Are you planning a berry exciting trip to beautiful Berry? Yep, that’s right, you can prepare yourself for a whole lot of terrible puns because this blog post is all about BERRY! I hadn’t heard of Berry until I started planning a trip down there, to do a stay with Anthony and Louise at Mt Hay Retreat. Once I arrived, I realised it’s a strong contender for my favourite little Aussie town. I just fell in love with the place and can very much see myself settling down on a farm there with a lot of rescue animals and some good quality wi-fi.
Berry is a place you’ll find to be warm and welcoming as well as incredibly beautiful. You’re treated to a country town with a chic city edge, mountains and a short drive to the ocean as well as loads of great food, drink and entertainment to be had. If you’re looking for a fantastic weekend escape close to Sydney, look no further than Berry. Even if you aren’t from Sydney, I’d highly recommend putting Berry on your travel bucket list and making a trip to this gorgeous spot when you get the chance. I cannot wait to go back myself.
1. Eat breakfast at Salmon & Co Eatery Restaurant & Cafe
Once upon a time, I had the best waffles I’ve ever eaten and that time was when I visited Salmon & Co. Oh, my god, words cannot describe how insanely good these waffles were. Home-made, crispy on the outside and deliciously soft on the inside, golden and toasty, topped with maple ricotta and berry coulis. Not only that, but they serve up fantastic coffee. Matt even went so far as to say his breakfast was the best he’s ever had! If you find yourself in Berry, do not miss out on having a meal here. So good. Find Salmon & Co Eatery here.
2. Visit Shoalhaven Heads
It will only take you 15 minutes to drive from the heart of Berry, surrounded by its glamorous mountains, to Shoalhaven Heads. We found this stunning beach to be pretty much empty, apart from us. It’s a great spot to fool around on the sand dunes, walk along with your feet in the water or just sit, soak in the sun and have a dip if the weather is warm. Even if it’s a cold day, as long as the sun is out, it’s beautiful and worth the trip. Find Shoalhaven Heads here.
3. Meet alpacas and taste fantastic wine at Silos Estate
We were lucky enough to visit Silos Estate and meet the owner, Raj, who showed us around the stunning property. We met and fed the alpacas, caught a glimpse of one of the most incredible sunsets I’ve ever seen and taste the award-winning Silos Estate and Wileys Creek wines. We had an amazing time and as we left, Raj asked me to write about the thing he is most passionate about social change. Raj and his family work tirelessly to support the community with their multiple charity efforts and carbon-neutral approach to their business. I cannot recommend a visit to Silos Estate highly enough, it was a trip highlight for me. Find Silos Estate here.
4. Try German wines with Leigh, from Decante This
While we were in town, Leigh Dryden of Decante This was in town hosting a wine tasting. Not just any wine tasting, Leigh shared his passion for brilliant German wines with us. I’d never thought to get into German wines, turns out, they’re incredible. We spent the night soaking in Leigh’s knowledge, fantastic wines and matching cheeses, made especially by Kirsten at The Schoolhouse in Gerringong. It was an awesome night, we met some fantastic locals too. Find out more about Leigh and Decante This here.
5. Get a fabulous coffee from Nourish Kitchen
Our tasting with Leigh was hosted at local spot, Nourish Kitchen + Lifestyle, by owner Michelle, who coordinates local events like the wine tasting as well as serving up killer coffee through Berry’s only coffee hutch! Not only can you get a great cappuccino from Michele, you can also peruse her gorgeous little shop, bursting with inspiring goodies for the home and some very delicious treats too. If you can get along to one of the event nights here, I recommend it, it’s a great way to meet locals and have a fun night out. Find Nourish Kitchen + Lifestyle here.
6. Have breakfast at Sourdough
Another Berry brilliant spot for breakfast, be sure to visit Berry Sourdough Cafe. Now, I’m not going to lie, I did find the clientele to be a bit snooty, but the coffee and food were so amazing that it really doesn’t matter. If you’re just a regular gal like me, you’ll probably feel a bit odd in your regular gal clothes, while all the glamorous people around you sip their lattes pointedly. Block it out and focus on the fabulous plate of food in front of you and the awesome service from the staff. We had a coffee go missing and when we told them they were right onto it, apologised and got it out in a few minutes. Seriously, so good! Find Berry Sourdough Cafe here.
7. Take a road trip down to Jervis Bay
If you have a day to spare I highly recommend you jump in the car and take a road-trip out to Jervis Bay. It is one of the most beautiful beaches I have ever had the pleasure of visiting. The drive, from Berry, should take you around an hour or so and it is 100% worth it. I have a whole blog post about this beautiful part of the world, so be sure to read that here to find out everything you need to know about visiting Jervis Bay.
8. Stroll through town and peruse the shops
After you’ve had a great breakfast or lunch, I recommend spending an hour or two strolling through the shops on the main street and tucked around corners. There are some really lovely little boutiques in the area, selling hand-made items, arts and crafts, clothing and beauty products as well as homewares and the like. It’s just a nice place to plod along, dipping in and out of stores, enjoying the sunshine.
9. Watch a sunrise and sunset
I was lucky enough to catch a sunset at Silos Estate and a sunrise at Mt Hay Retreat. The sunset at Silos was, honestly, one of the most beautiful I have ever seen. I asked the owner, Raj if they are always like that and he said yes. So, with that in mind, I highly recommend you catch a Berry sunset and sunrise. It’s beautiful to watch the area come alive with morning’s first light and then watch the sky turn brilliant shades of orange and pink as the sun sets.
10. Eat at Figbird Cafe and Deli
We had an incredibly yummy lunch and coffees at Figbird Cafe and Deli. The space here is gorgeous, it’s lovely and open, really warm and welcoming and serves up very delicious food and drinks. They serve up great lunch options, like a triple-smoked ham and cheese toasty as well as zucchini and sweet corn fritters that are, honestly, so good. I loved the inviting, cosy space and how immediately comfortable I felt once I arrived. I also loved the look of EVERYTHING in the cake cabinet. A must try! Find Figbird Cafe and Deli here.
11. Have a no-fuss picnic
While we were staying at Mt Hay Retreat, we were lucky enough to be treated to a fabulous picnic, prepared by Creative Catering. Because we were staying at Mt Hay Retreat we were able to grab our goodies and head up to their very quiet top paddock and sprawl out in the sunshine. However, if you’re staying elsewhere, I’d still recommend organising your own fantastic picnic with Creative Catering, complete with fresh fruit and veggies, biscuits and dips, olives and meats, then taking it to a really lovely spot with great views. A no fuss, fantastic picnic and a great way to spend a few hours in Berry.
12. Get your Donut fill!
Did you know there’s an amazing place in Berry called The Famous Berry Donut Van? Ahhhh yes, it’s a real thing and it’s some kind of wonderful. You guys, they have been serving up top-notch cinnamon donuts for 55 years and they’re everything your Homer Simpson dreams are made of. Don’t miss out! Find the Famous Berry Donut Van here.
Where to stay in Berry
Okay, so you know all the best things to see, do and eat in Berry, now it’s time for my recommendation on the very best place to stay. I’m 100% totally biased because I got to stay with Anthony and Louise, their dog Teal and their chickens, goats and cows at Mt Hay Retreat. It was a fantastic stay, made so enjoyable by the luxury accommodation, incredible views, awesome hospitality and great location of the retreat.
If you’re looking for a really gorgeous place to stay that makes you feel relaxed and really welcome, Mt Hay Retreat is your jam. I wrote a whole blog post about it, which you should definitely read, here. If you do go and stay there, I don’t want to hear about it, because I’ll be very jealous of you.
Useful travel resources for your trip to New South Wales!
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Agoda – our go-to site for booking hotels
Skyscanner – our go-to for booking flights
RentalCars.com – great search engine for car rentals
Booking.com – another go-to site for booking hotels
TourRadar – great search engine for tours
Uber – our go-to transport option