When the temperature retreats back to its preteen era, displaying as much predictability as a feisty teenager, we respond by arming ourselves with blankets, fluffy robes and bed socks, contemplating the concept of hibernation.
It’s no surprise that the winter chill can freeze all desire to voluntarily venture outside our cosy pads. While we can’t tear away the city’s gloomy backdrop, we can help ease those winter blues with a carefully curated list of adventures, all of which include a carbtastic treat because we both know there is nothing quite like a decadent snack to activate that joy switch and reel you out of a warm bed, your mouth watering in anticipation.
It’s so rare that the stars align in our favour, but when Mother nature decides to tease us with a little more sunshine and a little less gloom, take the opportunity to reacquaint yourself with nature. Pile on the winter gear, pack a blanket or two and buckle up for a road trip to this romantic lookout. Just over an hour’s drive from the Melbourne CBD, Arthurs Seat is the perfect spot to cosy up on a picnic rug with your lover and peer over the edge of the world in an epic state of awe. Your journey, however, is not complete without a quick pit stop at Johnny Ripe, home to, dare I say the best apple pie I’ve ever had the pleasure of devouring.
Slip into your #activewear and embrace your inner acrobat as you leap from one trampoline to another in this ginormous indoor playground. It’s the only type of exercise I’ll genuinely endorse. I promise you’ll be breaking enough sweat to generate the illusion of Summer, so round up your fellow trampoline enthusiasts and schedule in a session where you can bounce your winter blues away. With three kick-ass locations to choose from – Blackburn North, Essendon Fields and Glen Iris – the commute should not be an issue. Once you’ve hit your peak endorphin count and burnt enough calories to justify a finger-licking feast, head on over to Essendon Fields pride and joy: LaManna Direct Cafe. Make sure you plan your session wisely if you want to reap your savoury reward, kitchen closes at 3pm.
Queen Victoria Night Market
The Queen Victoria Night Market is the perfect excuse for a hump day treat. The smooth jazz on arrival, paired with a cup of mulled wine to warm your fingertips and a tantalising array of food stalls to satisfy your wildest cravings, will surely pull you out of a winter rut. The sweet and savoury aromas that fill the air are a mouth-watering tease which requires patrons to exercise a little patience before filling their bellies. A warning for those who are prone to hangriness – you don’t want to arrive in a ridiculous state of hunger expecting to be fed instantly because you’ll probably end up weeping on the floor. We stood in what was the longest queue at the market which was a 25-minute wait to order (plus another 10 minutes before we received our food). It was well worth the wait, though. The Cypriot Kitchen delivered a top notch feast of flavours. So turn your winter frown upside down and immerse yourself in QVM’s vibrant atmosphere. Tip: make sure you get some cash out beforehand to avoid battling yet another queue!
River Rink (Fed Square)
Hit the ice at River Rink and rediscover the magic of winter. Returning for the second year in a row and conveniently located in Fed Square, this outdoor skating wonderland is the best place to recharge your energy levels and discover your potential skating talent. Whether you’re effortlessly gliding through the ice or nervously clinging onto the rails for initial moral support, there is still so much fun to be had. You’ll eventually find the confidence to push off the walls and what an exhilarating moment that will be! After revelling in the skating spotlight, make a beeline for the St. Ali and Mr. Burger food trucks and reap your rewards.
And there you have it, 4 delicious adventures and activities to lift you out of hibernation mode. Go forth and embrace the beauty of winter, one tasty treat at a time.