Visitor Guide to Clare Valley

 

One of Australia's oldest wine regions, Clare Valley boasts heritage towns, trails, boutique wineries, museums, galleries and tops it off with magnificent scenery to boot. 

In this Visitor guide to Clare Valley, we'll answer all the pressing questions you might have about this wonderful region.  

Barrel hall Clare Valley

Clare Valley is the most boutique wine region in Adelaide’s wider periphery. Many vineyards in the area have been operated by the same families for multiple generations. The small wineries, heritage houses and the remote location (compared to other wine regions around Adelaide) only add to Clare Valley’s off-the-beaten-track charm.

If you’re interested in visiting this incredibly versatile region as part of your South Australian adventure, we are here to answer all your burning questions about the Clare Valley!

Clare Valley Dining

Visitor Guide To Clare Valley

Where is Clare Valley?

The Clare Valley is one of the oldest wine regions in Australia. You can find it in the state of South Australia, about 150 km | 97 mi north of Adelaide, on-route to the Flinders Range. 

How to get to Clare Valley from Adelaide?

By plane: Adelaide is the closest airport to Clare Valley for domestic and international flights. From the airport, it’s a very short drive to Adelaide CBD for a few days of city fun before heading to the wine region. 

By car: It takes about 2 hours to drive to Clare Valley from Adelaide. You can easily visit the wine region as a day trip from Adelaide. The valley is also a great stop on your way to the Flinders Range as it’s almost at the halfway point. Stay in Clare for a night or two on your South Australian road trip.

Public transport: There is no public transport that brings you all the way to Clare Valley. The closest bus station with a direct line from Adelaide is in Snowtown, about 43km | 27mi west of Clare. 

What’s the best time to visit Clare Valley?

Spring and Autumn are the best seasons. They treat you to a kaleidoscope of colours. In Spring, the canola fields on the side of the roads explode into a sunny yellow. In Autumn, the valley is bathed in a warm red and orange tone as the colours of the leaves change and the sun hangs lower. And after a day of rain in either season, you might be lucky to find the salt lake Lake Bumbunga near Lochiel in the most amazing shades of pink! 

What to do in Clare Valley?

As one of the oldest wine regions in Australia, Clare Valley is most famous for its fermented grape juice, better known as wine. Tour the wineries and cellar doors on one of the guided day trips or you can explore the valley on your own. Hire a bike for a laid-back ride from winery to winery on the aptly named Riesling Trail, a 33km | 20mi long walking and bike track.

Families will love getting deliberately lost in the giant Mintaro Maze, exploring the nearby bike trails and playgrounds or go for an excursion to Lake Bumbunga, one of South Australia’s pink lakes. 

How many wineries are in the Clare Valley?

About 50, mostly boutique wineries are waiting to be discovered at Clare Valley. Many are small and have been in the same family for generations. 

What wine is Clare Valley known for?

The area is most famous for its Australian Riesling, a white wine that can be either dry or sweet. Clare is also increasingly known for its Shiraz and Cabernets. 

Clare Valley Beer Flight

Where to stay in the Clare Valley and how long?

To fully immerse yourself in Clare Valley’s charm, we recommend staying two nights. 

The historic Bungaree Station fits perfectly into the authentic ‘boutique theme’ of the Clare Valley. This beautiful historic hotel and working station is still family-owned, with the 5th generation now at the helm.

You can easily fit a stay in Clare Valley into your South Australia itinerary. The valley is the last stop on the Epicurean Trail and at halfway, divides the trip to the Flinders Ranges almost perfectly. Clare can also be visited en-route to the Red Centre with Alice Springs and Uluru.

Have a look at some of our itineraries where you can add a night at Clare Valley: 

15 Day Grand South Australia Self Drive Tour

7 Day The Very Best of South Australia’s Luxury

10 Day Highlights of South Australia

10 Day Explore South Australia Road Trip

Is Clare in the Barossa Valley?

No. The Barossa and Clare Valley are different wine regions with different grapes. Clare Valley lies 100km | 62mi north of the Barossa Valley. Clare is the most remote of the South Australian wine regions. 

How far is Clare Valley from Barossa?

It takes about 90 minutes to drive from Barossa to Clare Valley. Clare Valley is the last stop on the Epicurean Trail which starts in the Fleurieu Peninsula and leads past Mclaren Vale, Adelaide Hills and the Barossa Valley. 

Is Clare Valley worth visiting?

We sure think so! If you like boutique wines from small, family-run vineyards and an off-the-beaten-track feeling, you will absolutely love the Clare Valley! 

For more food for thought - view our most popular South Australia Touring Routes

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Alexandra Diethelm
By
Alexandra Diethelm
: 28 Jul 2021 (Last updated: 29 Jul 2021)

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