A couple of weeks ago, my family and I welcomed our first official visitors to our new house.
When I say 'official', I mean people we entertained and looked after, of course. We've had people come and go here at our house already. The kids' friends have had 'play dates' and their parents have come over to drop them off and pick them up. A couple of friends have dropped by and stayed for lunch or dinner. But, it was the first time we had friends stay over for the weekend.
Our friends came over from New Zealand. My friend Christine has been to Adelaide twice before (though I only saw her once, back in 2009, I think). But, it was her husband's first visit to Adelaide.
It was great to see them again, even though we just saw them when we visited them in Christchurch just a little over a year ago.
The beauty of entertaining visitors to your city or country, especially first timers, is that you get to see your home in a new way. That's why we end up in museums. Or trying out new places.
Having entertained visitors from different parts of the world over the years to our home here in Adelaide, hubby and I have learned to put together travel itineraries based on our guests' personalities (and time limits).
Our most recent guests managed to see a good "highlights tour" of Adelaide, considering they were only around for the weekend (1 half day + 2 full days).
Upon their arrival on Friday, our family picked them up from the airport around mid-day and then took them to China Town in the city for a dim sum lunch. Then, we walked through Central Market to take the tram to Rundle Mall. We then took them for a walk/quick shop through Rundle Mall, and a quick stop at the National Museum of South Australia.
Then, we took the tram back to our car and then drove to Col Light lookout point, before heading off to Waterfall Gully, where we even witnessed a wedding while having afternoon tea. We then took a quick walk to see the bottom bit of the waterfall, before heading back home. Since our guests were pretty tired by the time we got home, we all just had a light dinner and an early night.
The next day, we had an early start and took our guests to one of our favourite cafes on our side of town. Right next to the seaside in South Glenelg. After a full, hearty breakfast, we took a walk to Glenelg, Adelaide's most popular seaside suburb. My friend did a mini shop/window shop along the high street of Glenelg while we waited for their other friends to arrive.
Christine's other friends then took them to McLaren Vale, one of Adelaide's wine areas, for what seemed to have been an incredibly filling lunch. When they got back to our house, we prepared a barbecue for everyone. I think we were all well and truly stuffed by the end of the evening.
And yes, it was also lovely meeting new people that day.
Sunday was our guests' last full day with us and was the only full sightseeing day that we've got on our travel plans. My friend requested to go back to Hahndorf, a German village just outside of Adelaide, as she enjoyed it when we took her there back in 2009.
It was mostly an eating + sightseeing + shopping thing at Hahndorf. After having a huge lunch at the Hahndorf Inn, we stopped by several quaint shops there. That's also where we ended up visiting the small museum.
Just before we headed off to another spot, we stopped by Chocolate No.5, one of our favourite cafes in the Hills, for a massive dessert. It was deliciously lovely.
After we've filled ourselves silly with chocolate, we went to the National Motor Museum at Birdwood, as our guests love cars and motorbikes.
After the Motor Museum, we just headed back home and had a light dinner.
On Monday, the hubby had to go back to work and the kids had to return to school. They were really sad to say goodbye to our friends. But, it was proof that they had a wonderful time having them around.
I ended up taking Christine and Simon to Ikea for breakfast and a quick shop (at Christine's request, as she's an Ikea fan :)), before dropping them off at the airport.
So yes, it was a wonderful weekend with friends. And, looking back, I think we did well packing in as much as we did without feeling too rushed everywhere. Really happy that we were able to share some of the best things that we have here in Adelaide with our friends.
Shai has been managing and blogging here at ShaiCoggins.com for 17 years. Here, she writes about creativity, productivity, and how to recharge for a better, happier lifestyle. She is the author of Today: Life Journal, Colour Bliss: Kaleidoscopes, and a little known children's book. A serial entrepreneur, Shai also currently runs Vervely.com, a boutique digital media agency offering online content, community, and conversion marketing services. Her blogging experience and digital work have been featured in various media, including being listed in Fast Company's "Most Influential Women in Technology" list. Originally from Manila, Shai lived in Singapore and the USA before moving to Australia with her British husband. They have two children, a pet bunny, and a rambunctious rescue Labrador.