10 Things that Make Newcastle and Hunter Valley a Great Place to Live, According to Dr. Beldholm
Hunter Valley and Newcastle boasts a strong beach culture, an emerging arts scene, friendly locals and a relaxed lifestyle. These are just some of the things that prompted Dr. Bernard Beldholm to make a permanent move to the area near the end of 2015, and he hasn’t looked back since.
Prior to relocating, he used to travel up to Hunter Valley twice a month to see patients while still maintaining a busy practice in Sydney. He’ll be first to tell you that working in the eastern suburbs of Sydney had been very rewarding. Along with a very busy practice, he was also a familiar face on various TV spots.
However, after having twins that are now two-years-old, he started to consider other lifestyle factors and how his children would enjoy being in Sydney versus the Hunter Region.
After constantly sitting in traffic for what seemed like an eternity in Sydney and not getting home until very late in the evening due to back-to-back consultations and regular operations, it became obvious that Sydney could not provide the lifestyle he wanted for his family.
He says moving down to Hunter Valley has served as a major revelation for him, and one of the best decisions he’s ever made. According to Dr. Beldholm, for people who already call the area home, they don’t really know how lucky they are. He often jokes that if folks in Sydney realised how good life was down in Hunter Valley, everybody would leave the heavily populated city.
Currently, Dr. Beldholm is winding down his practice in Sydney with the last procedure planned for July of this year. After that, he will no longer accept any new patients at his Sydney practice. Instead, he will focus his full attention to his patients in the Hunter Valley and Newcastle region.
Dr. Beldholm loves his new location so much, below he’s included ten reasons why Hunter Valley and Newcastle are the ultimate places to call home.
Hunter Valley Vineyards and Wineries
The Hunter Valley is Australia’s oldest wine growing region where you’ll find more than 150 wineries producing world-class wines. Pokolbin and the other areas up in the Hunter have eateries, vineyards and a lot of attractions. With the new expressway, Dr. Beldholm says it doesn’t take more than 30 minutes or so to get there.
Traffic is less of a headache here
While Dr. Beldholm says he often hears how people in Newcastle complain about how bad traffic is, he says it is nothing compared to what Sydney is like. You can more or less get everywhere here within 30 minutes, he says. In Sydney, you don’t even get down the street in that time. And in the worst peak traffic times, it can take more than 1 hour to go 10 km!
Amazing cafes and restaurants
From McGourtey’s Cafe Deli to Natural Tucker, there are so many amazing restaurants and breakfast places in Newcastle–especially on Darby Street. The food here is so good, it’s really hard to lose weight if you’re trying to diet. The area is really a great place to have a lazy morning.
The beaches are absolutely gorgeous
Sydney residents claim to have the best beaches but obviously they have not seen Newcastle beaches! In Newcastle, you can get to the beaches easily and actually find a car spot. There’s really no point in even taking your car to the beach in Sydney. Parking spaces are very hard to come by.
Kids have lots of room to run around
Here children never have to worry about getting bored. There are many playgrounds and parks nearby for them to enjoy. Lake Macquarie Variety Playground at Speers Point in the Newcastle region is a favourite among locals. King Edward Park is another popular place for family picnics and barbecues as well as a movie venue in summer. The park has a playground, too.
Beautiful walking trails
If you love a good stroll with beautiful views, you’ll definitely find them here in the Hunter Valley and Newcastle region. From the newly finished Anzac Memorial Walkway to Hunter Wetlands National Park, you’ll never run out of places to enjoy a nice, relaxing jog, hike or power walk. To explore other walking trails in the area, click here.
Small little heritage towns that are simply breathtaking
Morpeth and Lorn are two great places to explore and spend an afternoon. The historic town of Morpeth really is a journey through narrow laneways, sandstone curb sides and into heritage buildings where you’ll discover unique shopping, artisan treasures and delightful treats. When you visit Lorn, you’ll immediately love the village atmosphere as you enjoy the local shops, cafes, restaurants and bed and breakfasts.
Fantastic schools and daycares for the kids
The region is home to some of the best teachers in the area who are truly dedicated to helping children learn. If your kids aren’t old enough to attend school–don’t worry. There are plenty of excellent daycares to look after the kids if both parents work.
Hunter Valley Gardens is here
Explore over 60 acres of spectacular international display gardens that will amaze you with sensational sights, colours, fragrances and adventures. You won’t see anything like it anywhere else in Australia. According to Dr. Beldholm, he hasn’t had time to fully explore this beautiful attraction but says it’s a great destination to go to.
The people here are so friendly
Of course, Dr. Beldholm says the best thing about Hunter Valley is definitely the people. Everybody is less stressed and much more friendly here, he says.