Four hours from Gunnedah on the southbound road as you leave “The Entrance” is a sweet little strip where retro ritz meets gorgeous glamour. Long Jetty is a mural speckled curvy line of Devine eats and that desirable mix of the perfect gift and second-hand grunge.
If you’re looking for a place to relax on a vintage velvet couch with a good book and a great coffee or browse through beautiful unique boutiques, Long Jetty is your destination. Where else can you stroll down a street while weaving your way around old timber crates, mural painted odds and ends and a delightfully bright ruby red couch which is almost impossible to resist sitting on but for a moment. The Shop fronts are creative and colourful even in their imperfections. One store has even chosen to patch holes with LEGO which merely adds to the excitement of this eye-catching street.
The living is so luxurious on Long Jetty that the stores will literally close whenever they feel like it. This makes your favourite vintage find even more special purely by the fact that you found the store open in the first place. Fill up on your favourite health foods at the cleverly set out “Raw Deal”. The bucket lined store boasts all your healthy treat needs from nuts and dried fruit to flours and kombucha.
When it’s time for a coffee or lunch stop into The Glass Onion Society. Dining within the walls of this exquisite cafe leads one to feel of the utmost importance with its kinship of on-point espresso, honest food, and creative vibes. Your go-to sanctuary for fresh friends and food; the Glass Onion caters for the herbivore to the carnivore, the short to the tall and to the artist, Musician and dreamers alike!
When you’ve had your fill of the main drag head down to the lake. Jump on your bike and ride into town. Cruise along the lakeside path which winds through gnarled paperbarks and is soundscapes by the tranquil hum of the cicada. A beautiful view of the lake stretches along the left of the path whilst playgrounds and park benches for enjoying the peacefulness pop up on your right and ends at the skate park.
A block further along the lake sees you entering the Main Street of the Entrance. The family-friendly shop filled area has the children spoilt for choice. A stunning little carnival which boasts a 130-year-old carousel is open every weekend and every day during school holidays and the inclusive playground remarkably resembles the land of the Teletubbies. Markets are held every Saturday with children’s entertainment available on a stage which overlooks the beautiful inlet during high peak times.
If you don’t have a bike of your own you’re welcome to hire one in town and return it when you’re done. This makes getting around very easy as the country town-sized streets are quite congested for most of the day. Keep clear of bustle and enjoy the slow side of the coastal life by staying right on the lake at Paradise Park. The cute timber cabins come reasonably priced even in the peak season and come in a range of sizes to cater to your individual needs.
All this, of course, is complemented by the fact that you are five minutes drive from several beaches. My personal favourite on this trip was the Lakes Beach Reserve just shy of Budgewoi. The beach is patrolled, has ample parking and the convenience of a fish and chip shop to make the experience complete.
With something for everyone, Long Jetty is the perfect summer getaway. If it’s for a weekend or for a whole week you’ll be pleased with your choice of destination if you head to this relaxing space full of culture and personality.
Jade Punch, January 2017