Step aside Swan Valley, there’s a new popular kid on the block. The Bickley Valley wine region’s bushland beauty & WA country town charm has officially won Perth over!
The Bickley Valley in Perth Hills
About to book another Swan Valley wine tour? Wait a minute… you really need to know about this….
Did you know that there is a glorious wine region featuring a mix of natural bushland, wildflowers, wildlife, creeks and waterfalls, forests, boutique vineyards, stunning views, art galleries, cider houses, restaurants, cafes and more….*takes deep breath*… all just 30 minutes from Perth City, south of Kalamunda?
It’s called the Bickley Valley and its set in the tranquil Perth Hills, where stunning hillsides are raised approx. 350 metres above sea level covered in vines and colourful vistas of orchards.
While the hustling Swan Valley wine region is a flat landscape, Bickley Valley and the Carmel Wine Route offers a more exciting and diverse landscape to wine and dine. Filled with towering forests and creeks, it truly makes you think you’re somewhere else – like WA’s Great Southern Region or even the iconic Margaret River.
Another thing that makes Bickley Valley refreshingly different is it’s West Australian country charm. The area still features some colonial brick style architecture and is chracterised by bespoke cellar doors that are owned and operated by local families, with many young and progressive winemakers here passionate about creating vibrant, award-winning and boutique wines and ciders that you won’t get elsewhere.
Lucky for me, I received a special opportunity to explore the Bickley Valley wine region by Explore Tours Perth, a popular small groups tour company that operates daily tours in and around Perth. Read on for my personal experience!
My First Bickley Valley Tour Experience
Sure, wine and food was the main deciding part in my answer, but I was more curious than anything to discover this new wine region in Perth that wasn’t Swan Valley.
Over the years, I’ve attended many events held in Swan Valley from festivals and birthdays, to company team building and picnic dates. So don’t get me wrong – I like Swan Valley, it’s iconic and local – but sometimes you just need that exciting alternative. A new experience.
Bickley Valley IS that exciting alternative to Swan Valley that offers you an entirely new wine tour experience. It’s not mainstream but rather, fresh uncharted territory waiting to be explored by curious wine and cider adventurers like you and me.
What I liked most about the Bickley Valley Day Tour itinerary was it’s value and how much it included. You get to visit up to four venues including boutique wineries and a cider house to try the region’s premium wines and cider. They don’t let you go hungry either – there’s a cheese and fruit platter offered at one vineyard, a hearty platter lunch provided at another and complimentary sorbet at the last stop to finish it off!
Add to this vantage views of the surrounding valley, a personalised chauffeur experience, a friendly (and very patient at taking photos) tour bus guide, making new friends and laughter – and you got yourself a pretty awesome day that’s worth the price!
By the way, all of the above are included in the price of the tour. The only additional expense you may incur is for any additional drinks that you have with your lunch (apart from the alcoholic beverages included).
Follow how my first Bickley Valley wine tour experience went below.
Fairbrossen Estate Vineyard & Cafe (Stop 1)
Our first stop into Bickley Valley gave us an impressive introduction into the region. Fairbrossen Vineyard showcases an array of orchards across endless hillsides. It’s like an artists paradise here, the scenery could easily be turned into an oil painting.
We got in some selfies before starting the wine tasting. Adam, our tour guide, then brought out two very large cheese & fruit platters. This made for a delicious brunch! I ended up purchasing a bottle of wine, one of their side project wines -2015 Saperavi – a nice red that’s hand picked and basket pressed.
Afterwards, my friends and I made good use of the old brick well to take photos with. Instagraaaaaaaam!!!!
Due Jolly Winery (Stop 2)
It was a very short drive to Due Jolly – but this is one of the best bits about Bickley Valley – all the venues are relatively close to each other, giving you more time to drink!.
This quaint vineyard is set on the hillside with more panoramic views of the valley. The manager here is so friendly, he sat down with us to share more information on Due Jolly and its backstory. I highly rate the wine here – The Shiraz is delightful. I ended up purchasing their Due Jolly Rhesus Positive Shiraz Cabernet 2006.
Due Jolly has a sweet charm to it that I really like – this was one of my favourite stops. Again, more Instagram opportunities awaited us here 😉
Core Cider House (Stop 3)
It was around late midday when we arrived at the Core Cider House. The scenery here is lovely and the grounds are laid out well catering to families with children. There’s plenty of room for the kids to run around including a playground, sandpit and a tractor for little ones to entertain themselves.
They brought out starters being warm sourdough with hummus, balsamic and gourmet oils. Lunch was also included – we had a choice between four dishes – and either choice was generous size. They were:
They can also provide a gluten-free meal upon request.
Drinks wise, we had a choice between a glass of wine or a Core Cider House’s signature paddle board of 5 different ciders. Myself and a majority of others ordered the paddle board as it seemed better value for money – plus it’s nice to try a little of everything. I highly recommend you do the same – the paddle board was a highlight and a great way to taste Core Cider’s range.
Somehow I still managed to squeezed in some time for more quick complimentary wine tastings here before we all embarked down into the grounds to the nearby lake. The lake is gorgeous and apparently quite alot of Weddings happen here.
MyattsField Vineyards (Stop 4)
Our last stop before the sun goes down. This venue shows off magnificent views of vine covered hillsides. While we visited in Winter, the colours were still vibrant and great photo opportunities await you here. I also liked how this vineyard had alot of personality and charm with its various outdoor decor. You really feel like you’re in France here – it has that French Avignon vibe.
More wine tastings happened here before our tour guide, Adam, surprised us with complimentary sorbet. We had a choice between Rose or Shiraz.
As we descended back down to Perth questionably sober, we all agreed on how much fun our day out in Bickley was! We were also were chuffed on getting some great Instagram-worthy pictures from the stunning vineyards.
It would be selfish of me to keep the Bickley Valley a secret – it’s truly a stunning wine region with quality wine, wholesome food, premium views and friendly locals. Something tells me this is going to fast become Perth’s next big thing.
The beautiful Bickley Valley and Carmel wine route is such a tranquil place, it truly makes you feel like you are along way from the busy city. I for one will be going back there very soon and I urge you all to do the same.
Wineries on the Bickley Valley Wine Trail:
Want to know what’s along the Bickley Valley wine trail? There are plenty of bespoke wineries to impress and dazzle you. Download the Bickley Valley Wine Tour Brochure here or check out the links below:
Brookside Vineyard & The Vineyard Kitchen Restaurant
5 Loaring Road, Bickley
Phone: 08 9291 8705
Website | Facebook | Email
Tastings & Sales: 11am-4pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
The Vineyard Kitchen Restaurant: 12pm-3pm Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. (For restaurant reservations, phone 08 9227 7715).
**Core Cider House**
35 Merrivale Road, Pickering Brook
Phone: 08 9293 7583
Website | Facebook | Email
Sales & Restaurant: 10am-4pm Wednesday; 9am-4pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday; 9am-5pm public holidays
Hainault Vineyard & Cafe
255 Walnut Road, Bickley
Phone: 08 9293 8339
Website | Facebook | Email
Tastings, Sales & Restaurant: 11am-5pm Saturday, Sunday & public holidays (other days, groups by appointment).
60 Carmel Road East, Carmel
Phone: 08 9293 5567 | Mobile: 0409 600 658
Website | Facebook | Email
Tastings & Sales: 11am-5pm Friday, Saturday, Sunday & public holidays (Thursdays, groups by appointment).
ABOUT EXPLORE TOURS PERTH
Explore Tours Perth operates daily; offering seven different tours in and around Perth, as well as bespoke private tours, charters and airport transfers. They specialise in ‘small group’ tours, giving you a high quality, personalised experience.
Do you want to explore Bickley Valley too? Visit Explore Tours Perth and use their online booking system to book the date that best suits you. The tour goes for approximately 7 to 8 hours, with pick up time (at different pick up points) ranging between 9am-10am and drop off time at 5pm.
Explore Tours Perth
- Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/ExploreToursPerth
- Phone: 1300 135 752 (local) or International: +61 434 175 25
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: https://www.exploretoursperth.com.au