After leaving Brisbane we turned inland (instead of driving north along the coast) and headed straight for the vineyards of Stanthorpe. I had never heard of this wine region before (the famous one in Australia is the Barossa valley), but our guide book made the area sound interesting enough to spend a few days there. Apparently the “Darling Downs” is where a lot of produce and fruits are grown … unfortunately, we seemed to have missed the harvest season by a few weeks and only saw a few apples left on the trees.
Unlike in California, wine tasting doesn’t seem too commercial around Stanthorpe (yet?) and we usually met the wine makers themselves … who turned out to be quite interesting to chat with. We also liked the wines more than expected and quickly ran out of places to stash the bottles in the camper 🙂
The area is quite beautiful and reminded us a lot of the Central Valley and the western foothills of the Californian Sierra … with Gum and Eucalyptus trees instead of pines. We also visited our first National Park (Girraween) and scrambled up its granite dome for a great 360 degree panorama.
By now we’ve spent ten days in Australia without having seen a beach … time to head to the coast!
Here are a few more pictures: