This region of Victoria, with its undulating vineyards and small towns, is surrounded by an endless swath of the pristine Australian bush, and offers awe-inspiring adventures around every bend.
Better yet, it's only an hour away from Melbourne's central business district.
Healesville is known for its excellent restaurants and wineries, as well as its hipster-friendly bars, galleries, and shops.
Warburton is a genuine country town, full of character and amazing scenery. Further, Marysville is home to a veritable outdoor paradise, complete with countless trails for walking, cycling, and even skiing.
Expect meandering roads through ancient forests, countless hiking and bicycling trails, and superb providores, cellar doors, cafes, and restaurants in the in-between.
Slow drives through to the forest, a sausage bun from a country bakery, and discovering a hidden cellar door with organic wines are what the Yarra Valley is all about for us.
There are long strolls through verdant forests, fireside chats, and late-night sips of Lambrusco at outdoor farmer's markets.
No matter what you're into, our Yarra Valley guide has you covered with recommendations for the top sights, hidden gems, lodging, dining, and transportation options.
Where, And What Is The Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley, Victoria's wine country, is found just east of Melbourne's central business district.
The Yarra Valley is a favourite weekend destination for Melburnians due to its picturesque landscape, which includes vineyards, quaint towns, deep forests, and winding roadways. For at least thirty thousand years, the Wurundjeri have called the Yarra Valley home.
Rapid transformation occurred as a result of European settlement, with wood, mining, and farming quickly rising to prominence in the new state. Yarra Valley's outstanding terroir for wine production wasn't recognised for long before the Ryrie brothers, in the 1800s, set about planting their first vines there.
Has since, viticulture has flourished as the world recognises the quality of the region's wine. St. Huberts, De Bortoli, Yering Station, and Oakridge are just a few of the world-famous wineries that call this region home.
Victorians are increasingly drawn to the Yarra Valley for its renowned cuisine, wine, and scenic beauty.
Getting To Yarra Valley
It takes about an hour to drive to Yarra Valley from Melbourne. Proceed east on the motorway until you reach Maroondah Hwy.
You can also take the train to Belgrave, Lilydale, or Hurstbridge. Day trips to Yarra Valley may be booked through a number of different businesses for between $110 and AUD 150 per person. For this price, visitors can enjoy excursions to the region's major sights, including 4-5 wineries, a gourmet lunch, and round-trip transportation.
Unlike the Barossa Valley, Margaret Creek, Hunter Valley, and many other outstanding wine regions in Australia, getting to Yarra Valley is not a three-hour effort.
Where To Stay In The Yarra Valley
We advise spending at least one night in the Yarra Valley, despite its proximity to Melbourne. There is no shortage of fantastic hotels, and we've included some of our favourites below:
We've produced a guide to the top best airbnbs in the Hunter Valley, that you'll discover here. To tide you over, here are a brief glimpse at a few of our favourites:
Despite its compact size, the Alsace Retreat provides ample space for all of your needs. Comfortable bed, picture-postcard views of Mount Saint Leonard, fully-stocked kitchen, coffee maker, central heating, and air conditioning.
Separate from the main bathroom is a tub and shower, perfect for a relaxing bath or shower.
Ancient Future At Warby Sabi
The minimalist Japanese-style Warby Sabi Airbnb, just a few minutes' walk up a steep hill from Warburton village, makes you feel like you've stepped out of time.
Ample kitchenware, basics, fresh herbs from the garden, sturdy barn-style sliding doors, and a bed with a view of the trees make this the ideal place to wake up in the morning.
There's a TV projector and a warm inside fireplace, perfect for a group movie marathon.
The ample natural light Warburton Digs is great for a weekend getaway with a large group, whether you're going to ride bikes on the rail path, climb the surrounding trails, or sample the finest wine offers from the Yarra Valley.
The home has four bedrooms, bathrooms, 3 different toilets, air conditioning for the summer, and a warm inside wood fireplace for the winter, making it an ideal place to stay for a large group.
The fully equipped kitchen and living space with the open floor layout are perfect for any catering needs you may have.
The Loft @ Alchemy Distillers
The Loft is ideally located in the centre of Healesville. You'll find this trendy apartment atop the Alchemy Distillery, just steps away from the vibrant nightlife of the city's main drag.
Together all wineries and also the Black Spur are easily accessible as well. Winning.
The Healesville Hotel is a charming boutique hotel in the heart of the city, making it an ideal destination for a romantic weekend getaway.
The blue Kombi is always a plus, the mattresses are super nice, and the Warburton Motel is conveniently located within walking distance of the main drag.
Oscar's On The Yarra
Oscar's on the Yarra, located in a boutique country mansion built in the 1920s on the riverbank of the Yarra River, is a relaxing getaway for city dwellers in search of peace and quiet in the country.
Top Things To Do In Yarra Valley
Visit the Yarra Valley Information Centre in Healesville to get your bearings.
This is the best source to acquire information on the Yarra Valley, including walking maps, winery locations, and suggestions for things to do.
Yarra Valley is a great place to visit since it has everything you could want: hiking trails, native species, breathtaking scenery, fine eating, and even hot air balloon rides! Any of our favourite things to do while visiting Yarra Valley are:
Check Out The Beautiful Scenery Of Yarra Valley
Nature was clearly on the side of Yarra Valley, as she bestowed upon it an idyllic blend of vast farmlands, meticulously maintained vineyards, dense and luscious wildlife reserves, and a wealth of wildlife.
Visit Healesville Sanctuary in Yarra Valley if you're interested in seeing some of Australia's most beloved reptiles, birds, plus mammals.
The Yarra Valley is a beautiful place, and the vistas there ought to not be missed.
They can be found all across the valley, from the east near Healesville to the west past Christmas Hills, and each one boasts breathtaking panoramas of the valley's verdant hills, expansive vineyards, and forested mountains.
We found some of the best Yarra Valley panoramas at TarraWarra Estate and Domaine Chandon, but the sunset from SkyHigh Mount Dandenong was unrivalled. As the sun sank over Melbourne's central business district, the sky turned a gorgeous shade of multicoloured.
Enjoy The Fine Wine Of Yarra Valley
Of course, the most recognized of the Yarra Valley highlights is the wine. The Yarra Valley region's calm, sunny climate is ideal for producing a wide range of high-quality wines by some of the best wineries in the world.
Whether you’re after a silky Pinot Noir, a crisp Pinot, or you prefer a lively glass of sauvignon blanc, there is a shortage of selections to please even fussiest wine aficionado.
De Bortoli, Domaine Chandon, Yering Ranch, Yarra Yering, and TarraWarra Estate are just a few of the award-winning "must see" wineries in Yarra Valley; there are also many smaller producers, such as Coldstream Hills, Wattle Ridge, Innocent Bystander, and many more.
De Bortoli's extensive tasting menu was our favourite, especially when paired with cheeses from the milk shop located just inside the cellar entrance.
Explore The Other Beverages
Don't worry if wine is indeed not your thing and you're wondering how to use it in Yarra Valley. Non-wine drinkers in Yarra Valley won't be disappointed, as there are several pubs serving cider and Pale Ale.
The Meletos Ciderhouse and Brewery is a must-visit for beer enthusiasts in Yarra Valley. You can order the ideal sampling paddle with four of your prefered beers or ciders. You may also try one of the several beers brewed by White Rabbit Brewery, which are all in the Belgian style.
Feast On Great Food
You're in for a real treat if you decide to spend your weekend in Yarra Valley. On Saturday nights, many of the Yarra Glen wineries host special dinners where they serve their greatest wines alongside dishes prepared by their top chefs. Combine that with a beautiful panorama, and throw in some class and sophistication, and you have one of the best ways to spend an afternoon in Yarra Valley.
The Innocent Bystander's sharing plates and world-famous pink Moscato convinced us to forego the formal four-course meal. It was the ideal finale to our day in Yarra Valley, with a beautiful outside seating area with the sun setting in the background.
The Yarra Valley Full-Day Gourmet Tour, for example, combines chocolate, cheese, and wine tastings to bring you the full works and is just one example of the wonderful food-focused excursions available in the Yarra Valley.
More Food Options In Yarra Valley:
- Delicious meal served in a former church nearby Sassafras is so exquisite that eating there is almost a spiritual experience. The high tea is the main attraction, but the non - meat options are plenty.
- Zonzo Estate: This restaurant is located in the picturesque Yarra Glen wine region, and its menu features wonderful wood-fired pizzas and quality wine, all of which may be enjoyed as a group.
- The Tramonto Restaurant and Drinking Den: Set in Badgers Brooks Estate Winery, this winner restaurant develops seasonal meals to suit. They use locally grown and gratis ingredients and prides themselves upon their relations with the local growers.
- As for Oscar's, it's right on the Yarra! Enjoy upscale cuisine in a picturesque location while gazing at the Yarra River. Their menu is simple and changes every week, but there are always vegetarian alternatives that go well with their superb wine selection.
Reasons Why You Should Visit Yarra Valley, Australia
Great things to do in Melbourne include visiting the Healesville Sanctuary to see dingoes, koalas, wombats, bunnies, and even the Tasmanian devil; riding the Puffing Billy steam train; and perusing Indigenous art at the Address those issues Museum of Art.
There was a vineyard at Yering Hill in 1838, and in the 1860s and 1870s, viticulture quickly grew in Victoria, the state's centre for the wine industry.
Now home to over 160 wineries, the Yarra Valley's colder environment makes it ideal for growing grapes for making chardonnay, cabernet sauvignon, shiraz, and pinot noir.
Domaine O’hare, De Bortoli, Oakridge, and Yering Station are just few of the local wineries worth visiting.
The Yarra Vale in Australia is well-known for its high-quality wine and acclaimed restaurants.
However, the local culture isn't limited to its culinary offerings. You may view dingoes, koalas, wombats, tortoises, and even the Tasmanian devil at the Healesville Sanctuary; take a trip on the Puffing Billy train; and peruse Indigenous art so at TarraWarra Museum of Art, just to name a few of the 12 reasons to visit.
The state of Victoria produces some of the best wines in Australia and hosts some of the best winery tours in the world.
Visit the renowned wineries of the Yarra Valley, the Mornington Peninsula, the Macedon Ranges, Geelong, and the Center is located Peninsula with us on a personalised, individualised trip.
City Minicabs will provide you a tour of Victoria's wineries while you take in the state's beautiful sceneries.
Hot Air Ballooning
Get up early to take a hot air balloon over the Yarra Valley for a breathtaking view.This once-in-a-lifetime opportunity will leave you speechless with its unparalleled panoramas over the area. As the sun rises, you will glide over vine-draped slopes. There should be a champagne breakfast as soon as you land.
The mission of Healesville Sanctuary is to protect native Australian animal species, and it does so through operating as a non-profit organisation.
The zoo has a wide variety of habitats where you may see dingoes, koalas, wombats, kangaroos, and even a Tasmanian devil.
The Land of both the Parrots is an aviary where visitors can stroll around and see some of the zoo's about 200 native bird species.
You can also visit the Australian Environmental Health Centre, which offers up-close interactions with injured and ill native animals.
Black Spur Drive
The beautiful Black Spur Drive spans the distance of 30 kilometres (19 miles) along the Maroondah Highway, connecting the towns of Healesville and Narbethong.
Put your windows down and zigzag deep into the forest, where the eucalyptus trees are the highest flowering bushes in the world.
Marysville is a great alpine town to stop and relax in one of the numerous quaint cafés.
Things To Do In Yarra Valley With The Family
Although most people wouldn't consider a resort town a family vacation spot, Yarra Valley is a great place to bring the kids.
If you're looking for things to do in Yarra Valley with kids, consider taking them on a thrilling zip-lining trip across the treetop obstacle course of Dandenong Ranges.
Thrill-seekers and ecotourists alike will enjoy this enormous aerial obstacle course.
What about spending the day at the Usually contains Sanctuary, surrounded by native Australian animals? It's a fantastic chance to meet some of the most popular animals in the country.
You can take a self-guided tour on one of the many trails, or you can attend one of the free Herpetologist talks to understand how the animals and also the environments they live in.
Yarra Valley Chocolatier
However, if that isn't enough to keep the kids entertained, one of the best day outings in the Yarra Valley is a visit to the Yarra Valley Chocolatier and Ice-Creamery.
Everyone, young and old alike, secretly wishes they could visit the largest, most magnificent, Willy Wonka-like kingdom of chocolate deliciousness.
This venue not only has free chocolate sampling, but also hundreds of fine chocolates upon display and the services of some of the world's best chocolatiers. You can't leave without a purchase, and you can't help but try everything.
Needless to say, if you still need convincing to add Yarra Valley to your itinerary while in Australia, the Yarra Valley Chocolatier will do the trick. In addition, a golden ticket is not required for entry.
How Much Time Do You Need To Spend In Yarra Valley?
Day trips to Yarra Valley are highly recommended from Melbourne. More than two-thirds of tourists who visit the area only stay long enough to sample the Pinot Noir and cheese produced nearby before heading back to the city before sundown.
There is no need for an elaborate setup on a Yarra Valley trip. But it can be, as Yarra Valley offers a wide variety of attractions. Spend some time at other Yarra Valley landmarks, eat some tasty food, and Relax.
The Yarra Valley is Victoria's wine region, and it's located just to the east of Melbourne's CBD. Some of the most prestigious wineries in the world are based here, including St. Huberts, De Bortoli, Yering Station, and Oakridge. Yarra Valley is a fantastic tourist destination because it provides a little bit of everything: stunning natural beauty, excellent restaurants, native wildlife, and of course, wine. If you're looking for local information, the Yarra Valley Information Centre is your best bet. Because of its mild, sunny climate, Yarra Valley is home to some of the world's finest wineries.
You may witness some of Australia's most well-loved lizards, cockatoos, and koalas at the Healesville Sanctuary in the Yarra Valley. Dinners featuring the finest wines from the region's many vineyards are common in the Yarra Valley, and many of those vineyards arrange special events when their best chefs serve up the food. The Yarra River is home to many attractive spots, including Oscar's, Zonzo Estate, and The Tramonto Restaurant and Drinking Den. Yarra Vale has earned a stellar reputation for its excellent dining and wine. Learn about and interact with native animals such the dingo, koala, wombat, tortoise, and Tasmanian devil.
Travel aboard the Puffing Billy and stop by the TarraWarra Museum of Art, which houses important Indigenous art collections. You must go to the Yarra Valley Ice Creamery and Chocolatier. Try out the Dandenong Ranges' treetop obstacle course by going on a zip line tour. Visit the Healesville Sanctuary to see some of the most well-known creatures in Australia.
- People from all across Victoria are flocking to the Yarra Valley to experience its stunning natural beauty and world-famous food and wine.
- If you want to witness some of Australia's most well-loved reptiles, birds, and mammals, you should go to Healesville Sanctuary in Yarra Valley.
- Because of its mild, sunny climate, the Yarra Valley region is home to some of the world's finest wineries.
- Dine on fine cuisine while taking in stunning views of the Yarra River at this lovely restaurant.
- Australia's Yarra Valley is famous for its excellent wine and respected dining establishments.
- There are a dozen things to do in the area, including visiting the Healesville Sanctuary to see dingoes, koalas, wombats, tortoises, and even the Tasmanian devil; riding the Puffing Billy train; and browsing the TarraWarra Museum of Art's collection of Indigenous art.
- Some of Australia's best wines come from the state of Victoria, and the state's wineries are among the best in the world to visit.
- Take a hot air balloon ride above the Yarra Valley first thing in the morning to witness the sunrise.
- Consider taking the kids on a thrilling zip-lining tour across the treetop obstacle course of Dandenong Ranges if you're seeking for activities to do in Yarra Valley with them.
- But if that's not enough to occupy the little ones, the Yarra Valley Chocolatier and Ice-Creamery is a great place to spend the day.
- Visit additional attractions in the Yarra Valley, fill up on delicious local fare, and unwind.
FAQs About Yarra Valley
With heaps of stuff to do, see, eat (and of course, drink), the Yarra Valley is still Victoria's ultimate city escape. You can get everything here: boutique hotels among the trees, some of Australia's best wineries, highly renowned cheese shops and some truly epic drives.
Though it's possible to visit during a day trip from Melbourne, you do miss out on many sights, attractions and food & wine hotspots. For this reason, we'd recommend staying at least two days/1 night, thus allowing yourself time to travel slowly, considerately and without missing any of the good stuff.
Recognised as one of the world's great cool-climate wine-producing regions, the Yarra Valley not only has a rich history of wineries but also a significant history with beer and cider production dating back to the early 1800s. The Yarra Valley has over 80 cellar doors, plus many more vineyards.
Yes, the driving distance between Melbourne to Yarra Valley is 32 km. It takes approximately 27 min to drive from Melbourne to Yarra Valley.
Council again urges the State Government to reclassify non-urban areas of Yarra Ranges as regional, with the entire municipality caught up in the latest metropolitan Melbourne lockdown.