In our opinion, one of the best things about NewSA is it’s location: smack-dab in the middle of Newcastle’s own “inner west”. This month, we’re heading over the railway line and taking a look around Mayfield.

Mayfield is one of Newcastle’s oldest and largest suburbs – once home to thousands of BHP workers and their families, with a bit of a reputation for being quite rough around the edges. But a lot has changed over the past ten or so years, and these days there’s not a lot you can’t find, most of it on or not far from the 100 bus route along Maitland Road.

Got an active streak? Head to Mayfield Pool between September and April for a swim in the sun and then some hot chips in the shade. During the peak summer months the Pool runs special events like poolside cinema and inflatable days, and keep and eye out in December for surfing Santa, standing out the front, and their annual Christmas party. Take a ball and have a kick around nearby Dangar Park afterwards, or watch the skaters show off their best tricks at the skate park. Further west on Maitland Road, you’ll find Mayfield Superstrike.

Mayfield also has two gyms – Genesis at the Diggers Club on Hanbury Street and Balance on William Street near Industrial drive, and a soccer club and multiple fields up on Gregson Avenue. We told you this suburb was big…

If food and drink is more your thing, Mayfield has you covered too. Barrio is award-winning, fantastic tapas a short walk from NewSA, but it’s best to book because it can get busy. A little further past the main drag, Westside Pizzeria has just opened up and is bringing classic Italian pie to the suburbs, and across Maitland Road Talby’s does ice-cream and chicken wings for days. Want something even more cheap and cheerful? Head further west and find Blakeney’s Pies and Mayfield West Kebabs and Charcoal Chicken – both local institutions you might miss at first glance.

But it’s coffee where Mayfield is currently really hitting it’s stride. From The Locomotive — where they’re so serious they recommend you skip the sugar and tell you the origin of every single cup — to Onyx — which has a daily gourmet cruffin flavour — to The Oily May and Side Pocket Espresso and Perry The Feeder food truck and Portafilter (out of the way down near Waratah Station)… and literally half a dozen more, all opening in the past three or four years, Mayfield has become a coffee-lovers paradise so fast it’s impossible to keep up.

Need something fancy to take home? Pork Ewe Deli does a roaring trade in gourmet deli meats and cheeses, as well as spreads, sauces and other gourmet delights. They even do sausage-making classes!

And that’s aside from the supermarkets (and another “coming soon”), chemists, butchers, bakeries, op-shops, a huge antique store and everything else. So next time you’re at a loose end or after a bite to eat, stroll west along Maitland Road or catch a 100 bus and check out the super-suburb right on your doorstep.