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Things to do in the Hunter Valley with family this weekend

The Hunter Valley is known for its amazing wineries. Producing around 3% of Australian wine, the region is high on many wine lovers lists as a place to visit. It also has a lot to offer families. There’s so much to do with your kids while enjoying the region. Visit one of their amazing restaurants and if you like, a glass or two! Let’s explore things to do in the Hunter Valley with your family

Just one hour from Lake Macquarie, driving inland, this is a popular destination that attracts people who predominantly travel from Sydney, Newcastle and Lake Macquarie as well as from other parts of Australia and the world.  


Wine, wine and more wine

We can’t talk about the Hunter Valley without first talking about wine. There are over 150 wineries here who aim to produce quality over quantity. Known for its Semillon, the Hunter Valley also produces amazing Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Verdelho.  

Vines were first planted in this region in the early 1800s and by 1840 over 500 acres of land was dedicated to vineyards. During the 1900s well-known families moved into the area bringing Lindemans, Tyrrell,  Wilkinson, Tulloch and Drayton. You can now visit wineries in Pokolbin, Lovedale, Mount View and Broke Fordwich as well as around Hermitage. Many wineries in these areas offer cellar doors, dining options and the opportunity to hold events such as weddings. 


Places to stay

You have a whole list of choices available for accommodation in the Hunter Valley. For those on a budget, there are National Park campgrounds, camping available at farm stays and the Wine Country Tourist Park offers both campsites, caravan sites or cabins.

If you’re feeling a little more flush you can book into accommodation in one of the wineries, guest houses, hotels or resorts. Apartments and holiday rentals are also available meaning you can find the perfect fit for you, your family and friends.

Once you’ve dropped off your bags head over to one of the following attractions for some fun with your family.


Hunter Valley Gardens

Set over 14 hectares with over 8 kilometres of paths through the ten themed gardens, the Hunter Valley Gardens is a beautiful place to spend a day. Check their website for information on signature events such as Snow Time and the Christmas Lights Spectacular. There are now 4 permanent rides located in the garden including a large Ferris Wheel, Swing Chair, Superslide and Carousel. These operate during events and school holidays and are great for keeping your kids amused. There’s also a train that operates rides around the park during the day. Be prepared for a long day, particularly if you’re attending an event. There’s a cafe on-site and places to eat in the Shopping Village just outside or you can pack a picnic lunch.


Hunter Valley Zoo

Located in Lomas Lane, Nulkaba, Hunter Valley Zoo offers your family the opportunity to spend the day visiting the animals. With a large variety of animals to see you’ll encounter Australian native animals such as wombats, wallabies, kangaroos, koalas and echidnas. African animals such as lions, meerkats and cheetahs. Primates including lemurs, marmosets and capuchins. There are reptiles, Australian birds and a variety of other animals. Make sure you get there in time for the keeper talks. Grab a bag of animal feed as you enter for the farmyard, kangaroos and walk through bird aviary. If you would like to get up close there are animal encounters you can arrange. You’ll find plenty of facilities there including free gas BBQs and lots of picnic tables. It’s also a great place for a birthday party – just make sure you call them at least a week before to arrange.


Hunter Valley Adventure Centre

Do you fancy having an adventure while you’re here? Perfect for families, team building or a group of friends hanging out at the weekend. The Hunter Valley Adventure Centre offers you a variety of experiences. Would you like to ride a Segway along paths built by first settlers and convicts, learning the history of the area and enjoying the native animals? How about enjoying a ride on horseback soaking up the breathtaking views of the Brockenback Range and its vineyards and farmland? Worried about cycling up and down the hills?  What about hiring an electric bike? You’ll get training on how to use it and everything you need. All you’ve got to do is grab a map and off you go! With accommodation available as well you’ll find everything you need to enjoy the valley.



If you’re looking for something a little more thrill-seeking, how about hot air ballooning, a helicopter scenic ride, rally driving, a jet fighter flight, skydiving or trail bike riding? There are so many adventures to choose from to spice up your visit.


Aqua Golf and Putt Putt

Hunter Valley Gardens Aqua Golf and Putt-Putt offers a 5000 square metre lake that has multiple floating target nets for you to hit your ball at. If you hit a target you could win a prize! The prize pool include vouchers for hot air balloon rides, tours, wine, restaurants – even cash prizes. There’s an 18 hole Putt-Putt course where you can discover the ‘Greg Norman’ in your family as you challenge each other to a game.


Hunter Valley Chocolate Company

There are 3 locations for the Hunter Valley Chocolate Company. Head to Twenty -3-Twenty in Pokolbin if you want to see Peter the chocolatier and Lorraine the fudge maker doing what they do best. Established over 20 years ago the Hunter Valley Chocolate Company has become one of the top places to visit. If you want to enjoy a taste of these sweet treats put this on your to-do list.  It’ll delight the chocolate lovers in your family.  


Australian Army Infantry Museum

Just a half-hour drive from Pokolbin, the Australian Army Infantry Museum is the custodian of Infantry Corps history. Learn about its traditions, customs and history covering the period from pre federation right through to today’s diggers. Covering deployments from Gallipoli and The Kokoda Trail to Iraq, Afghanistan and Cambodia you’ll find the information engaging and interesting. It’s well worth a visit.

With so many different activities and so many places to visit, the Hunter Valley should be on your list of places to go. Make a booking, pack your bags and jump into your car for the short drive up to the Hunter. You’ll be glad you did.  

If you’re looking for other holiday destinations just one hour from Lake Macquarie how about heading down to the Central Coast or up to Port Stephens?  

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