Leaving Sydney for summer holidays is the done thing. With days of light that linger long into the evening, we gather at BBQs, enjoy swimming, fishing and other outdoor activities. Yet what's the plan for the cooler months of the year?
We reckon winter is the time to run away and curl up by a fire, read a book, drink good wine, and savour long slow cooked dishes. With that in mind, here's our pick of five winter weekend escapes from Sydney. And with our winter agenda in mind, you'll note fireplaces and wine regions are the priority.
1. The Tannery
On the doorstep of the Mudgee wine region, and located in town, the Tannery cottage built in the late 1850s, retains much of its natural charm. Catering for up to two couples, there is a comfortable lounge with open fire, two bedrooms with luxurious linen, comfortable beds, a fabulous dining room and the industrial stainless steel kitchen compliments the simple style of the early Victorian era.
48 Lawson Street, Mudgee, New South Wales, Australia
Of course, a bit of beach does us good at any time of year. Bannisters snuggles up close to Mollymook beach and gives us winter cuddles with a choice of luxury rooms, that include private balconies and spectacular views. Then there's this gem, the private beach house of internationally-renowned Chef Rick Stein is available for rental. A refurbished 60’s style coastal retreat, Rick’s Place still retains hallmarks of its earlier days, including wide decks and retro style bathrooms and other original touches. And of course there’s a well equipped kitchen, designed by Rick himself to please even the most ambitious cook.
191 Mitchell Parade, Mollymook, New South Wales, Australia
3. Bells At Killcare
Bells offers the most promising compromise between surf and turf: the beaches of Killcare and the bush of the Bouddi National Park, as well as the local folklore of spiritual magic. The award winning accommodation offers five star luxury suites, 1 and 2 bedroom cottages, and villas, sensitive and healing spa treatments plus the biggest bonus. Bells at Killcare has extensive kitchen gardens within the grounds that supply the award winning Manfredi At Bells restaurant.
107 The Scenic Rd, Killcare Heights, New South Wales, Australia
4. Jenolan Caves House
Just because it's winter, the need to exercise a little doesn't stop. There are choices of leisurely walks, or more active activities available. And when the activities comes accompanied by the grandeur of spectacular limestone caves, all the better. Then add the charming historic Blue Mountains accommodation of Caves House from the turn of the 20th century (think 1900, think 115 years) and the prize is complete.
4655 Jenolan Caves Rd, Jenolan New South Wales, Australia
5. The Vintry
There's a couple of choices here. Stayed holed up in the spacious and luxurious self contained country house, take in the private mountain views of Brokenback from the verandah, and curl up by the fire as winter demands. Or have your arm twisted to wander a few metres down the road to Audrey Wilkinson, Tulloch, Lindemans, Poole's Rock and Brokenwood cellar doors. The optimum winter choice might be a little bit of this and a little bit of that. Even when you're curled up by the fire, there is a need for wine supplies, of course.
780 De Beyers Road, Pokolbin New South Wales, Australia