Ben Goode
South Australia
Adelaide HillsPicture quaint villages dappled in light, charming gardens and former German settlements that transport you back in time and cozy cellar doors serving up some of Australia's best cool-climate wines.
Escape from life’s fast lane, and make the Adelaide Hills your next holiday getaway. Barely 30 minutes from Adelaide’s city centre and 45 minutes from the airport, experience a change of pace in the Adelaide Hills. It stretches from the Barossa Valley in the north, to Kuitpo Forest in the south. The countryside is storybook-pretty. It is dappled in light, dotted with quaint villages and bustling towns. With some of Australia’s best cool-climate wines, the Adelaide Hills’ food and produce come straight from nature’s top-shelf. How good do our restaurants make all those things taste? You’ll have to find out for yourself! The Adelaide Hills’ stunning views and big blue skies will take your breath away. There are three major shopping precincts in the Adelaide Hills. There’s Hahndorf, Australia’s oldest German settlement, the garden village of Stirling and thriving Mount Barker. Shop ‘til you drop or keep it simple. Buy flowers from a roadside stall, meander through a market or choose art from one of the region’s many galleries. Use the Adelaide Hills as a base for more touring. Adelaide, the Barossa and the Fleurieu Peninsula are all within an hour’s drive. Just get in the car and see where you end up. In the Adelaide Hills, the biggest decision to make is how long to spend there.
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Things to do
Discover Australia's largest motor museum!
Since 1965 millions of people have enjoyed discovering their motoring heritage at the National Motor Museum in Birdwood, South Australia. As an international centre for the collection, research, preservation, education, and display of Australian road transport history, the National Motor Museum is much more than a collection of vehicles. It is a social history of the way we were, the way we are now, and the way of the future. Nestled in the scenic Adelaide Hills wine region, the National Motor Museum's grounds are perfect for picnics or a barbecue. The museum is renowned for hosting special events such as the iconic Bay to Birdwood, the largest continually staged vehicle run of its kind in the world. It's the 40th Anniversary of the Bay to Birdwood in 2020 so you can expect a huge event on the 27th of September.
Visit Gumeracha
Gumeracha is set in the beautiful Torrens Valley region, surrounded by vineyards, olive groves, orchards and farmland. Enjoy a picnic at Federation Park, located on the banks of the river, or have fun at the skate park. Visit The Toy Factory for quality wooden toys and to climb the 18 meter Big Rocking Horse. Head to the Old Gumeracha Cold Store to visit hip Unico Zelo winery and Applewood Distillery (collectively known as Ochre Nation) where you can try their wine, gin, and other small-batch spirits. Protero Wines is housed in ‘The Green Shed’ – where locals and visitors in the know head for organic fresh local produce. Other wineries include Mt Bera Vineyards (including accommodation) and Talunga Estate. Visit Coach House Studio and Peregrine Store for retail therapy and The Good Pantry for coffee and whole foods. Gumeracha hosts the Medieval Fair in May and Beer & Bite Festival celebrating craft beer in April. In nearby Cudlee Creek, Gorge Wildlife Park offers koala holding and is home to Australian and exotic animals, birds and reptiles.
Enjoy a cold brew at Prancing Pony Brewery
Prancing Pony is an award-winning craft brewery in the Adelaide Hills. At the Pony, our unique brewery door outlet “The Brewshed” is located right inside our commercial brewing space. There’s nothing as relaxing as watching our brewers hard at work while you enjoy the fruits of their labors with a beer tasting plank! Take home a brewery-fresh souvenir of your visit to the Pony. The Pony knows that putting on the feedbag is part of the fun. All our dishes are created “from the beer up” to match our brews. Featuring fresh local ingredients, you can enjoy small bites, burgers, regional tasting platters and family-friendly fare. If it’s a quiet drink and a small bite, or a long lunch with all the trimmings, the Pony has your back. The Brewshed is decorated in a rustic industrial style that mixes pony memorabilia with brewing equipment. (Seriously, we think it works.) It’s the perfect backdrop if you are seeking a unique and relaxed venue, seating up to 120 people inside and a further 60 in the beer garden. We can make your next event memorable and fun – do it “Pony Style”.
Visit Hahndorf
Located around half an hour south-east of Adelaide, the contemporary village of Hahndorf is proud of its German heritage visible in its traditional streetscape with smallgoods, bakeries, cuckoo clocks, traditional wooden folk art and German-style pubs. Stroll the main street and discover shops, galleries and studios, a cheesemaker, leathersmith, jeweller, candle makers, craft brewery, winery cellar doors, chocolatier, traditional sweet shops, restaurants, pubs and cafés. Hahndorf is Australia’s oldest surviving German settlement, built by Prussian settlers in 1839 who made the long journey from Europe on a small sailing ship named the Zebra, under the command of Dane, Captain Dirk Hahn. Learn more about Hahndorf’s early settlers at Hahndorf Academy’s museum or on a guided walk with Hahndorf Walking Tours. Anyone with an interest in wine and viticulture should visit the Wolf Blass Gallery and Museum, which houses the private collection of Australian wine icon Wolf Blass. Drop by the Menz FruChocs shop for iconic South Australian treats and don’t miss artisan food producers such as Udder Delights cheeses, Buzz Honey, and Harris smoked goods. There are a handful of cellar doors in the main street itself including Somerled Wines, Landhaus Wines, and La Prova, while just out of town is Sidewood Estate (also known for cider), The Lane Vineyard with an iconic fine dining experience overlooking the vineyards, and Hahndorf Hill Wines with the ChocoVino wine and chocolate matching experience. Don't miss Ambleside Distillers just out of the main township for handcrafted gin in a beautiful rural setting. The Cedars, the former home and studio of renowned landscape artist Sir Hans Heysen is just a few minutes out of town. Hahndorf Academy in Hahndorf’s main street is a hub of creativity, heritage and contemporary culture with exhibitions, classes and an outstanding shop selling the work of local artists and designers. Kids will be delighted to meet some friendly animals at Hahndorf Farm Barn or pick strawberries at Beerenberg Farm (in season November to April). Hahndorf and surrounds have a great range of accommodation from luxury villas and B&Bs to motels and the BIG4 Hahndorf Resort.
Escape to Morialta Conservation Park
For over 100 years, the gorges, waterfalls and woodlands of Morialta have provided a recreational escape for walkers and rock climbers just 10km from the city of Adelaide. Enjoy the rugged ridges, gully scenery and seasonal waterfalls that make up Morialta Conservation Park. The three waterfalls along Fourth Creek are popular features of the park and are linked by an extensive network of walking trails. The views from the rock climbing zone also provide opportunities to admire Morialta Gorge and the nearby Adelaide plains. The first two falls are the grandest, each cascading over sheer quartzite cliffs after rain. To see the falls at their best, visit the park during spring or winter when the water flow is strongest. For wildlife lovers, the park's rock pools and creeks provide habitat for small reptiles, frogs and birds. Watch out for honeyeaters and thornbills among the woodlands that cover the hills. Adelaide’s biggest playground 'Mukanthi' can be found in the Stradbroke Road picnic area. T here are five play areas to explore: Frog Island, Eagle’s Perch, Great Snake, Bird Nests, climbing boulders, paths and climbing trees. The playspace has a focus on natural materials and experiences to challenge a range of ages.
Meet your favourite Australian animal up close!
Gorge Wildlife Park is not your average wildlife park; it's a place where people and animals get together. Under shaded trees, paths meander amongst the animals offering many relaxing hours of wildlife enjoyment. See all of your favorite Australian animals including wombats, dingoes, echidnas, and Tasmanian devils. Cuddle a koala and walk amongst the kangaroos and wallabies. A variety of exotic animals are on display, including American alligators, meerkats, otters, playful monkeys and more. The park has a vast range of birds, from fairy-wrens to ostriches and everything in between. Some are in enclosures but many fly free, including a free-range colony of rainbow lorikeets. The reptile house has a great display of reptiles, amphibians, insects and fish. Enjoy picnic areas with free gas barbeques, kiosk and souvenir shop. Koala handling times are 11.30am, 1.30pm and 3.30pm daily (subject to conditions).
Stroll Mount Lofty Botanic Garden
Mount Lofty Botanic Garden overlooking the picturesque Piccadilly Valley, features displays of cool-climate plants, which thrive on the eastern slopes of Mount Lofty. The Adelaide Hills Garden spans 97 hectares and is famous for its sprawling gullies, offering surprises during every season. Spring is popular when the Garden sees stunning mass displays of magnolias, rhododendrons and camellias, while autumn transforms the Garden's leaves into a panorama of scarlets, yellows and bronzes. Winter transports visitors to the Northern Hemisphere with the Garden often shrouded in mist and fog, while in summer the place to be is Fern Gully - one of the richest fern collections in Australia and the spot to find respite from the heat. The Garden is home to a range of walking trails of varying difficulty. The Nature Trail offers a glimpse of the native flora that would've dominated the region prior to European settlement. The iconic Heysen Trail also passes through this section. The Lakeside Trail is a more tranquil affair, offering universal access and a range of exquisite sculptures featuring important environmental messages. A picnic lunch by the lake after an invigorating walk is just the thing for an enjoyable outing with family and friends.
The Organic Market & Cafe
The Organic Market & Cafe in Stirling is a one-stop-shop for certified Organic and Biodynamic products, local and regional gourmet and wholefoods to cater for any recipe. You'll find fruits and vegetables, dairy products, confectionery, bread, meat and poultry, flours and grains, wines and beers, and much more. The Cafe is a food lovers delight. Here's healthy food with flavour - some organic, some conventional, with a simple, home-cooked menu. The cafe has a vegetarian focus and caters for most dietary requirements, with a choice of vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free and sugar-free products on the menu. T his family-run business employs a wide range of local people - chefs, cake makers, growers, designers, mums, dads, and students. The Organic Market and Cafe is passionate about good healthy food, so do drop in to discover what it's all about.
Grab a natural wine at Summertown Aristologist
The Summertown Aristologist is a wine bar that which also does small plates of food designed to share. We want to create a beautiful world, where in the background a lot of work is done to ensure purity and nourishment. However, what really matters to us are the enjoyment of simple pleasures done right.
See Australia's elusive platypus
Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary is the only place on mainland South Australia where you may see the elusive platypus. The Sanctuary is also a thriving eco-system where hundreds of Australian native animals flourish. Koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, bandicoots, potoroos, bettongs, and birds, rarely seen outside the feral-proof fence, all live safely at Warrawong. The award-winning Sanctuary was founded in 1969 by Dr. John Wamsley when he purchased a 35-acre dairy. Later, he and his wife Proo surrounded the property with a 2.1 meter high, electrified, feral proof fence. The fence, arguably the world’s first, created a safe haven where native animals were protected from introduced predators like cats and foxes. Thanks to the vision of the founders, current wife and husband owners, Narelle and David, have inherited a rich and diverse eco-system, where native animals prosper. Experience the tranquil haven of Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary for yourself by booking an animal encounter, behind the scenes experience, show, tour, or camp. Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary is a serene environment for animals and humans alike. Visit us and experience the best of natural Australia.
Visit Beerenberg Family Farm
Beerenberg Farm is a "must visit" for all food lovers visiting the Adelaide Hills. One of Australia's oldest family-owned jam, condiment and sauce producers, it is still run by the sixth generation of the Paech family on their Hahndorf farm. Open all year round, 7 days a week (except Christmas Day), the farm shop is open 9am to 5pm. Enjoy a leisurely browse through the complete collection of farm-made products in the delightful farm shop. During the strawberry season (November to April), bring the family and pick your own strawberries from 9am to the last field entry at 4.15pm (November to April). Pay a small patch entry fee and then pay for the strawberries you pick. Come and experience 'A Taste of Beerenberg' - a hosted, small group session. You will enjoy 90 minutes of learning, tasting and relaxing on our beautiful farm in Hahndorf, owned and operated by the 6th generation of the Paech family. $65/person, book online. Runs from November to April, in line with strawberry season.
Indulge at Red Cacao
Red Cacao is a boutique artisan chocolatier in the heart of the Adelaide Hills with a chocolate cafe and Dessert Bar where you can enjoy delicious hot chocolates, chocolate indulgences and our unique "Chocolate and Coffee Experience" where we match chocolates to the coffee bean of your choice from our daily menu. We are a passionate and vibrant business with a dynamic team always pushing the boundaries of whats possible with chocolate!
Dine at Lost in a Forest
Wood Oven Wine Lounge in the Adelaide Hills, serving eclectic pizzas featuring all locally sourced produce, paired with Basket Range wines. Such wines include Ochota Barrels from master winemaker Taras Ochota (fellow director) and selected French offerings. Well rounded beer list, as well as cocktails and other refreshments. Fireplaces, outside dining, and group booking available. Quite the Adelaide Hills gem and a fave amongst such diners as Marco Pierre White and Jock Zonfrillo (Orana).
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