The folk here on Wallace like to get out and about on a weekend. Otherwise the little lads drive us crazy! We’ve been blessed to recently spend two weekends in Avalon. We’ve had a fabulous time exploring the town and I’ve decided it’s a hidden gem. Here are five reasons to visit Avalon with kids. Spend a night or two if you can.
1. Proximity to Sydney
If you are getting away for a weekend, or even taking a day trip to the beach, you don’t want to spend the whole day in the car. It depends on where you take off from, but it’s about an hours drive to Avalon. It’s a picturesque drive and once you’re there you’ll feel like you are a world away from Sydney. Which takes me to point two.
2. The Township
Avalon itself is a laid back surf town. The vibe of the whole place is super easy going. The locals are very friendly and welcoming. There’s plenty of people heading to or from the beach. Lots of flip flops and bare feet, towels, surf boards under arms, tousled beach hair, dogs on leads and bronze kids. We love the relaxed coastal atmosphere and it’s not at all touristy.
3. The Beaches
Obviously the big drawcard to Avalon is the beach. The main surf beach is patrolled. There are plenty of waves so if you aren’t a confident swimmer, stay between the flags. There’s also a a great beach pool. But for us with little kids, and one in particular who has NO FEAR of the water, there are two fabulous alternates to the surf beach. I doubt we’d have discovered either of these beaches if it weren’t for kind locals sharing their secrets with us.
Clareville beach is a short drive from Avalon (off Delecta Avenue, look for the Clareville Kiosk sign). The beach is a beautiful setting, there’s plenty of impeccably clean sand for kids to build castles in, the water is calm and there are barbecues and tables that overlook the beach. Another positive, there are toilets and an outdoor shower for sandy little bodies. Bliss really.
Paradise beach, located at the bottom of Paradise Avenue, lives up to it’s name. It’s an absolutely glorious location. Again, the waves are very gentle (almost non-existent), there’s plenty of sand for digging and building castles and at points of the day parts of the beach is shaded. While it’s not strictly a beach pool, there is a fence in the water that would keep any big sea creatures out of the swimming area. If you’re looking for a beautiful beach to take young kids, Paradise Beach is perfect.
4. The Shops
The township of Avalon is a perfect place for a casual meander. There are lots of lovely little quirky coastal shops, boutiques, a florist, organic food shops and a kids boutique to explore. You could easily spend a very relaxed afternoon strolling around the town.
5. The Cafes
For a little village, Avalon has lots of fabulous places to dine. We’re generally restricted by three rascals but what we have experienced has been fabulous. The coffee at Nourished (on Avalon Parade) is spot on, we’ve tested it out plenty of times and have not been disappointed.They also do delicious and healthy meals and snacks. And there’s liquid chlorophyll on tap. Apparently people are ‘all over it’. I am clearly not one of the cool kids!
Smalltown cafe (Old Barrenjoey Rd) is very popular. Our brunch was yummo and the presentation is impressive. I highly recommend the Poppyseed Ricotta Pancakes.
Now I’ll be frank, my knowledge of dinner establishments is limited. I can however say that the take away Indian from Curry by the Curve (Hudson Parade, towards Clareville) is delectable! You won’t be disappointed but do order early as there is often a long wait for dinner.
Our family of five have been very well taken care of at Meltemi (Old Barrenjoey Road). The pizza is tasty, there’s pasta and a great specials board. It’s nothing fancy but that works for us.
Importantly, there are three bottleshops in Avalon. I’m a parent and I need wine.
Those are my five reasons to visit Avalon with kids! What are your ‘must haves’ for a weekend away?