Explore some of the more than 120 wineries in the Hunter Valley, one of Australia’s premium wine making regions – perfect for wine-loving honeymoon couples.
Along the way, stop and ample award-winning wines such as a Hunter semillon and a Hunter shiraz.
Drive through scenic valleys, vineyards and mountains, stopping off at stylish restaurants serving gourmet cuisine and resting overnight at charming boutique accommodation.
Survey the Hunter Valley vineyards from on high in a vintage Tiger Moth, helicopter or even a hot-air balloon – best at sunrise.
Tour the wineries in a horse-drawn cart or on a bicycle, take gourmet cooking lessons or a food- and wine-matching course and go bargain hunting in the historic villages of Wollombi, Morpeth and Broke.
Indulge in some serious pampering at a day spa or tee-off from one of the region’s three championship golf courses. The diversity of this region makes it just perfect for a weekend getaway.
Trip length from Sydney 3 days
Total distance 415km
Road conditions All sealed roads
Segment distances: Sydney to Pokolbin – 2hrs 20mins; 160km. Pokolbin to Singleton – 40mins; 42km. Singleton to Maitland – 45mins; 47km. d Maitland to Sydney – 2hrs 10mins; 165km.
Suggested overnight stops: Pokolbin, Singleton or Maitland.
Where to stay: Find the best deal, compare prices and read what other travellers have to say about these hotels in the Hunter Valley at TripAdvisor.
Must-see sights along the route, include…
Discover a living museum of Australia’s past. The former river port, located on a tree-lined stretch of the Hunter River, is crowded with character. Although its days as a busy river port ended around 1890, the town’s comparative isolation allowed its historic shop fronts, wharves and even the hitching posts along the main street to survive.
Browse a quirky collection of galleries, antiques and specialty stores. Stroll along Swan Street, past many the historic riverside buildings in this National Trust-classified town.
Enjoy a picnic lunch on the banks of the Hunter River near historic Morpeth Bridge, sample local wine and taste cheese at the Morpeth Wine Cellars.
Located in the heart of the Hunter Valley, surrounded by pastures and national parks, Singleton offers the perfect base from which to explore the Hunter Valley. Stroll through the town’s historic precinct and see one of the world's largest sun dials in Rose Point Park.
Examine an historic collection of infantry equipment, weaponry and memorabilia dating back more than a century at the Royal Australian Infantry Corps Museum.
Admire ancient Aboriginal cave paintings at Bulgar Creek, tour vineyards and taste wine at historic Broke, bushwalk the nature trails in Yengo and Mount Royal national parks or enjoy boating and fishing at beautiful Lake St Clair. Don’t miss the Singleton Show in September, with horse events, cattle and horticultural displays, art and crafts and fireworks.
Explore one of Australia’s most famous historic colonial towns, set on the Hunter River and surrounded by more than 110 local boutique wineries. Drive through olive groves and orchards and past local farms that offer a range of unique tastes to savour.
Take the Heritage and Produce Trail through Morpeth, Largs and Woodford for superb food, premium wines and fresh produce. In Maitland, stroll past a treasure trove of historic buildings that date back to the earliest years of colonial Australia.
Admire the town’s attractive historic quarter along Church Street; tour the notorious Maitland Gaol for a glimpse of colonial history and marvel at the ingenuity of the Walka Waterworks Complex, which once used steam engines to pump water to Newcastle. Head to Bolwarra Lookout for views over the city and river flats. Don’t miss the Hunter Valley Steamfest, in April, dedicated to lovers of steam railway engines.
Escape to the centre of the famous Lower Hunter Valley wine region, with its tapestry of vineyards lying in the shadow of the Brokenback Range. Discover a wine lover’s paradise that has been producing wines since the mid-1800s.
Take a personalised tour of boutique wineries aboard a horse-drawn carriage, watch how wine is made and enjoy the cellar door tastings. Taste handmade washed rind and white mould cheeses, hop aboard a hot-air balloon for an aerial view of the vineyards or be energised on a bicycle tour through the vineyards along country lanes.
Stroll through the Hunter Valley Gardens – 12 immaculate themed gardens. Don’t miss the Hunter Valley Harvest Festival, a feast of concerts, art exhibitions, street parties, wine tastings and gourmet food held every year in March/April; the Feast of the Olive held in September; or the Opera in the Vineyards and Jazz in the Vines in October.
Discover the town’s colonial history, including many pre-1860s buildings and fine Georgian architecture. Take a short walk along the historic Convict Trail to see the remains of stone culverts, bridges and retaining walls of the Great North Road, built by 3000 convicts between 1826 and 1834.
Hike the Watagans and Yengo national parks near Wollombi to see native birds and animals; admire well-preserved Aboriginal rock engravings at Devils Rock, Flat Rock Lookout and near Finchley Trig; and visit the Koolang Astronomical Observatory at nearby Bucketty.
Explore a region renowned for its award-winning wines. Discover a community of boutique wineries, quality guesthouses and fine restaurants. Admire the heritage timber truss bridge, built in 1902 over Black Creek. Hack over the countryside trails atop a horse or soar above in a hot-air balloon.
Visit some of the many wineries and enjoy a meal in one of the fine restaurants serving fresh local produce complemented by a premium local wine. Make a date to attend the Lovedale Long Lunch held on the third weekend of May each year, the Jazz in the Winery in November or the Harvest Festival held in March and April.
Latest update: Hunter Valley: 5 March, 2019
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