For the October long weekend, we spent three days roadtripping around the Adelaide Hills and Fleurieu Peninsular. We we so impressed by the beautiful countryside, rugged coastlines, delicious food and spectacular wines.
We spent three nights in a quaint bed and breakfast in Hahndorf – an original German settlement about a 30 minute drive east of Adelaide. From Hahndorf, the Adelaide Hills district is easily accessible. We spent time doing some walks – notably the Mt Lofty walk – a 8km round trip down and back, which was strenuous to say the least, but the view from the top was amazing. We sampled wine, ate great food with some amazing backdrops and just enjoyed the undulating green landscapes.
From Adelaide airport, we hired a car and drove south east along the M1 motorway. All towns are signposted at the respective exits.
We stayed at Amble Over Bed and Breakfast. Located just of the main road in Hahndorf, it’s within easy walking distance of all amenities, yet still quiet. The apartment was clean and spacious, with a beautiful view onto the paddocks behind. Rates start at about $220 per night for the apartment and breakfast.
Lunch at Hahndorf Hill winery – lovely platters of various pates and cheeses enjoyed with great wine and a lovely view from your table. Platters start at around $20 per person.
Our favourite wineries in the Adelaide Hills were Mount Lofty Ranges (who do a lovely 2012 Pinot Noir) and Somerled in Hahndorf town, who have a beautiful selection of delicate cool climate wines.
We spent our final day in the Northern Territory exploring Litchfield National Park and checking out Mindil Beach Markets in Darwin. After an early start, we sadly departed Kakadu and drove towards Litchfield National Park. Although Litchfield has some spectacular waterfalls and waterholes (all crocodile free), we were somewhat disappointed due to the plethora of people visiting the park. Unlike Kakadu which was sparsely populated with tourists, because of Litchfield’s proximity to Darwin, less than an hour’s drive south, it was busting with day trippers escaping the Northern Territory heat and bathing in the cool waterholes. We stopped briefly at Florance Falls and Wangi Falls, but found more ‘private’ waterholes along Walker Creek and Tolmer Falls. After a few hours of exploring the park, we headed towards Darwin to visit the sunset markets at Mindil Beach. These markets are on twice weekly, Thursday and Sunday night, starting at about 4pm and finishing at 9pm. Although not the best markets for handcrafted goods, there is a huge array of international food on offer, which you can take-away and enjoy whilst taking in the stunning Darwin sunset. We had an amazing time in the top end and would very much like to explore this fascinating area of Australia further. Essentials:
Hire a car. If you’re thinking to take the less accessible parts of Kakadu and Litchfield, make sure you hire a 4WD. Cars can be picked up and returned from Darwin Airport.
Mindil Beach Markets. A huge selection and the prices are great – we bought vege laksas for $8 and they were delicious.
If you can find some original Aboriginal artworks, the top end is the place to buy them. Many galleries support local artists and art cooperatives. We purchased a bark painting at the Aboriginal Cultural Centre in Kakadu.