Top places for healthy summer fun

Summer celebrations don’t have to equal a sore head. We’ve unearthed the best places in each state serving up a healthy blast this sunny season.

Recent research by University of East Anglia shows spending time outside has significant health benefits including reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stress and high blood pressure.

And with the weather on your side there’s myriad mesmerising ways to immerse yourself in nature.

Victoria

Take a pick-stop and discover the sweet satisfaction of harvesting your own organic produce at the Yarra Valley U-Pick Trail.

Pluck your fruit straight from the orchards and fill your basket with healthy seasonal offerings such as cherries, strawberries and blueberries.

At Cherryhill Orchards, Victoria’s largest cherry orchard, you pay for your take-home pack as you leave but all cherries eaten on site are included in the entry price.

Or, if fresh flowers are more your style, go for your daily stroll outdoors at Mannerim Stables Co in Marcus Hill while gathering your next blossoming bunch.

New South Wales

Summer’s the perfect time for a sea change, and there’s no shortage of picturesque locations along the NSW coastline.

Head off on a picturesque hike or learn a new skill on your beach holiday.

Take Jennifer Aniston’s lead and embrace an afternoon of paddleboarding, take a surf lesson or hire a kayak and explore the area from a different angle.

Or opt for effortless and book in a night of glamping.

Simple Pleasures at Ruins Campground at Seven Mile Beach will set up your chic bell tent for you, leaving you to simply arrive and while away your afternoon in the sunshine.

South Australia

Summer equals tennis season.

Take some inspiration from January’s Australian Open and to dig out the racquet to go for your own hit.

If you’re in Adelaide, the World Tennis Challenge from January 7-9 sees tennis legends Pat Cash and Henri Leconte take on current players at the top of their game.

Watch the action or join in on the Be Active Challenge, Australia’s largest tennis participation event where more than 2000 players battle it out on South Australian tennis courts throughout January.

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Goodbye rain! Hello blue sky! ☺️🐴🌈

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Queensland 

You may have been swimming or bareback horse riding, but have you ever combined both?

Rainbow Beach Horse Rides offers experienced riders the pristine setting to immerse themselves in the beauty of some of the nation’s best beaches and a soulful connection with their well-trained animals.

Beginners are welcome, and can choose from rides on either the white sand or the lush green hills and valleys of the Queensland hinterland.

There are also full moon rides, including a country full moon ride, which starts at midday and journeys into the evening.

Western Australia

Summer is the ideal time to revitalise both body and mind.

Escape to Yallingup for an energising wellness immersion when South West Yoga Fest returns for a weekend of yoga, meditation and mindfulness.

From yoga classes and drumming workshops to sound healing meditation and chakra dancing, you will leave feeling refreshed and ready to take on the new year.

Your attendance will also help others discover the joy of yoga – proceeds go to the Zenergy Yoga Program, which provides yoga mats, classes and workshops to local schools.

It’s on from February 23-24 at Solitaire Homestead.

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☀️ Summer is finally here ☀️ As we all head out into the sunshine and get set to fire up the BBQs, take the opportunity to learn all about the tips and tricks on cooking outside. Outdoor cooking queen @missarahglover will show you how you can escape the city and go adventuring with easy to prep food in Where the While Things Are. Or impress your mates and BBQ some of your own hand made sausages with Rodney Dunn's (@agrariankitchen ) class. Take your charcoal cooking to the next level from our Licenced to Grill class with @stillwater_tas Craig Will. If you prefer to sit back and let others do the cooking over the coals we have something for you too. A Flinders Island Long Lunch, from talented chef/sommelier from @ettieshobart, will see you feast on a menu featuring crayfish, lamb and wallaby, plenty of fresh greens and wild sea succulents. A Farmer's Feast: Dishing up the Dirt is the perfect summer meal from @fatcarrotfarm & @feldsfarm to round out the perfect summer dining. Let’s celebrate everything summer at The Taste! Ticket link in bio ⬆️

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Tasmania

Get an up-close understanding of fresh flavours – and learn how to cook your own healthy dishes – at the Taste of Tasmania.

The festival celebrates the state’s diverse food, beverages and creative talents with more than 70 offerings from local restaurateurs, producers and artists.

It’s a fitting festival for little ones, too.

The Kids in the Park area on Parliament House Lawns will come alive with free sporting activities, art and crafts, cooking classes and a nightly twilight cinema.

Check it out from December 28-January 3 at Hobart’s waterfront.

Written by Jenna Meade.

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