24 Hours in Gladstone

Nestled on the banks of the Macleay River, Gladstone is a charming little village brimming with creativity, history and culture. Listed as a ‘Creative Community’ on the Mid North Coast Arts Trail, the village is home to 19 preserved historical buildings and a host of art galleries, boutiques and cafes. Gladstone is known as the cultural heart of the Macleay Valley Coast.

Smell the Coffee

Start your day right with a coffee from Steam & Cedar at the Gladstone Hub. If you’re feeling adventurous, sample one of the infused coffees alongside the café’s deliciously simple fare, much of it created using local and native produce. The café has also made a recent foray into ice-cream – Dan’s lemon myrtle, honey and macadamia flavour comes highly recommended.

The Gladstone Hub

Take a walk through the Gladstone Hub, a fascinating warren of stores that offer everything from wholefoods, jewellery, art, photography and clothing, all made with love. The Hub exudes a true village atmosphere, where store owners ask each other for advice and always have time for a chat. Don’t be surprised if more than an hour flies by and you’re still browsing!

The Hub_Carly Marchment Exhibition_Gladstone_Macleay Valley Coast
Carly Marchment Exhibition at the Gladstone Hub
Whole and Happy_retail shop in Gladstone__Macleay Valley Coast
Whole & Happy Wholefoods supply

Galleries and Boutiques

If you love chain stores and same-same fashion, you’ve come to the wrong place. Instead of the usual suspects, Gladstone is home to a collection of specialty stores and galleries that reflect the heart and soul of local artists, stylists and craftspeople, making it the perfect place to find high quality art, homewares, clothing and jewellery that you won’t see anywhere else.

Stroll along Kinchela Street and pop into Mokea, Un4gettable 4evermore and the Old Lodge Gallery, which displays a collection of homewares, jewellery and art inside a marvellous heritage building.

Wander across the road to the Macleay Valley Community Art Gallery to check out the ever-changing exhibitions by the range of local artists who are supported by the gallery. You can also visit internationally-renowned artist Deb Broughton’s home studio on Barnard Street to view her coastal inspired paintings.

High Tea at the Old Bank

Buttermilk scones and fresh coffee served in a fragrant garden overlooking the river? Yes, please! Champagne breakfast? Even better! The Old Bank is a lovingly-restored heritage building whose owners are committed to using as much local produce as possible in their incredible dishes. Make sure you book as seats at the Old Bank fill up fast.

Old Ban Riverfront dining, Macleay Valley Coast
Outside seating area at The Old Bank

Lunch at the Heritage Hotel

For a hearty pub meal, try the Heritage Hotel, a splendidly restored historic pub with plenty of character. The hotel is also a great place to linger over a drink or catch a band on a Sunday afternoon.

Dinner and Live Music

Take a five-minute drive from Gladstone and to The Garden Bar & Kitchen in the little town of Frederickton. Book early for seats outside to enjoy sunset drinks on the deck overlooking the river while you dine in style. If you’re lucky, you might catch an acoustic band serenading diners on the deck.

Hint: The best day to visit Gladstone is on market day (every third Sunday of the month), when the little village really comes alive!

Heritage Hotel Gladstone
Heritage Hotel Gladstone
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