The best time to visit the Hunter Valley Wine Region
As we come into winter, it may seem that most activities are moving inside although there are many events taking place around Hunter Valley this winter like the wine festival or the cheese and chocolate festival. The most anticipated event each year is always the Snow Time in the Gardens event at Hunter Valley Gardens.
What is Snow Time in the Gardens?
Snow Time in the Gardens is an annual Hunter Valley event that takes place at the Hunter Valley Gardens in Pokolbin. This year, the event will start during the school holidays beginning on Saturday 19th June until Sunday 18th July 2021!
There will be numerous snow time activities inclusive of your entry ticket, such as a 9D immersive virtual reality snow experience, face painting, roaming entertainment, ice-sculpting demonstrations, and the annual anticipated action activities; ice skating, ice toboggan, snow play zone and snow cave. Additionally, the permanent rides housed within the gardens are also up and running. Tickets are available for purchase from the ticket booths near the rides (additional costs are incurred for these rides).
What wintery activities will be there?
Take a spin around the gigantic Snow Time Ice-Skating Rink! There will be skating sessions that will begin from 9:30 AM and end at 5:30 PM each day and each session lasts for 20 minutes.
Just in case your younger ones are a bit wary of ice skating, there will be skating aids called Bobby Seals available to be hired on the day for $5 each; these are only available for children aged 6 and under.
Tickets for the ice rink are included in the event price, so grab some skates and a helmet and show off your wintery skating skills.
For a more adrenaline-pumping activity for the family, there will be ice tobogganing throughout the event. All you have to do is grab a tube and glide down the 45-metre slide! This activity to suited for children and teens, and the adult who is a giant kid at heart!
Snow Play Zone
The snow play zone is specially built for younger children. It is a man-made snow play area where your child can experience snow for the first time, build a snowman or make snow angels!
Embrace the artic with the Snow Cave! The Snow Cave will have artificial falling snow and will be filled with animatronic arctic animals such as polar bears, penguins and sabre-toothed tigers. This activity is a great photo opportunity!
While the Snow Time event and activities are restricted to the open area oval at the top end of the gardens, there is nothing stopping you from exploring the remainder of the Hunter Valley Gardens in all its natural beauty. With over 8km of walking paths and 10 themed gardens to choose from, get back to nature and enjoy the tranquillity of beautifully constructed gardens, waterfalls and topiary. Take the time to enjoy the Lake’s Walk or take in the view from Waterfall Lookout. Access to the whole 14 hectares that make up the Hunter Valley Gardens is included within your Snow Time ticket.
Fun Fair Rides
For that added experience for your friends or family, the event will also open its selection of amusement rides. The 25-metre-high Ferris Wheel overlooks the whole gardens and gives you the opportunity to see everything in all its beautiful glory. Other rides include the traditional Venetian carousel, hand constructed in Italy, newly added twisty tea-cup rides for the adventurous rider, and swinging chairs, designed to get your adrenaline pumping while you fly around 11-metres up in the air.
The event has single-use tokens for the individual rides available for purchase at $6 each or an unlimited rides wristband for $20. All rides will operate from 10 AM to 5 PM, with the last ride being at 4:45 PM (weather permitting).
Height restrictions do apply to certain rides, so check with the ride operators before purchasing your tickets.
Where can we find food?
Throughout the event there will be a Snow Time Café available which will serve scrumptious hot food and beverages. There will also be food stalls open throughout the event, serving a wide variety of options for the various food lovers.
Other than the Snow Time Café located within the gardens, Pokolbin has numerous 5-star restaurants and cafés. TripAdvisor recommends checking out Hunters Quarter, Exp. Restaurant and Baume; all have glowing 5-star reviews!
Where is the best accommodation?
The Hunter Valley Gardens offers accommodation packages at their adjoining venues, Harrigans and the Mecure Resort. Contact the team online to organise a reservation. Surrounding the Hunter Valley Gardens, there are also wonderful luxury villas, resorts and guesthouses including Spicers Guesthouse, Crown Plaza, The Vintage and Leisure Inn.
For other accommodation options, such as single rooms, apartments, or houses to rent—AirBnB has 17 listings surround the Hunter Valley Gardens with more affordable pricing options.
Check out our top picks for accommodation here.
What are the pricing options?
The Hunter Valley Gardens website allows various all-day passes to be purchased online. A family pass (2 Adults + 2 Children; aged 4-15 years) is priced at $105.00 which includes all Snow Time events and access to the gardens. Prices exclude amusement ride tickets. Adult all-day passes are available for $34.00, children from 4-15 years old are $25.00 and children aged 3 or younger are free entry.
For those who have a NSW Dine & Discover voucher, the Hunter Valley Gardens will accept them for Snow Time event entry and the purchase of amusement ride tickets until the 30th of June 2021.
For more details to book your day pass click here!
How can we travel there?
Pokolbin is just over a 2-hour drive from Sydney if you take the M1. There are also public transport services available such as train, bus, or taxi. You can catch the train from Sydney to Maitland station (Church Street, Maitland Australia), and take a connecting bus to Cessnock. A taxi drive from Cessnock should only take 20-minutes to reach Pokolbin. Also, feel free to check out ride share options such as Uber.
For the best Hunter Valley experience, book with Hunter Valley Tours!
While in Hunter Valley, why not make it a memorable adventure packed with attractions? Hunter Valley Tours are experts in establishing the ideal itineraries and variety of wineries and activities for your visit to the Hunter Valley.
To arrange your personalised vineyard tour or answer any questions, visit us at hvtours.com.au or contact our friendly staff at 0456 737 888, or jump right into one of our tours by securing a book here!