Top 10 Things to Do in the Swan Valley, WA inner banner

Top 10 Things to Do in the Swan Valley, WA

It didn't take our thirsty colonial forbears long to recognise the potential of Western Australia's Swan Valley as a winemaking region. Today this picturesque part of the state is awash with fine wine, gourmet foodstuffs, and all manner of other indulgences. Tick off these ten tempting things to see and do.
Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley
Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley. Image: Tourism Western Australia

Top Oz Tours offers a range of Swan Valley wine tours from Perth. You can browse the options here.

There are lots of good reasons to add a visit to the Swan Valley to your itinerary when visiting Perth.

Let’s start with the fact that it’s just a 25-minute drive from the CBD. Convenient! Secondly, the Valley is home to a plethora of world-class wineries and innovative eateries. And thirdly, there are oodles of attractions and things to do across this compact region. Sound good so far? Well, let’s get down to specifics.

Here’s a checklist of our top ten things to do in the Swan Valley.


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1. Feast on fine food

Thanks to its temperate climate and rich soils, the Swan Valley yields quality fresh produce all year round. And from humble roadside stalls to fine dining restaurants, there’s no shortage of ways to indulge your inner foodie. Shop for Australian-style nougat from Mondo Nougat, infused honey from The House of Honey, more sweet delights from Margaret River Chocolate Company, and preserves and olive oil from Providore. Conclude your gourmet grazing with a winery lunch at Mandoon Estate’s celebrated eatery Wild Swan, or Sandalford Wines’ equally impressive in-house restaurant.

Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley
Sample the Swan Valley’s array of gourmet treats. Image: Tourism Western Australia

2. Try some great wines

Who could visit the Swan Valley and not delve into its fabulous wine scene? Visit large scale producers like Houghton Wines and Sandalford, or opt for a boutique cellar door experience at the likes of Sittella and Fig Tree Estate Winery. Just be sure not to draw the short straw as designated driver!

Speaking of which, you could make the day extra special on a private Swan Valley wine tour with Perth Hummer. Imagine arriving at each cellar door in your own private stretch Hummer. It’s the ultimate in glam travel and promises plenty of selfie-worthy moments!

3. Meet the furry and feathered locals

See, pat, and get selfies with all kinds of cuddly (and not so cuddly) critters at the Valley’s Caversham Wildlife Park, Western Australian Reptile Park, and Whiteman Conservation Park. Feed kangaroos, ride camels, milk goats, or pet pythons. The choice is yours!

Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley
Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley: Caversham Wildlife Park

4. Step back in time in Guildford

Established in 1829, Guildford is one of the oldest towns in Western Australia and the gateway to the Swan Valley. To learn more, check out the ongoing Cradle of the Colony exhibition at the Visitor Information Centre. You can also get a feel for the past by wandering along the James Street antiques strip (browse the eclectic wares at Curio Warehouse, Retrofind, and quirky Dr Russell’s Imaginarium), enjoying a cuppa at the Guildford Village Tearooms, or settling in for lunch at WA’s oldest operating hotel — the atmospheric Rose and Crown.

5. Sample the region’s best craft brews

The Swan Valley may be best known for its wine industry, but did you know it’s also a craft brewing hot spot? And trust me, you may have a hard time choosing where to pop in for a paddle! Definitely put new-kid-on-the-block Valley Social (formerly Elmar’s in the Valley) to the test, and swing by Duckstein Brewery for German-style brews. Even Mandoon Estate has got in on the action with their offshoot Homestead Brewery.

Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley
Homestead Brewery. Image: Tourism Western Australia

6. Visit galleries galore

From painters to potters, the Swan Valley is home to a large community of talented artisans. See stunning sculptural works at Gombok Gallery, which has an indoor exhibition space and outdoor sculpture park. Maalinup Aboriginal Gallery offers rich insights into the region’s Indigenous cultural heritage. And if you’re a lover of linocut prints and textiles, you must visit visual artist Jude Taylor’s studio. Her work is inspired by Western Australia’s unique flora and is full of vibrancy.

Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley
Image: Jude Taylor

7. Take a maker’s masterclass

Ever fancied yourself as the next Heston Blumenthal? Perhaps you’re a wannabe winemaker or burgeoning barista? Find out if you have what it takes during your stay in the Swan Valley. There are all sorts of classes and hands-on experiences on offer. Learn to make macarons with the experts at French patisserie Maison Saint-Honore, or turn out your own ricotta and feta under the guidance of The Cheese Maker. Sandalford Wines will show you how to create a unique wine blend, while Yahava Koffee Academy reveals the secrets to making killer flat whites.

Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley
Learn to be a barista at Yahava Koffeeworks. Image: Tourism Western Australia

8. Head for the great outdoors

Whether its picnicking in parks or strolling by streams, the Valley has plenty of wonderful natural spaces to tarry in. Whiteman Park and Middle Swan Reserve are perfect for family picnics or play dates, while the walking trails at Bell’s Rapids and Noble Falls will allow you to go with nature’s flow. Spring is a lovely time to visit the region, thanks to the many species of wildflower in bloom.

9. Indulge in some spa time

It’s easy to soothe body, mind, and spirit in the Swan Valley. Brookleigh Beauty and Spa offers luxurious day spa treatments, along with three and five-day health retreats (staying in gorgeous French chateau-style suites). The slightly-more-rustic-but-equally-lovely Swan Valley Retreat provides in-house guests and day visitors with nine different styles of massage. Over at Novotel Vines Resort, the Keishi Day Spa team will ensure you walk away feeling like a new person. Sacred Official in nearby Ellenbrook offers a variety of classes and sound healing meditation sessions.

Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley
Ten of the best things to do in the Swan Valley. Image: Swan Valley Retreat

10. Do a gourmet food and wine cruise

If you only have a day to visit the Swan Valley from Perth, do it in style on a Gourmet Food and Wine Cruise with Captain Cook Cruises! It’s a relaxed way to enjoy both the beauty and bounty of the region. Cruise along the tranquil Swan River to the Valley, where you’ll take part in a winery tour and tasting. A two-course lunch at Sandalford Wines is also included in the cruise price.

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This post was published thanks to Perth Hummer.

For more travel inspiration, visit www.swanvalley.com.au.

Browse our range of Western Australia tours and experiences here.

Do you have any suggestions to add to our list of the best things to do in the Swan Valley? We would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment below.

Additional images: Bigstock

Bonita Grima

About the writer

Bonita Grima is a Perth-based freelance travel writer with a background in television and radio production. She believes that travel has the power to challenge, inspire, and educate us, and encourage empathy by providing a window into the worlds of others. When not working on a story, you’ll find Bonita at the beach, on a hiking trail, drinking great coffee, discovering what’s new around town, and dreaming up her next big adventure!

 

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