26 December 2017

Top ten lifestyle posts on The RiotACT in 2017

| Amy M
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The most popular posts under the Lifestyle banner on The RiotACT in 2017 reflected the broad interests of our readers, but by far the most popular were those in the travel category.

Five of the top ten posts were about day trips in the Canberra region, with our contributors sharing the delights of hidden gems like Karloo Pools, Laggan and Wee Jasper. Stories about food, fashion and Canberra’s impressive coming of age in the world of musical theatre also made the most-read list this year.

10. Mamma Mia! Official opening of Canberra’s biggest musical theatre event wows audience

Canberra came of age in the world of musical theatre when it hosted the Australian premiere of a new production of global musical phenomenon Mamma Mia!, wrote Glynis Quinlan in December.

Too long the poor cousin of our bigger Australian city counterparts when it comes to musical theatre productions, Canberra proved its credentials as a city providing a passionate and appreciative audience with a strong love for the genre.

9. Southern Aurora jewel to help revive romance of rail in restored barracks

Captions: Top: Zia Attenborough and Mark McEwen with a Piccadilly Circus sign. Front row Will McCabe, Ben Brilliante, Jamie Booker and Kris Starridy. Photo: John Thistleton. Above: interior view of the events hall. Photo: Mark McEwen.

In January, John Thistleton introduced readers to Canberra entrepreneur Mark McEwen, who is reviving the romance of rail at Goulburn’s old railway barracks.

Mr McEwen has restored the 15-bedroom barracks, replacing wiring and plumbing and every nail in the old corrugated roof. He even plans to add a jewel to the rail-themed venue, a first-class carriage from the iconic Southern Aurora train.

8. One last swim? Try Karloo Pools

Woman floating in Karloo pools

There were many Canberrans keen to make the most of the last of the warm weather in March, when Heather Lansdowne’s story about Karloo Pools garnered much interest.

The pristine, natural swimming hole comes at the end of a beautiful walking track through a leafy corridor of ferny undergrowth and twisting red gums.

7. A day out in the region: the hidden valley of Wee Jasper

As another Canberra winter made its presence felt, Maryann Mussared found a perfect winter warmer in the rural getaway of Wee Jasper, which she wrote had everything she loved.

And there was much to love – beautiful Australian landscapes, old shearing sheds and farm buildings, and at the end of the road, a hidden valley, an old homestead, warm fireplaces, a really good home-cooked meal and a rare wine.

6. Nailing your personal fashion style with your local Canberra op shop

Nina Gbor joined The RiotACT team in the latter part of the year and her stories about sustainability in the fashion industry quickly proved to be popular.

Her story in November about how to build a super stylish wardrobe from local op shop finds showcased some surprisingly stunning outfits from a local Salvos store.

5. Mr Perkins soup cleanse review

Jane Speechley tried out a 3-day vegetable soup cleanse from Bondi institution Mr Perkins in August, writing that she started it off with a large coffee and a slice of jam and cream sponge roll! Perhaps that’s part of the reason her story came in at number 5.

And the verdict? Jane writes that the products were surprisingly tasty, she felt better and lost a few kilos to boot.

4. Road Trip: Jenolan Caves

Heather Lansdowne was back in the top 10 with another story about a day trip from Canberra, this time an adventurous road trip to Jenolan Caves, complete with stunning scenery and subterranean exploration.

3. Capital Cooma: enjoying the calm before the ‘winter storm’

Maryann Mussard’s article about Cooma – a regional location familiar to many long-time Canberra residents, came in at number three.

Her story profiling the largest town in the Snowy Mountains found Cooma has a lot to offer residents and tourists who are keen to explore and participate in activities in the increasingly popular alpine region in all seasons, including mountain biking, walking, and trout fishing.

2. Escape to the country: A Canberra region gem

It was two in a row for Maryann Mussared when she uncovered a true regional gem called Laggan Pantry, a restaurant located in the rural hamlet of Laggan, just north of Crookwell.

Approaching its second birthday, the Pantry is less than an hour and a half north of Canberra in the Southern Tablelands, and Maryann wrote that she suspects it is one of the best-kept secrets in rural NSW.

1. GoBoat launches Canberra adventures on the lake with European pizazz

A story about a new Canberra attraction – GoBoats – came in as number one lifestyle story of 2017. Glynis Quinlan’s September article about the self-drive electric picnic boats which seat up to eight people was greeted with enthusiasm by Canberrans keen to chart their own adventure on Lake Burley Griffin.

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