YOU wake up in the autumn dawn, pull on shorts, a top, a light sweater, and head out the door for an early morning walk.
An hour later you've shed the sweater, called out a dozen jaunty greetings to fellow walkers, have a light perspiration glow and are contemplating a well-deserved cappuccino in one of a dozen buzzing cafes.
As you take your first sip you wonder if the day stretching so invitingly ahead could possibly get any better.
Yes it could.
Welcome to Noosa in May.
May is one of the most pleasant months to visit the sophisticated resort town noted for its glamorous restaurants, spectacular national park, stunning north-facing beach and beguiling river.
The average temperature in May is 21 degrees, the sea is still warm enough for a swim, beach conditions are perfect, mornings and evenings are pleasantly cool and the sun shines most days.
Above all, May is the month the town comes alive for the Noosa International Food and Wine Festival.
Southern visitors and Kiwis especially love to escape the cold and fall into Noosa's warm embrace during the four days of the festival (May 16 to 19).
To enjoy some of the best food and wine in the world against the extravagant beauties of nature Noosa is so blessed with, is rare.
Most culinary festivals around the world take place inside halls or hotel conference rooms.
Noosa's festival is mostly alfresco.
Voluptuous multi-course dinners will be held on the sand on Noosa's Main Beach.
Seafood trails will sail guests along the Noosa River on a boat transformed to a floating restaurant.
After a sumptuous seafood and wine lunch, it's a stop off at Sir Richard Branson's private island retreat for an insider's peek at his luxurious property.
The Queensland Virtuosi Orchestra will play on the main festival stage while 10 renowned chefs from the S Pellegrino World's Best Restaurants cook in synchronisation to the music.
These are just some of the grand and ambitious events for serious foodies.
However, the program is aimed at everyone with events as laid-back as strolling the produce market under the grand marquee, to lively culinary exhibitions, cooking demonstrations, food and wine discussions, casual lunches and picnics by the Noosa River.
"Originally we held the festival in October but it clashed with other food festivals in other states," festival founder Jim Berardo said.
"Now I am glad it's a May event. The autumn produce is wonderful and Noosa is lovely in May. "
We'll raise a glass to that.
- Full details of events, costs and bookings on: noosafoodandwine.com.au or call The J Noosa on 5455 4455.
- Accommodation packages and inquiries on: visitnoosa.com.au or call 1300 0 NOOSA (66672)
- As well as the full program on the Noosa International Food and Wine website (noosafoodandwine.com.au) a new free app will walk you through the entire program of 148 events.
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