees bloom just for her!

Mary Valley Rattler - Dagun

Market day at Dagun.

NEED A ROOM ON THE SUNSHINE COAST HINTERLAND? VISIT BOOKING.COM

You’re spoilt for choice of things to do on the Rattler

There’s no shortage of options from which to choose when it comes to a Mary Valley outing:

  • The Classic Rattler Run takes passengers on an exciting adventure on the C17 steam train from the Gympie Historic Station through the scenic Mary Valley and the small town of Dagun, before arriving at the Amamoor Heritage Station.
  • The All Stations Train allows passengers to explore more of the region, stopping at both the Heritage Dagun Station and the Amamoor Station.
  • The Rattler Tasting Train is a fun experience for the whole family. Hop on board the Heritage Railmotor RM76 – which traditionally ran the Brooloo line to Gympie providing a daily link to the town for shopping, transportation of goods, and children getting to school.
  • Ride with Driver Experience lets you ride as a guest in a cab with train drivers (18+ years old).

Choice of packages

  • The Mary Valley Rattler’s Ride and Dine package includes priority pre-boarding, assigned seating, morning tea onboard, lunch at the Rusty Rails Café, and a bottle of water.
  • The VIP Club Car package allows you to enjoy priority preboarding, cheese plate and beverage onboard the Club Car, access to the verandah for stunning photos, plus water and a souvenir cooler.
  • Pets are welcome aboard on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays (terms and conditions apply).
  • Get your day underway at sunrise with the Rattler’s drivers on a Light Up & Workshop Tour, which includes a hearty breakfast of your choice in Rusty Rails Café.

Education trips and special occasions

  • The Mary Valley Rattler offers an educational and fascinating journey back to a bygone era for students of all ages.
  • The Rusty Rails Café at the historic Gympie Station can cater to up to 120 people, with a menu that has been designed to be light and contemporary.
  • Special Occasions can be tailored aboard any of their fleets, with dedicated staff on hand to help plan the perfect event.
  • Ample parking is available for coaches, and they recommend pre-booking for groups of over 10 people.
  • The Rattler regularly hosts themed outings such as Halloween and the Agatha Christie-styled Murder on the Mary Valley Rattler. 

Visit the Rattler website for more information.

Experience the beauty of rural Queensland, Rattler style!

If you’re looking for a fun day out, with beautiful scenery and a friendly, casual atmosphere, the Mary Valley Rattler is definitely worth checking out.

It’s an experience you won’t soon forget!

Sit back, relax, and enjoy the gorgeous Sunshine Coast hinterland—all while supporting a vital piece of Australian history.

We’re sure you’ll love the experience!

Mary Valley Rattler - Return Journey

Spectacular scenery on the return journey to the Gympie Historic Railway Station.

 

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT NOOSA HEADS? VISIT BOOKING.COM

If you go:

Gympie Historic Station

Tozer Street, Gympie, Queensland 4570, Australia

P: (07) 5482 2750

E: info@maryvalleyrattler.com.au

W: maryvalleyrattler.com.au

 

Mary Valley Rattler is open 7 days a week except for Christmas Day.
Please note its hours may vary on public holidays.

GET DIRECTIONS

VIEW MAP

With thanks to the Mary Valley Rattler for hosting us for this very special experience.

***

If you enjoyed this story, you might also enjoy Murder on a Runaway Train, a short, action-packed fiction story set on a steam train in the rugged wilderness of Tasmania’s West Coast.

Where to next?

Wherever you want to go in the world, don’t forget to check out Booking.com.

With so many amazing deals on accommodation, flights, car rentals, attractions, and airport taxis, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for – and more!

So, what are you waiting for? Click the links here to visit BOOKING.COM today and start planning your next trip!

Magnetic Island: The best wedding anniversary pressie ever!

By Brian Pickering and Kaye Browne

It’s funny how people perceive other people’s lives.  Take for example the reaction when we messaged a few friends and family we were about to take a short break.

The replies were swift… “What! You’re going on a ‘holiday’?… But we thought you WERE already on holiday… a permanent one!!!”… accompanied by classic exasperation emojis.  Very funny.

But despite being ‘on the road’ for the past three years in our 20ft New Age caravan, (and loving it!) sometimes you just need to take a break from the everyday routines we all endure whether travelling or in a house!  Plus our imminent wedding anniversary was all the excuse we needed to ‘Getaway’.

As it happens, we feel very much at home here in Hervey Bay just north of Maryborough in Queensland so much so we’ve stayed here – with occasional trips north to Bundaberg and south to the Gold Coast and Brisbane to visit friends for some house-sitting – for just on two years.

Time flies when you’re having fun and we love the vibe of the place and have made many new friends – in fact, we’ve met and socialised more in ‘The Bay’ than we ever did living in Sydney for two decades.

Like everyone else, our travel plans were impacted when COVID-19 hit – but luckily working online means we can do what we do anywhere there’s enough Internet coverage.  We now call ourselves ‘Slow-Mads’!

So why a road trip to Magnetic Island just off the coast from Townsville in far North Queensland?

Why not – especially as Brian’s parents used to holiday there when his father was stationed with the Navy during WWII in Townsville and the pair used to regularly have romantic weekends on ‘Maggie’ when he had days off.

It didn’t take long to decide it would be fun to visit the place they loved so much for our own wedding anniversary – especially as friends Col and Jenni regularly holiday there and raved about it.

Magnetic Island - palm trees

DESTINATION MAGGIE: Magnetic Island, North Queensland.

 

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, Jocelyn earns from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

NEED ACCOMMODATION ON MAGNETIC ISLAND? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Fly or drive? Fly or drive?

In round figures, the cost to fly from Hervey Bay to Townsville (via Brisbane four hours south of Hervey Bay) is around $1,200 per person!! We reasoned flying would mean lots of airline departure lounges, buses, and taxis, and miss the changing scenery below.

Sure you might arrive the same day but what’s the rush?

So we made the decision to drive. Ok, so it’s roughly a 12–14-hour road trip, but the stopover points we planned in advance made it all well worthwhile.

Trip planning

It goes without saying Australia is a BIG place!… So it’s important to plan ahead.

The mantra… ‘Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance’ comes from our previous work in mainstream media, but it also means it’s worth the effort to spend some time planning which hopefully relieves you of any headaches and worries during your trip, knowing everything has been ‘locked in’.

With so many people now ‘hitting the road’ post-COVID lockdowns, it’s important to make sure you book ahead for accommodation that suits you!… unless of course you have a small camper-trailer and are happy to ‘free-camp’ along the way.

Kaye wanted to see some of the less well-known beach-side towns en route so some of the names mentioned below possibly won’t be at all familiar.

Each location has a separate link to the accommodation plus a short update of where we stayed and what we thought of each place.

Important safety factor!

While two people can usually share the driving, it’s always a good idea not to do much more than three to four hours a day in total, and less is even safer.

This is due to the ‘fatigue’ factor and we actually saw the results of several ‘prangs’ and even a large truck and trailer which had, unfortunately, slid off the road even though the road was dry at the time.

Plus driving can get pretty boring cos only the passenger gets to see left and right while the driver has to focus on the road ahead!.. That’s why we made this trip of about 1,200 k/ms (14.5hrs driving) over a four-day period.

We’ll have more detailed updates on each location down the track! Meantime with our ferry booked to the island on a Saturday, we left Hervey Bay on the Tuesday prior.

Hitting the road

Tues – From Hervey Bay 2hrs 42mins (226kms) to…

1. Miriam Vale Hotel

9 Blomfield St, Miriam Vale QLD 4677
We did a podcast with pictures a while back when we stayed at this lovely old hotel with heaps of history.
Check out the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0TXcwCPW5CU

Originally, we ‘free-camped’ in our caravan out the back as we still had our little dog Chica. This time we stayed in a lovely self-contained cabin. Mitch the owner has upgraded and expanded the hotel over the past two years, and the food, staff, and amenities are excellent and the town – although very small – has a lot of charm and history.

Magnetic Island - Hotel

Miriam Vale Hotel.

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT MIRIAM VALE? VISIT BOOKING.COM

_______________________________________________________________

Wed – From Miriam Vale 2hrs 32mins (213kms) to…

2. Yeppoon Beachhouse

58 Farnborough Rd Yeppoon QLD 4703
http://www.yeppoonbeachhouse.com.au/

This was a very pleasant surprise. We’ve never actually stayed in a backpackers hotel, our verdict? Excellent!

We could see the beach and hear the waves crashing overnight but best of all it was super clean, with the shared kitchens (one downstairs one upstairs) and facilities constantly monitored and cleaned by very friendly owners and staff who were amazingly helpful… Price for a single room with Queen size bed, etc (as opposed to a shared dormitory style) was very good too and while backpackers tend to be ‘party animals’ it was surprisingly quiet while we were there.

Yeppoon itself is another hidden jewel in our view.

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT YEPPOON? VISIT BOOKING.COM

_______________________________________________________________

Thurs – From Yeppoon 3hrs 43mins (340kms) to…

3. Sarina Beach Motel & Restaurant

44 Owen Jenkins Dr, Sarina Beach QLD 4737
https://sarinabeachmotel.com.au/
Well, this is where we celebrated our Wedding Anniversary! – A LOVELY location right on the beach. Plus, they have an amazing restaurant – ‘The Palms’ – with excellent food, etc…

Sarina township itself is a bit ‘old/quaint’ about 10 minutes away from the beach where we stayed but friendly to tourists.

We liked Sarina Beach and its very comfortable bed #Unit 18 so much we re-booked for two nights on our way back south which is when we also managed to have a chat with the co-owner, Meaghan Thompson to find out what’s kept her, her husband and (now) five kids here for the past 14 years!

You can listen to the podcast or read a full transcript here: https://foodwinepetstravel.com/travel/169-podcast-the-serenity-of-sarina-beach-meaghan-thompson

Magnetic Island Road Trip - Hotel

Sarina Beach Motel.

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT SARINA? VISIT BOOKING.COM

_______________________________________________________________

Fri – From Sarina 4hrs 10mins (354kms) to…

4. Alva Beach Tourist Park (Ayr)

20-36 Braby St, Alva QLD 4807
https://www.alvabeachtouristpark.com.au/

This was our longest drive, with both of us sharing every hour and a half, and while not our favourite stopover, we were very impressed with the owners/caretakers of this park who were VERY accommodating, allowing us to upgrade from what we had originally booked online (old tiny cabin room only)  to a really nice self-contained 2 bedroom ‘tiny-home’.

Best of all, they had been given boxes of fresh locally grown fruit and veg and generously invited us to help ourselves.  A wonderful surprise and we’re still talking about the yummy vegetarian meal which resulted.

Magnetic Island Road Trip - Alva Beach

Alva Beach at Ayr.

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT AYR? VISIT BOOKING.COM

_______________________________________________________________

Sat – From Alva/Ayr 1hr 19mins (103kms) to…

5. Ferry to Magnetic Island

An easy drive to Townsville where we eventually found the local Woolies and stocked up on some basic ‘goodies’ so we could avoid having to eat out for every meal every day. We’d been warned food and drinks are generally higher on the island because of transport costs – but we later discovered they’re not that bad.

There are several options to get to Maggie.  Passengers can get a speedy catamaran which gets you there in 20 minutes.   The car ferry takes about 40 minutes and although you can get out of your car and use the onboard café we chose to stay there, windows down enjoying the sea breeze!

Cost? – Well the advertised cost for a return trip WITH your own car is around $220.
However, booking through Defence Holidays NQ – http://www.defenceholidaysnq.com.au we were able to get a reasonable discount. They can also offer discounts on local accommodation bookings so worthwhile checking them out!

_______________________________________________________________

Sat – 1 pm ferry From Townsville to…

6. Island Leisure Resort

6 Kelly St Nelly Bay Magnetic Island
http://www.islandleisure.com.au/
Just 1.5Km from the ferry wharf, and 100 metres from the water in Nelly Bay the resort has beautiful high-ceilinged self-contained rooms.

There’s a large swimming pool, barbecue area plus a family room for kids with a pool table, books, videos, and more, and also a laundry with coin-operated machines.

Island Leisure Resort is a great place recommended to us by our friends Col and Jenni we mentioned earlier who’ve stayed there several times after visiting family in Townsville.

It’s a popular option because we wanted seven to 10 days but could only get four days

So, Defence Holidays came to the rescue and helped us organise another location – Details below!….

Magnetic Island Road Trip - Resort

Island Leisure Resort, Magnetic Island.

NEED ACCOMMODATION ON MAGNETIC ISLAND? VISIT BOOKING.COM

7. Canopy Chalet 4

42 Yates St Nelly Bay Magnetic Island – just around the corner from our stay above!
https://www.bestofmagnetic.com/magnetic-island-accommodation/canopy-chalet-4

This was another surprise – A very ‘eclectic’ design of about 12 cabins surrounding a large swimming pool but it was lovely, airy, and had everything you’d need for a great holiday and still within walking distance of the beach – well pretty much everywhere on the island is within walking distance!

A magnificent Magnetic Island Banyan Tree.

Kaye checks out the Sunday Markets.

Restaurants

It was also right next door to one of the many great restaurants on the island; ‘Thai Again’ which Col and Jenni had recommended – and they were right – the food was delicious.  We also got to chatting with the couple sitting next to us – long-time locals who live on the island and as it turns out – we’d spotted their stall ‘Hooked On Maggie’ at the Sunday weekly markets at Horseshoe Bay.

Magnetic Island Road Trip - Restaurant

Brian enjoys a glass of red wine at Thai-Again.

What can you do on Magnetic Island?

In a word… PLENTY! – In fact, we wish we’d had more than 10 days there. Such an amazing vibe about it.

They say there are 23 beaches on Maggie some of which can only be reached by boat so we didn’t get to see them all this visit – but we gave it a red hot go.

There are snorkelling trails and beaches with gentle waves perfect for kids. The Backpackers Base hotel and accommodation was chockers with young foreigners making the most of the re-opened international borders.

One of the highlights of our visit was the Moulin Rogue show at the Stage Door Theatre Restaurant… we can vouch for the idea that it’s a ‘slice of Vegas in the tropics’!

Basically ‘Moulin Rogue’ is a tongue-in-cheek send-up of the classic ‘Moulin Rouge’ cabaret which started way back in 1889 in Paris, France but this performance relied on two key performers who are locals and they were brilliant, a great soundo, and some audience participation.

And the food was great too because when you book they ask if you have any dietary requirements – and they cater to everyone.

Again we got chatting with the couple next to us. (Their story another time).

You can read our full story here along with a video compilation of the night we went!
https://foodwinepetstravel.com/travel/170-video-blog-the-moulin-rogue-magnetic-island

Summary

Now you might think… “WOW!… How much did all that cost and was it worth it?”

Well… cost is relative of course. You might go on an ocean cruise for a few days to a week and spend $8-10k! but after going through all our expenses – Fuel, food, accommodation, etc in round figures it was a little over $4,000.00 for our three-week holiday.

So was it worth it?… You bet! Will we do it again? Absolutely, but if we went back to Magnetic Island from Hervey Bay where we are now or (say from Brisbane or Bundaberg) for a short break, we would probably catch an overnight train and then rent a car in Townsville or on the island.

Estimated savings for the next visit would be about $400+ on fuel and several hundred in additional accommodation there and back.

Still, the sightseeing aspect of the drive was well worth it plus supporting local businesses, etc, and best of all, there are so many accommodation options in all price categories you do NOT need a caravan or camper trailer to do it, although if that’s your preference there are plenty of caravan parks and free-camps on the way.

Magnetic Island/Maggie?… We’ll be back!

NEED ACCOMMODATION ON MAGNETIC ISLAND? VISIT BOOKING.COM

***

Looking for inspiration for your next adventure?

Is the daily rat race leaving you feeling exhausted?

Jocelyn Magazine acts as a source of inspiration to help you tantalise your taste buds and indulge your curiosity while also discovering all that Australia offers.

So, if it’s time for a new adventure, check out some of our travel destination posts here today!

Where to next?

Wherever you want to go in the world, don’t forget to check out Booking.com.

With so many amazing deals on accommodation, flights, car rentals, attractions, and airport taxis, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for – and more!

So, what are you waiting for? Click the links here to visit BOOKING.COM today and start planning your next trip!

Maryborough swim centre is simply the best!

26/10/22

Have you been to the Maryborough Aquatic Centre?

If not, you’re missing out – it has taken out the AustSwim State and National awards for the best large swim centre in Australia!

That recognition comes on the back of forced closures due to COVID-19 and two floods.

And, in 2010, Maryborough was on the brink of losing its 50-metre pool before the Fraser Coast Chronicle helped the community to save the much-loved facility.

Keep reading to find out more about what makes the Maryborough Aquatic Centre so special.

COVID-19 and two floods – but they bounced back!

These awards are recognition of the hard work and dedication of the staff who have had to contend with COVID-19 shutting the pools and then having to rebuild after the floods this year devasted the facility

Fraser Coast Regional Council CEO Ken Diehm said staff had rebuilt the facility and regained the support of the community.

“There has been a 15 per cent increase in attendance numbers across the swim classes since the pool reopened in June,” Mr Diehm said.

“I think that really shows the community has confidence in the instructors, and the staff at the centre are liked and well respected.”

The program supervisor at the facility, Joel Seeney, was previously the recipient of an Austswim award for Aqua Instructor of the year award.

“The award shows that regional facilities and their staff are just as talented and dedicated as those in the bigger centres.”

The AustSwim award is the premier award presented to facilities and individuals in Australia that achieve the highest standards of aquatic education excellence.

“The awards mean a lot to staff and is fantastic recognition of the hard work that they have put in to pick themselves up and rebuild.”

Flashback: How the community saved the 50-metre pool

Maryborough Aquatic Centre - news report

Maryborough Aquatic Centre - News reportMaryborough Aquatic Centre - News Report

In 2010, the Maryborough Aquatic Centre’s 50-metre pool was sorely in need of a revamp, but the then council’s proposed redevelopment plan didn’t include replacing the 50-metre pool; the plan was to downgrade it to 25 metres!

That was until the Fraser Coast Chronicle helped the community to save the 50-metre pool!

The loss of its Olympic-size pool meant Maryborough would lose the capacity to host school carnivals and competitions.

A good proportion of the public also preferred to swim in a 50-metre pool — Maryborough Masters, triathletes, schools and rugby league players who swam for fitness, as well as people from surrounding towns.

Thankfully, though, the council listened and overturned its initial proposal to downgrade the 50-metre pool as part of a $5.5 million redevelopment.

So, whether you’re a fitness fanatic or just looking for somewhere to cool off in summer, be sure to take a dip!

These AustSwim State and National awards have come after long, hard-fought battles to keep the centre afloat.

Congratulations to the Maryborough Aquatic Centre staff and Fraser Coast Regional Council.

Maryborough Aquatic Centre: A history of excellence

The 50-metre town pool being considered for downsizing in 2010 was the third in Maryborough’s history.

The original floating baths were built on the Mary River but were swept away in a flood in the 1890s.

In 1906, after a local boy drowned swimming in the Mary River, a 33-yard (30m) pool was built on the side of the now Excelsior Band Hall car park with money donated by local widower George Ambrose White.

In the early 1960s, a fundraising campaign was held to build the “new” War Memorial Swimming Pool on former defence force land. The 55-yard pool was 300 millimetres longer than 50 metres and was shortened in the 1970s.

The first pool caretaker was Hayden Kenny, Australia’s first ironman champion.

His son, Grant Kenny, OAM, Australian former Ironman, surf lifesaver and canoeist, went on to compete in two Olympics, winning a bronze medal in the K-2 1000m event with Barry Kelly in Los Angeles in 1984.

During the 1970s, the swimming club committee urged the Maryborough City Council to provide spectator stands, the money for which was donated by then-mayor Charles Adams.

The club raised funds through treble tickets and cent auctions to provide the recording and club rooms, gym, timekeepers’ shelter, store room and waveless ropes. In 1977 it bought one of the first electronic timing systems in Queensland.

In 1995, a 25-metre heated pool was built where the wading pool used to be, after lobbying behind the scenes by president Dr Tom Dunn.

Another prominent name of Maryborough swimming was Larry Sengstock who set many records at regional level and competed at state level in the 1970s.

He later starred with the Brisbane Bullets basketball team and represented Australia at the Moscow, Los Angeles, Seoul and Barcelona Olympics and at four world championships in 1978, 1982, 1986 and 1990.

 

Muttaburrasaurus langdoni has been voted as Queensland’s state fossil emblem. The plant-eating dinosaur was discovered in 1963 and named after the Central Queensland town of Muttaburra, the hometown of Jocelyn’s father, William C. Scott. Read on to find out why “Mutt” has been declared Queensland’s official state fossil, and what you can see in Muttaburra.

Muttaburrasaurus was voted the most popular fossil emblem

The Muttaburrasaurus langdoni will now become part of Queensland’s official identity after it topped a popular public poll to select the State’s fossil emblem.

The 12 shortlisted fossils featured dinosaurs from both land and sea, early mammals, and flora, all discovered across Queensland.

Of the nearly 9000 votes cast by Queenslanders, the ornithopod emerged as the clear popular choice.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the Muttaburrasaurus will join the nine other unique Queensland emblems.

“The 100-million-year-old, plant-eating dinosaur was discovered in 1963 and named after the Central Queensland town of Muttaburra,” the Premier said.

‘The seven-metre-long dinosaur makes a very big statement indeed.

“I’m sure it will be an enduring emblem Queensland can be very proud of.

“Along with our official coat of arms, flag and badge our emblems highlight the many wonders and beauty of our state.

“The Cooktown Orchid, koala, Great Barrier Reef Anemone fish, brolga, the sapphire, and our official colour – the mighty maroon, are all iconic symbols.”

 

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT BARCALDINE? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

Travel back in time with Muttaburrasaurus

The Premier said the popularity of Muttaburrasaurus as the State’s official fossil emblem highlights the importance of dinosaur tourism in Outback Queensland.

“I encourage Queenslanders to get acquainted with our new fossil emblem by planning a visit to Outback dinosaur destinations,” the Premier said.

Queensland’s rich palaeontology discoveries have generated worldwide interest among experts and have attracted thousands of tourists to the Outback to see the fossils found firsthand.

Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said thousands of visitors travel to Outback Queensland every year to walk in the footsteps of dinosaurs and discover our rich palaeontological history.

“Everybody loves dinosaurs, they generate millions of dollars for the visitor economy, and we want to see Outback Queensland continue to grow as Australia’s paleo capital.”

 

Muttaburrasaurus - building

Muttaburrasaurus Interpretation Centre, Central Queensland, Australia.Muttaburrasaurus Interpretation Centre

The replica of the Muttaburrasaurus langdoni can be found at an interpretive centre at Muttaburra in Central Queensland. The displays include replicas, models and histories for guests to learn more about how this ancient creature was discovered as well as what life was like back then when they roamed our world 100 million years ago. PHOTOS: Jocelyn Watts, July 2022.

Mutt, one of the most complete dinosaur skeletons in Australia

Queensland Museum Network CEO Dr Jim Thompson said while there was an outstanding lineup of nominees for the State’s Fossil Emblem, he couldn’t think of a more worthy winner.

Muttaburrasaurus has been synonymous with Queensland Museum since it was described by our palaeontologists in 1981, and thanks to the iconic replica skeleton that stands proud within the museum, Queenslanders have come to know and love this home-grown dinosaur over the decades,” Dr Thompson said.

“Mutt, as people affectionately call it, is one of the most complete skeletons of an Australian Dinosaur and is a great ambassador for palaeontology and dinosaur history.”

Queensland’s Muttaburrasaurus is a national icon and global treasure

Queensland Museum palaeontologist Dr Scott Hocknull said Queensland’s Muttaburrasaurus was a national icon and global treasure.

“I started volunteering at the Queensland Museum as a kid 30 years ago and Muttaburrasaurus was the first dinosaur fossil I got to work on,” Dr Hocknull said.

“It inspired me then, as it will do for countless budding palaeontologists in the future.

“I used to dig dinosaurs as a kid, but now I do it for real and I can thank Muttaburrasaurus for this.”

The next step in making Muttaburrasaurus the state’s fossil emblem includes amending the Emblems of Queensland Act 2005 to confirm ‘Mutt’s’ official status.

To learn more about Queensland’s emblems, flags and icons visit:  https://www.qld.gov.au/about/how-government-works/flags-emblems-icons

Where is Muttaburra?

Muttaburra is located 152 kilometres from Barcaldine in Outback Queensland via State Route 19.

What else is there to see in Muttaburra?

While on an Outback trek in July 2022, I visited Muttaburra, the geographical centre of Queensland, to see the Muttaburrasaurus Interpretation Centre and the Dr Arratta Memorial Museum where my father was the first baby born after Dr Arratta’s arrival in 1925.

Here I’m pointing to where my father, William C. Scott, is recognised as the first baby born in Muttaburra after the arrival of Dr Arratta in 1925. With me is Margaretha Siebert from the Dr Arratta Memorial Museum.

Muttaburra has the distinction of being the town closest to the geographic centre of Queensland. A monument, erected in recognition of this significance is located on Nev Bullen Drive near the Dr Arratta Memorial Museum. PHOTO: Selfie!

 

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT BARCALDINE? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Looking for inspiration for your next adventure?

Is the daily rat race leaving you feeling exhausted?

Jocelyn Magazine acts as a source of inspiration to help you tantalise your taste buds and indulge your curiosity while also travelling.

So, if it’s time for a new adventure, check out some of our travel destination posts here today!

Sydney’s Art & Soul, a must-read for culture travellers

05 Oct 2022

With its lively arts scene and nature’s artistry on show at every turn, creative energy charges through the harbour city.

Now, as a jam-packed calendar of world-class cultural events weaves its magic throughout spring, summer and beyond, you’ll find innovation meets inspiration wherever you venture.

Here, are the must-do experiences that’ll leave you feeling energised long after the applause fades.

 

NEED ACCOMMODATION IN SYDNEY? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

Enjoy a refreshing new perspective

For more than 150 years the Art Gallery of New South Wales has showcased extraordinary creativity, and now its hallowed halls are set to unveil their own transformation as the Sydney Modern Project reveals a brand new building, inspiring outdoor spaces, and dynamic galleries.

Feel your mind expand as you explore the works of Adrián Villar RojasDaniel Boyd and Sol LeWitt; feast on Matt Moran’s culinary creations, and discover nature’s treasures on an Aboriginal bush tucker tour in the nearby Royal Botanic Garden.

Discover an icon’s secret stories

The Sydney Opera House is the glittering centrepiece of Australia’s arts scene, and as its pearly sails sparkle in the spring sunshine its stages feature everything from lively musicals to classic concertos.

Get swept away by powerful storytelling at Phantom of the OperaInstruments of Dance and L’Hôtel; discover the house’s rich, hidden history on a private tour, and afterwards, raise a toast as you drink in the views from the Opera BarQuay Quarter Lanes and Bennelong.

Embrace the magic where old meets new

With its futuristic cityscape perched atop historic cobbled streets, Sydney’s layers of living history set a magical scene for all manner of arts events.

At UNESCO World Heritage-Listed Cockatoo Island, the iconic architecture lends an industrial feel to contemporary events, including the upcoming season of Opera Australia’s Carmen and the Mode Festival.

The steampunk vibes continue to inspire at Carriageworks, where 1800s railway workshops host everything from the experimental art festivals to Sydney Dance Company’s New Breed – all just a stroll from South Eveleigh’s innovative eateries.

Venture east to feast your senses

With its twinkling city views, cosmopolitan villages, golden beaches and playful spirit, Sydney’s East is a cradle of creativity.

Become part of its effervescent rhythm as pop living legends Bruno MarsElton John,  Robbie Williams and Justin Bieber hit the stage; be awed and enthralled by Paddington’s eclectic galleries, and let your inspiration guide you to Bondi, where the Sculpture by the Sea exhibition showcases the world’s best creativity and landmark eateries like Sean’sIcebergs and Totti’s serve inspiration on a platter.

 

NEED ACCOMMODATION IN SYDNEY? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Live in the theatrical moment

From the art deco opulence of the State Theatre to the heritage grace of the Capitol and the modern charms of the Sydney Lyric Theatre, the city’s entertainment venues are themselves inspiring works of art – and host everything from Moulin Rouge! The Musical to CinderellaThe Angels Symphony and Aussie comedy greats throughout spring and summer.

Afterwards, head to the Darling Quarter for late-night bites, before slipping between the sheets at The AidenSofitel Sydney Darling Harbour, or Crown Towers in buzzing Barangaroo.

Explore unexpected treasure troves

Wander around The Rocks and you’ll find arts, culture and entertainment as vibrant as the harbour itself.

With its thought-provoking collection of more than 4000 modern works and a rolling roster of world-class exhibitions – including the ground-breaking Do Ho Suh and Australia’s most exciting young artists – the Museum of Contemporary Art always inspires.

Nearby, look for treasures hidden in plain sight on an Aboriginal culture or architecture walking tour, before hitting refresh in YCK laneways‘ secret bars.

Revel in the buzz of diversity

Sydney’s community spirit comes to life in its lively culture. At the Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre on the banks of the Georges River you’ll find a busy spring-summer schedule of events, including the Italian Film Series, and the multimedia extravaganza, Where Shadows Meet.

Just 15 minutes drive away in Campbelltown, the offbeat Fisher’s Ghost Festival brings everyone together each November; meanwhile, in Cabramatta, the local Vietnamese community shares its delicious culinary heritage at a delectable range of eateries all year round.

Find joy in the eclectic and eccentric

With its street-art-filled lanes, breweries, and a live soundtrack featuring everything from rock to rap, the Inner West is buzzing with creativity.

Embrace its carefree spirit at the Enmore Theatre, where upcoming headliners include Eskimo Joe and Joey Bada$$.

At The Vanguard, Sonny Grin and Blondie appear between cabarets.

Out and about, you can soak up the creativity at the White Rabbit Gallery, and the Imperial and Factory Theatre, and spend a night or three basking in the inspiration at the atmospheric Old Clare Hotel.

NEED ACCOMMODATION IN SYDNEY? VISIT BOOKING.COM

 

***

Looking for inspiration for your next adventure?

Is the daily rat race leaving you feeling exhausted?

Jocelyn Magazine acts as a source of inspiration to help you tantalise your taste buds and indulge your curiosity while also discovering history and culture—all that Australia offers.

So, if it’s time for a new adventure, check out some of our travel destination posts here today!

Stefano Guseli chats about his art and exhibitions

Hervey Bay artist Stefano Guseli has a lot to say about art. In this interview, he chats with Jocelyn Magazine about his unique approach to art-making, the role of intuition in his work, and how he strives for creative spontaneity in his pieces. If you’re curious about what drives an experimental artist like Stefano, be sure to check out this interview!

‘Art is a mirror for the viewer, not a soapbox for the artist’

“Once you have sent a thought, it will not return. Once captured, it will not be let go of. The moment of realisation, the moment of transference, is a shared moment—something to treasure, not to disdain.”

This idea about the transference of thoughts is the basis of Stefano Guseli’s rationale for his art exhibitions in Maryborough, Queensland, later this year and in 2023.

“Perhaps letting go is the most vital part of the puzzle,” the Hervey Bay High School design teacher said.

“Once a ball is thrown, the pitcher has no control over the reaction. It is suspended in mid-air, defying gravity, hurtling, diving, and closing the gap between the two,” he said.

“If it is caught, the moment is not over, but it has just begun.

“Elation or loss may result. Can the pitcher take back the throw? Can the hands of time be wound back? Which is more reasonable? To pitch again or to take back the impossible?”

Stefano uses the metaphor of a ball game to explain how he sees the relationship between his artwork and its viewers.

“I know a lot of artists work to express themselves, but I prefer to make art for the viewer to be immersed in it and to interpret it their way.

“I feel the art I make is more of a mirror for the viewer rather than a mirror for me, so I shy away from interpreting individual artworks for the viewer.

“Basically, I can write anything I want on the plaque next to it in a gallery, but it is the viewer who I want to interpret my work.”

Stefano’s art

While French artists Henri Matisse and Marcel Duchamp, and the Spanish painter Pablo Picasso have influenced Stefano’s method, what he paints comes from 20th-century art history and contemporary movements.

From Bendigo, Victoria, Stefano studied art and design at La Trobe and Griffith universities.

He moved to Queensland about 14 years ago to marry his wife, Kim Guseli; they now live in Hervey Bay with their two loveable Dachshunds Lucia and Dexter.

Stefano has his own backyard “man cave” where his thoughts and ideas come to life as visual art.

“I like to observe the way art has developed over the past 100 years, particularly with the visual experience and installations. They are two very different things.”

“With installations, I’m getting more heavily into the style of the Dadadists, an art group from the First World War. For example, I’ve got a few found objects, such as an old television set, that I’ve incorporated into my artwork.

“But I don’t reconstitute found objects to make them look like something visual for example spoons welded together to look like an animal.

“I class myself as an ‘experimental artist’ because I really don’t know where I’m going with it. All I know is I’m going somewhere with it!”

While most human figures in Stefano’s painting come from his imagination, some are based on real people.

“The ones based on real people are abstracted, so I don’t reveal who they are. It’s more about abstracting the narrative.”

Stefano Guseli - artist and painting

Hervey Bay Artist Stefano Guseli at work in his backyard “man cave”.

Preferred mediums

Stefano’s preferred art medium is acrylic because it dries more quickly and he can work faster, but he also loves oils.

“I love the richer, more vibrant textural qualities of oils, but it has drawbacks.

“One of my oils was so thick it took two months to dry!

“I submitted it to a competition, but the judge disqualified it; not because it was wet, but because it was still too soft in spots.”

Stefano mixes his own colours but sometimes they come straight out of the tubes.

“My artworks are usually pretty bright! I find bright colours, not diluted with black, grey and white, can be very positive.”

Experimental art

As an experimental artist, Stefano looks at the visual aesthetic, the installation, and the conceptual sides of art, pushing those elements together, apart, or moving them around, which is unusual.

“A lot of early experimental artists ended up spearheading methods for future ideas in the arts,” he said.

“If I got onto the bandwagon of a painting to a certain theme, I could see a trajectory in a direction where I could attract a certain type of clientele or a certain type of viewer and I’d keep making that sort of art.

“Some masters did that. They made the artwork that people liked, and that was in demand, so they were cutting edge in the eyes of many collectors.

“Experimental art is not theme-based repetition, at least it should not be in my view.”

Stefano said he also has a passion for book illustrations, which he has done several times in recent years.

“Illustrating is a finished product I can give to the client,” he said.

“It’s a reciprocal arrangement too, making the author happy, the publisher happy, the reader happy, and me happy!”

Competitions

Stefano has only recently begun entering art competitions, so it’s a case of “watch this space”.

“I’m hoping to submit to the Archibald competition,” he said.

“Many of the artists who are successful are known in the painting community, but being an experimental artist it’s not my niche,” he said.

“So, we’ll see how I go over the next few years.

“You do your best work, submit it, see how the judges go with it and then see how the public goes with it.

“Entering competitions is often just an exercise in seeing what reaction you get from viewers and what comments they make.

“That’s really why I’m entering.”

Why create art?

“The choice to create art is about being true to the viewer by making it as an artistic mirror which reflects their interpretation,” Stefano said.

“Why am I making this piece? Am I making it because I do really want to, or am I solely interested in profit?

“Some of the most successful artists, mainly American and British artists, who sell their work for millions of dollars have been accused of being peddlers, but I don’t think they are.

“I think they’re just extremely successful financially.  Money should not be the primary purpose in art making.

“Any artists, even very poor artists, can make art and sell works for money.

“The point is art should be a connection. If money comes in small or large amounts, that is not the primary purpose.”

Where you can see Stefano’s art

If you’re interested in seeing more of Stefano’s work, check out his website at https://www.stefanoguseli.net/

Stefano Guseli - artist and painting

Stefano Guseli, Hervey Bay Artist.

***

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT HERVEY BAY? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

***

Looking for inspiration for your next adventure?

Is the daily rat race leaving you feeling exhausted?

Jocelyn Magazine acts as a source of inspiration to help you tantalise your taste buds and indulge your curiosity while also discovering history and culture—all that Australia offers.

So, if it’s time for a new adventure, check out some of our travel destination posts here today!

Kim’s botanical skincare: eco-friendly, vegan, sustainable

Looking for something new to treat your skin? Meet Kim Guseli of Hervey Bay, Queensland, who has just released her first range of sustainable, vegan, eco-friendly skincare products under the label Botanical Skincare Lab. Kim talks with JOCELYN MAGAZINE about her new venture and what inspired her to become a professional cosmetic chemist.

Kim’s journey to becoming a cosmetic chemist

Botanical Skincare - Kim Guseli

Kim Guseli and Dexter, one of her two beloved Dachshunds.

One night, Kim Guseli was dabbling with her one of her creative passions—making natural skincare products—when she thought: “How awesome would it be if I could write my own formulas?”

Kim loved mixing the formulas, but following other people’s recipes was limiting her creative streak.

That lightbulb moment soon set the nature-lover on an exciting path of transformation from corporate officer to cosmetic chemist.

“I knew I needed to know the science behind making cosmetics, so I studied to become a qualified cosmetic chemist, and I absolutely loved it,” Kim said.

“I just wanted to keep studying. The more I learned, the more that things came together, and the more I wanted to know even more.”

Now, as a member of the Australian Society of Cosmetic Chemists and the International Federation of Societies of Cosmetic Chemists, she has launched her own business: Botanical Skincare Lab.

“Researching all the different ingredients fascinates me, and working out the most effective combinations is captivating. And getting into the lab and testing out my formulas is exhilarating.”

Her business has become her “job” and she gets to do what she loves while helping people take care of their skin.

“I’ve got all the proper equipment. I even had some equipment sent over from France because I wanted all the correct gear,” Kim said.

“The ethos of Botanical Skincare Lab is to provide clean, nourishing, luxury skincare which is scientifically formulated and powered by nature.

“We support local and Australian businesses when purchasing ingredients and supplies. Even my labels are Australian-made.”

Originally from Perth, Kim runs her business from the Hervey Bay home she shares with husband Stefano Guseli, an artist and teacher, and their two loveable Dachshunds Lucia and Dexter.

“I love being able to work from home where I’m with Lucia (black and tan) and Dexter (chocolate and tan) all day long.”

The beauty of skin chemistry

With the excitement of a pre-schooler opening a tub of play dough, Kim wakes each morning thinking of all the fun she’ll have that day with her ingredients.

“I just can’t wait to play with all my ingredients,” she said.

Kim said she was still settling into her daily routine because she often responded to people’s requests on a need basis.

“I want to find out what things people are looking for and make products they want to use.

“If there are any gaps in the market, I love to hear about them because I can write formulas to suit.

“As it is, I’ve got so many ideas for formulas that I want to write that it’s hard to prioritise them.

“And I’m hoping to get some products into some local shops soon, so it all depends on what shops I can get into and how often I need to deliver.

“I like to make everything fresh, so I do it in small batches of about half a litre at a time.

“If you order something from large manufacturers, you don’t really know how long it’s been sitting on the shelf, but this way, I can assure customers what they’re buying is fresh.

“My products have a good shelf life, so they can sit on shelves for some time, but I don’t want that. You can really notice the difference when they’re fresh.

“Why not give people the opportunity to have fresh skincare?

Botanical skincare - chemistry

PHOTO: Shutterstock

Kim’s top 5 favourite cosmetics

Kim has so many “favourite” products that she loves for different reasons, so picking her Top 5 was difficult, but for Jocelyn Magazine, she relented and named these:

  1. Pink Clay Face Mask: “I’ve formulated this so you only need to put a thin layer on your face and leave it on for just five to 10 minutes. I’ve always found the face masks I’ve bought previously I’ve had to leave them on for at least 20 minutes, but for me, that’s too long because you’re limited what you can do during that time.”
  2. Golden Jojoba Face Cream: “This has Sea Buckthorn that gives it the beautiful golden colour I love.”
  3. Velvet Rose Light Day Cream: “I made this one so it leaves your skin feeling really smooth and light, particularly on humid days as we get in Hervey Bay’s summers. It’s lightweight, fast-absorbing and moisturising for when you don’t want anything thick on your face, but you still need some moisturizing. In humid weather, when you get out of the shower and you start sweating already, this cream feels light and cool on your skin.”
  4. Sunflower Cleansing Face Polish: “This one is a cleanser, but it’s also got some ground walnut grains, so it polishes your skin as well, which is really nice.”
  5. Hyaluronic Glow Intensifying Serum: “I didn’t know this formula would make your skin feel so nice. Sometimes if I run out of it and use other things, I can really notice the difference in my skin. I like it when Stefano puts it on too because it makes his skin feel nice.”

Looking for eco-friendly, sustainable and vegan skincare?

Botanical Skincare Lab’s products are eco-friendly, sustainable, and vegan – that’s official!

“When you make skincare properly, it needs to meet industry standards and qualifies for insurance,” Kim said.

“The ingredients used in my formulas are from Australian suppliers and come with documentation certifying the quality of the ingredients.

One of the reasons my products are classed as sustainable is because I make and distribute them mainly locally, so they’re not being transported all around the country and sitting in warehouses.

“Another benefit from purchasing all of the ingredients in Australia is that they haven’t come on ships from overseas so that helps the environment with decreased pollution from transportation.

“We’ve got solar panels on our roof and I make everything in the daytime so the energy comes from the sun. Even my packaging is recyclable.

“My cosmetics are also vegan because they don’t contain animal products and haven’t been tested on animals in any way.

“And, there are no synthetic fragrances and the natural preservative system is Ecocert certified.

“That means too, there are no strong overpowering smells, but only light aromas like the Velvet Rose Light Day Cream that contains some rose water for its skin benefits.

“I’ve done that for people with sensitive skin who might otherwise have allergic reactions.

“Many people are even allergic to essential oils, so I’ve made my products so that people with sensitive skin don’t have reactions to them.”

Visit the Botanical Skincare Lab website

If you’re looking for a new natural skincare line to source online, or are on holiday in the Fraser Coast region and want to check out some local eco-friendly products, head over to the Botanical Skincare Lab website. You won’t be disappointed!

Botanical skincare - chemistry

PHOTO: Shutterstock.

 ***

NEED ACCOMMODATION AT HERVEY BAY? VISIT BOOKING.COM

Disclosure: As a Booking.com affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases made through links in this post.

***

Looking for inspiration for your next adventure?

Is the daily rat race leaving you feeling exhausted?

Jocelyn Magazine acts as a source of inspiration to help you tantalise your taste buds and indulge your curiosity while also discovering history and culture—all that Australia offers.

So, if it’s time for a new adventure, check out some of our travel destination posts here today!