The rolling hills and vineyards of Melbourne’s Yarra Valley are just a one-hour drive from the city center. As Victoria’s largest wine growing region most visitors come here to taste the many wines on offer and enjoy a gourmet meal, but there’s plenty more to see and do here.
Get Up Close to Australian Wildlife
Spend the afternoon at Healesville Sanctuary, Melbourne’s premier indigenous animal sanctuary. This is the best place in Victoria to see koalas, wombats, kangaroos and dingos up close as well as some of Australia’s less cuddly and highly venomous reptiles!
Enjoy Some Country Hospitality
Stop for a coffee or a pub lunch in Healesville, Yarra Valley’s charming country town.
Take a Forest Walk or Drive
Head east out of Healesville on the Maroondah Highway and you’ll drive through the spectacular Yarra Ranges. This area is known for its immense mountain ash trees and green ferns. It’s a beautiful spot to take a walk, have a picnic or just simply wind down the windows and breathe it all in.
Wineries and Cellar Doors
With over 75 wineries and cellar doors in the Yarra Valley, there’s a somewhat overwhelming number of to choose from! Some of the standouts include:
- Yering Station (Melba Highway)
Victoria’s oldest vineyard has an old red brick cellar door, a cute upstairs café, a produce store and an excellent restaurant with views across the valley. What to try? The 2010 Yering Station Reserve Chardonnay.
- Domaine Chandon (Maroondah Highway)
Established by Moët & Chandon in 1986 and dedicated to the production of traditional sparkling wine and premium Victorian wines. Get in early for a seat in its popular restaurant. What to try? Chandon Cuvée Riche.
- Yering Farm (Melba Highway)
This much smaller winery oozes rustic, country charm. Try a drop from its gorgeously labelled ‘Farmyard Series’.
A winery tour from Melbourne is highly recommended to get the most out of your visit.
Watch our video for a taste of what to expect from a Yarra Valley winery tour.
– Contributed by Emma McMahon