Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory © VisitCanberra
Sydney to Canberra: a 3-day foodie road trip
Take your tastebuds on a culinary journey from Sydney to Canberra.
The route from Sydney to Canberra is as picturesque as they come. Rolling hills are dotted with cool-climate wineries, crackling fireplaces and sandstone cottages.
Wind your way through fine dining destinations and unexpected delights on this three-day gourmet trail from Sydney to Canberra.
Day 1: Sydney to Bowral
Drive south out of Sydney, continuing about 1.5 hours until you reach the Southern Highlands. Take in a delicious lunch at The Shaggy Cow near the historic main street of Mittagong, and don’t leave without tasting their famous ginger-infused refreshments.
Just a few minutes’ drive will bring you to Bowral, a quaint town filled with local arts, gifts and wineries. Uncover some vintage threads at Dirty Janes and grab a coffee or fresh juice (along with all your organic needs) at Raw & Wild Market & Café.
If you have time, take the ten-minute drive to Centennial Vineyards – home to award-winning varieties of shiraz. Take a bike tour to soak in the vineyard’s beauty, then cap off the afternoon with a well-deserved cheeseboard and a wine tasting.
Continue on to Southern Highlands Brewing in the cute town of Moss Vale. Grab a pint of their seasonal brew before driving just five minutes to your accommodation for the night – Peppers Manor House. Dine in-house at Katers Restaurant for local flavours alongside a wood-burning fire.
Day 2: Discover capital country
Start your day in nature with a brisk walk through Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve, about a 15-minute drive from your accommodation. The walkway provides excellent views of the wetlands and around 90 species of birds.
Turn off for the little town of Gundaroo for a decadent fine-dining lunch experience hidden within a rustic frontage at Grazing. The restaurant is housed in the 1865 national trust Royal Hotel, with open fireplaces and private dining rooms. The setting is divine, yet it’s the food that pops, so make room for three courses.
Continue the drive to Canberra, turning off on Majura Parkway to drop into Mount Majura Vineyard. You can take a self-guided nature trail walk, or sit back to try a fresh and zesty riesling.
From here, get back onto the Majura Parkway and make your way to Mount Ainslie Lookout. The vista is spectacular. See Parliament House, the Australian War Memorial and stunning mountain ranges in the distance.
Finish your day at Brassey Hotel, one of Canberra’s oldest hotels, which oozes charm and character. If you’re looking for a light yet quality meal, try some tapas or wood-fired pizzas at Ostani – a quick walk away at Hotel Realm.
Day 3: Enjoy Canberra
Wake up to the quiet bustle of Canberra. After a wholesome breakfast at Maple + Clove, head back to the Brassey for some deep wellness treatments. Hale Spa is the most luxurious experience you’ll find. Start in the cave-like spa pool and then indulge in a full-body aromatic stone therapy massage.
After a few hours of pure relaxation, drive a few minutes to the Kingston Foreshore. From here you’ll have the opportunity to see Canberra from a completely different perspective – atop Lake Burley Griffin. Book a GoBoat, an electric vessel that comes complete with a personalised picnic (or you can bring your own). Keep your eyes open for Canberra’s most iconic locations, including the National Gallery of Australia and the Carillon.
On your way out of Kingston, drive towards Lonsdale Street in Braddon so you can pop into a boutique or two for a hit of designer fashion and homewares. At a minimum, visit Rebel Muse and Bisonhome. Then choose an unusual gelato flavour (Guinness anyone?) at Frugii Dessert Laboratory before heading home.