I am a freelance journalist and an author living in Sydney. Writing is a passion and I enjoy everyday indulging in the talent that I am gifted with. You can find me on au.linkedin.com/pub/sharmila-jayasinghe-niriella/21/182/467/
Published July 14th 2014
Christmas in July festivites in the southern highlands
Celebrating Christmas in July for me personally is a good thing as it chases away the wintery blues and gets me into celebration mode. Best place to jump start on the Yule festive spirit is Fountaindale Grand Manor in Robertson just under a two-hour drive from Sydney. The Manor in July is a sight to behold, aptly decorated from tinsels to trees and even with an eye pleasing nativity scene.
My first visit to the Manor was couple of years back just by chance. With my entire brood on tag, I arrived at the manor gates for a new, and hopefully a rewarding experience. Though we had heard of all the Yule festivities at the Manor in July, we were not prepared for such grandeur. The Manor was Christmassy from the entrance itself. Our cameras clicked in excitement with us posing with each and every glittering ornament.
A roaring log fire; a sanctuary from the frost.
We hurried up the slope and entered the premises to get away from the chilly winds of Robertson. The lobby shouted Christmas with the large Christmas tree erected beside a roaring fire giving us instant warmth. The Manor is beautiful filled with charm of days gone by, pleasingly nothing had been changed to give it a modern look. The old charm of the place I am sure is one reason why many flock here to experience Xmas in July. There are plenty of Yule lovers huddled up on cozy chairs in front of any one of the three roaring fires on the ground floor.
Christmas decorations and the festivities weren't the only attractions for yours truly at the Manor. The line up of stalls selling everything from scarves to handbags most certainly was capable of making my day. Since the first visit I have never failed to stroll through the line of kiosks and stalls temporarily erected for the celebrations. I usually start off at the Rudolphs Christmas store, diving into the sea of absolutely mesmerising Christmas decorations. The quaint little red and white lolly shop is a must to visit. My kids understandably go a bit crazy at just by seeing the variety of lollies on sale. I get on board and choose boiled lollies and some fudge, enough for our trip back home. Once everyone is satisfied with their purchases, we peel ourselves off the line of stalls for a blissful time beside a roaring fire, sipping hot chocolate or indulging in a hearty home made soup. The grand dinning room is decorated for those who while around for a Christmas meal, lunch or dinner, but for this too it is advised you make an advanced booking.
If you want your Christmas in July to continue on, accommodation is available with advanced bookings at the manor itself but I have always preferred my day trips to Robertson filled with excitement. Though over the years I have noticed the scale of festivities to have mellowed down, Fountaindale Manor is a place I would visit for that hit of Christmas in July for years to come.