Hunter Valley Summer Bucket List

What’s on your Bucket List? You know, those once in a life time experiences you’ve always wanted to tick off. Make this summer about unforgettable Hunter Valley moments shared amongst friends and family as you explore lush vineyards, indulge in cheese tastings against a backdrop of endless crystal clear skies. To help you get the most out of the season, we’ve put together a bucket list to ensure Summer in the Hunter will be one to remember for you and your loved ones.

1. Go on a road trip
The classic road trip has to be one of the best ways to kick start an unforgettable escape. The Hunter region is a mere two and a half hour drive from Sydney or 40 minutes from Newcastle. Regardless of where you’re from, make sure to bring plenty of snacks, a pumping playlist and an adventurous spirit.

2. Picnic amongst the vineyards
Venture out and explore the stunning hunter region with a rustic and delicious picnic. A beautiful vineyard inspires outdoor alfresco grazing while tasting your favourite wines and enjoying the spectacular summer sunset

3. Segway kangaroo spotting
The region is home to an abundance of kangaroos, what better way to see them all than on the back of a segway? Explore the bush differently with a segway tour on off road tracks framed by the majestic Brokenback Ranges. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a wombat.

4. Watch a movie at an old school drive-in
The Heddon Greta Drive-In has seen 50 years of patrons enjoying the latest films from the comfort of their own car. Watch the latest films, the old fashioned way, with an FM car radio or portable FM radio to hear the sound. Bring beanbags and blankets and get ready for the comfiest night outdoors.

5. Get crafty at Ogishi Craft Centre
The Ogishi Craft Centre, a work of art in itself, is a gallery displaying some of the finest pieces of glasswork in Australia. Learn from the artist herself, Setsuko Ogishi, and take home original pieces of glassblown art to commemorate a new skill learnt over the summer.

6. Indulge in a cheese tasting
If you’re a dairy king or queen, the Smelly Cheese Shop is an unmissable stop in the Hunter Valley.  This Hunter-locals certified shop is the go-to for some of the best cheese from the region and beyond. Our top picks are anything by local producer, Binnorie Dairy, but just to be on the safe side, we recommend going with the cheese tasting.

7. Party at a concert amongst the vines
You might recognise some of the biggest names to have played in the region, including Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Elton John, The Rolling Stones and more. A stunning vineyard backdrop, great wines and country hospitality make the Hunter Valley a beautiful yet comforting setting for the concert of your dreams. Check our What’s On guide for updates on who’s coming next but be sure to book your ticket early for a magical outdoor concert experience.

8. A lesson in local produce
There’s no better place to get to know local produce than at a locally-run gourmet market. The Hunter Valley Fine Food Markets offers a variety of hand-made goods including farm fresh produce, boutique cheese, fresh baked bread, preserves and more. Have breakfast at the market, meander through the vast array of stalls and pick up a few Hunter specials for home.

9. Explore vinotherapy
Some people dream of bathing in wine but Ubika Spa has the next best thing, a new spa therapy that utilises the restorative powers of wine. Stop by for the Signature Vinotherapy Range which includes a spa facial, pink champagne sugar smoothing or the full works with the Rejuvenation Ritual.

10. Trek to Mount Yengo lookout
Make one bucket list item a fitness one, with a bush walk to the Mount Yengo lookout. Watch over the north and west in Wollemi wilderness, followed by a short hike to the breathtaking vantage point overlooking the valley. It’s the perfect spot to reflect and reimagine what life in wine country was like, hundreds of years ago. Don’t forget to bring your camera.

11. See sunrise from a hot air balloon
Just when you think you’ve seen everything the Hunter has to offer, take to the skies for one last look at the region. Sometimes a shift in perspective is all you need for fresh ideas to start flowing. Make sure to book in for a champagne buffet breakfast at Redsalt Restaurant afterwards, the only appropriate complement to breathtaking views of the Hunter.

12. Stay with us
This might be presumptuous of us to say, but we think we offer the best accommodation in the region for you to tick your bucket list off. Go out and adventure on but return to rest peacefully in our comfortable rooms, swim in Regional NSW’s largest outdoor heated pool or or grab a bite from our Lovedale Bar.