The beautiful Upper Hunter is a food lover’s paradise and one of the most famous horse-breeding areas in the world. From cellar doors and champion mares to heritage towns and fun festivals, there is a wealth of wonderful experiences to enjoy in this Hunter Valley wine region, only a few hours north of Sydney.
Explore charming towns, rolling vineyards and acclaimed horse studs on one of the many memorable scenic drives in the region. Indulge in delicious food and wine, from world-class wine tasting at cellar doors to sampling handmade cheese, gourmet condiments and fresh produce.
Bordered by World Heritage wilderness and the striking Liverpool Range, the natural beauty of the Upper Hunter is breathtaking. In Burning Mountain Nature Reserve a smouldering 5,500-year-old coal seam fire is woven into Aboriginal Dreaming stories, while Lake Glenbawn boasts one of NSW’s best freshwater fishing spots.
Begin your discovery in the main town of Muswellbrook, home of the Max Watters Collection of paintings by influential Australian artists. The extraordinary collection is in the Muswellbrook Regional Arts Centre. The cellar doors around Denman and Sandy Hollow are a short drive away.
Check out the region’s festivals in the exciting events calendar, including the Scone Horse Festival in Scone, horse capital of Australia, and the King of the Ranges Stockman’s Challenge and Bush Festival in Murrurundi. Enjoy the Merriwa Festival of the Fleeces, or embrace Aberdeen’s Scottish heritage at the Aberdeen Highland Games.
The Upper Hunter is around three hours’ drive north of Sydney and a scenic two hours and 20 minutes’ drive from Newcastle, through Australia’s oldest wine region. Alternatively, you can take a scenic train trip to Scone via Newcastle and Maitland.
You’ll find plenty of places to stay, from luxury retreats to cottages, farm stays, caravan parks and campgrounds. The holiday park at Lake Glenbawn offers cabins and camping on the foreshore. Camp at Washpools campground in the Towarri National Park, among pockets of rainforest, snow gums and casuarinas.