Margaret River Wineries with a Difference by Jo Castro
Lush grapes and verdant vineyards epitomise the Margaret River region in South West Australia, but wait! There’s much more to discover than just the vino!

Wineries with a difference.

You might be forgiven for thinking that Margaret River wineries are all about wine. Well, they are, mostly. But several are branching out into other areas and offering much more than merely vinum bonum.

Margaret River Wineries with a Difference by Jo Castro
A Shakespeare Play at Voyager Estate.

Over the last  summer we’ve been privileged to watch a Shakespeare Play, a James Bond movie, as well as taste wine and have lunch at winery restaurants. We’ve oggled pottery, gawped at fine art and wandered in beautiful gardens.

Margaret River Wineries with a Difference by Jo Castro
Roses at Laurance … and you’ll find an elaborate rose garden in the ‘werf’ courtyards at Voyager too.

How lovely the evening events are and how pleasant it is to be sitting  out, on the grass, under the stars surrounded by vineyards.

There are some very special restaurants at some of the Wine Estates, and those I’ll write about in a future blog post, but there are several wineries that go the extra mile and offer something even more, and a little unexpected.

Margaret River Wineries with a Difference by Jo Castro
You’ll find gift shops … Here at Aravina, but try Voyager, Happs, Hayshed Hill, Wills Domain and Leeuwin, below, to name a few.

Margaret River Wineries with a Difference by Jo Castro

Although not in Margaret River, I have to mention St Aidan’s Estate in the Ferguson Valley . Throughout the summer they have rural cinemas present an outdoor movie. The setting at St Aiden’s winery is  perfect because the lawns sweep down to a brook, and so the slope makes a perfect amphitheatre for people to come sit and bring their picnics.

We went to watch the new James Bond movie, Skyfall, and as the stars twinkled so we were taken on a voyage of escapism to Scotland with Bond, James Bond and his gorgeous consorts, helped along with a very nice bottle of St Aiden’s Merlot, and a fabulous picnic hamper for two (order your picnic hampers in advance if you want one).

So what can you expect from some of the Margaret River Wineries?

Leeuwin and Sandalford put on fabulous concerts each year with international performers. Book early.

Margaret River Wineries with a Difference by Jo Castro

Cape Mentelle offer outdoor Movies in the Vineyard during summertime.

Voyager Estate stages plays on the lush lawns by the cellar door.

Happs offer a large selection of fine, home made pottery.

Margaret River Wineries with a Difference by Jo Castro
Happs Wine Estate offers interesting pottery pieces.

Leeuwin, Vasse Felix, Hayshed Hill, Wills Domain and Laurance all have art on display or for sale.

I’m still exploring, and there’s yet more to discover, but one thing’s for sure; there is plenty to do for the more culturally minded in Margaret River beyond drinking wine.

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  1. there is certainly a lot more to the Margaret River than just wineries Jo. I know we certainly haven’t explored everything there is yet. The worse part is coming back to normal life after a weekend away!

  2. And the region keeps on getting more exciting doesn’t it, Jill? Still more to see and do each time we visit.

  3. One of my favourite regions in Australia for indulgence AND scenery. Have only scratched the surface, and can’t wait to return!!

  4. Hope it’s not too long until you’re back in this part of Australia, Craig.

  5. I hope you can too, Marisol. Yes, we are very lucky in this little corner of the world.

  6. All I ask of my wineries (apart from actual wine!) is location, something to nibble on and somewhere comfy to sit. So these are really BEYOND wineries!!! But I can see a little value-adding goes a LOOOOOONG way!!

  7. Margaret River has really blossomed as a tourist destination since we were there. That rose is gorgeous. Did it have a heady smell?

  8. Yes, it did Jan… absolutely gorgeous. It was at Laurance Estate where the rose garden is extensive.

  9. Ha ha Red, yes a little added value can be the reason to keep on going back … And back … And then back without making it seem that it’s really just the wine you’re returning for (*_)

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