Top
  >  Destinations   >  Australia   >  McLaren Vale tours you don’t want to miss

McLaren Vale is famous for its shiraz but that is not the only reason you should visit this picturesque wine region located just 45 minutes from Adelaide. With a lively vibe that is more contemporary than quaint, affable locals and over 80 cellar doors to explore, McLaren Vale makes for an ideal day trip. However, there is no need to do a boring bus tour. Discover stunning seaside vistas, boutique wineries and restaurants and trails winding through untouched Australian bushland on the following trips which celebrate the region’s fabulous food, wine and scenery with flair.

Off Piste 4WD Tours

Unlike a standard McLaren Vale wine tour, this one ventures off-road to discover places that other vehicles cannot reach. Go wine tasting in a National Park where wallabies lead the way, soak up the sounds of a didgeridoo player, meet a world-famous wine maker, enjoy lunch from an award-winning restaurant in the great outdoors and drive onto the beach for a thrilling adventure at the end of the day. Off Piste 4WD Tours offer an engaging introduction to McLaren Vale, with entertaining stories, inside information and plenty of laughs along the way from a ‘local in the know’. If there is something particular you want to see or do this can be arranged, however, it is best to avoid planning too much yourself. Perhaps the greatest joy of this tour is letting a passionate expert craft the perfect day out.

Ben Neville of Off Piste Tours
Ben Neville of Off Piste Tours

McLaren Vale Motorcycle Tours

Feel the sun on your face and the wind kissing your cheeks as you explore McLaren Vale on the back of a Harley Davidson, a gleaming machine that will probably give you more street cred in an hour than you’ve had in your entire life. Keep an eye out for bounding kangaroos and echidnas peeking out from behind the bushes as your driver revs the bike’s powerful engine and sets off down Willunga Hill. Cruise past the aptly named Silver Sands, where the sparkling beach and ocean meet, and follow the coast to Port Willunga which offers views out to Kangaroo Island on a clear day. After zipping past the iconic Star of Greece restaurant you will stop at picturesque Port Willunga jetty, one of the most photographed spots in South Australia, for some Instaworthy pics. There is time for a spin past Maslin Beach, Australia’s first nude beach, before you follow the coast back home. If you want to stop for wine tastings or lunch along the way, you can book a half or full day tour.

McLaren Vale Motorcycle Tours
McLaren Vale Motorcycle Tours

Do you follow us on Social Media?
Let’s connect on Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or Facebook.

Escapegoat Adventures

Make like a rider on the Tour Down Under and explore McLaren Vale on a bicycle, albeit at a far more leisurely pace than the pros. After a ride along bush trails at Kuitpo Forest, a picturesque spot perched high above the McLaren Vale wine region, Escapegoat Adventures set off to discover the area’s most picturesque and delicious highlights. This tour offers plenty of adrenaline and adventure but you don’t need to be an experienced cyclist. Most of the tour is flat or downhill plus any nervous novice riders receive plenty of encouragement from guides who are expert at spotting koalas at speed. Revive along the way at wineries, micro-breweries, cafes and chocolate shops and rest your legs during lunch which showcases the region’s freshest produce. If the weather is warm, there will almost certainly be a swim stop at one of the region’s stunning beaches at the end of the tour.

Escapegoat Adventures cycling tour of McLaren Vale
Escapegoat Adventures cycling tour of McLaren Vale

Shopping and Bubbles Tour

Enjoy a fun day out with your besties on this Wine Diva’s Tour which begins with a tasting of three different bubblies at the Minko Wines’ cellar door located in a historic cottage in Willunga. Shop for local delicacies like juicy cherries, crusty sourdough and avocados from the Adelaide Hills as you stroll around the lively Willunga Farmer’s Markets. Give your credit card a workout at I am Tall Poppy, a clothing and giftware store that uplifts the soul, and McLaren Unvaled which stocks unique jewellery and vintage chic home accessories. After your shopping spree, you will meet Wine Educator Gill Gordon-Smith and enjoy a sparkling wine masterclass at Fleurieu Cellars before lunch at a picturesque vineyard. This is followed by more shopping and tasting at McLaren Vale Almond Train, Four Winds Chocolates and Patisserie and Lloyd Brothers Olives. Load your purchases into the Mercedes van in time for one more stop, this time for coffee and cake, before you return to Adelaide.

Want to travel smarter and save money? Check out our tips for flying a low cost airline, keeping your luggage safe, visiting Europe in peak season, getting a great car hire deal, avoiding travel scams, saving money at the airport, staying at an Airbnb, finding cheap five star hotel deals, catching public transport overseas, staying safe in a big city, getting the best round-the-world airfares, making the most of a five star hotel stay, travelling during low season, visiting a theme park in peak season, packing a carry on bag, visiting a wine region, planning a romantic getaway, early morning flights, visiting the Great Barrier Reef, multigenerational travel, travelling in a motorhome, buying the best souvenirs, going on safari, visiting the Eiffel Tower, travelling with pets, holidaying with adult children, travelling with teens, and sleeping on a plane.

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. If you use these links to make a purchase we will earn a small commission, at no additional cost to you. Please click here to view our disclosure policy.

Dr Tiana Templeman is an award-winning food and travel journalist, travel author and media industry academic. She is the creator of The Travel Temple, writes for Australian and international media outlets and appears on radio talking about where to go, what to see and travel industry trends.