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Things to do in McLaren Vale: Make The Most Of Your Weekend Getaway

There’s much more to this picturesque region than vineyards, but it’s a good place to start as you make your way through the best things to do in McLaren Vale.

d'Arenberg
d'Arenberg

The beauty of South Australia is that you can drive for an hour and be in a different world. East you have the hills, North you have Barossa, West you have some of the best beaches and South you have the one and only McLaren Vale. Famed for its countless cellar doors, award winning Shiraz and endless landscapes, there’s so much to fill your trip up with you’ll just have to go and visit again.

The Slo Whey
The Slo Whey
Make Your Own Cheese

The one time you’ll be excited to go back to school – at the SloWhey School of Cheese. Building its foundations on goals to educate and celebrate sustainable cheesemaking and a slower way of living, they pride themselves on having no artificial colours, flavours, or intelligence. By visiting you’re not just learning the art of cheese, you’re also supporting a local, family ran business.

409 Colville Rd, Hope Forest

Adelaide Biplanes
Adelaide Biplanes
See Things From A Different View

Now this is a solid bucket list item. Go back in time with Adelaide Biplanes’ flying experiences, taking off from Aldinga Airfield and fly south along the Fleurieu Peninsula, where you’ll head out across the eastern coast of Kangaroo Island and over The Deep Creek Conservation Park, up over the hills that surround the McLaren Vale wine region and back into Aldinga Airfield near Sellicks Beach. A once in a lifetime experience.

Aldinga Airfield, 174 Colville Road, Aldinga

Down The Rabbit Hole
Down The Rabbit Hole
Sip Your Way Around A Few Cellar Doors

Because you can’t go to McLaren Vale without visiting a cellar door… or three. With each one offering something individual, the experience is a gift that keeps giving. Perhaps start at Alpha Box and Dice and their alphabet range of wines, then onto the picturesque Chapel Hill Wines for wine as fantastic as their architecture and then pop past Down The Rabbit Hole for the Instagramable wine experience.


McLaren Vale Distillery,
McLaren Vale Distillery,
Discover Something Other Than Wine

Not everyone is into wine! Or perhaps you’ve already hit up your fair share of cellar doors and are looking to sniff out something different. Try out the new opening; The McLaren Vale Distillery, opening May 2nd, for a taste of some rich, smooth whiskey. Or maybe a craft beer in a lush, green suntrap, at Goodieson Brewery, where you may even spot a kangaroo or two hopping around.

Or Get Your 2-in-1 With Wine and Gin Together

Want to do it all but can't be stuffed hopping from winery to distillery. Luckily for you Chalk Hill Wines and Never Never Distillery share a pretty epic cellar door, with one side offering the world class wines of Chalk Hill and the other half, award winning gins from the infamous Never Never Distilling Co. As if that wasn't already good enough, the friendly crew from Cucina Di Strada are there to fill your bellies with mouth watering pizza's, mezze platters and Pinza paddles.

d’Arenberg Cube
d’Arenberg Cube
Blend Your Own Wine

Naturally, the d’Arenberg Cube was going to make an appearance within this list – a famous sight within McLaren Vale. With plenty to do here that would fill an entire day up, it could be difficult to choose what to do first – we would highly recommend stepping up to their blending bench and trying your hand at playing winemaker for the day. One experience on offer includes an eight course food and wine degustation, and of course – you get to take a bottle of your very own blend home with you. 

58 Osborn Rd, McLaren Vale

Maslins Beach via Coastal Wings
Maslins Beach via Coastal Wings
Get Off The Roads And Into The Water

One of the best ways to see this area is via the water, kayaking no less. Getting that little bit closer to nature, paddling away the stress of your everyday life and if you’re lucky enough you may even spot some sea life! There are designated areas to stop off and have a little BBQ and sink into the surrounding nature. 

Exact location upon booking

Vineyard Retreat
Vineyard Retreat
Sleep In A Luxury Pod

We all need some luxury in our lives every now and then. You can get this and then some at The Vineyard. With specially built indulgent pods that have been designed to ensure an effortless and immersive stay. You have your own private deck attached – all with en-suite. It is honestly the only way to go after a long day of sipping through the cellar doors. 

165 Whitings Road, Blewitt Springs

Mclaren Vale via Serio
Mclaren Vale via Serio
Walk The Shiraz Trail

Take a walk on the wild side with the Shiraz Trail, starting from McLaren Vale (Almond Train) and going right down to Willunga through a steady 7.4km (one-way) track. You’ll pass vineyards, some of the older architecture of the area, grazing sheep and the lush greenery including towering Eucalyptus trees. Surely at the end of this trek you deserve a glass of something chilled. 

Address available on site


Once you've sipped, swam and churned your way through the best things to do in Mclaren Vale, visit some more of Adelaide's beautiful wine regions. Take a tour through the whimsical Adelaide Hills, or perhaps venture a little further to the Barossa Valley.