Easter is almost upon us again, and with the celebration falling at the start of the school holidays, this year it’s a fabulous time for getting out and exploring all the region has to offer. There will be plenty to do across Hunter Valley Wine Country throughout the Easter long weekend (10 to 13 April), with some eggcellent activities for the kids and a few tasty treats for mums and dads as well.
April is a beautiful time of year to visit the Hunter Valley Gardens, with bright sunny weather anticipated and an array of entertainment on offer for the whole family to enjoy. Over the Easter weekend, the kids will be peering through bushes and under trees to find the famous giant golden egg which will win a lucky visitor an annual family pass to the Gardens. Plus, don’t forget the enormous easter egg hunt on every day over the long weekend.
A few more unusual eggs will also be on show at the Gardens this Easter thanks to the Mega Creatures display, which is running across the long weekend and throughout the school holiday period. Spot a Stegosaurus, tiptoe past the Triceratops and try not to tremble at the sight of the giant T-Rex! It’ll be difficult to avoid the six-metre-long winged dragon or the toothy two-headed dragon – so stay on your toes! Check out the new additions to this popular prehistoric event including archaeological fossil digs, the secret dinosaur egg-hunt daily and the fabulous Dino Mights stage show.
If that’s not enough thrills and excitement for one visit, why not get into the carnival vibe and take a ride on one of the Gardens’ amazing rides with a ride-pass (purchased from the event area). There’s the Venetian carousel, 25m Ferris wheel, super speedy swing chair or giant slide, or bounce off that chocolate-induced sugar rush in the kids’ inflatable world.
If you’re looking to add a few more eggs to your basket before you leave Hunter Valley Gardens, make sure you stop by Shop 5 in the village and check out the gourmet delights on offer at the Hunter Valley Chocolate Company.
The destination of choice for those looking to indulge in something truly special, the artisan chocolate makers have been lovingly crafting their wares since 1999 using only the highest quality Belgian or Swiss couverture chocolate, together with Australian dried fruits and nuts, and distilled pure fruit oil infusions.
There’s something to cater to every taste bud, with dark, milk and white buttons and blocks a staple of the range. Easter is undoubtedly their busiest time of year, and during this period Hunter Valley Chocolate Company branches out to include a few sensational seasonal lines including the ever-popular freckled eggs, and a more novel product, which uses a real rainbow-dyed eggshell that kids can peel off to discover a delicious praline nougat underneath.
Hunter Valley Chocolate Company’s amazing array of handcrafted products are available seven days a week online as well as in-store at their “Twenty-3-Twenty” Chocolate & Fudge Factory on Broke Road and their retail outlets at Hunter Valley Gardens and Peterson’s House.
Parents keen to pick up a treat for themselves that isn’t chocolate related should check out The Garden Cellars, with an Easter Long Weekend sale not to be missed. There will be tastings available and wine dozens on offer from $144, including Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Cabernet Merlot and more, while stocks last.
Once you’ve had your fill of the fun at the Gardens, don’t forget to stop by Kevin Sobels Wines just down the road and check out the handcrafted treasures on offer at the Handmade in the Hunter Markets. To celebrate Easter the markets will run all weekend, from 9am–3pm on Saturday and 9am–2pm on Easter Sunday.
Organiser Karen Rowe promises plenty of zany Easter fun, with bunny ears galore, a sprinkling of chocolate and “whatever else we can dream up to make your visit to the market a festive time”.
Alongside the Easter craziness will be a market full of passionate stallholders who love to chat about what they do and show you their work.
If you feel like something a bit more substantial than a chocolate egg or two, why not grab a bite to eat at one of the region’s fine dining restaurants or gourmet cafés.
Bimbadgen will be open every day throughout Easter (excluding Good Friday). There will be lawn games and kids colouring in available along with a family deal in the pizza café. Enjoy two Pizzas and two glasses of beautiful Bimbadgen wines PLUS two kids pizzas and two kids drinks and four (yes four!) Gelato’s – all for only $60.
Hunters Quarter (HQ) is a relaxed and elegant dining destination, located in the Cockfighters Ghost Vineyard of Pokolbin. With a dining space that has something for everyone, including a private terrace in the vineyards, it’s the perfect place to while away a few hours with family, friends and fantastic food this Easter. Over the Easter weekend (excluding Good Friday), Hunters Quarter will be serving up an Easter feast for diners with a scrumptious three-course menu. Bookings are essential – phone 4998 7776.
To stay up to date with Easter opening times and events as they are announced, visit www.yourhuntervalley.com.au