Palm Beach Estate, NSW
From the balcony of a master bedroom high on the peninsula, I…
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It’s the same decision every winter. Hunker down with a pinot and ride out the cooler season, or jet off to Europe and post Grecian beach photos with captions like “Wish you were here.”
The NSW Southern Highlands have a touch of that bucolic, Olde English vibe. It’s all rolling meadows, lazy sheep and pastoral-postcard vistas; the kind of countryside where you catch yourself humming Greensleeves. Considering it’s only 90 minutes’ from Sydney to Bowral, the Highlands are the perfect spot to embrace the Australian winter.
Historic towns like Bundanoon and Berrima are beautiful year-round (Berrima is particularly lovely, with its sandstone blocks and convict-built Georgian architecture). Make sure to check out Harper’s Mansion if you’re in the area.
Winter is too early for Bowral’s famous Tulip Festival, but you can still explore acclaimed cool-climate wineries like Bendooley Estate, or hike the local walking tracks. Fitzroy Falls are always dramatic in July (particularly after good rains), but the nearby 6.7km East Rim Walking Track is equally stunning.
Getting peckish? Book a table at Bowral’s famous Biota restaurant. Inspired by Scandinavia, but using impeccable, locally-sourced produce, it’s the standout eatery in the Highlands. Try to time your visit with the monthly farmers’ market at Moss Vale too – there’s a stall called Phat Duck that bakes amazing duck and mushroom pies.