From wine tasting in Australia’s oldest wine region to bushwalking in World Heritage wilderness, the Hunter is an appealing escape like no other. Producing exceptional wines, the region also thrives with acclaimed restaurants, festivals, beautiful heritage and ancient rainforest in the Hunter Valley, Upper Hunter and Barrington Tops.
Hunter Valley food and wine
Fun and informative tours combine fine wine and good food, a tasty mix in the Hunter which grows a rich variety of produce. You’ll taste some of the best wines in the world at the cellar doors, including the distinguished Hunter Valley semillon. Emerging European grape varieties win accolades, too.
At award-winning restaurants such as Muse Restaurant, Bistro Molines and Margan Restaurant, talented chefs create exquisite dishes using the freshest seasonal produce. Fresh local produce and other delights are available at markets and providores, such as Hunter Belle Cheese and the Lovedale Smokehouse.
Maitland and the Upper Hunter
Hop aboard a Nova Cruises riverboat in Newcastle and travel along the Hunter River to wine country and the historic towns of Maitland and Morpeth. Discover the natural beauty of the Upper Hunter, a region with a rich farming heritage and untouched wilderness. Fish, paddle or swim in tranquil waterways.
Join in the fun at the Scone Horse Festival in Scone, the horse capital of Australia. Champion mare Winx was raised on a horse stud in the Hunter region. Each winter the beautiful Hunter Valley Gardens hold the popular Snow Time in the Gardens where the kids can go ice skating and build snowmen.
The World Heritage wilderness in the Hunter is a wonderful attraction, too. In the Yengo National Park, explore ancient Aboriginal rock art on the Finchley Cultural Walk. Volcanic flows aeons ago shaped the Barrington Tops National Park, which is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia.
Getting there and where to stay
Perfect for a weekend escape, getting to the Hunter is easy. The region is only two hours’ drive north of Sydney and trains also depart from Sydney, stopping at Maitland and Morriset. It’s 50 minutes west of Newcastle Airport, which is serviced by flights from Sydney, Canberra, Brisbane, Melbourne and the Gold Coast.
Accommodation options suit various budgets. There are campgrounds and caravan parks, vineyard cottages and guesthouses, as well as retreats and luxury resorts adjacent to championship golf courses. Check out the events calendar for festivals and markets and plan ahead for a memorable getaway.