Things to do in Orange
If you've been thinking about taking a trip to Orange, DO IT! Winter is quite a lovely time to visit, who knows, you might just see it snow! But Orange is a great place to visit all year round, we do all the four seasons properly here, but Autumn is my personal favourite!
I thought I'd compile a little list of my favourite things to do in Orange for those of you thinking about making the trip some time soon. This will by no means cover all the great places in our humble little town but these are my genuine favourites....... Share this post with your friends that are thinking about visiting, it might just entice them!
Coffee/Cafes in Orange
Bills Beans East Orange is my local, it's a dangerous 100m from the gallery in the BEST neighbourhood in town ;) - great coffee roasted locally and a nice selection of meals. Byng Street Local Store also does great coffee and a mean brunch, plus my husband Erick works there, so it must be good. My other favourite is Groundstone, it's located in the new Regional Museum building next to the Orange Regional Gallery which is also worth a look! You should also check out The Agrestic Grocer, they have live music several evenings a week and also on weekends as well as a small grocery store selling local produce. The Grocer and Co Organics has a delicious menu too! If you're looking for a quick espresso fix I'd suggest Arthur's Coffee, or Nimrod's, he has two stores, one in Lords Place and one up at The Sonic (mighty handy for you shopping enthusiasts), or there's Good Eddy also in Lords Place.
Restaurants and Bars in Orange
So many to choose from! You should definitely make a reservation, most places book out! Start your night at a wine bar, somewhere like Ferment, The Union Bank (also great for a meal), or Percy's. Once you're nicely warmed up with a couple of local wines under your belt you'll probably need a feed. Again, there are a ton of great places not mentioned here but these are my regular eateries. For modern Asian cuisine try Sweet Sour Salt or Mr Lim's Korean Restaurant, Erick and I eat at both of these places more than I care to mention and love it every time, Mr Lim's also has karaoke after the late sitting if that's something you're into. Sammy also has a great Japanese place across the street called Mr Sushi King, they have a sushi train for lunch as well! Charred Kitchen and Bar is a fun new restaurant just up the street from the gallery, it's especially good for larger groups as all the meals are designed to share. Lolli Redini is for a special treat, make sure you order the cheese souffle! Heading out of town a little we have Racine near Lake Canobolas, or the best little Italian place a bit further along Fiorini's, seriously delicious!
If you're up for a few drinks you MUST go to Washington and Co Whiskey Saloon a "modern spin and tribute to the speakeasy bars of America". The Parkview Hotel has an awesome beer garden and yummy pub meals. The Canobolas Hotel is a family friendly pub with wood fired pizza and Chesterfields is their in house whisky and wine bar upstairs. I'm not going to recommend an after midnight pub - they're all a bit tragic! But if you like lame country pub dance floors The Royal is the way to go!
Shopping in Orange
I'm only going to mention local small businesses here, of which there are many. Obviously you should visit me at the gallery, but definitely try and make it to Orange for The Journey Person Handmade Popup! It's a mini handmade market featuring all sorts of products made by over 30 clever locals popping up at The Corner Store Gallery several times a year!
For your ladies fashion fix try Belle Armoire Boutique, they happen to stock some of the best tassel necklaces around made by yours truly ;) .... These lovely ladies are part of a collective with Good Eddy and Botanica Flora, a fabulous florist, so you can grab a caffeine fix and a fresh bouquet at the same time! Iglou is located at The Sonic alongside Jumbled, a massive lifestyle store you could spend hours in! There's also Bobbies on the main street and Danielle Louise not far from there. Hawkes General Store has gifts for every occasion and The White Place is just around the corner with an entire house fitted out for your shopping pleasure! Don't forget about Mary and Tex Curious Emporium and Eclectic for beautiful homewares and other goodies.
For the boys I'd head to Hartford's for clothing or Blowes Menswear across the street, they both have excellent customer service! Angus Barrett also has a beautiful new store selling all the locally made leather goods you'll ever need. The Lucknow Skin Shop and Boot Barn is worth a visit too on the way out of town towards Sydney.
For second hand goods I'm a big fan of op shopping, the best one is Beuna Vista on Peisley Street, Vinnies and Salvos are conveniently just down the street. If your keen on antiques, here's a few places: Second Chance Collectables, Bower Bird Treasures, or Revive, all in Peisley Street.
Cellar Doors in Orange
Oof, this is a tough one..... We are spoilt for choice here, our little town is thriving because of the huge range of local wineries. Every time my friends visit I take them to Heifer Station. They have a beautiful new cellar door with a roaring fire during Winter and a large breezy outdoor space for Summer, there's even a petting zoo for the kids. My friend Michael Walker runs Faisan Estate Wines out near Borenore, but he's opening a new cellar door / wine bar in town soon, stay tuned.... While you're out Borenore way drop in to Small Acres Cyder, producers of premium cider from true heritage cider apple varieties and big supporters of the gallery. Word of Mouth has a lovely cellar door and they always have an art exhibition on. They also have a ceramics studio in the same building that you can nosy around in!
If it's beer you fancy drop in to The Beekeepers Inn between Bathurst and Orange. They also have a cafe, shop and antiques store. Drop in to Badlands Brewery at The Agrestic for another great local brew. There are heaps more cellar doors, you can pretty much follow any country road around Orange and stumble across a winery while enjoying the scenery.
Live Music in Orange
The Agrestic Grocer holds a live music night called Ruby Tuesday, lots of local musicians and musicians from further afield covering classic albums and artists. It's a really fun night out, and a good excuse to get your butt out of the house on a Tuesday night. They also have live music on the weekends for lunch and afternoon drinks! Washington and Co has live music nights and afternoons as well, follow them on Instagram to stay in touch. JAM is the local Open Mic Night, they bar hop around Orange once a month showcasing the local talent. If you're in to musical theatre The Orange Theatre Company puts on an impressive performance with two major musical productions a year as well as a play.
When visiting Orange, you really have to take a trip out to Millthorpe, a tiny heritage village 20 minutes outside of Orange. Take a stroll around the streets and just enjoy the old buildings and gardens. Angullong Vineyard is one of my favourite local wines and has a lovely cellar door in the centre of Millthorpe. The Old Mill Cafe is delicious, (try the carrot cake), Tonic restaurant is amazing, Eclectic has just opened a sister store of beautiful homewares and Bowerbird Old Wares is a stunning and surprising antiques store!
SEE!? Plenty to see and do (and drink ;) I hope this list is helpful, I know there's a lot to take in but consider it a tried and tested itinerary! Let me know your thoughts, Comment below with your favourite local hot spots!