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Beautiful Barossa
barossa valleyThe Barossa Valley is nestled just an hour from the city of Adelaide in South Australia, and is highly regarded as one of the most famous wine regions in Australia. The this the perfect place to sample exquisite wines, enjoy all types of local food produce and enjoy the beautiful gardens and vineyards that are prevalent in this area. It is a truly magnificent place for a campervan getaway because there are endless opportunities for adventure.

Enjoying a Mediterranean climate, the Barossa Valley experiences its rainy season between April and October, with all other seasons predictable all through the year. During summer the temperature reaches 35C on average, and winter brings cold days and colder nights. So be sure to plan your holiday around this.

Festivals, events, art galleries and antique shops are all hugely popular here and will easily fill up your day. Other great activities to take part in here are the hot air balloon rides, which offer panoramic views of the valley. There are a number of caravan parks that have shady sites perfect for a relaxing getaway and pleasant stay.

The highlight of the year would no doubt be the Barossa Vintage Festival. This yearly event is known for its events, food, music and of course, its wine. With such an extensive history of wine-making in the area, some of the best names come from this region. Wolf Blass, Peter Lehmann, Yaldara and Yalumba are just some of the more popular names.

With magnificent grounds, the three Chateaus which dominate the valley must be seen to be believed. The Chateau Barossa is surrounded by over twenty thousand rose bushes which leave a scent to die for. The Chateau Yaldara has a café perfect for an cosy afternoon tea, making for a desirably pleasant afternoon. The Chateau Tanunda is also offset with a cricket oval and has its own small winery. Stay here for a meal to dine in style and indulge in the scenery, food and incredible architecture.

The lookout Mengler Hill, which is east from Tanunda, offers some truly fantastic views. There are pretty church steeples punctuating the landscape, and rolling hills and green valleys stretch as far as the eye can see. It is also a great spot to enjoy the sunset. Tanunda is also a great place for food shopping and dining. A great restaurant here is the 1918 Bistro and Grill, which is known all over the valley.

Just down the road is also the Stuhl Conservation Park which is great for families of all ages. There are walking tracks here, and plenty of wildlife such as kangaroos, possums, parrots and lizards.

If you are here on a weekend, you can’t miss the Barossa Farmers Market. Held on Saturday mornings, you will feel as though you have just stepped foot inside the home of the friendly locals, as they generously offer their local produce, wares and wines. It is fantastic for a wander and a closer look at the relaxed way of life and atmosphere in the valley.

There is so much to see and do at the Barossa. Try the Yaldara winery, which is close to Lyndoch. It also has a beautiful lavender farm. South from Angaston, you will find the Yulumba winery, which is also worth a visit. The Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop is a great favourite with the locals and tourists, with plenty of taste testing and produce to tempt any sceptic. With her books and local wines on sale, it is great for browsing and getting to know the locals over a delightful meal.

The Barossa valley is no longer one of South Australia’s best kept secrets but it still enjoys a unique laid back atmosphere. The word has been out for long enough now that this is by far one of the most enjoyable tourist destinations in the state, with a plethora of wines to suit any palette, wineries that never seem to end, quaint towns dotted across the landscape, and friendly locals that welcome you into their world as you get away from the fast pace of normal life. Enjoy the valley while you can, and there is no doubt you will take some of it home with you until you return.

Christine Barton

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