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Sydney, Australia is one of the popular destinations among travellers to visit. Sydney offers many popular attractions such as The Barbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House, Blue Mountains, Hunter Valley, and Bondi Beach are few of those. However, the Blue Mountains and Hunter Valley are away from Sydney, and many visitors to Sydney have the question of whether to choose Blue Mountains OR Hunter Valley as a day trip from Sydney. You may find there are several questions posted in popular travel forums such as TripAdvisor and Reddit asking the same question. When an overseas traveller, in particular visitors from the USA and Canada, plans a visit to Land Down Under they have very limited time to spend on each state in Australia; adding New Zealand to this itinerary may narrow down the number of days to spend in Australia.
The statistics have shown that most travelers spend only 3 days in Sydney. From those 3 days, they tend to spend one to two days covering Sydney city attractions such as the Opera House and leave one day for a tour outside Sydney. Then the decision to make either select Blue Mountains private tour or a Hunter Valley wine tour. In this article, we have covered that for you. We (Sydney Top Tours) have explained the main attractions in the Blue Mountains area and the Hunter Valley region to make your mind choose what is the best day trip from Sydney that suits you. Also, we will be suggesting 3 itineraries for those who would like to cover popular attractions in those areas.
Top-rated Tourist Attractions in the Blue Mountains
The Blue Mountains, a natural sightseeing area covered with dense bushland, breathtaking lookouts, and wildlife. This popular landmark is located on one and half hour’s drive from Sydney to the inner west. The most visited landmark of Australia; the Three Sisters lookout located in the Blue Mountains, Katoomba. The Scenic World is another popular stop among visitors to the Blue Mountains where you can experience the world’s steepest passenger railway. There are a couple of boutique wineries in the Blue Mountains which is an unknown factor for many travelers. We have covered extensively ‘things to do in the Blue Mountains‘ in many articles and you can find that information here.
Best Things to Do in the Hunter Valley
Hunter Valley is a paradise for food and wine tasting. The 130-plus Hunter Valley wineries attract locals and overseas visitors to this oldest wine region of Australia for its special grape varieties of Semillon, Chardonnay, Shiraz, and Verdelho. Hunter Valley is not short of other attractions; for example, this region got the region’s best restaurants, artisan cheese factories, chocolate shops, and many more. If you are feeling adventurous, booking a balloon ride to have an eagle-eye view of the Hunter Valley or cuddling a koala are other things you can do at the Hunter Valley. Another wonderful place to consider in the valley is the Hunter Valley Gardens. The place consists of several (themed) gardens that will blow your mind, such as Italian Grotto, Rose Garden, Sunken Garden, and many more. The place will show you the true beauty of nature and you would definitely love it if you are a nature lover. If you want to get a completely new experience, you can also try horse riding. It would take you through experiences you never had. We recommend you read our articles related to things to do in the Hunter Valley here.
Blue Mountains OR Hunter Valley
So, now you may have a picture of what are the main attractions of each of these main destinations. And the decision is yours…..However, there are other things you need to consider before selecting either one of Blue Mountains OR Hunter Valley.
Firstly, you need to consider whom you are travelling with. As our experiences in tour guiding for several years around Sydney, Blue Mountains is the best family-friendly destination as opposed to Hunter Valley. Kids will love the rides at the Scenic World, or spot a Lyrebird in the bush. Secondly, the Blue Mountains is much closer to Sydney CBD and the drive only takes 1.5 hours from any Sydney hotel. However, Hunter Valley is an approximate 2-hour drive towards the North of Sydney with 170 Km one way. Therefore, the Blue Mountains is a definite kid-friendly destination. Hunter Valley is perfect for adults as it offers tastings from boutique wineries, beer tasting, distillery tasting and food experience.
Below are our suggested itineraries if you want to have a combined experience
Itinerary 1 – the Blue Mountains with wine tasting
As we have explained earlier, there are a few boutique wineries in the Blue Mountains. In particular, those wineries located at the Megalong Valley and are Megalong Valley and Dryridge wineries. So, if you want to visit the Blue Mountains on your visit to Sydney and do a wine-tasting session overlooking the Megalong Valley, this is the best suits you. If you have kids, they will enjoy this itinerary pretty much as there are Alpacas at Megalong Winery that they can take some photos of them as well.
Suggested stops – Euroka campground for wild kangaroo spotting, Three Sisters Lookout, Scenic World, Cahill’s Lookout, and Megalong Valley
Itinerary 2 – the Blue Mountains and Hunter Valley with one night stay
This is one of the unique tour itineraries and mostly not for many of you. However, one of the best ways to cover both of these main attractions. Follow the above tour itinerary excluding the wine tasting. Replace the wine tasting by a stop at the Featherdale wildlife park on your way to the Blue Mountains to hand-feed kangaroos and pat a Koala. So, the trick is where to stop for an overnight stay.
We suggest you drive past Richmond and book an overnight stay at the Tobruk Homestead. It will be one of your memorable stays with rustic style yet modern facilities. Try some of their dampers with golden syrup and melting butter followed by a Billy tea.
Day two; add another experience to this trip by crossing the Wisemans ferry ride. A vehicular ferry crosses the Hawkesbury River. Then drive towards the Hunter Valley for wine tasting via M1.
Itinerary 3 – Two-day trips from Sydney
The last avenue left for you is if you do not prefer any of the above tour itineraries. Book a Blue Mountains private tours from Sydney and return to Sydney accommodation and visit Hunter Valley on the next day.
We assume we have given enough guidance to your question to select Blue Mountains OR Hunter Valley for your visit to Sydney. Let us know if you have any further questions. Our customer service team will help you to provide related information. If you need a trusted and reliable tour operator to handle all your Sydney tours, contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (+61) 498507873.