Five of the best beaches to help you relax and forget your troubles
What’s not to love about the beach? The warm sun on your face, the feel of sand beneath your toes, and just being amongst the best of what Mother Nature has to offer is usually enough for us to forget about all our worries and focus on the here and now.
Australian boasts some of the best beaches on Earth, and you really do feel like you’ve discovered a gem if you find a beach that can transport you to another time and place. As a committed beach-lover, I’ve taken my passion to new heights and trudged around to give you my top 5 favourite Australian beaches:
1. Norries Head, Tweed Coast in NSW: Known to its locals as Caba, this small beach is popular for whale-watching during migration.
2. Trouser Beach, Flinders Island in Tasmania: Come here to see the colourful granite boulders alone. It truly looks like paradise, with its calm waters and white sand.
3. Tidal River, Wilsons Promontory in Victoria: The dramatic landscape alone will take your breath away. This pristine beach is near a popular national park.
4. Second Valley, Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia: If you fancy a bit of diving and snorkelling, you’ll love the crystal clear waters and marine life that this beach can offer.
5. Airlie Beach, Whitsundays in Queensland: No list would be complete without a mention of this stunning beach, with the Great Barrier Reef easily accessible from here.
What are your top 5 favourite Australian beaches? Let me know!
Explore Belair National Park for an incredible bird-watching experience
Grab your binoculars and come with me as I take a closer look at some of the unique birds and wildlife that Adelaide has to offer.
If you’re a bird-watching beginner, then you will definitely benefit from a local guide like me to help you navigate around the area. I live only an hour away from Belair National Park, so whenever I want to take time out and get back to nature, I come here to watch the birds.
Here are just some of my favourite birds that you can expect to see out and about at Belair National Park:
- Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo: Easily identifiable by its mostly black plumage and yellow cheeks, this species from the parrot family flies with small to large flocks and slowly flaps its wings.
- Musk Lorikeet: These beautiful and bright birds are my favourite to see. Identifiable by its bright read forehead and band through the eye to the ear, the crown is blue, and is green all over. They are active and noisy.
- Tawny Frogmouth: Often mistaken for an owl, this bird is quite adept at camouflaging itself from its prey due to its ability to look like a tree branch when standing still. Their call sound is distinguishable by making a noise that resembles drumbeats.
- Yellow-faced Honeyeater: These short, stout birds avoid suburban areas until trees have grown to a suitable density and size. It has a distinctive, broad yellow face-stripe, bordered with black.
What are some of your favourite birds to watch? Let me know!
5 Creative Ways to Make Money Online
It’s time to think outside the box and use the skills you already have to make a comfortable living online. While you might not necessarily earn enough to own a private island in the South Pacific, the reality is that there are so many people around the world who make a living exclusively online.
Below are five great ideas that Matt George suggests to help you get some extra cash in your wallet:
- If you’re a professional photographer or just a hobbyist, get online and sell your photos via Shutterstock or iStock Photo. There are many people willing to buy your photos for their business or personal reasons, and if you’re selling each photo for as little as $1 and you get 50 customers, then you don’t need us to do the math.
- If you’re a talented writer and love to use the written word to sell, get onto Amazon – they run a very successful affiliate program that allows you to make money when you sell any of the products for sale online.
- Sell your stuff on eBay! Not only will it reduce clutter in the home, but you will earn cash from selling things you don’t want or need anymore. Don’t forget that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.
- Etsy is one of the fastest growing sites that allow artists to sell their items that they have made or built at a fair price. If you can make clothes, bake edibles, or even draw using watercolours, then you can advertise your products online and get cash for every sale.
- If you are nifty with a sewing machine, then you can offer your services to locals. Get customers to come to you when they need a button or a dress hemmed – you can even make bags, custom bedding, and draperies… all from your own home.
Matt George is a professional photographer from Melbourne, who makes a comfortable living by selling his photos online at iStock Photo, eBay, and Etsy. He left his career in the banking industry to pursue a lifestyle that gave him more time and freedom to follow what he loved to do.
Promoting his latest short story is no easy feat
As any accomplished author knows, a book signing is a big deal. It is also very terrifying. Akin to hosting a party, you never know if people will turn up to see you. Fortunately, Sydney author Matt George has been to a few book signings around Australia and he knows exactly what to expect and how to come prepared.
Here he shares his tips to first-time book signers everywhere:
- Dress comfortably but nicely for the signing. The first time Matt George went to his book signing, he wore a black suit one size too small. He looked extremely smart, but he was uncomfortable the entire time. He also looked a little bit unapproachable. The next time, Matt decided to dress ‘business casual’ in a pair of loose pants and a nice shirt.
- Bring a water bottle, a business card, some mints, and lots of pens. You don’t want your breath to smell as you’re greeting customers, and you want to keep a drink on hand to keep yourself busy.
- Don’t be afraid to smile and make eye contact to passers-by. People are curious – they’ll wander over to see what you’re doing. Engage in conversations with them about the type of books they like – you might not sell a single book, but you’ll make a positive, lasting impression.
Above all, don’t forget to enjoy the experience! You should never deny yourself the chance for self-promotion, meeting your fans, and just getting your face out there.
The blind date that unexpectedly went really well
I’m not particularly one for blind dates, but I thought I would give it a go because I was visiting my best friend in Melbourne, and she really wanted me to meet her friend, Matt George. I’m never one to pass up a networking opportunity, so I knew it would be a bit of fun even if nothing eventuated from the date.
I like to think of myself as a sociable and friendly person, and I enjoy meeting different people. My friend said she would set up the entire date, from the time and day, to the choice of venue – I just had to bring myself.
I met Matt George at the front of a cute café in Brunswick Street – as discussed, he would be identifiable by a red tie. I spotted him almost immediately, and I know it sounds really cliché, but when our eyes locked, we knew who the other was, and we just laughed because there was instant attraction.
Matt George was a web designer and a Sagittarius, and true to his star sign, he was extremely talkative. There were no awkward pauses, and I was genuinely upset when our two-hour date ended. We agreed to meet up next week and I’m really looking forward to it!
Here are my top 5 tips that I can share about blind dates:
- Open your mind up to the possibility that anything can happen
- By that same token, be careful not to divulge too much about yourself – remember, they are strangers
- Don’t talk about your ex!
- Be yourself, and be confident in who you are
- Have fun!
Top 10 things to see and do in the city where dreams are made
It’s the city that never sleeps, and I can say first-hand that this is an understatement! I finally had the pleasure of visiting New York for a three week holiday, and let me tell you, it wasn’t enough time to explore the Big Apple. If you have the time (and the funds!) to go to New York, you won’t regret it!
To help you, here is a list of 10 things you must do while you’re over there:
- See a show on Broadway. I was fortunate enough to be in New York while they were showing The Lion King – it’s every bit as spectacular as everyone says it is.
- Have a hot cawfee (read: coffee) at one of the many busy cafes that line the streets of Manhattan. You’re not a native unless you have it for breakfast with a bagel.
- Take a leisurely stroll through Central Park, one of New York’s most breathtaking and celebrated attractions.
- Pay your respects at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Centre, and honour the men, women, and children killed in the terror attacks of September 11, 2001.
- Stand in the middle of Times Square at dusk and take an iconic photo.
- Take photos of wax celebrities at Madame Tussauds
- Visit The Statue of Liberty. Need I say more?
- Cheer on the New York Yankees at the Yankee Stadium – even if you’re not a baseball fan, you will love the atmosphere
- Cross over the Brooklyn Bridge
- Explore the Lincoln Centre for the Performing Arts.
You’ll never be bored in this city when there are so many things to see and do. So hop on a plane right now and visit New York – tell them Matt George sent you there.