Guide to the Barossa Valley

No one does wine quite like the Barossa Valley. Nestled amongst rolling green fields and traditional wineries to the northeast of Adelaide, Barossa Valley is the perfect pit-stop.

Barossa Valley

As well as high-end vineyards, the valley also encompasses a gamut of charming villages that boast cobbled high streets and a hint of Germanic history that dates back centuries.

The History of the Barossa Valley

  • Indigenous History

    The traditional owners of the Barossa Valley are the Peramangk people. Prior to European invasion the Peramangk people lived on and facilitated the land. The area was rich in supplies, including plants for food and medicine, animals for meat and plenty of fresh water. They cultivated the land and cared for it to ensure it remained prosperous. They regularly conducted burnings to help regenerate vegetation and drive animals away from the undergrowth. These methodical burnings help to cultivate the vast natural open spaces that characterise the Barossa today.

    Heading towards Adelaide you cross into Kaurna land. The Peramangk and Kaurna people regularly met to exchange goods and conduct ceremony. Today, the Aboriginal People of Australia are the oldest living culture in the world. Today the Peramangk people still hold a strong relationship to this land. Evidence of their occupation is all around the area and can be seen in artefacts, scar trees and shelter paintings.

  • European Settlers

    Adelaide was first invaded by Europeans in the early 1800s. Whalers and sealers began to converge along the Adelaide coastline due to the area’s abundant marine life, and lead to settlement in 1836. It didn’t take long for settlers to see the richness of the Barossa soil and send word to England of what they had found.

    Europeans wasted no time planting vines across the Barossa, gearing up for wine production. The area was named after the Barrosa Ridge in the Spanish region of Andalusia. However, a miscommunication saw the regions name misspelt as Barossa, and thus it was born! Since then, the region has continued to flourish. Today, there are six generations of wine growers in the region, including some that date back to the original settlement.

  • The Collection of Cellar Doors

    There are over 150 wineries in the Barossa Valley and 80 cellar doors. The famous wine-making region is home to some of the most recognisable brands in the world. You’ll find the vineyards that make Rockford, Penfolds, Jacob’s Creek, and Henschke wines amongst many others. Plus, there are plenty of small batch and boutique wineries too.

    Each cellar door provides a different experience, ranging from traditional tastings to creating your own blend. Visiting cellar doors is one of the best ways to experience the Barossa. Friendly staff will answer all your questions and teach you how to taste the nuances of each group.

  • The Villages of the Barossa Valley

    The wineries of the Barossa Valley are nestled in between charming little villages that hark back to yesteryear. Family-run cafes and restaurants line the boulevards and make the perfect spots for kicking back, relaxing, and watching the world go by.

    These villages include Bridgewater, Crafers, Stirling, and Aldgate, all of which boast a lengthy heritage that is evident in their charming surroundings and great range of activities. There are plenty of cafes and restaurants to check out, as well as picturesque streets to wander. Explore boutique stores and artisan shops, supporting local business while you explore.

    While you travel, stop by the Stirling Theatre in Stirling. Explore South Australia’s ‘Book Village’– check out Chapter Two Books, Matilda Bookshop, and The Hut Book Shed while you’re in town.

    In between the villages, there is incredible countryside to explore. The patchwork landscape is filled with rolling greenery, vast open spaces, and, of course, plenty of wineries to enjoy. If you’re in the Barossa Valley, be sure to check out the many cute villages around for a taste of the rich history and a taste of the delicious flavours that make the area so well-known.

Top Things to Do & See in the Barossa Valley

  • Jacobs Creek

     Jacob’s Creek,

    Jacob’s Creek is undoubtedly the most sought-after winery in the Barossa Valley. Named after the nearby creek that cuts through the valley, they have become a household name. Everything about the vineyard is steeped in the Valley’s history. The creek was named after William Jacob, who was one of the main forerunners in founding German Lutheran immigrants to the area. Just ten years after South Australia was settled, the first vines were planted.

    The winery now produces some of the best wine in the region. Venture here for an afternoon of delights. Learn about the winemaking process, sample delicious varieties and enjoy the picturesque surroundings. Sit down at the onsite restaurant for a wine pairing experience. If you’re looking for something more casual, pick up a gourmet picnic and enjoy views of the sprawling Barossa Valley and vineyard.

    Take in the satisfaction of preparing your own meal at a Jacobs Creek Cooking Class. Held in the Estates historic gardens you’ll pick produce from the kitchen garden before preparing a delicious feast. Follow along with a qualified chef before digging in with the perfectly paired glass of Jacobs Creek wine.

  • Seppeltsfield

    Seppeltsfield

    Enjoy a country getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city. Seppeltsfield is a stunning winery of 420 acres of lush greenery waiting for you to explore. Breathe in the clear country air and enjoy the cosy atmosphere of the region with a delicious glass of wine.

    First opened in 1851, Seppeltsfield is an international award-winning venue, guaranteeing you’ll have a good time. One of the top wineries in Australia you’ll taste crisp whites while walking through the on-site gallery. The gallery contains work from a collection of local artists using a variety of mediums. After enjoying the art, dig into a delicious meal at the onsite restaurant.

    Seppeltsfield isn’t just a winery though, they are famous for their historic experiences and yearly vintage release. What started as a remarkable idea in 1878 to mature a tawny for 100 years has turned into one of Australia’s most anticipated yearly releases. Each year Seppeltsfield release a single vintage, 100-year-old tawny as part of their centennial collection. Bottles range from approximately $700 to over $3,000 depending on the vintage year. If that’s a bit steep, book into a Centennial Cellar experience and taste the vintage from the year you were born!

  • Wolf Blass

    Wolf Blass

    When it comes to wineries, Wolf Blass is a relatively young estate. Established in 1966 by German Wolfgang Franz Otto Blass, the estate began as a one-man vision, before blossoming into the brand we know today. The first vintage was released in 1967 and immediately loved for its drinkability and distinct Australian flavours of mint and eucalypt. Just eight years after making his first wine, Wolf Blass won the prestigious Jimmy Watson Trophy, cementing his place in Australian winemaking royalty.

    Visit the on-site art gallery and view the iconic work Wolfie. The piece was created by David Bromley, one of Australia’s best-known artists, to celebrate the 80th birthday of Wolf Blass. While here enjoy the display of Black Labels, the only collection of every black label wine created by Wolf Blass. At the cellar door, you can enjoy a delicious tasting or sit down for a 3-course meal with a perfect wine pairing.

  • Hahndorf

    hahndorf

    The historic town of Hahndorf should certainly be on any itinerary for the Barossa Valley. Arriving in town you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time to 1800s Germany. Settled in 1838 by a small German community, the town is the oldest surviving German settlement in Australia.

    Today, the village is proud of its German heritage. You can see it in the cobbled streets and traditional storefronts. Explore cheesemakers, candle makers, traditional sweet stores and German style pubs. You can learn more about the small town’s heritage at the Hahndorf Academy’s migration museum. Though the town centre may be small, there is plenty to do in this village.

    Families will enjoy the Hahndorf Farm Barn while adults may prefer a visit to The Cedars, home and studio to the famous artist Sir Hans Heysen. If you’re looking for somewhere quaint and quiet to stay in the Barossa Valley Hahndorf is the perfect place for you. With plenty of sweet accommodation options on offer, Hahndorf is the perfect place for you!

  • Beerenberg Family Farm

    Beerenberg Family Farm

    Located just outside the town of Hahndorf, the Beerenberg Family Farm is fun for the whole family. Explore their range of delicious homemade jams, sauces and chutneys or explore the farm grounds. Almost 200 years ago the Beerenberg Family Farm opened but it wasn’t until the 1970s that the farm shot to popularity. After deciding to focus on growing strawberries the farm really hit its stride.

    Visit the farm during berry season and pick your own strawberries right from the patch. Or enjoy the Taste of Beerenberg Experience. Here you’ll get to taste a range of fresh produce and learn more about the history of the farm. Delve into the history of your product with their Provenance Pathway. Trace the origin of each ingredient used, the day it was made and even the name of who made it! Beerenberg strives to include you in every step of the production process and a visit to the family farm will be a highlight in your Barossa trip.

Other Incredible Activities Around Barossa Valley

  • The Marvellous Markets

    Barossa Food Markets

    Wine regions are known for their country markets, and Barossa Valley is no different. A number of small, locally run markets that run in the Valley. The best of these is no doubt the Barossa Food Markets in the cute town of Angaston. Here, visitors can wander through stalls piled high with free-range meat, home-grown veg, chutneys and sauces in every flavour, and sumptuous pastries.

    The market is a great place to meet locals and learn more about this rich region. Visiting stalls is a great way to find new and exciting locations to visit. Or, use the market as a way to visit the stalls of places you might not be able to visit during your Barossa stay.

  • The Fine Food Selection

    Food Selection in Barossa

    The quality of food on offer at the markets just shows how much of a foodie region Barossa really is. There are plenty of delicious experiences to enjoy in the Barossa Valley. Explore modern Australian cuisine, South-East Asian fusion, fresh takeaways, and fun snacks from the collection of village cafes.

    To top it all off, TV chef Maggie Beer also has a farm shop in Barossa Valley, where you can stock up on fruits, jams, and chutneys. If her market stall isn’t enough for you, head to the farm itself. Tuck into baked pastries and home-cooked meals in the adjoining café that overlooks a lake.

  • The Fun Festivals

    Barossa Vintage Festival

    Barossa Valley has amazing festivals too!

    In autumn, the Barossa Vintage Festival takes over town. This one-week event brings together wine, food, art, culture, and music to celebrate the end of the grape harvest. Across six days the valley explodes with almost 90 events showcasing the region’s products. There are family friendly parades and town days, as well as a gala ball and wine and food masterclasses. No matter what you’re into the Barossa Vintage Festival has something for you.

    In Spring, Barossa Gourmet Weekend offers an itinerary packed with foodie experiences, wine tasting, markets, music, and cooking classes. Follow the Gourmet Trail and experience 13 exclusive Trail events. Or, take the road less travelled and build your own trail along with a selection of ticketed and free events occurring through the valley.

    The Barossa Valley has a number of fantastic festivals throughout the year. These events are the perfect opportunity to explore this amazing region.

The Barossa Valley is a truly magical place hidden just outside of Adelaide. There are so many fantastic wineries to visit, delicious food to eat and memorable experiences to have. Plus, we barely mentioned any of the wineries just waiting for you to explore! There’s so much to do in the Barossa Valley we promise you won’t regret adding it to your travel list.

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