Swan Valley - A Rich Mix of Art, Wine, Food and Culture

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The Swan Valley is a region of land about 25-minutes east of the centre of Perth that is famous for its mix of wineries, farmland, natural bush, historical buildings, scenic rivers and the promise of an unforgettable day out.

It also holds the enviable reputation as being Western Australia’s oldest wine growing region as well as the closest wine region to any city in the world.

The town of Guildford, a short 12 km from the centre of Perth as you head towards the hills, is the gateway to the valley and well worth a visit if you have time on your journey.

The Swan Valley is a region of land about 25-minutes east of the centre of Perth that is famous for its mix of wineries, farmland, natural bush, historical buildings, scenic rivers and the promise of an unforgettable day out.

It also holds the enviable reputation as being Western Australia’s oldest wine growing region as well as the closest wine region to any city in the world.

The town of Guildford, a short 12 km from the centre of Perth as you head towards the hills, is the gateway to the valley and well worth a visit if you have time on your journey.

Established in 1829, Guildford is one of three towns founded during the first settlement of the Swan River Colony and was chosen for its location on the river and its close proximity to fresh water at Success Hill. The entire town itself has been listed by the National Trust.


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The Swan Valley is Noongar country – home to the Noongar Aboriginal people who have inhabited the region for at least 40,000 years. These traditional owners believe the Wagyl, or dreamtime serpent, carved out the valley and the Swan River as he made his way across the land.

The valley is rich with history and is a fascinating example of the many cultures that make up our country. Throw into this mix are the migrants that moved to the valley after World War 1 and who brought with them their knowledge and expertise of wine growing.

To explore all that the area has to offer could take more than one visit so it may be best to decide in advance what you would like to do and see in the area before heading there.

The Swan River is one of the best ways to appreciate the region, and river cruises are a popular choice for visitors to the area. These start at the Barrack Street Jetty in the centre of the city and can take you into the heart of the valley.

If wine and beer are your passion, the options are endless. The Swan Valley has a wonderful mix of international players and small family-run wineries and boutique breweries. Don’t forget to appoint a skipper if you are planning to tick off quite a few on the list.


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If you are partaking of a drop then you will also need to eat. A picnic down by the river bank is a romantic choice but if you would like to try out the fresh local produce, the area boasts more that 70 restaurants and cafes.

Along with the wine, the Swan Valley has always been renowned for its arts and crafts so if this is more your style then you are bound to find an exhibition or two going on in the region. The Swan Valley Visitor Centre has a comprehensive document entitled Artisans on the Swan which includes a map of how to get to each gallery.

The Visitor Centre is located in the Historic Guildford Courthouse on the corner of Meadow and Swan Street, Guildford and is open daily from 9am - 4pm. Phone: +61 8 9379 9400.

If you plan to travel in the month of October then you are in for an extra treat. Each year around that time, the Spring in the Valley festival takes place across the region. It is a month-long celebration of food, wine, beer, art, craft, music and activities and is an event not to be missed.

If you have a favourite place to visit in the Swan Valley add your comment below.


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