Escape into the idyllic countryside that is dotted with beautiful historic cottages and refreshing nature begging to be explored. Located just two hours from Canberra, Bowral is the perfect weekend getaway, especially if you want to relax and escape the chaos of Canberra!
Whether it’s wandering down the main street, exploring the expansive countryside or even checking out the Bradman museum (all cricket fans rejoice), you’ll be whisked away into a scenic country landscape. Bowral is the perfect place to escape life’s routine, take a deep breath and rejuvenate.
Eat and drink
To the untrained eye, Bowral may appear to be your average country town, but the area is filled with cafes, restaurants and vineyard estates that will have you spoilt for choice when it comes to dining.
For something luxurious, Biota Dining is a three-hatted restaurant, that is inspired by sourcing and utilising local produce native to the local landscape. To escape the tough decision of choosing one or two items from the menu, why not try the set menu for brunch, which offers a mix of sweet and savoury dishes that are sure to tantalise your taste buds. Or select a three-course menu from the restaurant if you want to try something in particular. From my experience, you can’t look past the pumpkin cooked in coal, served with a rich creamy, sheep’s cheese sauce – absolutely delicious!
For something a little more low-key, try Raw & Wild Market Café for breakfast. This charming venue offers a variety of vegetarian, vegan, diary-free and gluten-free options! And with a focus on beautiful, organic fresh produce and food it’s hard to not love this place. Try the organic potato rosti and poached eggs, served with fresh avocado salsa, roasted cherry truss tomatoes with lashings of the house-made balsamic glaze and aioli (yum!).
The Shaggy Cow, just up the road in Mittagong is also a Southern Highlands favourite and family-friendly! For something a little sweeter for breakfast try the sourdough pancakes, served with caramelised banana and buttered walnuts (and add some cream or ice-cream if you’re feeling extra cheeky!). For lunch, you can’t go past the roasted tomato risotto, with fresh green peas and buffalo mozzarella.
Or for the wine lovers, head to one of the regions many vineyards and estate. One of my personal favourites is Centennial Vineyards. Take in the rustic rolling vineyards whilst enjoying a glass of its award-winning wine – and while you’re there why not enjoy a high tea for something a little more decadent, or have a long lunch at the vineyard’s picturesque restaurant.
Whether you’re after an outdoor adventure or something a little more relaxed, you simply must explore the myriad of attractions and sights Bowral has to offer. For the cricket fans, you can’t go past the Bradman Museum and International Cricket Hall of Fame, to relive Donald Bradman’s life and greatest achievements.
Continuing the sporting theme, if you love golf, enjoy the tranquillity of the countryside and soak up the fresh air through a round at the famous Bowral Golf Club.
To relax and unwind from the hustle and bustle of Canberra life, escape the daily grind at Endota Spa in Bowral. Become completely zen with a facial treatment, or work out your stress with a deep tissue massage. Endota is the perfect place to relax in this beautiful rural setting.
Experience the beauty of the Southern Highlands and Illawarra region from the comfort of your car on the Illawarra tourism route. Picture a journey through rolling hills and pretty pastures of farming country. Stop and stretch out your legs with a walk along the breath-taking waterfalls at Fitzroy Falls and the deep valleys.
At night enjoy a film at the historic Empire Cinema, the oldest commercial cinema in the country that has been operating since 15 September 1915. Whether it’s a Hollywood blockbuster, or an independent film, you’ll find something that everyone can enjoy at Empire, whilst immersing yourself in its rich architectural history.
Peppers Craigieburn is the ultimate country estate experience for a weekend away in Bowral. Nestled on a vast property and first built 100 years ago, you can feel the rustic charm of this hotel and its beautiful gardens.
Links House similarly retains all the charm of an earlier time while embracing modern facilities to ensure you have a relaxing stay. With secluded courtyards, to spacious sitting rooms, this is the perfect spot to stay and unwind.
If you are holidaying on a budget, the Imperial Hotel is situated in the heart of Bowral, within walking distance to all attractions and has comfortable accommodation options.