Discovering the Barossa Valley in South Australia

Australian wines are gaining in popularity beyond the Shiraz that brought the country to the forefront of the wine community. You can now find many different wines produced within the Barossa Valley, one of the leaders in production of the country’s wine.

Plan to make a trip to the Barossa Valley on your Australia vacation to see and taste your way through the area.

Getting There
You can fly to Adelaide from any of the major international airports in Australia, such as Sydney or Melbourne. From there it’s just about an hour’s drive through the scenic hills to the Barossa Valley. If you wish to drive it, keep in mind that Australian’s drive on the left side of the road.

If you prefer not to drive, you can hire a car at Adelaide airport or pick up a tour from there (A Taste of South Australia is one company that knows the area well.) You can also take a bus or train from Adelaide to the Barossa Valley, both of which offer daily service.

Wineries to Visit
Nearly 200 companies make wine in the Barossa Valley. You can sample at about half of them in tasting rooms, known in Australia as “cellar doors.” The largest of these is Jacob Creek and their facility is big enough to spend an entire day at, with tours, tastings and trails filled with Australian birds and wildlife.

Among the wother ineries that you don’t want to miss during your Barossa Valley visit are: Villa Tinto, which produces Spanish and Argentinian wines; Chateau Tanunda, a French style chateau which produces a selection of their own wines and houses the Barossa Small Winemakers center; and Rockford, which produces small batches and only sells direct to customer so this may be your only opportunity to taste their wines.

Places to Eat & Stay
The Barossa Valley is filled with wineries, but you won’t find a lot of hotels. The Novotel Barossa is an excellent mid-range option to consider. It has sweeping views of the valley and large, comfortable rooms. For a high end option, check out The Louise, a member of Luxury Lodges of Australia.

In addition to the award-winning fine dining at Appellation in The Louise, you should also consider dining at 1918, a quaint restaurant filled with locals and unusual dishes such as Spanish Meatballs with polenta and goat cheese, and Harry’s, where you will find an assortment of international dishes.

Remember when planning an Australian vacation that the seasons are different than they are in the United States. In South Australia, where the Barossa Valley is, summer is from December to February; fall is March to May; winter is June to August; and spring is September to November. For more information on weather in specific regions, visit the official website of Tourism Australia.

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