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Things to do in Maitland while you Groove the Moo

Written by
Gina Karlikoff
Groovin’ the Moo (GTM) is coming to the NSW's Maitland this April the 23rd with a stella lineup of local and international acts including Ratatat, Danny Brown, Golden Features and Ms Mr. Heading up for the day is manageable – but why not make a weekender out of it? After the festival on Saturday, take the time on Sunday to not only recover but also discover the local gems around Newcastle, the Hunter Valley, Central Coast or Taree. 

Here's what to do while you're up there:

1. Find a new beach

There’s a lot more to beaches in NSW than Bondi, Avalon and Gordon’s Bay. And let's face it, getting to those spots on the weekend can often take you as long as the train to Newcastle. If you’re heading up for GTM, take a dip along the way at Terrigal or stretch your legs by Avoca. Heading that little bit north for a swim also means the water is clearer and there’s more space to flap about. 
2. After-party
With the festival wrapping things up at a 10:30pm don’t let that dampen your spirits. Catch the shuttle bus from the showgrounds into Newcastle and dance the night away at the Argyle or King Street Hotel. When it’s time to wind down, head to the speakeasy whiskey bar Coal and Cedar on Hunter St. It’s a little hard to find (and you’ll have to text for access), but that makes it the perfect place to hide. 
crowd in sunset moshpit at Groovin' the Moo
3. Kick-ons in the Hunter Valley
Still feeling thirsty after Saturday’s shenanigans? Head to the Hunter Valley. Just make sure you’ve got a designated driver for the 25 minute drive (no trains unfortunately). When you’re there, visit one of the many wineries like Audrey Wilkinson for a good view and an even better drink. Renting a bicycle is also a great way to zip between vineyards and chase the sunset through the valley. 
4. Hungover in Newcastle
Newcastle can provide the perfect hangover cure if you're feeling a little worse for wear post-GTM. Self-proclaimed coffee snobs will have nothing to whinge about with cafes such as Blue Door Cafe, One Penny Black, Suspension Espresso and Wickham Motorcycle Company raising the bar for fine food and caffeine (you may even spot one of the touring artists, surely they like good coffee).  
5. Where to Stay
It's best to book your GTM accommodation in advance. The festival’s popularity in recent years means securing a place gets difficult the later you leave it. Shenanigans at the Imperial in Maitland have twin-room, two-night GTM deals, or head to the Accommodation Around Newcastle website for apartments that will fit all of your friends. While it’s easy to romanticise sleeping in your car, after a day of dancing and drinking a solid bed is where you really want to be. 

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