Little Sparks - Scienceworks - Melbourne - Review

Kate and her little ones had a very interesting morning yesterday when they headed to Scienceworks to checkout the Little Sparks workshop which runs once a month for children 3 to 5. Thank you Kate for this great review. xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

From birth, children are curious.  We can build on that natural curiosity by developing their interest in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).

The Little Sparks workshops at Scienceworks explore different STEM topics in a play-based learning setting.   With different themes throughout the year, each 50 minute session is suitable for children aged 3-5 years and combines stories, songs and hands-on STEM challenges.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Our session ‘Mapping Our Place’ explored maps; what they are, how to use them and how they help us figure out our place in the world.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Led by Scienceworks educator Owen, the children were given a map of Melbourne and stickers to highlight some of their favourite places.  The poppets were very excited to find our suburb on the map and very quickly both maps were filled with stickers representing important places - a fire truck for Eastern Hill Fire Station, a football at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, dogs along the bike track next to Collingwood Children’s Farm and a cat at their grandparents’ house.  

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The second half of the workshop saw the children using the Scienceworks Visitor Map to navigate their way outside of the Stem Lab to find Dot (the adorable main character in the Ground Up: Building Big Ideas, Together exhibition, who was named after Dr. Dorothy Hill, the first female fellow of the Australian Academy of Science) who was lost and needed help.  Following Dot’s clues we eventually found her outside near the Amphitheatre where she was waiting to have a selfie taken with the little explorers.   

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The Little Sparks workshops run once a month, with each date having two times to choose from, morning or afternoon.  Children aged under 3 are welcome to attend the workshop with their participating older sibling and parent/carer. Parents/carers are expected to participate in the workshop with a a maximum of two children per parent/carer recommended.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

For more information on Little Sparks, head to their website.

100+ Easy Ways to Reduce Your Waste

After watching the War on Waste show on the ABC last year and the movie A Plastic Ocean, I was inspired to find and adopt better ways to reduce our family’s household waste, reduce our impact on the planet and oceans and show our kids how they can do their bit and how we can influence others in doing the same.

As part of our family journey to reduce waste, I thought it would be helpful to share 100+ Easy Ways To Reduce Your Waste to our Busy City Kids readers. These tips and tricks were inspired by members of the community, web articles and Facebook groups such as Plastic Free Future, #waronwasteau, Zero Waste groups, local beach cleanup groups, Plastic Free July etc. where community members share events, news and ways we can each do our bit. These groups led me to create a local Facebook group called Plastic Free Sydney Northern Beaches to encourage locals to reduce their impact and plastic use too.

Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitkids

Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitkids

As a family, we are no way near where I’d like to be in terms of our waste journey and going plastic free, however each day we try a little bit more towards achieving new ways our family can reduce our impact on our world for our children’s future.

Kate and her little ones also recently did their bit and shared simple ways on their Insta page to look after the environment and reduce their waste footprint with Melba Bear. We will share some of Kate’s photos throughout this article. We would also like to thank Pascale at Mailed With Love for her gorgeous illustrations.

So with that, I leave you with a list we have put together of 100+ Easy Ways to Reduce Your Family's Waste and Plastic Usage. We hope you find this post useful. xo Catherine

Note - This post is in no way sponsored. We have mentioned some brands however this is only because we like them.

Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

REDUCE/REFUSE/REUSE - SWAP

1 - REFUSE disposable water bottles - SWAP for REUSABLE ones - stainless steel 18/8 or plastic BPA free only. We love Ecococoon bottles for kids and adults.

2 - REFUSE disposable iced coffee, iced chocolate, bubble tea, boost juice and milk bottles etc - SWAP for large REUSABLE flasks and get your coffee shop, bubble tea, juice & smoothie bar to put those drinks in them.

3 - REFUSE single use juice boxes and fruit bottles etc. - SWAP for REUSABLE BYO your stainless steel bottle and fill up at fruit & veg shops who let you fill your own juice bottle.

4 - REFUSE single use coffee/tea/hot chocolate/babycino cups - SWAP for REUSABLE ones - BPA free only, ceramic or glass and get a discount on your coffee. Checkout Responsible Cafés for a participating coffee shop near you.

5 - REFUSE single use zip lock bags, foil and clingwrap for lunch boxes - SWAP for Nude Food REUSABLE lunch boxes, they can be BPA free plastic ones or metal ones. NO wrap NO rubbish. Encourage kids and parents to do Nude Food and take part in Nude Food Day.

Nude Food lunch boxes - Photo credit: @busycitykids

Nude Food lunch boxes - Photo credit: @busycitykids

6 - REFUSE single use yoghurt pouches - SWAP for bulk yogurt, use REUSABLE pouches, use your REUSABLE containers or RedCycle the pouches (see below).

7 - REFUSE single use ice cream cups and plastic spoons - SWAP for a cone or BYO container, reusable spoon or coffee cup to put ice cream in.

8 - REFUSE single use plastic straws - SWAP for REUSABLE straws - stainless steel 18/8 or bamboo or silicone.

Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

9 - REFUSE single use packaging - SWAP for loose fruit & vegetables not wrapped in plastic and try to find alternatives to packaged foods, make your own if possible.

10 - REFUSE single use meat packs - SWAP for REUSABLE containers and bring those to your local butcher that accepts BYO containers.

11 - REFUSE single use bread plastic bags - SWAP for REUSABLE bread bag at bakeries - our favourite bread bag is from OnYa.

12 - REFUSE single use grocery shop or any other retail shop plastic bags - SWAP for REUSABLE canvas grocery bags or REUSE what you have at home. Find your closest Boomerang Bags to buy, sew or borrow. Drop your excess reusable bags at Boomerang Bags boxes.

Boomerang Bags - Drop Excess Bags or Grab one for your shop - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Boomerang Bags - Drop Excess Bags or Grab one for your shop - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

13 - REFUSE single use plastic fruit & veg plastic bags - SWAP for REUSABLE produce and grain bags - lots of options online and in-stores.

14 - REFUSE single use plastic containers - SWAP for REUSABLE plastic BPA Free containers or better glass containers - our favourite Pyrex glass containers. If you have BPA free plastic containers at home REUSE those up before buying other containers and stop buying new plastic containers.

15 - REFUSE single use containers & packaging from take away shops and sushi shops - SWAP for your own REUSABLE containers at delis for takeaway and leftovers - lookup or/and add a business to Trashless Takeaway and ask your local take-away shops, cafés and restaurants. Say no to those little Sushi Soy fishes, did you know they can can never break down and wildlife can eat lids and other bits thinking it’s a fish in the ocean.

16 - REFUSE single use plastic party plates, cutlery, tumblers - SWAP for REUSABLE & washable plastic tumblers and plates and/or ask friends & neighbours to bring some to the party to avoid single use plastics. Use what you have around the house, your own cutlery, plates and glasses or grab some second hand at charity shops. This will cater for parties to come.

17 - REFUSE balloons and plastic confetti - SWAP for confetti made out of leaves and forget balloons all together. What goes up must come down so when a balloon fly off and later lands in water or on land, chances are it will hurt wildlife.

Leaf Confettis - Image Credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

Leaf Confettis - Image Credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

18 - REFUSE Polystyrene if you can. It cannot be collected in your council recycling service. It is made of 98% air, derived from a non-renewable resource - oil and is a type of plastic. Although it can be recycled it’s not ideal - SWAP for green eco peanuts which biodegrade. Expanded Polystyrene Australia is the national EPS Industry Group. They are the drivers behind collection facilities in the capital city of each mainland state. These facilities are capable of accepting all types of EPS from both packaging and building applications. Find a facility near you.

19 - REFUSE bubblewrap even if it can be RedCycled. Use eco alternative like cornstarch packaging, paper and cardboard, biodegradable air peanuts, mushroom packaging, newspapers, old clothes among some options.

20 - REFUSE single use coffee pods - SWAP for REUSABLE refillable coffee pods.

21 - REFUSE single use tea bags as some contain plastic - SWAP for leaf tea like Nerada which is Australian grown and pesticide free, their tea comes in cardboard or metal tins. Check if your favourite tea bags contain thermoplastic fibres as this will mean the tea bags are not compostable or biodegradable. Brands are slowly changing their tea bags due to customer pressure, such brands that still have plastic are Bushells, Yorkshire Tea, some Twinings tea bags and Dilmah amongst some of the brands.

22 - REFUSE single use plastic water bottles - SWAP for REUSABLE water jug with filters to filter tap water. We love Britax.

23 - REFUSE single use milk bottles - SWAP for milk in glass or bring your glass bottles to your local food co op if they have refillable milk. Schulz Organic Dairy and Barambah Organics dairies have various retailers stocking their milk in glass across Australia.

24 - REFUSE single use soda water bottles - SWAP for REUSABLE Sodastream bottles. 1 SodaStream bottle saves 2,190 bottles from going to landfill. Each bottle lasts 3 years. SWAP empty gas bottles for filled bottles at petrol stations, Coles, Woolworths, BigW etc. The empty gas bottles will be refilled and reused again. Once your Sodastream water bottle has expired, recycle it as per guidelines.

Reusable Fruit & Veg & Grain Bags - Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

Reusable Fruit & Veg & Grain Bags - Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

25 - REFUSE single use dish clothes - SWAP for REUSABLE & washable dish clothes & sponges.

26 - REFUSE single use plastic dish brushes - SWAP for bamboo brushes.

27 - REFUSE single use cleaning products in plastic bottles - SWAP for eco friendly refillable alternatives or refill at your co op or bulk store or use bicarb soda & vinegar and lemon juice to clean.

28 - REFUSE single use laundry liquid in plastic bottle - SWAP for concentrate powder from bulk stores or look into Laundry Detergent Eco strips.

29 - REFUSE single use baking paper - SWAP for REUSABLE silicone trays or lining sheets.

30 - REFUSE single use plastic utensils - SWAP for stainless steel utensils.

31 - REFUSE single use freezer bags or zip lock bags - SWAP for reusable freezer bags or reusable zip lock bags.

32 - REFUSE single use vacuum seal food bags - SWAP for reusable freezer bags.

33 - REFUSE single use clingwrap and foil - SWAP for REUSABLE & washable Beeswax wraps, reusable silicone covers and use REUSABLE containers and jars too.

Beeswax Wraps Australia Wraps - Photo credit: @beeswaxwraps.com.au

Beeswax Wraps Australia Wraps - Photo credit: @beeswaxwraps.com.au

34 - REFUSE single use plastic bin liners - SWAP for homemade newspaper bin lining or opt for compostable bin bags. Our favourite Adelaide based Biobag is fully compostable as well as others made of corn or potato starch. Compostable will not break down in tiny pieces of plastic like Degradable plastic and will break down unlike generic plastic bin liners.

35 - REFUSE single use napkins - SWAP for REUSABLE & washable cloth napkins. Place them in the wash once dirty.

Reusable Cloth Napkins - Photo credit: @busycitykids

Reusable Cloth Napkins - Photo credit: @busycitykids

36 - REFUSE single use vacuum bags - SWAP for bag-less vacuum cleaner once the old one no longer works and has been recycled at the tip.

37 - REFUSE softener - SWAP for vinegar instead, it will keep your machine clean and doesn’t have a scent.

38 - REFUSE plastic toiletries containing micro plastics (like facial scrubs with micro beads) - SWAP for soap bars.

39 - REFUSE plastic travel & hotel toiletries or cosmetic samples - SWAP for your own soap bars and toiletries.

40 - REFUSE plastic boxed tissues and plastic covered paper towels - SWAP for REUSABLE & washable cloth tissues and tea towels.

41 - REFUSE plastic covered toilet paper, tissues, paper towels - SWAP for paper wrapped toilet paper like Who Gives A Crap. These guys use recycled paper and bamboo toilet paper and donate 50% of their proceeds to build toilets in third world countries. We love the premium Bamboo TP.

42 - REFUSE plastic shower gel and liquid hand wash bottles and hand sanitiser - SWAP for soap bars or buy refills and avoid sanitiser as it contains BPA plastic.

43 - REFUSE plastic shampoo bottles - SWAP for shampoo bars - our favourite is Sydney Based Shampoo with a Purpose, we’ve tried all 4 bars (you can too with their sample pack for only $5) and love the OG the most but all are pretty good too. They are natural, plastic free, SLS free, it’s a shampoo & conditioner, easy to use & lathers up nicely and each bar replaces 6 plastic bottles.

Shampoo With A Purpose Shampoo Bar - Photo credit: @busycitykids

Shampoo With A Purpose Shampoo Bar - Photo credit: @busycitykids

44 - REFUSE plastic/glass/aluminium covered deodorants - SWAP for plastic free deodorants. Our favourite is Sydney Based No Pong is 100% paraben, aluminium, cruelty and plastic free and comes in a fully recyclable tin and the anti odourant is all natural and comes bicarb free too.

45 - REFUSE plastic insert disposable breastfeeding/nursing pads - SWAP for REUSABLE & washable pads.

46 - REFUSE disposable wet wipes - SWAP for REUSABLE & washable wipes or make your own wipes with recycled paper towels.

47 - REFUSE plastic hygiene pads & disposable tampons - SWAP for REUSABLE & washable pads and undies like brand Modibodi (we can’t wait to try soon) or menstrual cups.

48 - REFUSE plastic children’s nappies if you can - SWAP for reusable clothes nappies. Did you know that the average parent can use up to 3,800 disposables nappies in 1 year that go straight to landfill. By switching to cloth nappies, a parent can use 24 cloth diapers which can be re-used and can cost half of the price of disposable nappies and can be used from 1 to 3 years. Lots of brands out there, our favourite Bambooty.

49 - REFUSE disposable plastic cotton buds - SWAP for paper stem or bamboo ones.

50 - REFUSE disposable plastic toothpicks - SWAP for bamboo toothpicks.

51 - REFUSE plastic toothbrushes and plastic toothpaste - SWAP for bamboo toothbrushes and toothpaste tablets if your dentist approves of them. Recycle oral care packaging through the TerraCycle program.

52 - REFUSE plastic boxed floss - SWAP for floss in glass jars.

53 - REFUSE plastic disposable shaving razors - SWAP for reusable safety razors like old times.

54 - REFUSE plastic pegs - SWAP for stainless steel pegs.

Reusable Stainless Steel Pegs - Photo credit: @busycitykids

Reusable Stainless Steel Pegs - Photo credit: @busycitykids

55 - REFUSE single use plastic around your dry cleaning/pressed shirts or give back to your dry cleaners and return coat hangers if you’re not using them.

56 - REFUSE plastic toys - SWAP for second hand toys or wooden toys or sign-up to a toy library near you - the best thing is that you can return the toys if the kids get bored with it and no clutter at home.

57. REFUSE plastic highlighters - SWAP for wooden highlighter pencils.

RECYCLE

58 - RECYCLE plastic, paper and cans in your council bins. Check your local council website for guidelines on what you can recycle.

59 - RECYCLE soft plastics with Redcycle at Coles and Woolworths. Checkout their website for a list of where you can and what you can Redcycle. The plastic will be made into furniture and other products. The program recently advised that it would soon reach capacity so it’s advised that soft plastics should be avoided if possible.

Redcycle at Coles - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Redcycle at Coles - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

60 - RECYCLE cans, juice boxes, plastic bottles and glass bottles (no wine bottles) at return & earn schemes return points and receive 10c per container in return. This reduces contaminated recyclables and it ensures a high percentage of recycled containers. Not available in VIC yet unfortunately but available in NSW, SA and QLD. Find out yours locally and what you can return & earn.

Tomra Return & Earn Deposit Scheme Return Machines - Photo credit: @busycitykids

Tomra Return & Earn Deposit Scheme Return Machines - Photo credit: @busycitykids

61 - RECYCLE disposable coffee pods with Planet Ark. Places like Nespresso and TerraCycle do it. take them back. This will ensure the coffee grounds break down into compost and the aluminium from the pods is recycled.

62 - RECYCLE batteries at your nearby Aldi or Ikea shop if you have one, or your local library or lookup your local council website for places to recycle batteries.

Battery Recycling at Ikea Richmond VIC - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Battery Recycling at Ikea Richmond VIC - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

63 - RECYCLE old beauty, dental and optical plastic containers with TerraCycle recycling program. Checkout their website for local drop off locations. Make sure the containers are empty first. Places like L’Occitane and Body Shop (Return Recycle Repeat) offer customers discount when you drop off used brand containers at their shop but you can also drop off other brands there too, you will receive 10% of product at L’Occitane (Find out about the scheme here) or with Body Shop you will receive a reward (Find out about the scheme here). You can also get refill bottles of their product to save on money and save on a new container.

L’Occitane Eco-Recycling Program - Photo credit: @busycitykids

L’Occitane Eco-Recycling Program - Photo credit: @busycitykids

64 - RECYCLE old clothes at H&M if you can’t donate them to charity because they are too warn out. They will be either be Reworn, Reused and Recycled. Find out about the scheme here. Kathmandu also collect old clothes to donate to Red Cross shops. Find out more here.

Recycle at H&M - Photo credit: @busycitykids

Recycle at H&M - Photo credit: @busycitykids

65 - RECYCLE old print cartridges with Planet Ark. Places like Officeworks have drop off boxes instore. This will ensure correct disposal and the plastic will be recycled.

66 - RECYCLE old mobile phones, mobile phone components including all brands of handsets, along with their batteries, chargers and accessories with Mobile Muster. Free of charge at old major phone retails.

67 - RECYCLE old electronics at your local tip to avoid it by dumped in landfill. Electronic components are a valuable resource that we can recycle and disposing of them properly will mean components won’t leak into soil. You can recycle your old television, printer, laptop, computer, VCR etc.

TechCollect free national ewaste recycling program - Photo credit: @busycitykids

TechCollect free national ewaste recycling program - Photo credit: @busycitykids

68 - RECYCLE old paint, strippers & varnishes, pesticides, herbicides & poisons, solvents & household cleaners, motor oils, fuels and fluids, batteries, gas bottles, pool and hobby chemicals, fluorescent globes and tubes. Household cooking oil can be stored in a sealable jar or wiped up with absorbent paper, to then be placed in your general waste bin. Cooking oils can also be filtered and recycled into products such as bio-fuel, cosmetics and stockfeed so check your local council for recycling centres, drop off locations and businesses near you. Also lookout for recycling events and community recycling places near you to dispose of and they will be recycled for you, for free. Find out about the cooking oil scheme here. Find out about motor oil schemes near you here.

69 - RECYCLE old car batteries. Used car batteries, as well as other used lead-acid batteries are hazardous waste and should be disposed of appropriately through recycling programs. Lead-acid batteries also include batteries in motorcycles, boats, emergency lighting and air conditioners. Most car workshops, scrap metal dealers and service stations will accept used car batteries for recycling. Check with your car battery vendor when purchasing a new battery. Find out about the scheme here.

70 - RECYCLE old white goods either at your local tip or if you’re buying new white goods, most stores will take them from you when they deliver your new goods.

71 - RECYCLE old plastic bottle caps and bread tags, some rotary clubs and preschools/daycares love to reuse and recycle these. Organisations like Aussie Bread Tags for Wheelchairs and Lids4Kids collect bread tags and bottle caps to be converted into recycled objects or prosthetic limbs.

72 - RETURN expired or unwanted medicine at your local chemist. The old medicine packets and tubes are disposed of safely. They are in no way reused or recycled however this will ensure appropriate disposal of drugs so they don’t enter the waterways or soil. Find out about the scheme here.

OTHER THINGS TO THINK ABOUT

73 - Go through your pantry & fridge and use up the food you have to make meals and snacks with them. It’s estimated that one in five shopping bags end up in the bin = $3,800 worth of groceries per household each year in Australia.

74 - Enjoy your coffee and food at coffee & restaurants, sit down and take the time to relax. Reduce single use plastic containers as a result.

75 - Make your own food and avoid packaging and processing foods, you will be saving the planet, your wallet and tummy.

76 - Shop locally at your local butcher, veggie shop, farmers market by BYO your own containers to reduce excessive packaging. Local shops and farmers market encourage customers to bring their own containers and bags. Not only this reduces packaging but it reduces their packaging costs.

Plastic Free Fruit - Photo credit: @busycitykids

Plastic Free Fruit - Photo credit: @busycitykids

77 - Find a local bulk food store and stock up on groceries plastic free. An example of some bulk food places are Naked Foods and The Source Bulk Foods. You can get discounts, loyalties points for shopping plastic free and by BYO your containers when you shop.

Naked Foods - Photo Credit: Naked Foods

Naked Foods - Photo Credit: Naked Foods

78 - Find a local food co op shop where you can buy groceries from - some co ops give you 10% off and up to 25% off if you volunteer at the co op. We love our local Manly Food Co Op. Bring your own containers, measure your container before and after you fill its contents and help your local food co op.

Manly Food Co Op - Photo credit: @busycitykids

Manly Food Co Op - Photo credit: @busycitykids

79 - Take part in local beach or bush cleanups and yearly Clean Up Australia Day cleanup or organise one any day of the year.

80 - Reduce your fashion footprint by buying clothes secondhand or by swapping with friends or by buying clothes that last and clothes made of natural fibres. Polyester, nylon, acrylic, and other synthetic fibres - are all forms of plastic. These fibres contribute to ocean plastic pollution in a subtle but pervasive way: The fabrics they make — along with synthetic-natural blends — leach into the environment just by being washed. Estimates vary, but it’s possible that a single load of laundry could release hundreds of thousands of fibres from our clothes into the water supply.

81 - Reduce your furniture footprint by buying furniture secondhand or by buying furniture that will last and that is multipurpose. IKEA Tempe in Sydney has launched a new furniture take back pilot, encouraging customers to recycle unwanted goods and help the local community. If you don’t want your IKEA products any more, and they are still in good condition, consider bringing them back to IKEA Tempe. Allowing you to up-cycle your unwanted goods instead of throwing them away and minimising the contribution to landfill. If your item(s) qualifies for this service, we will reward you by providing you with a voucher to be spent at IKEA Tempe. More info here.

82 - Take your rubbish with you wherever you go especially beaches and lakes to avoid waste going into the sea and rivers and affecting wildlife. If you spoke, dispose of cigarettes carefully. The chemicals found in one cigarette butt can leach out and contaminate approximately 7.5 litres of water within one hour. This contaminated water is lethal to aquatic life.

83 - If you see litter, pick it up and dispose of it and talk to your children about litter and best ways to dispose of waste.

84 - Encourage your children’s school or workplace to take environmental action about their waste. Lots of ideas and resources on the War on Waste website.

85 - Buy appliances that last rather than buying cheap appliances to reduce your waste as appliances currently do not have a recycling program.

86 - Find a local street library where you can Take A Book - Give A Book - Share A Book or more! Checkout a local street library near you.

Street Library - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Street Library - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

87 - Next time you’re tempted or hassled by kids to buy them a new kids toy, see if you can borrow that toy at your local toy library. Reduces waste, clutter in the house and you can return it once they don’t play with it anymore.

88 - Next time you receive a present you don’t like or no longer need that is in great condition, think of re-gifting and be part of the gift economy.

89 - Next Christmas, think of wrapping presents in recyclable paper, recycle the kids drawings or wrap in material. Most wrapping paper contains plastic thus cannot be recycled in the paper bin.

90 - Next Easter, keep the foil from the Easter eggs in a box and make a big ball of the foil that you can put in the recycle bin to recycle!

91 - Check your local council website and see their tips & tricks and initiatives to reduce household waste. Some councils offer worm farms, compost bins as well as allow you to put food scraps in vegetation bins. Councils have dedicated tips to dispose of electronic waste, hazardous chemicals, paint etc.

92 - Share waste in your community if you don’t have room for a compost bin or worm farm at your place. The ShareWaste website is a great place for people with scraps to find composts or for people with compost to start receiving scraps.

93 - Get a worm farm (great for small places) or a compost bin (great for large gardens) and convert your food scraps into soil for your garden and use the worm juice to help your garden grow and reduce waste to landfill. Don’t add processed foods, meats, garlic, onion and acidic fruits like orange and lemons. Check with your council as some offer discounted or free worm farms or compost bins.

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

94 - Repair - Fix or upgrade broken objects rather than throwing them out. Lookout for local repair shops or repair community events.

95 - Donate your old clothes, toys and furniture to local charity shops or put them up on local community groups on Facebook for people to have/buy or swap you something with. Sell your old things on Gumtree, Ebay, Buy/Swap/Sell Facebook groups or at second hand markets.

Donating clothes to charity - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Donating clothes to charity - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

96 - Donate old towels and blankets to animal shelters.

97 - Reuse your own cardboard boxes, old shoe boxes, old post satchels, old parcel boxes and send with Sendle to reduce postage costs and the use of buying new products. Australia Post allow customers to reuse boxes however the costs savings aren’t great at the moment.

98 - Regenerate nature around you to take part in combating climate change by introducing more flowers to your garden to help bees, planting fruit and leafy trees on your property, planting little veggies patches in your garden or nature strip if allowed and share it with neighbours and community.

Regenerate - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Regenerate - Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

99 - Walk to school, work or the shops or take public transport when you can to reduce your carbon emission footprint.

100 - When you travel interstate or overseas, don’t forget your reusable items (coffee cup, water, cutlery, produce & grocery bags, straws etc) to avoid waste on the plane, in the car or during your travels.

101 - When you head to grocery shops, just try and think of ways you can swap plastic wrapped products like fruit, veg, meat and dairy for loose products or buy from delis and butchers where you can BYO containers. Kids snacks are notoriously heavily packaged like single serve cheese, popcorn, crisps, lollies, biscuits even snack cucumbers and snack carrots! Opt for full size packs to divide later, you’ll save money and save on waste.

Thank you for taking the time to read our 100+ Easy Ways To Reduce Your Waste. Feel free to share with family and friends xo Catherine

Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

Image credit: Mailed With Love @mailedwithlove for @busycitykids

Wild Nights - Werribee Zoo - Melbourne - Review

Kate and her little ones headed to Wild Nights last Sunday and had an amazing time! Don’t miss out on a great evening packed with lots of activities and fun at the Werribee Zoo. Thank you to Zoos Victoria for inviting us and for Kate for her great review and pics. Xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

For eight nights only, zoo-lovers can visit Werribee Open Range Zoo after dark as it lights up with all the action of Wild Nights! Plus this year, for the first time, see the amazing life-size animatronic dinosaurs at Zoorassic: Dinos After Dark!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

This was our first experience of Wild Nights, and most definitely will not be our last. The poppets loved exploring the African Trail by torchlight and seeing what animals they could spot along the way. The event program is full of awesome activities that the whole family will enjoy.

Here are our highlights.


Zoorasic: Dinos After Dark

Explore the Werribee River Trail like never before as you come face-to-face with life-size dinosaurs that will be brought to life for Dinos After Dark with dazzling lights, animatronics and an extraordinary soundscape.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Fire Performers

Be captivated by dazzling fire performers as they wow audiences just inside the main entry gate using a variety of different objects in their high energy, theatrical show.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Lantern Parade

Between 7.00-8.00pm, make your way over towards the Safari Station to see the gorgeous Eastern Barred Bandicoot lantern parade. Children can also decorate their own paper lantern to place over torches from home to join the parade. Be sure to check out the Secret Garden close by too.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Glow Zone


Head over to the Africa Village to get your face painted with special glow in the dark paint before joining in the circus fun in the Glow Zone.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Marshmallow Toasting

As the temperatures drops, keep warm up around a flickering camp fire and toast yummy, gooey marshmallows. There are two marshmallow camp fires for your toasting pleasure - one near the Hippo Play Trail and the other near the Cheetah BBQ area. We highly recommend a hot chocolate or cup of mulled wine too!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Bandicoot Hideout

Head into the Bandicoot Hideout to introduce yourself to the critically-endangered Eastern Barred Bandicoot and learn about the conservation work that’s bringing this native animal back from the brink of extinction.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Seeing the Jurassic creatures after dark definitely added to this already spectacular event and the best part, all proceeds from Wild Nights contribute to Zoos Victoria’s fight against wildlife extinction. Highly recommended for the whole family.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Tip - Remember to dress for all weather conditions (especially gumboots if it’s wet as the dinosaur trail can get quite muddy) and bring your own torch to help navigate around the zoo in the dark.

For more information on Wild Nights, head to their website.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Interaxcity Children's Museum - Melbourne - Review

Kate’s little ones recently visited the Interaxcity Children's Museum and enjoyed playing at this cute mini city. Kids will enjoy pretend playing being a mail person, being a florist, a flight attendant, a mechanic, a doctor, a dentist, a cook and more! Thanks Kate for the great review and pics and thank you to Interaxcity Children's Museum for inviting us. To follow Kate’s adventures, head to her Insta. xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Set amidst a scaled-down, indoor ‘mini-city’, Interaxcity Children’s Museum is a place where kids are the community heroes. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Designed to foster creativity, curiosity and learning through imaginative play, Interaxity Children’ s Museum is the only children’s museum in Melbourne.  Owner Melissa Blumenthall discovered children's museum while travelling with her family in the USA and knew instantly that it was something that she wanted to create here for all Melburnians.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids


Unlike a regular museum, a children’s museum is a space where kids are allowed and encouraged to touch and engage with all the exhibits. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

At Interaxcity, each 90 minute session allows children to use their imagination as they take on whatever role they wish against the backdrop of a mini-city. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

They may wish to sort mail in post office, arrange and wrap flowers in the florist, conduct an examination in the medical centre, cook and serve food in the restaurant, be a flight attendant or pilot in the airport (which features a genuine set of Qantas economy seats from a Boeing 737), help build on the construction site, repair cars in the service station and go shopping in the supermarket. It’s learning at its most fun!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The museum has been cleverly designed with activities for toddlers to middle primary aged children.  Little ones can choose to simply interact with the hands-on exhibits or complete tasks based on their developmental abilities by following the handy prompts on the wall - which have been especially designed in conjunction with early childhood educators. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

With four sessions every day plus parties and private events, Interaxity Children’s Museum is the ultimate learning-through-play environment: with a big emphasis on imagination, interaction and fun. Highly recommended.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

For more information on Interaxcity Children's Museum, head to their website.

Brickman Cities - Scienceworks - Melbourne - Review

Kate’s little ones loved their trip to Scienceworks this morning for the latest Brickman Cities LEGO® exhibition. They observed and admired some of the world’s greatest cities and built their own creations. Find out what they got up to in more details below. Thanks for the great review Kate @kateflatman xo catherine

Following the recent success of Channel Nine’s blockbuster reality show LEGO® Masters Australia, there is no denying the significant boost in the popularity of the much-loved Danish construction toys.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Curated and built by Ryan McNaught, (the official judge on the LEGO® Masters series and the only LEGO® Certified Professional in the Southern Hemisphere) Brickman Cities at Scienceworks is an intimate, immersive exhibition that invites visitors to imagine the cities of the future.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The experience is powered by one of the most famous cities in the world - LEGO® City. Brickman and his team have devoted an entire wall of the show to showcasing the history of LEGO® City, with City Fire Stations on display from decades ago and over a million LEGO® City bricks for visitors to spark their creativity and build the LEGO® City of tomorrow.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The centrepiece of Brickman Cities is a 3m x 4m, 1:600 scale model of Lower Manhattan, New York built entirely from white LEGO® bricks.  Every thirty minutes a 3D story is projected on the display taking visitors from the days of the First People’s villages amongst the swamps of the River Delta right up until the present day.  

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Around Manhattan, you can travel to four great cities of the world; London, Tokyo, Dubai and Sydney. Each city is represented with three huge skyscrapers as well as different stages of their history that show visitors how each city has evolved and grown. Each city has hundreds of thousands of LEGO® bricks to help you build what you think that city will look like in the future.  Perhaps we will see robot garbage trucks in Tokyo or underground houses in London..? Imagine it and get building!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

For little ones, there is also a LEGO® DUPLO mosaic wall to build with as well.  

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

This incredible exhibition is Brickman’s fourth LEGO® brick experience and although smaller than other exhibitions, it certainly is immersive - with a large focus put on learning and play rather than large scale sculptures.  Highly recommended for children, families and all LEGO® lovers.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Tip - Each session to the Brickman Cities lasts 60 minutes (although we were lucky to visit on a quiet weekday morning when session times were not strictly adhered to) and I would definitely recommend allowing at least 45-60 minutes to explore the experience.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.


Brickman Cities ends October 6th 2019. For more information and to book, head here.

Holey Moley & Strike Bowling - Sunshine Coast - Review

Kate and her little monkeys visited Holey Moley & Strike Bowling when they visited the Sunshine Coast recently and loved the mini golf and tenpin bowling experience! Thanks to Holey Moley & Strike Bowling for having us and thanks Kate for the review. xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Bringing fun to the Big Top Shopping Centre in Maroochydore; Holey Moley Golf Club and Strike Bowling offer a unique mini golf, tenpin bowling, karaoke and bar experience like no other!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

This new venue, operated by Funlab - who also run Sky Zone Australia, Archie Brothers Cirque Electriq and the newest addition, B. Lucky & Sons - opened in February 2018 and has quickly become one of the hottest spots on the Sunshine Coast, or should that be ‘Funshine' Coast…?

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Get ready for the craziest round of mini golf you have ever played when you step onto the course at Holey Moley Golf Club!  Forget the usual windmills and castles, putt your stuff through two nine-hole courses, with 18 uniquely themed holes. With nods to much loved TV shows and movies (think The Simpsons, Happy Gilmore, Back to the Future and Game of Thrones) and pop-culture icons (Kayne West and Elvis), as well as tributes to nostalgic games and toys, get ready to tap, tap, tap it in!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Strike Bowling is definitely not your average bowling alley. Whether you’re competing to be crowned bowling king, or just a fan of wholesome fun, bowling is the perfect activity for all ages. Be ready to put on some shiny shoes and smash strikes down on the 10-lane alley where the lights are turned down low, fun is cranked to 100% and the sound system will have you grooving between bowls.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

But the good times don't end there! There is a fully-equipped bar serving drinks and bar snacks including pizza, burgers, hot dogs and delicious loaded fries, which staff will happily deliver to your bowling lane or to the golf course (drinks only). Belt out tunes in one of the private karaoke rooms, play a game of pool, test your skills in the mind-bending escape rooms or get your groove on with the DJ spinning tunes.

FYI - Due to liquor licence restrictions, children under 18 years are not permitted in the venue after 8.00pm.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Busy City Kids were invited to experience Maroochydore Strike Holey Moley for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more information about Maroochydore Strike Holey Moleyhead to their website.

Terracotta Warriors: Guardians of Immortality | Cai Guo-Qiang: The Transient Landscape

Terracotta Warriors: Guardians of Immortality | Cai Guo-Qiang: The Transient Landscape, a dual presentation of the terracotta warriors and one of the world’s most exciting contemporary artists Cai Guo-Qiang is now on display until the 13th October 2019 at NGV International.

Thanks to our Photographers Tina Giorgio Photography for attending the media preview and for taking these stunning shots, to find out more about Tina Giorgio Photography, head to their website.

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Exclusive to Melbourne and presenting nearly 170 works, the exhibition will offer a new perspective on Chinese culture, past and present and features 8 life-size Qin Emperor’s terracotta warriors discovered in 1974. 

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

More than 160 exquisite ancient treasures of Chinese historic art and design, drawn by the NGV from leading museums and archaeological sites from across Shaanxi province is also on display. These include priceless gold, jade and bronze artefacts that date from the Western Zhou through to the Han dynasties (1046 BC – 220AD)

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

The parallel exhibition of Cai Guo-Qiang: The Transient Landscape created especially for this NGV exhibition include the monumental installation of 10,000 suspended porcelain birds. The birds create a three-dimensional impression of a calligraphic drawing of the sacred Mount Li, the site of the ancient tomb of China’s first emperor, Qin Shihuangvand his warriors. So impressive!

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Drawing on Cai’s understanding of ancient Chinese culture and his belief that a dialogue with tradition and history can invigorate contemporary art, he has also created a porcelain sculpture of peonies, Transience I (Peony), placed at the centre of a 360-degree gunpowder painting, Transience II (Peony), both of which were created in Melbourne.

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Terracotta Warriors: Guardians of Immortality | Cai Guo-Qiang: The Transient Landscape is on now at the NGV International in Melbourne until the 13th October 2019.

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

Photo credit: Tina Giorgio Photography @tinagiorgiophotography

For more information, head to the NGV website.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Brickman Cities Powered by LEGO® CITY - Scienceworks - Melbourne - Info

Brickman Cities Powered by LEGO® CITY is coming to Melbourne this June at Scienceworks! 

We loved Brickman Cities Powered by LEGO® CITY when it came to Sydney earlier this year, the kids loved the impressive builds and building their own Lego masterpiece. We spent almost two hours at the event and enjoyed our time there. Now it’s time for Melbourne to enjoy it! So head to Scienceworks this June with your LEGO fans!

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Created by the LEGO® Masters judge, Ryan ‘The Brickman’ McNaught. The experience has been exclusively curated and built by McNaught and his expert team and opens at Scienceworks Melbourne on Saturday 15 June and runs through until August 4. 

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Showcasing five of the world’s most iconic cities at different time periods in history, visitors can trace each city’s evolution all the way from 1000AD to today in a fun, educational and immersive way.

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Brickman Cities Powered by LEGO® CITY

Brickman Cities Powered by LEGO® CITY

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

At the centre of this new interactive experience is a 3m x 4m scale model of Lower Manhattan, built entirely in white LEGO® pieces with 3D stories of New York projected directly onto them. Using cutting-edge technology of UHD 4K projectors, visitors are taken on a journey from the First People’s villages right through to present day.

More than 1,900 hours and 1 million LEGO® bricks were needed to build Brickman Cities powered by LEGO® CITY.  Ryan ‘The Brickman’ McNaught and the creative team spent a further 250 hours developing sophisticated 3D projections to bring the hero city of New York to life.

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Budding builders itching to get their hands on some LEGO® bricks can do so in the interactive master build zone home to half a million LEGO® bricks where they can build their vision of a LEGO® CITY of tomorrow.  Brickman Cities also features a brand-new collaboration with LEGO® CITY, an entire wall showcasing the history of LEGO® CITY, including CITY Fire Stations from decades ago.

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

McNaught hopes the interactive experience will encourage visitors to learn and play whilst also enjoying large scale sculptures. “Brickman Cities brings to life the rich histories of the world’s greatest cities like never before and I hope visitors will find it both informative and fun.  I can’t wait to see young LEGO® enthusiasts take what they have learnt and use their imagination to create their own LEGO® CITY of tomorrow,” says McNaught. 

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

Photo credit: @busycitykids Sydney January 2019

For more information and to book, head here.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Bellingham Maze - Tanawha - Sunshine Coast - Review 

Kate clearly found the best spots on the Sunshine Coast on her recent Noosa holiday and her little ones definetely had a great time wondering and taking part in the different mazes, mini golf and games at the Bellingham Maze in Tanawha. What a gorgeous place to visit! Thanks for the review and cute pics Kate x Catherine. To follow Kate’s cool adventures, head to her insta @kateflatman.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The Bellingham Maze is renowned for being one of the Sunshine Coast’s most popular tourist attractions, ‘The Maze’ as it’s known locally has been loved by families since it first opened its doors over 20 years ago.  Located just 10 minutes from Mooloolaba and featuring an incredible 80m x 80m living hedge maze, timber maze, rope maze, tyre maze, 18 hole mini golf course, outdoor games, garden cafe and puzzle shop, it’s no wonder it attracts over 20,000 visitors a year.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

New owners Adam and Robyn acquired the business in June last year (they are the third owners since the Bellingham family developed and opened the property in 1993) and are very excited to own and operate a local icon and have many plans on improving what is already an a'MAZE'ing destination for locals and tourist alike. 

You know you are in the right place when you spot the large Dutch Windmill from the street (which was originally located up the road in Buderim) and once you negotiate the magic waterfall at the entrance (be careful not to get wet!) you will be promptly told by the lovely Bellingham Maze staff to ‘get lost’, in the star shape hedge maze that is!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The eight-pointed, star shaped maze takes approximately 20-25 minutes to complete. However, you can wander at your leisure through the pathways amongst the rows and rows of lilly pilly hedges to the tower in the middle and enjoy the views.  Along the way keep your eye out for Snow White’s dwarfs and try to crack the secret code as an added element of excitement. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Once you find your way out - we found that harder than finding the path to the tower! - the fun doesn't end there. Find the scrambled scrabble letters in the timber maze, take a relay challenge in the rope maze, try your skills on the tyre maze or stretch your mind with one of the floor puzzles, especially designed by award-winning maze designer, Adrian Fisher.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

For even more fun, test your hand-eye coordination on the 18 hole, 2 par mini golf course - suitable for all ages.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

After all those activities, refuel with a coffee, cold drink, lunch or Devonshire Tea in the relaxing Garden Café. 

Try the puzzles on the tables in the cafe or browse the Puzzle Shop which has a unique range of brain teasing metal and wooden puzzles to purchase to take home.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Bellingham Maze is an ideal place for families to have good old-fashioned fun together on the Sunshine Coast. It’s a great place to challenge your mind, get out in nature + there is the added bonus that it gives little ones the chance to run off energy as they frantically search for the maze exit! Sounds like a winner to me!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Busy City Kids were invited to experience Bellingham Maze for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more information about Bellingham Maze, head to their website.

The Ginger Factory - Yandina - Queensland - Review

During their recent Queensland holiday, Kate and her little ones spent a fun day at The Ginger Factory in Yandina riding on their historic ginger train, hopping on boat rides, going on a tour of the factory, experiencing a live bee show, doing lots of tastings and playing too! Thanks for the Ginger Factory for having us and thanks Kate for this great review! x Catherine To follow Kate’s adventures, head to her page @kateflatman.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

One of the Sunshine Coast’s most popular attractions, The Ginger Factory in Yandina has been delighting families for more than 40 years.  Home of the famous Buderim Ginger, it is the world’s largest operating ginger factory and produces a large range of delicious and locally made ginger drinks, sweets, spreads and foods. However, there is more to the iconic Ginger Factory than manufacturing, it offers fun rides, fascinating tours, a unique retail precinct and café surrounded by beautiful sub-tropical gardens - there is something for everyone.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Here are our TOP SEVEN reasons for visiting The Ginger Factory with the whole family.

1. Ginger Train

Climb aboard Moreton, the historic ginger train for a tour of the factory grounds.  Moreton, the 116 year old, retired sugar cane train now spends his days taking people around the property giving a running commentary of the history of Buderim Ginger, the factory and local area + interesting things to see along the way.  Trains depart every thirty minutes from Ginger Town Station.  After three rides, the poppets voted the Ginger Train the best part of our day! 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

2. Overboard Boat Ride

Running continuously throughout the day, hop on a boat and chase the gingerbread man on an adventure as he escapes the clutches of hungry chefs.  As you sail through different countries, little ones will love trying to spot the gingerbread man as he hides amongst 200 homemade moving puppets including Moulin Rouge dancers, Santa and his elves and the guards at Buckingham Palace. Please note that this ride is quite dark in parts, which some children may find scary.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

3. Live Bee Show & Tasting

Led by an experienced beekeeper, learn about the life of a bee, how bees make honey and see different bee species up close in this fascinating presentation. Honey lovers will enjoy tasting some delicious varieties of honey at the completion of the show with opportunities to buy jars to take home.  

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

4. Factory Tour & Tasting

Take the fully guided Factory Tour for a behind the scenes look into how far Buderim Ginger has come in the last 77 years, from a small farming community and ginger growers cooperative to one of the world’s largest suppliers of ginger.  Finish the tour with a private tasting in the Tasting Room featuring products available to purchase in the Ginger Shop and recipe ideas.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

5. Gingerbread Decorating

Purchase a freshly baked gingerbread man from the Ice Creamery with a tub of colourful icing, mini chocolates and lollies for children to use to decorate.  The poppets loved decorating the gingerbread men, but they loved eating them more!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

6. Kids Play Area

There are several free and fun play spaces for kids to explore. The undercover playground next to the Ginger Cafe allows children to play in a fenced areas with tunnels, stairs, slides, windows for peaking, and ropes for climbing. There is also a smaller play space designed for toddlers with their very own train to climb, a carriage to crawl through and colourful balls to play with. The poppets also loved playing the giant snakes and ladders located outside the Overboard Boat Ride.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

7. Café, Ice Creamery & Shop

A fun day out isn’t complete without a treat from the café (the ginger scones come highly recommended) or a handmade ice cream. Pop into the Ginger Shop on the way out to pick up your favourite Buderim Ginger products for home or gifts for family or friends.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Admission into The Ginger Factory is FREE - this allows you access to the Ginger Shop, Ginger Cafe, Ginger Town, play areas, gardens and Rainforest Walk.  Extra costs apply for the Ginger Train, Overboard Boat Ride, Live Bee Show and Factory Tour.  Check the website for prices and special bundle offers.  If you want to experience everything, purchase a Play, Taste & Discover Bundle which includes entry to all tours and shows + unlimited rides. Note, children aged three and under are free.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Busy City Kids were invited to experience The Ginger Factory for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more information on The Ginger Factory, head to their website.

Australia Zoo - Beerwah - Queensland - Review

On her recent trip to Queensland, Kate took her little ones to Australia Zoo for the ultimate day out to see and interact with wonderful wildlife, see wildlife shows and have lots of fun along the way! Thank you to Australia Zoo for inviting us and thank you Kate for this wonderful review. x Catherine To follow Kate’s adventures, head to her page @kateflatman.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Australia Zoo - home of the Crocodile Hunter - on the beautiful Sunshine Coast, Queensland, is nestled on over 70 acres of natural Australian bushland. With over 1,200 gorgeous native and exotic animals, a line up of free wildlife shows daily, interactive animal encounters and an action-packed 24-hour Wildlife Hospital, there is never a dull moment at Australia Zoo.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

If you've ever wanted to cuddle a koala, walk alongside a cheeky cheetah, get up close to a gorgeous lemur, wrap a python around your shoulders or waddle with a wombat, then Australia Zoo is your ultimate destination. 

Located just under an hour’s drive north of Brisbane or south of Noosa, there is no better place to spend a day with the entire family than at Australia Zoo.  Here is a list of highlights from our recent visit:

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • The Crocoseum

A visit to The Crocoseum to watch the world famous Wildlife Warriors Show is a must! Held every day at 12pm, keepers and their amazing animals will take you on a slithering, swooping, jaw-snapping adventure of epic proportions.  See giant snakes, colourful, soaring birds and the highlight; Steve Irwin's favourite animal in the entire world - the impressive saltwater crocodile.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • Roo Heaven

Purchase some roo food for a couple of dollars and watch the enchantment on your children’s faces as they feed the friendly red and grey kangaroos as they laze about and roam around in their large outdoor enclosure.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • Wildlife Hospital

Located at the rear of the main carpark, the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital was opened in March 2004, inspired by the memory of Lyn Irwin (Steve’s Mum), who was a pioneer in wildlife care in Queensland.  It was Steve Irwin's dream to build the world's largest wildlife hospital at Beerwah to honour his mother Lyn, and to provide a lifeline for nature's innocent victims - providing sick, injured and orphaned wildlife with leading-edge treatment and rehabilitation before eventual release back to the wild. The incredible team in the hospital have already treated more than 80,00 patients. By purchasing a $2 Sneak Peak donation, you can visit the Wildlife Hospital and see first hand the vital work that is taking place.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • Pat A Koala

Admire our best known Aussie icon and visit Koala Walkthrough, where you can pat a cuddly koala or watch them snoozing or eating amongst the eucalyptus trees.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • Tiger Temple

Home to the majestic Sumatrans and Bengal tigers, Tiger Temple provides an amazing opportunity for you to get up-close with these magnificent big cats.  At 2.00pm daily, watch the popular Tiger Show and observe the tigers showcasing their impressive speed, agility and confidence both on land, and in water.  If you’re lucky you might even see them swimming in the underwater viewing area - the only one of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.  Be sure to arrive early for the show as seating is limited.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • Kids Zoo

Have some farmyard fun at the Kids Zoo located adjacent to The Crocoseum.  Little ones will love feeding and patting the super cute baby animals in their enclosures.  

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • Bindi’s Island

Visit Bindi’s Island, a tropical island paradise that has ring-tailed lemurs free roaming amongst giant tortoises, colourful macaws, an alligator snapping turtle + Bindi’s three-storey treehouse, which offers sweeping views of Australia Zoo.

  • Roving Wildlife

The Wandering Wildlife team regularly roam around Australia Zoo with animals to meet. Get up close for a pat or to snap a photo with a possum, blue tongue, baby alligator, snake, koala or cockatoo to name a few.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • Africa

Catch the FREE Safari Shuttle and explore the wide open plains of the 24-acre African savannah to see the only multi species exhibit in Queensland.  Marvel at the gorgeous giraffe, rhino and zebra or meet one of the mischievous meerkat families.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

  • Play Areas

If the kids need a break from the animals, there are several play spaces located within the zoo for them to run around.  Outside The Crocoseum, kids will love the giant jumping pillow,  tea cup ride and recently opened Laughing Frog Water Park.  At Bindi’s Bootcamp Playground you will find a rock climbing wall and heaps of gooey, scaly, interactive games to play and challenges to complete.  The poppets loved exploring the little shaded playground adjacent to the wombats and snakes too.

Photo credit: @busycitykids for @kateflatman

Photo credit: @busycitykids for @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Steve and Terri Irwin's vision has always been to make Australia Zoo the biggest and best wildlife conservation facility in the entire world.  With conservation projects on-going and expansion plans going full steam ahead (including ‘Camp Crocodile Hunter’ which will open in 2020 as part of Australia Zoo’s 50th anniversary celebrations), Australia Zoo is certainly delivering an animal experience like no other and keeping Steve's dreams and legacy alive.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Our tips:

  • Don’t forget your camera!

  • Be sure to make use of Steve's Safari Shuttle for internal transport, hosted by friendly and knowledgeable guides, it can help tired legs or respite from the sun/rain. 

  • Allow at least four to six hours to explore Australia Zoo, depending on the age of your children.  We were there for nearly eight hours with our nearly 5yo twins. The Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital is open until 5.30pm so we visited for thirty minutes after the Zoo had closed at 5.00pm.  

  • Check out the range of animal encounters, Zoo tours and studio photo opportunities that are available for an additional cost. 

  • Do your homework before you arrive. Visit the Australia Zoo website and make a list of the animals, shows, exhibits, etc. that you wish to see. Alternatively download the Australia Zoo app onto your phone for exhibit information, as well as handy hints on how to book an encounter, which shows to catch, and where to eat lunch. It also has a really awesome day planner and show reminders to make sure you don't miss all the action. 

  • Wear good walking shoes and be prepared for all weather conditions with a hat, sunscreen and umbrella or rain poncho.

  • Bring snacks and a picnic or enjoy a bite to eat in the two-storey, 1500-seat Feeding Frenzy food court or Dingo Diner, as well as several kiosks and beverage and ice cream vendors though the Zoo grounds. 

  • Keep hydrated and drink water.  You can refill your water bottle at one of several drinking taps.

  • Ramps, pathways and enclosures are designed to be accessible by prams, wheelchairs and motorised scooters. Prams, tag-along wagons and lockers are also available for hire.

  • There are several parents nursing rooms + most toilet blocks have toddler seats in bathroom stalls. 

Busy City Kids were invited to experience Australia Zoo for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more information about Australia Zoo, head to their website.

Arts Centre Melbourne 2019 Families Winter/Spring program - Info

Families are invited to experience an array of engaging and ambitious theatrical adventures and interactive experiences from Australia and beyond as part of the Arts Centre Melbourne 2019 Families Winter/Spring program this June through to November 2019. This season presents entertaining, inclusive and culturally diverse works spanning dance, music, puppetry and theatre. 

Young people and their families can enjoy an interstellar adventure designed for children with disabilities, an international dance work inspired by a computer game, an intercultural b*boy battle, hip hop fairy-tale, graphic novel brought to life, quirky puppetry and an indigenous history lesson with a twist.

Checkout this great video below for a visual of this year’s 2019 Families Winter/Spring program great line up.

 

In June, WA’s Sensorium Theatre will present the intergalactic adventure Whoosh! (29 June), an immersive and highly-tailored multi-sensory performance suitable for all children, including those with multiple and complex needs and those on the autism spectrum.

Woosh - Arts Centre Melbourne

Woosh - Arts Centre Melbourne

During the winter school holidays, little ones aged 2-7 are invited to experience Beep (9-13 July), a heart-warming robot tale from Windmill Theatre Company. The work, from the makers of Grug and Grug and the Rainbow, features gentle story-telling, music and puppetry.

Beep - Arts Centre Melbourne

Beep - Arts Centre Melbourne

For older children and young adults there will be a chance to experience a story told through dance, born from a meeting of cultures, when Nick Power’s Between Tiny Cities រវាងទីក្រុងតូច (10-13 July) is performed in Arts Centre Melbourne’s State Theatre Rehearsal Room. Budding hip-hop fans can get up close to a high energy b*boy battle in the tale of cultural ownership told through the language of dance.

Between Tiny Cities - Arts Centre Melbourne

Between Tiny Cities - Arts Centre Melbourne

Musical theatre is explored throughout the season, engaging young audiences in important conversations. Shaun Tan’s award-winning book The Red Tree (3-4 August) will be brought to life on stage in a unique musical theatre performance that tackles a young girl’s journey from fear towards hope.

The Red Tree - Arts Centre Melbourne

The Red Tree - Arts Centre Melbourne

Then performer Candy Bowers will wow audiences in One the Bear (8-10 August), a fairy-tale for the hip-hop generation, jam-packed with infectious beats, endless rhymes and humour.

One the Bear - Arts Centre Melbourne

One the Bear - Arts Centre Melbourne

From hilarious to heart-warming, ingenious works of puppetry are presented throughout the season. Indigenous history is explored through Nathan Maynard’s new work, A Not So Traditional Story (7-8 September) a hilarious and unique tale of adventure highlighting the importance of culture, identity and friendship.

Not so traditional story - Arts Centre Melbourne

Not so traditional story - Arts Centre Melbourne

Dead Puppet Society bring the hyper-coloured world of Tim Sharp’s Laser Beak Man (19-21 September) to life. Nominated for four Helpmann Awards, it features live music from Sam Cromack of Ball Park Music.

Laser Beak Man - Arts Centre Melbourne

Laser Beak Man - Arts Centre Melbourne

In spring school holidays, children who love to move and shake will be given the chance to jump into TETRIS (25-28 September), a colourful, participatory work by renowned dance company Arch 8 from the Netherlands.

Tetris - Arts Centre Melbourne

Tetris - Arts Centre Melbourne

This will be followed by a stage adaptation of the much-loved book Spot (13-17 November), Eric Hill’s beloved puppy who is on a new adventure to visit his Dad on the farm and meet farm animals.

Spot - Arts Centre Melbourne

Spot - Arts Centre Melbourne

There you have it, the amazing lineup of the Arts Centre Melbourne 2019 Families Winter/Spring program, grab your tickets soon!

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

A Family & Foodies Guide to the Mornington Peninsula - Melbourne

Kate loves taking her little ones on new adventures and wrote this gorgeous article of her time on the Mornington Peninsula this year. We love this piece of Victoria and cannot wait to visit all these interesting places too one day! Thank you Kate for this beautiful piece and photos. To follow Kate’s adventures, head to her Insta page. xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Located just over an hour drive south from Melbourne, the Mornington Peninsula is one of our most favourite parts of Victoria.  With grandparents in Mornington, I spent many school holidays on the Peninsula and it’s been such a joy to share those special memories with the poppets + discover new things along the way too.

With its world class wineries, busy bayside villages, stunning coastline and gourmet delights, the Mornington Peninsula is perfect for families - and foodies!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

In early February we escaped the city for a three day weekend in Rye and didn't let the rain or cooler conditions stop us from exploring this fabulous region.

Here are our TOP 10 places to visit on the Mornington Peninsula on even the gloomiest of days.

1. Peninsula Hot Springs
With over 30 globally-inspired experiences Peninsula Hot Springs’ Bath House is a bathing wonderland for families and children to discover together.  Enjoy the designated family area as well as magical cave pool, reflexology walk, Turkish Hamam steam room, underground saunas and massaging thermal mineral showers.

Read our full review here.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

2. Rosebud Pier Adventure Playground

An amazing all-abilities playground with a variety of play equipment to keep children entertained from enclosed baby swings, tunnels and rope climbing walls, to net swings, a flying fox and three slides.  This is a perfect spot for a family BBQ or picnic overlooking the safe swimming beach and 300m long pier.  Just be mindful that in hot weather the metal slides can get too hot to use. Other great playgrounds to visit include the McCrae Foreshore Playground (also called the McCrae Lighthouse Playground), Rye Foreshore Playground and Sorrento Park. 

Read our full review of the Rosebud Playground here.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

McCrae Foreshore Playground

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

3. Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm

There’s nothing quite like the taste of freshly picked strawberries! Set amongst scenic bushland and rolling hills on Victoria’s Hinterland property in Main Ridge, Sunny Ridge is now the largest strawberry farm in Australia. We highly recommend the fluffy scones served with house made strawberry jam and whipped cream from the Cafe.

Read our full review here.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

4. Main Ridge Dairy

A farmhouse cheese factory and goat dairy, offering a true paddock to plate experience. Enjoy a cheese tasting at the counter or spot on the deck for a cheese platter and a glass of local wine.  Children will love the lovely lawns to play on and they can even get up close to the goats in the paddocks too.  Inside you will find a simple children's play area with colouring sheets, books and toys.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

5. Pure Peninsula Honey

This charming farm shop has the most impressive range of honey and bee products you may ever see.  Enjoy free taste tests, see bees building honeycomb, collecting pollen and producing honey, browse the bee themed gift shop and read amazing bee facts. Be sure to buy a tub of the honey ice cream, it’s delicious.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

6. Johnny Ripe

From homemade sweet and savoury pies, to sausages rolls, meringues and buttery croissants - not forgetting their famous cronuts - Johnny Ripe is a small home-style bakery producing seriously tasty treats.  Order from the all day brunch menu or make a selection from the take-away counter and find a spot on the beautiful sheltered deck over looking the Red Hill Lavender Farm and the hills of Main Ridge.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

7. Red Gum BBQ

With a large, indoor play area, colouring sheets, change facilities, highchairs and plenty of space for little people to roam around, Red Gum BBQ is an awesome place to visit with the entire family.  Best of all their Aussie-smoked,  Southern American BBQ is simply the best we have ever eaten.  Bookings recommended. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitkids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitkids

8. Green Olive at Red Hill

Wind your way down the driveway through the olives trees and grapevines to this magnificent, family friendly, whole farm experience.  Offering a cafe, farm shop, kitchen garden, children's outdoor play area (complete with in-ground trampoline!), animals, farm stays and cooking classes.  Their extremely popular school holiday program gives children the opportunity to meet farm animals, plant seeds, learn about where food comes from, and get dirty in the garden. 

Read our full review here.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

9. Mock Red Hill

This family-owned and operated orchard has been producing high quality, bio-dynamic fresh fruit, apple juice, apple ciders and apple cider vinegar for the local region and beyond for many years.  Visit their unique cellar door space offering sensory tasting experiences within an original wooden cool store, then purchase apples to take home from the shop.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

10. Mornington Peninsula Chocolaterie

Located in the charming seaside town of Flinders, the newest, petite-sized sibling of the Yarra Valley and the Great Ocean Road stores opened its doors late last year taking over the space formerly occupied by Mornington Peninsula Chocolates.  As well as serving up chocolate (up to 180 unique varieties!) and ice cream, it also features a brownie bar and continues to make truffles in flavours made popular by the site's previous owners.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Busy City Kids was invited to experience some of the places mentioned above for the purpose of a review. Most were self-funded. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Rosebud Foreshore Playground - Mornington Peninsula - Melbourne - Review

Put the kids climbing shoes on and head to Rosebud Foreshore Playground next time you visit the Mornington Peninsula.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The playground is a multi level nature playground and is perfect for small and big kids with lots of swings, slides, a flying fox, lots of climbing with ropes, a tunnel and lots more.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Kate took her little ones to the Rosebud Foreshore Playground recently and they really enjoyed their time there.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Rosebud Foreshore Playground is located at Point Nepean Rd & Jetty Rd in Rosebud.

Our packing list for this playground:

  • Drink bottles

  • Food for snacks, for lunch or for a picnic

  • Sunscreen

  • Sunhats

This playground has:

  • Accessible and street parking

  • Bike stations

  • Flying fox

  • Picnic areas with BBQ

  • Public toilets with disability access

  • Seating, picnic tables and benches with shelter

  • Slides, swings and climbing structures

For more playgrounds, go to our dedicated page

For more ideas on the Mornington Peninsula, checkout our Family & Foodies Guide.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Jubilee Adventure Playground - Onkaparinga - Adelaide - Review

Come for the giraffe, stay for the awesome day out for small kids and big kids at the Jubilee Adventure Playground! Situated on the lower reaches of the Onkaparinga River, just off Saltfleet Street is, Jubilee Park. The park overlooks both the Port Noarlunga sand dunes and the Onkaparinga estuary, giving nature lovers superb views of this unique ecosystem. Kate and her little ones recently visited this great playground while on a trip to Adelaide and loved it!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The fantastic Jubilee Adventure playground was built by the community for the community, with multiple bbq and picnic facilities and a small junior playground for little ones.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

This great playground is fully fenced with plenty of swings, slides and seating available for the adults and toilet facilities close by.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

This awesome playground was a hit with Kate and her little ones and you can see why they stayed there for almost three hours. Thanks Kate. xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The Jubilee Adventure Playground is located at Saltfleet Street in Port Noarlunga South.

Our packing list for this playground:

  • Drink bottles

  • Food for snacks, for lunch or for a picnic

  • Sunscreen

  • Sunhats

This playground has:

  • Accessible and street parking

  • Ball game areas

  • Changing facilities

  • Picnic areas with BBQ

  • Public toilets

  • Seating, tables and benches with shelter

  • Slides, swings and climbing structures

  • Walking and cycling tracks

  • Water Play areas

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Adelaide, head to our blog or our Adelaide daily spots lists.

Ramp Kids Sessions at Rampfest - Melbourne - Review

If your little ones need to improve their scooter or bike skills, checkout Rampfest in Braybrook. Kate’s little dare devils grabbed their helmets and scooters and headed to Rampfest recently to test out the Ramp Kids sessions. What a clever program for kids to improve their scooter skills and confidence. Thanks Kate for the great pics and review. Follow Kate via her Insta page. xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

What did we do before scooters? Fast, compact and fun, they’re now a wildly popular mode of transport for adults and kids alike – and for preschoolers they are a dream toy, allowing energetic little ones to travel with the speed and independence they crave.  My two absolutely love their scooters and I love them too as they are the perfect tool for developing their balance, coordination and motor skills while giving them a taste of independence. 

Rampfest Indoor Skate Park, located in Melbourne's inner west suburb of Braybrook has been offering riders, skaters and ‘scooter’ers' a top-quality skate park - and plenty of expertise to go along with it - since 2008.  As one of Australia’s largest indoor skate parks, Rampfest has now helped 1000's of kids get started on their first bike, scooter or skateboard.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Every Saturday and Sunday morning from 9am, Rampfest offers a special one hour session for children under 10 years of age.  Designed for younger riders to enjoy the skate park before it officially opens at 10am, each Ramp Kids session is fully supervised by one of the Rampfest coaches, and parents are welcome to jump on the course and give their kids a hand as well.  After 10am, you're welcome to hang out longer if you like too or join a coaching clinic.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

With over 1000 square metres of skate park, the poppets absolutely loved scootering around, up and over the plywood ramps during the Ramp Kids session and although they are quite competent and constantly scaring me with ‘tricks’, they had no previous skate park experience. Thankfully Rampfest runs a range of coaching programs, so we didn't hesitate in signing them up for a beginners lesson.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Held every Saturday morning from 10.30am - 12pm (2x 45min groups), the Saturday Beginner Coaching Sessions focus on skate park safety and etiquette, basil skills and techniques, use of skate park obstacles and giving riders the confidence to use the skate park independently. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Our pro rider coach, Reece was extremely patient with the group of (mostly) scooter riders, who ranged in age from 4-9 years old with varying levels of competency. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

At the end of the session, the poppets definitely had solid base of skills that they can now use at any skate park and a desire to progress faster to more advanced skills.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

If you have a budding rider, are looking for an activity to burn off some energy (especially on rainy days) or want to try something different during the school holidays, grab a scooter, bike or skateboard and head to Rampfest.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Our tips:

  • Check the website for up-to-date information about session times, special events and school holiday programs.

  • Ask about their membership options if you plan to visit often or consider enrolling your little one in an eight week term Ramp School program. 

  • Scooters and helmets are available to hire every day, starting from $5 per session. FYI folding scooters are not permitted.

  • Rampfest is a great venue for children’s birthday parties or group bookings.  They have several different packages to choose from including exclusive private hire.

  • There is a limited menu available at the onsite canteen; pies, sausage rolls and hot dogs + drinks, tea and coffee. No food is permitted inside the skate park but you can make use of the outdoor tables for a BYO picnic.

  • When riding it is really important to follow the rules of the park, that goes for adults watching too.  Be sure to keep an eye on your little ones at all times.

  • Rampfest offers a great range of scooters, bikes, accessories, safety equipment, streetwear and apparel.  If you buy a complete bike, scooter or skateboard you receive a free coaching clinic.

Busy City Kids were invited to experience Ramp Kids Sessions at Rampfest in Braybrook for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more information on Rampfest and their programs, head to their website.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Green Olive School Holiday Program at Red Hill - Melbourne - Review

Escape the city and head to Green Olive at Red Hill on the Mornington Peninsula, you won’t regret visiting this gorgeous place and the children will love it too! Kate took her little ones yesterday to experience one of their school holiday program activities and loved their time there. Thanks Kate for the gorgeous photos and review. To follow Kate’s adventures, head to their Insta page. Xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Whether you are a park parent, an arts & crafts parent, a working parent or an out & about parent, chances are that you need to plan at least one activity during the school holidays to keep little ones busy.

I’m definitely the organised, out & about parent and with an abundance of school holiday programs and activities on offer in Melbourne and surrounds, the choices really are limitless.

Whilst visiting Green Olive at Red Hill during a long weekend on the peninsula in February, I came across an advertisement for their School Holiday Program and knew straight away that it would be a perfect activity for the poppets.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Located just one hour from Melbourne in Main Ridge, Green Olive at Red Hill is a family owned and operated business encouraging children to enjoy and learn from the surroundings of a real working farm.  Their Farm Kids school holiday program gives children the opportunity to meet farm animals, learn about where food comes from, get creative in the kitchen and plants seeds while spending time outside in the fresh air and sunshine.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

After much discussion and deliberation over which activity they wanted to participate in, the poppets chose the Kids Chicken Workshop from the appealing program - and what a good choice they made!  All three of us had such a fun time visiting and feeding the resident Isa brown chooks (who are guarded very closely by Pisa, the Maremma Sheepdog) and collecting freshly laid eggs from the chicken nesting trailer.  The excitement on their faces when they found an egg was just magical! 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

While the chefs were busy in the kitchen making and flipping the super cute chick-shaped pancakes, the children decorated plastic easter eggs which then had cotton wool, water and sprout seeds placed inside. We cannot wait to see them once they grow! 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Once the pancakes were cooked and the egg shells sprouts carefully put away to take home, the poppets got to sit down and enjoy the yummy pancakes with homemade strawberry jam, the most perfect end to an egg-cellent morning. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

If you're looking for a unique, wholesome, fun activity for the kids to do during the school holidays, we highly recommend exploring the program of events at Green Olive at Red Hill - I know a certain someone who is waiting eagerly for the winter holiday activities to be released!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Tip - Be sure to allow time after your session for a play in the outdoor play area.  Kids will love bouncing on the in-ground trampoline and climbing on the tall rope structure while you sit back and enjoy a cuppa and a piece of cake, some tapas or even a glass of wine from the estate vineyard.    

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Busy City Kids were invited to experience the Kids Chicken Workshop at Green Olive for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more information on Green Olive at Red Hill, head to their website.

For more ideas on the Mornington Peninsula, checkout our Family & Foodies Guide.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Alexander Calder: Workshop for Kids - NGV - Melbourne - Review

Kids can get hands-on and creative at the latest kids installation at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) - Alexander Calder: Workshop for Kids. Kate’s little ones enjoyed their time at the NGV last week making cute llamas and virtual sculptures.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Alexander Calder: Workshop for Kids opened 5th April 2019 in conjunction with the artist’s main exhibition Alexander Calder: Radical Inventor. Kids can construct animal sculptures by using custom-designed paper templates and working with intersecting shapes and folding techniques. Kids can also take part in a multimedia game where they can design virtual public artworks across Melbourne.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Alexander Calder was captivated with movement and animals even as a child; at age 11 he gifted his parents with sculptures he had made of a dog and a duck. Taking direction from this fascination, Alexander Calder: Workshop for Kids presents children with the opportunity to construct their own unique creatures.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Just as Calder designed outdoor sculptures on a grand scale, children will also be able to create public artworks in a specially designed multimedia game. Equipped with a virtual toolbox of shapes and colours, children will enrich Melbourne by designing public sculptures at popular Melbourne sites St Kilda Beach, Royal Botanical Gardens or NGV International.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

While Alexander Calder is well known for his suspended mobiles that move, he also made sculptures without moving parts which sat firmly on the ground. His friend Jean Arp created a new game called the sculptures ‘stabiles’ which stood as high as fifteen metres. You can create your own ‘stabile’ and hear some music during your visit which was popular when Calder was busy making art.

alexandercalder.jpg
Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Alexander Calder: Workshop for Kids is on from Friday 5th of April to Sunday 4th Aug 2019. Open 10am–5pm daily. Entry to the Kids installation is FREE however the main Alexander Calder exhibition is ticketed.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

For more information on Alexander Calder, head here. For more information on Alexander Calder for Kids, head here

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Neon Playground - Zoos Victoria - Melbourne - Review

Kate and her little ones had an amazing night on the opening night of Melbourne Zoo’s Neon Playground after dark experience last week.  

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

They were spoilt with night lights, projections, art installations, interactive performances, food and drinks and more - including a Graeme Base Waterhole performance.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Neon Playground is a new event celebrating wildlife conservation with a showcase of some of the best local light and visual artists and designers. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Checkout tips on how to make the most of your night, download the event program, and map on the Zoos Victoria’s Website.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Neon Playground is on now until Saturday 27th April 2019 5:30pm-9:30pm. All proceeds will go to the critically endangered Southern Corroboree Frogs. Adult $39.00, Child (4-15 years) $19.00, Child under 4 FREE Adult Member $35.10 and Child Member $17.10.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Busy City Kids were invited to experience Neon Playground for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more information on Neon Playground, head to the Zoos Victoria's website.

GoBoat Melbourne - Melbourne - Review

Kate and her little pirates boarded a GoBoat Melbourne boat last week and had the best time on the water exploring Melbourne along the Yarra River. What an amazing experience! Thank you Kate and family for sharing these pics and great review. To follow Kate’s adventures, head to her Instagram page @kateflatman. xo Catherine

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

GoBoat, which started in Copenhagen in 2014 and now runs in multiple locations including Sweden, London and Canberra, launched in Melbourne last January, offering a new way to see our beautiful city, and a unique experience suitable for the whole family.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Thanks to Go Boat Melbourne you can now book your own private cruise and explore Melbourne - and the best part,  YOU captain the boat! The nominated skipper doesn't require a boat licence but they do need to be 18 years old to sail the boat. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Founded on a sustainable outdoor experience, GoBoat boats are a state-of-the-art, Scandinavian designed vessel made from recycled plastics and fibreglass. With a maximum capacity of eight people (including the captain), each boat is powered by a super quiet electric motor and has a wooden picnic table + plenty of storage for bags.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Departing from Water Plaza Wharf, Docklands, guests choose between three different sailing adventures: one hour, two hours or three hours*.  We chose the two hour experience which had us sailing under the Bolte Bridge up the Yarra River to Princess Bridge and back.  Along the way we sailed past many famous landmarks, including South Wharf, Sealife Melbourne Aquarium, Southgate, Pony Fish Island and Flinders Station Station.  The poppets loved pointing out the landmarks they recognised, as well as waving to the other boats going past and the people along the river bank.  Watching a red helicopter land on the helipad opposite Crown Casino was definitely a highlight of our trip!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Take advantage of the large table in the middle of the boat that makes it super easy to enjoy snacks and drinks.  Either pack a picnic from home, pick up something on the way from one of the nearby businesses or order directly through GoBoat. Alcohol is permitted on board but restrictions do apply.

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

There is plenty of photo opportunities whilst on board and if you would like an instant memento of your ride, you can hire a polaroid camera with 10 polaroid prints from the office. Plus you can purchase sailor and pirate hats at the office too, or BYO from home. Our little pirate loved scaring other sailors with her tall sword!

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

A detailed course map , life jackets and safety gear are all provided (children under 12 years old must wear a life jacket at all times while on the boat).  Don't forget to pack for the elements; sunscreen, hat and water.  Bottled drinks are available to purchase from the office plus they also have bathrooms onsite to use before and after your trip.  

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Last but certainly not least, be sure to say hello to Gigi the Bernese Mountain Dog - GoBoat Melbourne’s Official Ambassador - who hangs out in the office and greets sailors, both big and small with sloppy kisses and cuddles. 

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

* Take advantage of Go Boat’s April Offer: Book one hour and get the second hour for FREE. That's a saving of $80.  Valid Monday - Wednesday only. Book online and use code: free2hour at checkout.

Busy City Kids were invited to experience GoBoat Melbourne for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food was self funded.

For more information on GoBoat Melbourne, head to their website.