One of the best things about the Christmas season in the southern hemisphere is the sunshine and balmy weather. There’s just something special about celebrating love and joy with family and friends under the sun. Here at Global Ballooning, our favourite place to enjoy our loved ones’ company is in the stunning surrounds of the Yarra Valley. The wine region is teeming with the best holiday tourist activities – and we’ve collated the ultimate guide!
A Hop It tour is the best way to experience the plethora of fabulous food and wine the Yarra Valley has to offer! Unlike standard tours, this is a choose-your-own-adventure. The amazing Hop It team have carefully crafted bus routes that traverse the gorgeous vineyards that the Yarra Valley offers – all you need to do is hop on and hop off wherever you please! If you’re not a wine fanatic, there are plenty of options along the way to please everyone – think restaurants, breweries, distilleries, and landmark sites, plus more. What a wonderful day out!
The beautiful Olivigna Restaurant, nestled in the rolling hills of Warrandyte is home to some of the best dining the Yarra Valley has to offer. For something a little different, check out the restaurant’s picnic huts – it truly is an experience like no other. You’ll be escorted to a picnic hut reserved only for your group, overlooking the estate, and perched among the Warrandyte bushlands. The picnic huts are available on weekends only, and spots are limited for this exclusive experience – so bookings are essential.
For a slower paced, more wholesome Christmas holiday activity, the Melba Garden Walking Tour at Coombe Yarra Valley property is perfect. Established in 1909, Coombe is the home of iconic Melbourne-born soprano Dame Nellie Melba. These guided tours explore seven acres of the lush gardens, which are an evocative setting to wander and peruse. And while you’re there, why not enjoy a high tea? For just $75 per person, you can enjoy decadent sandwiches, sweets, and buttermilk scones, served with your choice of tea or coffee, or free-flowing bubbles, if that tickles your fancy!
What could be better than a refreshing gin on a hot summer’s day? The Four Pillars Gin Tasting in Healesville is an experience all gin-lovers will adore. A 55-minute tasting in the private mezzanine includes a signature G&T on arrival, and taste-testing five of the Distillery’s award-winning gins. And the experience doesn’t end when you leave! The gin shop is the perfect place to stock up, so you can recreate your favourite cocktail concoctions at home.
If you’re after an experience that is truly sensory, the Edible Forest at Yarra Valley Estate is the way to go! Wander, roam and discover the unique flora and fauna in the Edible Forest with a guided Garden Tour. Beauty aside, this tour is educational too – learn about the health benefits of some edible and medicinal plants as you go. Tours run for approximately 45 minutes, after which you can freely wander the onsite nursery and harvest shop, where you may find something special to nurture and grow yourself, at home.
Of course, we can’t miss this iconic tourist activity off the guide! The best way to see the Yarra Valley is from above. You’ll have a bird’s eye view of the region’s sprawling vineyards and breathtaking countryside, all while the sun is rising and the world is just starting to wake up. A hot air balloon flight is a great way to wake up while the world sleeps, in anticipation of a wonderful day in the Yarra Valley.
A gift voucher for Global Ballooning is a gift that’s sure to impress this Christmas. Buy yours NOW!