Indulge in your anticipation as you drive through the rugged landscapes of burgeoning spring in the Adelaide Hills, tastebuds tingling and bellies rumbling for the flavourful day ahead. Fortunately, with the Hills just a short drive from the CBD, we have the ultimate food & wine experience right on our doorstep.
Day Trip Highlights
Begin the day with a well-deserved sleep in, or tuck into local produce early at Uraidla Republic before heading to Ashton Hills Vineyard. Discover the wood fires and wine lists of Uraidla’s foodie haunts before cruising through Lenswood with the wind in your hair. From chocolate to cheese, and more exceptional wine, discover the incredible flavours of the Adelaide Hills from the romantic nooks of the region’s most charming establishments. Don’t be afraid to use the spittoon, or book some of the area’s incredible accommodation – the only thing better than a day trip to the Hills is waking up there.
Day Trip Itinerary
First Stop: Bakery and Bubbles
If you’re not one to sleep in and start later, head to the atmospheric Uraidla Republic open from 7am for the perfect start to your day. Committed to the local farmers and artisans, this breakfast gem cooks on site their very own made bread, pies, pasties, sandwiches, pastries that truly reflects the surrounding area.
Just a five-minute drive from the Uraidla Republic, your Adelaide Hills wine journey begins. Opening at 11am, you can start your tasting journey with a sparkle as you savour the biscuity brioche flavours of their sparkling Pinot Noir.
Stop 2. Orchard Drives and Wines by Wood Fire Or Alfresco (weather dependent)
Cruise through Lenswood
Cruise past the sprawling paddocks of vast vineyards and orchards that pattern this roadway, wind down the windows and let the breeze of Lenswood greet you. This 30-minute journey will give you time to enjoy the scenery and explore the quaint, semi-rural village famous for its apples, pears, cherries and wine grapes. Not just known for the orchards, check out unforgettable views and cellar doors belonging to Pike & Joyce, Mt Lofty Ranges Vineyard, and Anderson Hill, for Lenswood’s best wines.
Stop 3: Nibbles and nostalgia
Next, arrive at sweet-tooths heaven – a place reminiscent of Willy Wonka – Melbas Chocolate Factory. If you grew up in South Australia, you’ll likely have memories of the iconic factory, the perfect nostalgic trip for your romantic drive. While their employees don’t look a thing like Oompa Loompas, they do make exceptional chocolate, and you can watch them handcraft it right before your eyes while snacking on samples. Don’t forget to support local and purchase a bag of goodies for the road.
Right next door, you’ll find the kind of place that’s extremely hard to leave. Artisanal cheesemaker Kris Lloyd utilises the region’s incredible local produce to create deliciously sustainable cheese products. They’ve got a cult following, too, including Masterchef Australia. Don’t go past the satin-like Persian fetta, and Monet-inspired Chevre covered in tiny edible flowers. If you’re still hungry for more, don’t fret – your next stop offers platters full of Woodside goodness.
Stop 4: More wine … ArtWine
If at this stage you feel well-versed in the region’s shiraz and are looking to introduce your palate to some alternative varieties, the next stop will have you spoilt for choice. From graciano to alboriño, discover exciting modern Mediterranean varieties, surrounded by fantastic works art from local artists.
Stop 5: Making moments last forever … Make every day a wine romance
Follow Nairne Road on your way home for a cup of coffee and chat at the Newenham Information Centre. They can show you how to make special days like these part of the norm. Explore Newenham – from the larger blocks and focus on natural open spaces and active lifestyles to the Newenham farm and market café, living at Newenham is something truly special. A word of warning – once you visit, it’s sure to weave its way into your Monday morning daydreams. Why not make it a reality?
Stay the night
If you’re looking to extend your day, indulge in a night away with a huge choice of accommodation. Choose from the unique off grid accommodation CABN , cottage rentals or the newly renovated Hahndorf Big 4 Resort Spa Suites. With the Hills just under 30 minutes from the CBD, we say pack an overnight bag and enjoy your day, celebrate the night and drive home the next day.
If you choose not to stay in the Hills overnight, when you’ve finished exploring, head back to Adelaide in less than 30-minutes via the South Eastern Freeway, talking about the best parts of your day trip while planning next week’s Sunday Drive.
View other Weekend Day Trips …
Read and download the map for A Nature Experience
Photo credit: Big thanks to South Australian Tourism for allowing us to use their beautiful image.
Note: There are many incredible wines in the Adelaide Hills, so remembering to drink responsibly and drive safely is extremely important. Don’t forget to use the spittoon, and grab some bottles to enjoy at home with friends and family.