Less than an hour from Melbourne, the Yarra Valley is a popular choice of day trip. With just one day, time is of the essence; its recommended to book tours well in advance and to choose a tasting tour that transports you between several different wineries. Here’s how to spend one day in the Yarra Valley.
Morning: Vineyard Views
The lush vineyards and storybook villages of the Yarra Valley offer a serene backdrop for a hot-air balloon flight. Opt for an early-morning flight to watch sunrise over the mountains and then enjoy breakfast accompanied by sparkling wine after touchdown.
With just a day in Yarra Valley, every moment counts so squeeze in a couple of cellar door wine tastings into the rest of the morning. Be sure to go with a guide so you can learn more about the region’s diverse wine varietals, the most popular of which are Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Sauvignon Blanc.
Afternoon: Wine and Dine
For lunch, book a table at a Yarra Valley’s restaurant; the Balgownie Estate restaurant overlooks the vineyards and offers Segway tours around the estate. Book a package that includes a wine tasting lunch and a guided tour of the winery.
With over 80 wineries in the region, there are plenty of options for wine tasting and visiting with a private guide means you can enjoy tailored recommendations. For those on a tighter budget, there are plenty of group tours available, but don’t be tempted to go it alone—you need a car to get around, and of course, you can’t drink and drive.
Night: Sunset tasting
The Kangaroo Ground War Memorial Tower, not far from the town of Yarra Glen, is a great spot to watch the sunset, as it boasts views over Melbourne and the Dandenong Ranges.
In the evening, swap wine for something stronger and sample some of Yarra Valley’s other beverages. The region has a number of craft beer breweries, rum distilleries, and artisan cider mills. A Yarra Valley night tour is a great option as it combines multiple tastings with a pizza dinner.