Things to Do in The Barossa Valley

Looking for things to do in the Barossa Valley? I’ve got you!

Just an hour’s drive north of Adelaide, you’ll find South Australia’s best-known wine region – the Barossa Valley.

Synonymous with top-shelf wines that have earned it worldwide acclaim, you can’t help but wonder – once the swirls, sniffs and sips are done, what else does the Barossa have to offer?

I live on the northern side of Adelaide, making it so easy for me to spend a day exploring this region. It’s my go-to area for a day out of the city because its right on my doorstep

It doesn’t even need to be a whole day – I may have recently driven to the Barossa just to stock up on my favourite Fruchocs.

Even though I go there regularly, I challenge myself each time I visit to find something new, whether an activity, a cellar door or a place to eat, and I’ve come up with a lot of options – it’s not all about wine here after all.

So, let’s uncork (see what I did there!) the lesser-known, yet equally awesome adventures waiting for you in the Barossa Valley!

Top Activities in Barossa Valley

a symmetrical stone two story building with a formal garden and a large lawn in front

The Barossa Valley consists of small towns scattered amongst the grapevines. The largest town is Nuriootpa, and this is a great place to base yourself for your time in the area.

From there visitors can fan out and access all the Barossa Valley attractions as well as the things to do in Nuriootpa. Sometimes though it can be hard to find things to do in Barossa Valley not related to the wine industry.

Once you include some of the many wine-tasting options on the list (don’t miss the Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon), it’s very easy to keep busy for a few days with activities in Barossa Valley.

It’s a relaxed and sleepy place though, so take it nice and slow, and enjoy the peace and beauty of this area in the time it deserves. Now here are all the best things to do in the Barossa Valley.

Taste the Barossa Valley Wine

A wall in a cellar door with bottles and glasses sitting on shelf=ves on the wall and in a cabinet below.

This is quite possibly the reason you have come here, so I have to include it at the top of the list. I can’t go past the fact that one of the top attractions in Barossa Valley is its world-renowned wineries.

The region is home to over 150 wineries and cellar doors, including the historic Seppeltsfield Winery, known for its century-old Para Tawny port-style wines, and Jacob’s Creek, where visitors can learn about the winemaking process and enjoy wine-tasting.

From Shiraz and Riesling to Grenache, the Barossa Valley covers a rich spectrum of wine varieties that will surely satisfy every wine aficionado’s palate!

Some vineyards offer the opportunity to blend your own wine or do premium tastings providing a hands-on experience in winemaking.

There are so many top wineries to visit and they are all great. I also recommend just stopping in to a random winery you’ve never heard of before – it might just become a new favourite.

Pedal through the Vines on a Bike Ride

Explore the beauty of the Barossa Valley on a bike. With over 40km of sealed bike trails that meander from Gawler to Angaston, it’s honestly an experience you can’t afford to miss. 

In my own adventures, I’ve found that many local places to stay offer reliable bike rentals.

But, you know what’s even more fun? Going for an E-bike from Barossa Bike Hire. You can go ahead and reserve your E-Bike right away too. 

And, if you’re planning a longer ride, there are handy cycle hubs at Gawler, Tanunda, and Kapunda with additional amenities like bike repair stations, restrooms, showers, picnic spots, water, and even wifi.

Kick off Your Morning with a Hot Air Balloon Ride

A red, yellow and orange hot air balloon with the words Balloon Adventures on it

Is there anything better than a hot air balloon ride in the cool of the morning? You can do that right here with a sunrise hot air balloon trip across the Barossa Valley.

Honestly, it ranks as one of the most monumental experiences of my travels so far – a true gem among all things to do in the Barossa Valley! 

You’ll start early in the morning, but the early rise soon fades when you’re soaring over the vines. 

If you’re looking for an idea to celebrate a honeymoon, an anniversary, or a birthday, this is your solution! Could anything be more romantic among the Barossa Valley experiences? 

When you land, you’ll be greeted by a buffet-style breakfast, including that lovely sparkle of champagne. You can sit back, and enjoy while reminiscing about the magical moments you’ve just experienced high above the valley.

Stroll Along the Whispering Wall

Looking along a dam wall

Looking for something uniquely Barossan to add to your itinerary? Well, the Whispering Wall is a must-do!

Nestled in the region of Williamstown, this architectural wonder serves as the dam for the Barossa Reservoir, a key player in Adelaide’s water supply. 

But this isn’t some ordinary dam wall. Its shape creates bizarre acoustics, and that’s how it got its name. 

I love taking my visitors here and seeing the surprise when two people, standing at opposite ends of the wall, a good hundred meters apart, chat away in hushed tones.

They can hear each other perfectly, as though they’re standing right next to each other. It’s wildly bizarre and a surreal experience you wouldn’t want to miss. 

The surroundings of the Whispering Wall are a nature reserve. It’s a great spot for a short stroll, immersing yourself in the local flora and fauna. Don’t be surprised if you spot a kangaroo or two bounding around! 

Remember, if you’re planning a trip during the summer (like we did), keep an eye out for the fire danger warnings. The reservoir is off-limits on days when fire risk is high or extreme.

Delight in Browns Barossa Donuts

Let me tell you about a hidden gem – the delectable donuts at Browns Barossa. Seriously, it’s fast becoming a must-stop when you’re in the Barossa. 

They serve the classic flavours, but it’s the unique combinations like Bailey’s Toblerone Cheesecake or Apple & Blackberry Crumble with Custard that steal the show. Being homemade daily, you never know what tasty surprise you will find! 

They make a pretty mean coffee too – an ideal companion for these sweet treats.

A quick tip: try to pop in earlier in the day as these delights can fly off the shelves! 

With its doors open from Wednesday to Saturday, it’s tucked away in Tanunda, just waiting to tickle your taste buds.

Take in the Scenery at Menglers Hill Lookout

A sculpture of an eagle head with views over the valley beyond

If you need a few minutes of peace, stop at at Menglers Hill Lookout, named after a famous wine producer from the area. From this high point, you’ll have a view over the whole Barossa Valley. 

The Barossa Valley is surrounded by gently rolling hills and this gives you the chance to truly see the breadth of the landscape.

Pull over, take a break and just appreciate the view. 

There’s more to this stop than just the view, though. The Barossa Sculpture Park is also here for you to enjoy. Home to around a dozen unique sculptures made from granite, it’s an art exhibit under the open sky. 

Stroll through the Barossa’s Natural Bushgardens

Once you get to Nuriootpa, you’ll find the stunning Barossa Bushgardens. This amazing spot has been around since 2001. It’s a big 7-hectare area carefully designed to protect the area’s unique local plants, some of which were nearly extinct.  

It’s another beautiful and peaceful spot. There’s an awesome garden labyrinth built to help people relax, and the trails are perfect for a peaceful walk.

To promote community, the Bushgardens organises regular group walks. If you’re staying a few days, join it – it feels great exploring nature as part of a group.

They often hold interesting workshops on topics like pest control and land conservation too, with fun events like bat walks at twilight. 

The Bushgardens often hosts local art festivals (look out for the Sculpture competition in April), as well as the popular statewide SALA festival.  

So, would you like a guided tour? Or do you want to explore the Bushgardens by yourself? You can grab a map for a self-guided tour from their website here.

Either way, I’m sure you’ll have a great time and it will make your trip to the Barossa Valley even better.

Indulge in a Gelato at the Farm Shop by Maggie Beer 

Inside a shop with a table full of oils and vinegars. There are some tasting pots in the front.

Building your itinerary for Barossa Valley? Don’t miss visiting the Maggie Beer Farm Shop. If you aren’t familiar, Maggie Beer is a household name in Australia’s culinary scene. 

She makes delicious, hearty homemade meals, has authored droves of cookbooks and frequently graces the small screen. Never receiving a formal culinary education, her heart and passion lies in soulful homely cuisines. 

Back in the ’70s, she began making paté on her Barossa property, which eventually led to the opening of the Maggie Beer Farm Shop.

Today, the shop showcases dozens of products, among them, some pretty decadent ice cream—a must-try! 

During your visit, you’ll have the chance to sample numerous mouthwatering items. It’s also an ideal spot to pause for lunch while exploring Barossa Valley.

The menu is ever-changing, reflecting the fresh local and seasonal products available. Each dish is a work of art and boasts a gourmet touch. A tip: reserve a table in advance if you are visiting for lunch. 

Want even more? The Eatery also dishes out a range of classes. You’ll have the chance to sample the tasty creations and learn about the rich history of Maggie Beer’s farm while you’re at it.

Feast Your Eyes and Taste Buds at Local Farmers’ Markets

Looking along a row of stalls in a large shed making up the Barossa Farmer's Market

Strolling through local farmers’ markets is one of my favourite things to do in the Barossa Valley. Delightful smells, colourful displays, and people bustling—there’s nothing quite like it! 

A trip to the Barossa Valley Farmer’s Market should be at the top of your weekend agenda.

Every Saturday, from 7:30 to 11:30 am at Vintner’s Shed in Angaston, it’s a haven for foodies. You’re going to find fresh produce, meat, honey, pastries—the list goes on.

You can catch a glimpse of the weekly changes in the lineup here

Not to be outdone, the Mount Pleasant Farmer’s Markets are also held every Saturday from 8 am to 12 pm at the Mount Pleasant Showgrounds.

They display not only Barossa Valley’s produce but also that from the Adelaide Hills. Find out who the current stallholders are here.

Not just confined to mornings, they sometimes have evening markets and all-day festivals too. 

While you’re in the neighbourhood, don’t forget to look out for other periodic markets in the area: 

  • Rock’n’Roll Country Markets, Nuriootpa, happens every 2nd Sunday from September to April.
  • Barossa Made Market, Tanunda, scheduled intermittently.
  • Makers Market, Kapunda, rolls around every 3rd Sunday from November to April.
  • Angaston Country Markets, because, the more the merrier, right?

Discover Barossa Valley’s Chocolate Treasures

A colourful display of blocks of chocolate in a chocolate store

Don’t forget to swing by Barossa Valley Chocolate Company while in Barossa. With over 250 different chocolate varieties crafted in their Tanunda store, it’s a chocoholic’s delight! 

Their shop lets you choose from a wide assortment of chocolates. You can observe the confectionery process through the store’s glass windows as you browse. 

And hey, if you’re vegan, they’ve got you covered with a tempting selection of vegan chocolates too. 

Once you’ve stocked up on chocolate, pop into their café. A cup of hot cocoa could be just what you need. Or, if you fancy something light, have a quick bite or refreshment. 

Before heading out, don’t miss the ice cream booth. More decadence in store for you there! 

If like me, your chocolate appetite is yet to be satiated, head straight to the Fruchocs Shop on Tanunda’s main street for some of these SA icons.

Relish the Delights at Barossa Valley Cheese Co

Packaged cheeses on display behind a board with triangles of cheese in front for tasting

If you’re anything like me, a trip to wine country isn’t complete without indulging in some regional cheese too. In the heart of Angaston, you’ll find a cheese haven at the Barossa Valley Cheese Co. 

Drool over their cheeses, crafted from local cow and goat’s milk. You’re welcome to taste them all, and I guarantee that you’ll want to swing a few into your basket to enjoy later with your new wine finds. 

You can also partake in their special tasting experiences. Their cheese and wine trail is just divine.

Before you leave, check out their custom-made cheese wheel cakes. They are a thing apparently, and make wonderfully unique centrepieces for weddings and parties.

Paddle Your Way Through the Barossa on a Kayak

Do you know what’s surprisingly fun in the Barossa? Kayaking. That’s right, not exactly what you had in mind, huh?

Try strapping on a life vest and heading to the Warren Reservoir, tucked away at the edge of the Barossa Valley near Mount Crawford. 

The reservoir recently opened its gates for public recreation, and let me tell you, it’s a beautiful place to take a kayak for a spin. 

There are single and double kayaks, and a relaxed two-hour guided tour provides a unique, up-close-and-personal way to experience a different side of the valley. 

Don’t miss out, book your kayaking adventure today

Immerse Yourself in the Craft Beer Scene

Sure, wine flows like water here in the Barossa, but have you heard about the growing craft beer scene? I must tell you, these microbreweries and tap houses don’t disappoint.

Let’s walk through some to look out for, shall we? 

  • Steins Taphouse in Nuriootpa. Technically not a brewery, but they’ve got virtually every local craft brew under one roof.
  • The dashing Greenock Brewers in cozy Greenock. I often lose track of time here!
  • Barossa Valley Brewing in Tanunda. I can vouch for their beers, it’s always an inspired choice.
  • Tanunda’s Rehn Bier Brewery. A crowd favorite, and mine too!
  • The elusive Western Ridge Brewing in Greenock. No cellar door here, but their unique brews are all over the place, especially at the Barossa Farmers Market.
  • Ministry of Beer in Rosedale. Similar to Western Ridge, they don’t have a cellar door, but their beers can be found at Steins Taphouse.

Savour the Flavours of Local Gins

Four glasses with a small amount of gin in them, a bottle of tonic water and four small pieces of fruit as garnishes

Alright, so you’ve had your fill of wine and beer, it’s time to up the stakes with a little gin tasting. Isn’t it exciting to see the unfolding gin scene right here in Barossa Valley? 

I’ve seen some wineries branching out, adding gin and even whiskey to their offerings. What’s even more intriguing are the exclusive gin-tasting rooms popping up amidst the vineyards. 

Go on a gin-tasting adventure at these locations: 

  • Seppeltsfield Road Distillers in Marananga
  • The unique Barossa Distilling Company in Nuriootpa
  • Durand Distillery in Nuriootpa, they may not have a tasting room, but have phenomenal gins and a school for you budding gin makers!

Explore the Barossa Valley Wineries 

Even if you don’t want to do any wine tasting, it doesn’t mean you can’t absorb the beauty that the wineries offer.

The beautifully adorned Barossa Valley cellar doors typically come with restaurants or cafes, providing you a chance to dine amidst an idyllic landscape. 

Places like Jacobs Creek, Pindarie, First Drop Wines or Barossa Valley Estate have gardens you can stroll through after a lovely lunch.

But what stands out for me? The 1837 Barossa winery. With a stunning sculpture trail of 12 modern art pieces free to explore, it’s also home to a photogenic “1837 Barossa” sign and a stylish “wings of Barossa” sculpture. 

Capture the Beauty of Lyndoch Lavender Farm 

A field of lavender

The rise of Instagrammable locations has seen an influx of visitors at lavender farms worldwide, and Lyndoch Lavender Farm in the Barossa Valley is one of them.

Browse the numerous lavender-based products on sale, and sink your teeth into lavender scones or lavender ice cream at the on-site cafe. 

For a more immersive experience, you can take a self-guided tour which includes tastings and tea/coffee for as little as $2AUD or spend $7.50AUD for a guided tour.

Enroll in a Cooking Class 

Barossa Valley isn’t just about Maggie Beers when it comes to cooking classes. With a plethora of local produce, you have Casa Carboni in Angaston offering everything from pasta making to vegetarian workshops. 

Run by Matteo Carboni from Italy, it provides a first-class food experience. And if you’d rather just eat, you can enjoy breakfast or lunch, and wine on Friday evenings.

You could also learn to make cheese at the Cultured Cheese School, offering classes based on preference. Check out their upcoming classes on their website

Witness the Intrigue of the Herbig Family Tree 

A large tree with a hollowed out trunk that now has some information signs in it

It might seem bizarre, but yes, I’m recommending you visit a tree.

But the Herbig family tree isn’t just any tree. This centuries-old red gum housed Friedrich Herbig and his family during the 1850s. The first two of their brood of sixteen were even born in the hollow stump! 

With tenacity and resilience, they overcame hardships and eventually moved into a nearby hut. The tree stands as a testament to their spirit and is a spectacle to visit.

Zoom Around on a Segway Tour

Ever thought about going on a Segway tour? They are so much fun, and the one at Seppeltsfield Winery in Barossa is no exception.

You’ll learn heaps about the area, snap some fantastic photos and have a good laugh as you zoom around for about an hour. Now that’s my type of sightseeing! 

Book your Barossa Segway Tour here 

Explore the Charming Small Towns

Alright, you’ve got the big towns in Barossa like Tanunda, Nuriootpa, and Angaston. But there are these small, quaint towns scattered around as well. Oh, and did I mention they often have some fab local businesses? 

Take a stroll down the main streets and you might just bump into groovy cafes, antique shops, cozy bookstores, wee museums and galleries and even tiny producers.

And don’t be surprised to find top-notch restaurants and lodgings hidden away too, exploring these towns is an absolute treat. 

Get Festive at Barossa’s Events and Festivals 

While setting your itinerary for your trip to Barossa, be sure to see if any events or festivals coincide with your stay. I’ve personally found that these occasions can really add a special touch to your visit.

For music lovers, the “Day on the Green” festival might be up your alley. Or if you prefer laughing to beats, the comedy festival “Grapes of Mirth” is always a hoot. And if your visit falls in August, don’t miss out on the foodie fest “A Little More Barossa”.

Every second April the Barossa Vintage Festival pops up and there’s nothing quite like the joy of Christmas markets in the Barossa area.

If you’re a cycling fanatic (or even if you’re not), watching a stage of the SANTOS Tour Down Under zoom through the Barossa is something to consider.

Explore Kaiserstuhl Conservation Park’s Walking Trails

A rock in the scrub that is the shape of a horses head

Get moving and burn off some of those delightful Barossa Valley indulgences by hiking the Kaiserstuhl Conservation Park’s scenic trails. 

Take the Wallowa track to see Horse Head Rock. It looks like, well, a horse head! 

My favourite time to explore here is during spring or early summer. You’ll see plenty of wildflowers and keep your eyes peeled for kangaroos too.

For more walking trails, take a look at the Barossa Goldfields area too.

Experience the Cultural Institutes

The Barossa Valley is packed with several fascinating museums and art galleries that you seriously can’t miss. Let me give you a quick list: 

  • Barossa Museum – A must-stop in Tanunda! It shares amazing stories of the region’s history, especially about the German settlers.
  • Greenock Aviation Museum – A place that’s a treasure trove of aviation-related items and airplanes. You’ll be surprised at the vast amounts of model aircraft there!
  • Jamfactory at Seppeltsfield – My absolute favourite stop for looking at the craftsmanship of locals. You’ll find everything from delicate glassware, knife-crafting, millinery, and leatherwork there!
  • Doddridge Blacksmith Shop and Angaston Museum – Here you can check out blacksmithing in action – yup, it’s pretty cool. This hidden gem is tucked away in Angaston.
  • The Taste of the Region Interpretive Centre – This one’s in Kapunda. It offers a glimpse into local history, the surrounding nature, and the abiding cultural significance of our Aboriginal people.

Relish the Flavours of Vasse Virgin Olive Oil

A old stone building renovated to be the shop front of Vasse Virgin.

When you are in the Seppeltsfield area, don’t miss Vasse Virgin. Start your visit by browsing the variety of olive oils and other olive-derived products crafted here and in Western Australia. 

Apart from the array of culinary delights it offers, Vasse Virgin also boasts a line of natural skincare. You can watch their artists making the soaps using age-old techniques – it’s kind of mesmerising! 

Also available are various workshops to learn how to make your lip balm, or to learn about perfumes or olive oils.

Feast Your Eyes on Classic Jags

Tucked away in a little corner of the Barossa Valley, you’ll find the Carl Lindner Collection. It’s this fabulous curation of classic Jags that have been lovingly rebuilt and preserved over the last four decades. Any car enthusiast worth their salt wouldn’t want to miss out on this. 

They’re located in Tanunda and open for self-guided tours every Tuesday and Thursday from 10 am-12 pm. For those who prefer a bit more information, there’s a guided tour at 2 pm on the same days.

Drive Along Seppeltsfield Road

If you’re keen on catching gorgeous landscapes, then you shouldn’t miss the famous Seppeltsfield Road. With palm trees flanking both sides, it screams picture-perfect. 

I suggest setting aside some time for sunrise or sunset – if the weather is just right, it’s magical. It’s no wonder it’s a hit among landscape photographers and Instagram enthusiasts! 

Experience Traditional German Kegel

Ever heard of Kegel? This is a traditional German game, a gift from the early European settlers. It kind of reminds me of ten-pin bowling, but it’s a bit different – just nine pins and the lane is insanely long. 

Become part of the tradition. If you happen to be around on a Friday, pop over to the kegelbahn at Tanunda Kegel Club to experience this intriguing game. 

Got Spare Time? Try Ten Pin Bowling

Perhaps Kegel isn’t your cup of tea, or maybe the kegelbahn isn’t open whilst you’re in town. Instead head to Barossa Bowland, which is open all week, and is a great option on a rainy day in the Barossa. 

Aside from the satisfaction of knocking those pins over, you’ll also find a dinosaur-themed mini-golf course there. A total win if you’re travelling with kids. You can just turn up, but I’d book ahead just in case.

Front Seat at Barossa Rodeo

Rodeo might not be everyone’s cup of tea—I get it. But if you’re even slightly curious, it’s an exciting event to go to.

With ringside thrills, live entertainment, and piles of food & drink, it’s a blast. They even have short helicopter rides at the Barossa Rodeo!

Every December, Lyndoch hosts the Barossa Rodeo – I’d mark the calendar if I were you.

Travelling more in South Australia? Read these next
Things to do in Adelaide
Hahndorf – A German Gem in South Australia
Things to do in Victor Harbor for a Weekend

TRAVEL PLANNING ESSENTIALS

Find flights – I always use Skyscanner as my starting point when searching for flights. One search will give many options including airlines I may not have thought of. This means I can find the best possible flights to suit my needs

Book accommodation – my go to is always Booking.com for the best places to stay. It’s not just hotels anymore, but hostels, apartments, B&Bs and more. I love that the bookings are usually cancellable, and that I can book now and pay later.

Hire a rental carRentalCars.com is my go to here. It allows me to do just one search and it finds cars from many of the different supplies, so no checking multiple websites to compare.

Get travel insurance – you would have heard by now that saying “if you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel”. If we’ve learnt anything from the last couple of years it should be how essential travel insurance is. I use CoverMore for my insurance.

Pick up an eSIM – I tried an eSIM on my last trip and it was fantastic. I set it up before I went so it was ready as soon as I landed, and I still had access to my home number for emergencies. Get your own eSIM at Airalo.

Book activities, tours & attractions – I use a few different websites for this. Viator and Get Your Guide tend to be the first places I look. In Asia, Klook often has more options, and in Australia it’s Experience Oz.

Manage your money – the best way to manage your different currencies is with an account from Wise. You can hold money in many different currencies, and use them with the ATM card or from your phone.

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