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in Travel, Travel Australia

H is for Hunter Valley

  • April 9, 2016
  • By 50 Shades
  • 20 Comments

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The Hunter Valley sits between Barrington Tops to the north and The Greater Blue Mountains to the south, 160Km north of Sydney in NSW, Australia. The region also engulfs Lake Macquarie – Australia’s largest coastal saltwater lake and Newcastle – Australia’s second oldest city.

Australia’s best known and oldest wine region brims with 150 top class wineries set against the dramatic backdrop of the Brokenback Range. Many have award winning wines, however there is also a burgeoning industry for other delicacies such as olive oil, wood-fired bread, cheeses, stone fruits, table grapes, honey and even chocolate.

Hunter Valley Winery Chapel

You can explore the vineyards by bike, bus, limo, horse and carriage or even take a scenic flight by tiger moth, helicopter or hot air balloon.

From our digs at the town of Broke, we wound our way through the rolling hills and stopped at several cellar doors and tasted a few different whites. I must say I enjoyed a couple of crisp Semillons, which apparently the Hunter Valley sets the world benchmark for. The views over the valleys and vineyards were spectacular.

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They say where there is great wine, great food usually follows. I can vouch for this! There are over 65 restaurants to dine at in the area. We enjoyed a long leisurely lunch at Wandin Valley where we partook in ‘divvy dishes’ which were very scrummy! The following day we dined at Enzo’s at Pepper Creek Winery and once again feasted on some delicious fare.

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To finish off a fine day we visited Hunter Valley Chocolate Factory (very decadent!) and Peterson’s House, which specializes only in sparkling wines. With a slogan like “life is flat without a glass of bubbly”, we couldn’t resist tasting a few glasses of bubbly!

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Right smack bang in the middle of the vineyards is the magnificent Hunter Valley Gardens which is set on over 60 acres. With ten stunning feature gardens, you can bask in the lavash array of colour and scents.

Beautiful roses in the Gardens

Beautiful roses in the Gardens

There is a 10m waterfall and lookout for those great photo opps.

Waterfall at Hunter Valley Gardens

Waterfall at Hunter Valley Gardens

The Disneyland-style ‘Storybook Garden’ was the highlight of the gardens for me.

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Plus the formal gardens were pretty spectacular.

Formal Garden at Hunter Valley

Formal Garden at Hunter Valley

The Hunter Valley won’t disappoint. It is truly a feast for the senses and a sophisticated playground for adults only!

After all “Life’s too short to drink bad wine”!

 

 

By 50 Shades, April 9, 2016 Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 4 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now 60. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Gold Coast in Queensland. She enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, movies, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
  • 20

50 Shades

Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 4 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now 60. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Gold Coast in Queensland. She enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, movies, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.

20 Comments
  • Johanna
    February 10, 2014

    I devoured your pics of the Hunter Valley Kathy as it’s a place I’d love to visit. I’ve heard about the wineries, and assumed that great food might follow, and the scenery looks pretty gorgeous too. Enjoy!

  • Kathy
    February 10, 2014

    The Hunter Valley was fairly easy on the eye and on the taste buds! I’m think I am sporting the results around my middle-aged spread!

  • Pinky Poinker
    February 10, 2014

    I remember driving through that area with my parents when I was about 13. I’d love to go back and spend some time there now that I’m old enough to appreciate the wineries. I do love a good garden too!

    • Kathy
      February 11, 2014

      The gardens were magnificent, however they would be even better in spring when all the flowers are out. The area itself is very picturesque but strange how there are dairy farms and coal mines all mixed together. The three best parts – wine, wine & more wine!

  • All Around Oz
    April 9, 2016

    I love the Hunter Valley but as Mr Oz doesn’t drink wine it has been a long time since we have been there. We stayed at Hunter Valley Resort on our last visit which is set in the middle of the vineyards…just gorgeous!

    • Kathy
      April 9, 2016

      We had always wanted to go to the Hunter Valley as my husband has a cousin here, so it was a big highlight of our trip to catch up with her and have her show us around the region. I remember seeing the Hunter Valley Resort. We were staying in our caravan at a place called Broke (which pretty much summed up the place!) :)

  • sue elliott
    April 9, 2016

    I have not been there and that might be because I had no idea where it was…I stupidly thought it was a short hop from the Goldie but it is clear the more likely jumping off point is Sydney… I really must get out an atlas from time to time huh? Great pics!

    • Kathy
      April 10, 2016

      The Hunter Valley is inland from Newcastle and Lake Macquarie. It has always been on our bucket list as we had heard good things about the wines in this region. Such a pretty place and the Hunter Valley Gardens were glorious. :)

  • Rajlakshmi
    April 9, 2016

    I remember drinking so much wine at Hunter Valley. Gorgeous photos. We missed visiting the gardens. Probably next time.

    Visiting from A to Z Challenge
    Co-host Pam’s Unconventional Alliance Team
    A Whimsical Medley
    Twinkle Eyed Traveller

    • Kathy
      April 10, 2016

      It is easy to drink too much wine here! By the time you go around a few wineries and sample wines at each you can easily lose track. The Hunter Valley Gardens were such a bonus to this beautiful area. :)

  • budgettraveltalk
    April 9, 2016

    60 acres of gardens and 65 restaurants sounds amazing. I can imagine sipping a crisp white while enjoying olive oil on wood-fired bread and a selection of cheeses. :)

    • Kathy
      April 10, 2016

      It is an amazing place to visit. I enjoyed our culinary adventure around the wineries and associated restaurants. It was my birthday on one of the days so I had to partake in a few wines to celebrate! :)

  • Fran
    April 10, 2016

    Great pictures. I never think of towns in Australia having formal gardens. I must check this out more when travelling.
    Fran @travelgenee from the TravelGenee Blog

    • Kathy
      April 10, 2016

      Yes I think people from overseas think Australia is one big dry continent with a few nice beaches and lots of kangaroos! However there are some terrific wine regions that produce world-class wines and there are many areas that are green and lush. :)

  • Susan Scott
    April 10, 2016

    Gorgeous photos thank you for sharing them! Here in South Africa, especially in the Cape where the wine lands are set among majesctic mountains, there is great food ..

    • Kathy
      April 10, 2016

      Susan I would love to travel to South Africa and Capetown to see some of your spectacular countryside and visit the wineries. Thanks for visiting my blog. :)

  • J.L. Campbell (@JL_Campbell)
    April 10, 2016

    It’s wonderful when you can visit other countries via the web. Lovely pictures.

    • Kathy
      April 10, 2016

      I couldn’t agree more! I love visiting travel blogs from overseas. Thank you. :)

  • ddeepa
    April 10, 2016

    Nice! I like the tidbits of information you’re giving out! Helps discover new places. I am doing something similar for my own A-Z this year. Quirky facts from countries around the world! Good going so far and best wishes for the rest of the challenge!

    Cheers,
    Deepa
    Deepa’s Kaleidoscope

    • Kathy
      April 10, 2016

      Thanks. Travel blogs are extremely informative if you are interested in travelling to new and exciting places. I will be coming over to check your blog out! :)

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