Today, we woke up rather early for our day tour. After a quick brekkie at one of the groceries nearby we were well on our way to Barossa Valley.
Barossa Valley is the wine producing region in the Adelaide. An hour's drive from Adelaide city centre gets you right into the heart of these vineyards and a number of wineries. Okay, I admit I slept most of the way. I suddenly woke up when we were 10 minutes away from our first winery. And the view outside my window was simply gorgeous!
Once we reached our first wine centre - Seppeltsfield, one of Australia's oldest wineries. We were given about 45 minutes to spend there. That inluded wine tastings, shopping (for wines) or just strolling around the area. We tasted four different kinds of wines and were shown (just shown) a wine that was 100 years old.
Next up, was the infamous Jacobs Creek, which was located about 20 minutes away. We did the same thing here ... wine tastings and all. Except that Jacobs Creek visitor centre is located in the middle of this picture perfect vineyard. It was a beautiful sunny day (atleast until then) and everything just glistened under the golden sun.
We stopped for lunch at a restaurant nearby before heading to the German settlement of Hahndorf. By then it got all grey and gloomy. I'm not sure of the name of the place, but it had a museum with artifacts dating back to the 18th and 19th century. Apparently Queen Elizabeth had visited this place too!
Hahndorf, which is Australia's oldest surviving German settlement was beautiful. Surprisingly, no one speaks German here! The little shops and houses along the road gave us a feel of Germany. We weren't here for too long to actually explore the entire place. I wish we stayed for more time.
We were back in the city again after sunset and this time we headed to a different place for dinner. Another steakhouse! Atleast we didn't have to cook the steak ourselves. Read my review on "The Little Hunter" here. After dinner, we took a little stroll near Adelaide Oval which was just behind our hotel. Tonight was our last night at Adelaide and tomorrow we were heading up north!
Stay tuned for the next destination X
When we decided to include Adelaide in our Australia plan, many people told us that Adelaide would be boring After visiting Adelaide, I have to tell you that Adelaide in anything but boring. Yes, its a bit smaller that other bigger cities like Sydney or Melbourne, but there's still a lot to do.
For starters, we stayed at the amazing Intercontinental Adelaide. The good part about being an IHG Platinum member is the room upgrades. The moment we checked it, we got upgraded to a suite. Besides the room being huge, it faced the Adelaide Oval. We had the most beautiful view ever!
A good thing about Australia is that public transport within the city limits are free. Not in all the cities, but atleast in some. We caught the free tram just in front of our hotel and headed to Adelaide Central Market. Even since we landed in Australia, I've always gone to some or the other market. These markets offer so much more that just fruits, vegetables, fish or meat. This particular market is 140 years old and has shops that sell bread, pickles, cheese, plants and more. You get actually get all your household essentials sorted out here. Plenty of restaurants too.
Next up, was Haigh's Chocolate Factory ... Australia's oldest family owned chocolate maker. Sadly, we could get a tour as they were almost done for the day. But we did manage to get a sneak peek through the glass and see how chocolates were made. A word of advice, when you're buying chocolate go for the discounted ones that are on a separate rack. They're discounted only because they aren't shaped well. They still have the same great taste! Haigh's Chocolate Factory is located between the tram's last free stop and next paid stop. Either you walk or pay!
We stopped by the beautiful St Francis Xavier's Cathedral and stood there admiring the exterior. Too bad we couldn't go inside as they had some construction work going on.
Our last stop was Rundle Mall, Adelaide's shopping area filled with a number of restaurants and boutiques. Food trucks, street performers, we saw them all. One thing that caught my attention was the Adelaide Arcade. A century old shopping arcade with an extremely beautiful interior. Later, I got to know that this arcade is supposedly haunted by ghosts. I don't know how far this is true, had I known this earlier I probably wouldn't have gone!
Dinner that evening was at a restaurant called Café 129 just in front of our hotel. The restaurant uses a unique concept of a hot stone to cook food. And we cook food by ourselves. Here's where we tried crocodile & kangaroo too! Read my review here.
Stay tuned for the next post X
Today, we had plenty of free time on our hands and decided to explore more of Melbourne city. Unlike the other days when we had to wake up really early for the day trips, we were a bit more relaxed today.
A 5 minute walk from our hotel got us to us very first spot - Queen Victoria Market. This century old market sells food, clothing and other stuff all under one roof. There have a dedicated meat and fish area too. On the day we visited, they told us that not every shop would be open. However, we still got to see a lot. I can only imagine how it would have been on a normal day.
We had a lovely breakfast at the food court here. So much more cheaper than having it in at our hotel.
After exploring the market, we headed to the Central Station to catch a train to Brighton Beach. On our way, I saw this fancy staircase and just had to take a picture!
It was a 40 minute journey to Brighton Beach and it involved changing a couple of trains. We purchased a Myki card which could be topped up and used for our train and metro journey. Once we reached Brighton, we walked for about 20 minutes to reach the beach. It was very cold, but thankfully it didn't rain. While walking towards the beach, I couldn't help but notice how peaceful this area was. There were these luxurious villas all facing the sea. Wow, imagine waking up to a view of the sea every single day. There were hardly people walking around.
After a walk that never seemed to end, we finally reached Brighton Beach. Not your typical sunny day kinda beach, with people basking in the sun ...but beautiful nevertheless. And there they were .... those colouful Brighton bathing boxes standing in a row.
We then walked all the way back to the station, hopped on the train and reached Central Station. Our next stop was Flinders Street Station and St Paul's Cathedral. A free tram took us there. We didn't enter Flinders Street Station. It looked amazing from the outside with a dome shaped entrance and a row of clocks hanging from the top. This station is supposedly more than a 100 years old.
St. Paul's Cathedral was just a short walk away. It looked magnificent from the outside (very Gothic) and I had some trouble fitting the entire thing into my camera. The church is free to enter. The interior of the church was simple, nothing very fancy. Very peaceful though!
Now that we were done with all the attractions, there was one last place to visit - Lindt Chocolate Cafe. We took the tram and headed there. If you are a chocolate lover, this is one place you dont wanna miss. We had some of the most amazing desserts here. Click here for my review.
By the time we were done with Lindt, it was already sunset. Next morning was our flight to Adelaide. We strolled around for a bit and headed to the hotel for an early dinner. We didn't intend on having dinner at our hotel but I'm glad we did. HQ's On William (a restaurant in our hotel) is definitely a place worth trying out. I had the biggest steak in my life (900 grams) not to mention an array of delicious cocktails! Read my review about them here.
Then we went off to bed!
Watch out for my next post about the next city we visited.
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