Cool Yule in Sydney

Events, Food, Things to Do, Travel Tips, What's New — By rruge on May 28, 2011 at 5:32 pm

Plum pudding for Yulefest

Some figgy pudding for Yulefest by Renate Ruge

Christmas halfway through the year anyone? It’s time for Yulefest in the Blue Mountains. As Sydney nights draw in and the cooler months are upon us, those in the know head up to the Blue Mountains for a blast of mountain air, some killer views, roaring log fires, cozy cottages — and Christmas dinner!


View of the Blue Mountains

Up on high in the Blue Mountains

With plenty of warming mulled wine, roast turkey and all the trimmings, plum pudding, carols by the fireplace and the odd visit from the man in red, it’s all going on in Leura, Medlow Bath, and Katoomba in the mountains.

Yulefest started as a pagan winter festival in Germany and it was celebrated as long ago as the 4th century AD. The Blue Mountains’ version of Yulefest dates back a more modest 30 years, and its story begins with a small group of Irish visitors. During their trip, the tourists enjoyed the spectacular views and crisp, clear winter climate before relaxing in front of a roaring log fire. The atmosphere was so convivial it reminded them of their own Christmas celebrations back home.

A savvy local hotel operator sensed an opportunity in the making and offered to re-create Christmas in July for his Irish guests, to make them feel even more at home. And so the preparations began; decorations were hung, the Christmas tree came out of storage and a plump turkey went in the oven. Word soon spread and Yulefest quickly became an annual Blue Mountains tradition.

Here are some of the venues to check out for dinners and overnight stays and packages: Waldorf Leura Gardens Resort, The Carrington and The Chalet Blue Mountains.

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