If you’re partial to the odd tipple from time to time, then it won't be hard to convince you why the Hunter Valley needs to be on your travel list to-do-list. As Australia’s oldest wine region known for its Semillion and Shiraz, the Hunter Valley is an indulgent destination perfect to tantalise your taste buds and recharge from everyday life. It brings a range of gourmet delights to invigorate your senses amongst the Australian countryside.
The Hunter Valley is located 2 hours by car north of Sydney otherwise you can fly into Newcastle Airport with transfers available directly by bus or car. Start your vineyard adventure with one of the many organised day tours available, or do it yourself with all wineries easily accessible and mostly located south of the Hunter River.
Many wineries offer cellar door wine tastings and vineyard tours, so why not begin at Tulloch Wines, which has been around for over 122 years. Next move onto something with a bit of sparkle at Peterson House, a specialist producer of sparkling wines. Finally, continue to one of the oldest winemaking families in Australia - Drayton’s Family Wines. Or for the total wine making experience, the Hunter Valley Resort also brings you the chance to jump into the oak barrels and squash the grapes by foot - giving you the opportunity to carry out this age-old tradition yourself.
Beyond wine, you’ll find incredible untouched natural countryside waiting for you to discover. Wander through the Hunter Valley Gardens, which not only brings waterfalls, statues, and murals but also contributes as a beautiful venue for weddings and events. You'll also find a choice of shopping and rides for the kids too (a crowd pleasure, that's for sure).
Enjoy a cuddly wildlife experience at the Hunter Valley Zoo where you can arrange a unique meerkat encounter, or swap wine for cheese and chocolate tastings in Pokolbin, where you’ll find local artisan produce in abundance.
The Hunter Valley is not only the perfect place for a romantic getaway, but it also brings a choice of activities for the thrill seekers. Skydive over the valley as you indulge in views over rural New South Wales or ride a hot air balloon for something a little more relaxing. With a choice of bush walks, mountain biking tracks or four-wheel driving routes, you can truly explore the land as you wish. The Hunter Valley gives visitors the opportunity to learn about its rich past with an authentic Aboriginal experience or visit convict relics, so you can have the opportunity to learn about the regions history right up until now.
Suitable for all types of holidays, from fun family vacations, romantic couple escapes, group trips or special occasions, the Hunter Valley is an excellent choice of day trip or extended getaway inland. Whether you spend your days frolicking through a vineyard or skydive from 14,000ft above sea level, you'll be able to choose an adventure to suit your style.
The Hunter Valley Zoo is an enjoyable way to spend a day while visiting the Hunter Valley region. The town of Cessnock is a short drive from the zoo and a good base if you’re planning to explore the area. Encounter farmyard animals up close as well as kangaroos, wallabies and koalas. Daily shows on offer are entertaining and a great way to learn about native wildlife with talks about wombats, cheetahs, capuchin monkeys, maned wolves, spider monkeys and more.
Enjoy a picnic for lunch with free barbecue facilities available or book an animal encounter to get up close with the incredible wildlife. The array of animals to discover provides an incredible learning experience about Tasmanian devils, dingoes, meerkats, ring-tailed lemurs and more. The zoo also has a gift shop on site so you can take home a special memento to hold on to forever.
The Maitland Regional Art Gallery (MRAG) boasts early 1900's style architecture and showcases 25 exhibitions annually. The building brings visitors just as much as the art does, with a mix of interactions from exhibitions, workshops, shopping, talks, tours and events. The gallery is accessible with stairs and a lift as well as a dedicated children's area, the Art Factory. The gallery is open Tuesday to Sunday and has a cafe on site for you to enjoy lunch or a bite to eat at. Exhibiting a mix of iconic Australian artists as well as international artists; the collection is made up over 4,000 prints, paintings, drawings, and sculptures. Artists like John Olsen, Judy Watson, Sidney Nolan and Margaret Olley are all part of the collection. During your experience utilise the MRAG audio tour to learn about the permanent collection on display throughout the building. Set in Central Maitland and on the banks of the Hunter River, experience the incredible Maitland Regional Art Gallery.
Delight your senses at the Hunter Valley Gardens and be enchanted by 25 acres of feature gardens. Follow a journey between the ten different gardens made up of blossoming flowers, hearty shrubs and billowing trees. The gardens include the Italian Grotto, Oriental gardens, Indian Mosaic, Sunken garden, Rose garden, Storybook garden, Formal garden, Border garden, Indian garden and the Lakes Walk to explore. The Rose Garden sits above a 10-metre high waterfall showcasing views from the lookout with the scent of roses encapsulating you. The Storybook Garden brings fairy tale characters to life as you wander through. Many couples choose to say 'I do' in the gardens, as it’s an incredible backdrop for photos and wedding parties. The floral display is one of the most stunning in Australia, and the site is wheelchair friendly. After you've enjoyed a feast for the eyes, stop at the onsite restaurant to enjoy a culinary feast, the perfect way to end your experience.