Thursday, 12 January 2017

Spotlight on the Hawkesbury

Steeped in a rich history, the Hawkesbury region is postcard perfect quaint villages, flourishing orchards, heritage trails, cool climate mountains and National Parks, and of course the meandering Hawkesbury River.

Beyond the banks of the Hawkesbury River are the heritage and mountain villages of Windsor, Richmond, Kurrajong, Bilpin, St Albans and Wisemans Ferry where you can discover the region's local produce and gourmet eats, outdoor and adventure activities, and heritage accommodation.

Here are just a few highlights of region:


The UNESCO World Heritage listed Old Great North Road, is an Australian Convict Site. The 9km heritage walk offers a fascinating peek into the past, following in the footsteps of convict workers who carved out the road overlooking the Hawkesbury River. Don't forget to download the Convict Road app to learn about the hardships of the convicts who constructed the road as you hike along this trail through the Dharug National Park.

Take the family on an adventure at Trees Adventure Grose River Park, an adrenalin pumping Treetop experience - swing, leap, climb and fly amongst more than 70 eucalyptus trees. Suitable for four year olds to 75 year olds, there are over ten courses, 110 challenges and 19 flying foxes. Families will also love the Rouse Hill House and Farm, where kids can explore the farmyard and all its friendly animals - chooks, cows and calves, sheep and horses.


Feast on local seasonal produce and "pick your own" at orchards laden with fruit, sample local ciders in Bilpin and stock up of farm fresh vegetables at farm gate stalls along the Hawkesbury Harvest Trail. Pick-up a map or download the app which shows farm gates and local producers that are open direct to the public.

Lochiel House
cottage which was built in 1825 in Kurrajong Heights has reopened and is now open for breakfast and lunch. Dine on local produce in the courtyard surrounded by a beautiful garden or enjoy the open fire inside.


Stay at luxury heritage cottage with James Rose Unique Accommodation. Choose from the lovingly restored Windsor Cottage, the character filled Cuppits Cottage in Windsor or The Chapel at Ebenezer which is surrounded by nature and beautiful gardens.

Set on ten acres of gardens, farm and bushland, Bilpin Springs Lodge allows families get back to nature. Kids can enjoy yabbying in the dam, canoeing and meeting all the farm animals.

For the perfect relaxation holiday, check-in to Billabong Retreat at Maraylya. A stay at this eco retreat includes organic whole food, yoga, mindfulness and mediation. Accommodation options suits all budgets, from private Deluxe Cabins and a Treehouse Ensuite, to shared bathroom rooms in the Lodge and Cottage.

Ten minutes outside of Windsor is the self-contained, Cooks Co-op Cottage overlooking the Hawkesbury River. It's set on the Cooks Co-op farm run by ex-Longrain Chef Martin Boetz who has runs sustainable agriculture projects and foodie events perfect for those who are interested in an authentic paddock-to-plate experience.

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