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Things to Do in Barossa Valley

With its idyllic vineyards, charming villages, and green hills, the Barossa Valley is the picturesque heart of South Australia’s wine country. A popular day trip from nearby Adelaide, this is the place to sip award-winning wines, cycle through the countryside, and tuck into delicious regional cuisine.

The Basics
It’s no surprise that wine tasting is the most popular activity in the Barossa Valley given that more than 200 wineries and cellar doors are open to the public. There are plenty of options for wine tasting tours from Adelaide—take in the scenery of the beautiful Barossa Valley, River Torrens, and Adelaide Hills; soar over the vines on a romantic hot air balloon flight; or visit the historic town of Hahndorf. Those looking for the best value can combine wine tasting with a sightseeing tour of Adelaide, while others wanting a personalized experience can choose a small-group or private tour.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • The legal drinking age of 18 applies for all wine tasting in the Barossa Valley.
  • Most Barossa Valley wineries do not have a dress code, but smart-casual dress is required at the region’s upmarket restaurants.
  • Cell phone coverage can vary throughout the Barossa Valley, but free Wi-Fi is available at the Barossa Valley Visitor Centre.
  • Sunscreen and comfortable shoes are a must if you plan on walking through the vineyards.
  • Many Barossa Valley wineries are wheelchair accessible, although tours of the vineyards are not always possible. Check in advance to avoid disappointment.

How to Get to the Barossa Valley
The Barossa Valley is located 43 miles (70 kilometers) northeast of Adelaide, about an hour’s drive. Buses from Adelaide run to Angaston, Nuriootpa, and Tanunda, but it’s best to join a guided tour to visit multiple wineries and take part in tastings.

When to Get There
The best time of year for Barossa Valley wine tours is December through February, during harvest season. This is a popular time, so book ahead for tastings. Note that temperatures can reach up to 85°F (30°C) in summer. It’s possible to visit Barossa wineries year-round—spring and autumn can be cooler and ideal for walking and cycling tours, while winter offers cheaper prices on accommodations and activities. 

Barossa Valley Wines
The Barossa Valley wine region is home to some of Australia’s most popular varietals, including some from big names such as Penfolds, Henschke Cellars, Wolf Blass, and Jacob's Creek. Wine lovers can sample award-winning shiraz wines and discover the legendary vintage wines at Seppeltsfield winery. Other varieties include cabernet sauvignon, grenache, merlot, riesling, sémillon, and chardonnay.
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Peter Lehmann Wines
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This favorite mid-size South Australian vineyard was built in just five months back in 1980. Since then, its luscious red and white wines have been celebrated both locally and internationally, and its true family farm feel has been welcoming visitors for generations.

After learning touring the grounds and learning about the practice of wine making, travelers can saddle up to the Weighbridge—now known affectionately as Peter’s Bar—for a taste of Peter Lehmann’s bold Shiraz. Growers have been gathering at the Weighbridge after a long day’s work since the vineyard first opened. Today visitors can join them in the same age-old tradition, too.

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Penfolds Barossa Valley Cellar Door
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Since 1844, Penfolds Barossa Valley Winery has been offering travelers access to a wide variety of wines, luscious tastings and idyllic vineyard views. And while strong pours of favorite vintages are a treat for visitors, it’s the Make Your Own Blend Tour that lends this age-old vineyard the air of something new. After touring the grounds and exploring the Cellar Door, travelers enter the winemakers’ laboratory and use popular grapes, like Grenache and Shiraz, to blend their own wines to bottle and take home.

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Jacob’s Creek Visitor Centre
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In 1847, after nearly a decade of living in the hills of the Barossa Valley, Bavarian-native Johann Gramp and his wife decided to literally put down roots in the Australian countryside and planted nearly 30 hectares of grapevines. While the couple almost immediately began producing wine, it wasn’t until 1976 that the name Jacob’s Creek” was introduced to the public. Gramp’s first Shiraz-Cab blend was a hit among wine lovers.

Today, some 150 years later, this vineyard’s commitment to family traditions and its drive for innovation holding strong. Today, travelers can visit this famous vineyard and tour the age-old grounds of Jacob’s Creek, as well as sample wines and learn about production and farming at the innovative, modern and environmentally sound new Visitor Centre.

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Mengler Hill Lookout
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One of the most popular scenic overlooks in the Barossa Valley, visitors to Menglers Hill Lookout can take in bird's-eye views of the region’s expansive vineyards and rolling hills. The nearby sculpture park, which sits at the foot of Menglers Hill, offers travelers a whimsical, playful look at the works of nine artists who visited the area in 1988. Visitors say this picturesque peak is the perfect place for snapping scenic photos or escaping into the quiet and quaint rural countryside on a trip to Barossa.

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Barossa Chateau
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In addition to being one of Australia’s most luxurious hotels, the Barossa Chateau sits on what is perhaps the country’s most well-known (and well-kept) rose garden, too. With some 25 acres of estate land, including 22 acres of gardens and five kilometers of scenic pathways, the Barossa Chateau offers travelers the perfect country escape. Visitors can spend the morning wandering the beautifully landscaped grounds, then tuck into traditional high tea at the hotel’s classic restaurant. After stroll through the rose gardens, visitors can stop at the art and antiques gallery before sipping on a glass of fine wine from the Cellar Door. Finally, visitors can sink into lush beds with high thread counts after a long day filled with some of Australia’s most classic natural beauty.

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