Ten reasons for a day trip to the Adelaide Hills

Ten reasons for a day trip to the Adelaide Hills

Let’s start with the fact it’s so close, natural attractions from world class gardens, to wildlife sanctuaries and fabulous places to eat your heart out. Adelaide Hills is a collection of attractions, activities and events that would be hard to beat anyway. Imagine a sculpture trail that passes through family owned boutique wineries or a distinctive motor museum with a quirky events calendar, it’s choices galore.


Birdwood Motor Museum

Birdwood Motor Museum is home to more than 300 of Australia’s most important vintage, veteran and classic motorcars and motorcycles. Specialising in vehicles manufactured or closely associated with Australian transport history it is a fascinating snapshot of wheels that made Australia the country it is now. The museum sponsors events from the Bay to Birdwood Run, The Bay to Birdwood Classic and the Rock ‘n Roll Rendezvous.

Mount Lofty Botanic Garden

There is no getting away from the observation that Australia is dry with iconic images derived from the sun-burnt red ochre tints of Gawler National Park and Ulurua. The refreshing bloom of cool temperature plants and the burst of brilliant reds and yellows as autumn shadows grow the garden is especially spectacular when contrasted with semi-arid landscapes of South Australia.


Hahndorf is a classic tourist village yet it continues to weave its charms and then towns such as Stirling with its Old Cottage Hospital and heritage George Brown’s Cottage encourage further exploration. One day can stretch into several as you potter among the Adelaide Hills villages. There is a delightful classic pub in Crafters, a tree lined picturesque street view in Aldgate where cafes and shops tempt visitors to relax and Birdwood with its heritage buildings invites visitors to find out more about the area.


Wineries around every bend and corner to tempt visitors to linger in courtyards and tasting rooms with generously stacked platters of local cheeses and nibbles accompanying samplings. Join a local wine tour to indulge your senses and relax into the spirit of the Adelaide Hills. There are two weekend festivals for the visitor diary,

  • Crush, late January – celebrate the best of summer with long lunches, sunset dinners, lawn games, picnics, art and culture, masterclasses, and entertainment.
  • Winter Reds, late July – warm up with sumptuous events, roaring fires, warming reds, hot entertainment and hearty food.
    And every winery has a fabulous view of rolling hills, grapes and wide open spaces.

Craft breweries and even a boutique gin factory await the discerning taste buds. Lobethal with its microbrewery Lobethal Bierhaus is a wonderful way to spend the afternoon. For lovers of beer you must not miss Prancing Pony Brewery. With a cabinet full of trophies, craft beer, platters overflowing with local treats and live entertainment, the rustic brewery and bar is personality plus. For lovers of things fruity cider try out Paracombe Premium Perry, pear cider. Sacha hand crafted a copper still and in 2015 launched 78˚ Gin, a product that quickly gained a reputation as a high quality small batch gin showing unique Australian characteristics. And then there is Applewood with fruit infused gins yet another reason to take time to savour the taste rolling around your palate.

Wetlands and natural places

Wetlands and natural places for an impromptu picnic or a romantic place where you build memories together. Visit the Laratinga Wetlands and explore one of the short easy walks on boardwalks and bridges. Laratinga is home to numerous bird species. Kids will enjoy a walk in the Woorabinda wetlands in Stirling with its Belair National Park is a special place for a romantic day with your favourite person. Enjoy the woodlands and lakes on one of the many walking or biking trails. Remember to check out the historic Old Government House.


Wildlife parks where African safari experiences make for a fun kids day. If hand feeding a kangaroo is top of your kids list of things to do then Cleland Wildlife Park solves the problem of where to go. Koalas rest in the forks of eucalyptus trees, wombats roam unfettered by fences on the walking trails making wildlife parks a great place to introduce visitors and locals to Australian wildlife.

Farmers markets

Farmers markets and pick your own strawberries. Baskets full of fresh produce with pop up deli goods ranging from curated sauces to crusty breads stuffed with traditional European fillings. Mount Baker market is choca with fresh produce, yummy snacks and deli delights ready for your picnic at Mount Lofty Botanic Garden or the nearby parks and reserves. For the dedicated craft fair visitor pencil in the Gumeracha Sunday Market. The market is a hub for artisan and handmade craft goods. It is held in Gumeracha’s Federation Park. For Christmas buffs there is a tingle when December rolls round as the Christkindlmarkt Christmas Market, Hahndorf is a seasonal highlight reflecting the European origins of a traditional German Christmas fair.

Cooking workshops

Cooking workshops, craft workshops where you focus on the pleasure of learning new things and meeting people with similar interests is a hallmark of the Adelaide Hills. You can try all things sweet at Melba Chocolates with a factory tour and a chance to practice your chocolate craft or join a local chef at a local winery where ingredients are freshly picked from the kitchen garden.

Adelaide Hills sculpture trail

Adelaide Hills sculpture trail is part of a vibrant art and culture scene. The Heysen Cedars 60 hectare heritage property and the historic home of Sir Hans Heysen, one of Australia’s most noted landscape artists is open to visitors. The Coach House Studio at Gumeracha has fine art and craft, indoor plants, gifts and homewares produced by Adelaide Hills and SA artists. Visitors interested in galleries and studios have the Information Centre, Hahndorf as an essential part of the Adelaide Hills art circuit. Emerging and established artists exhibit in the heritage building. The Hahndorf Academy is a hub of creativity, heritage and contemporary culture. The Hahndorf Academy exhibits are managed by a non-profit organisation with profits going directly to the artists.

Unique journeys, personal adventures.

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Ten reasons for a day trip to the Adelaide Hills
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