Written by Brooke Wilson
It seems that although 2022 is still new, it has already brought many adventures. Something my friend and I had discussed for a long time but never managed to find the time for was a trip to Stanthorpe. Recently, we finally found the time.
We had planned for three nights in Stanthorpe, and with the amount of things we wanted to do in that small space of time, we really needed to plan well.
The first stop was to the famous Girraween National Park to tackle the Pyramid, an enormous granite rock cutting over a thousand metres high. Certainly not for the faint hearted (being terrified of heights, I myself chickened out before I reached the top), but if you can make it up, you will be rewarded with spectacular views over the Granit Belt.
A sizeable enough bushwalk makes it all that much easier to justify the chocolate you will eat afterwards, as just on the edge of the national park lies Heavenly Chocolate, a shop handmaking exclusive chocolates as good as the name suggests.
Of course, Stanthorpe and the Granite Belt are famous for the local wineries and locally grown produce, so it would be a great injustice to make the trip down there without sampling some of it. There is an absolute plethora of vineyards to visit with most offering wine tasting, but the one we visited was Castle Glen, an intriguing purpose-built castle just north of town.
They boast a selection of wine and liqueurs in an overwhelming choice of flavours. Just about any flavour you can think of, they have it. I walked away the proud owner of a bottle of musk liqueur – worth every cent!
Just down the road is Sutton’s Cidery and Café, producing delicious food and drinks from their apple orchard. It is a great place for lunch as they have a lovely outdoor seating area overlooking the orchards, and their apple pie is to die for!
After you’ve eaten as much as you can fit, closer to town is the Granite Belt Maze, a great way to entertain the family. Upon entry, staff will give you a brain teaser, and you must make your way through the maze to piece together the answer. On site, they also have a mini golf course, giant chess board, and all manner of quirky things to keep everyone entertained.
All these things barely scratch the surface of what there is to do in Stanthorpe and surrounds.
My friend and I could have spent a week there and still kept finding things to do. Wineries, mazes, hikes, delicious food – Stanthorpe is the surprising humble achiever, and well worth the drive to get there.