July road trip - Cherson Cottage, Upper Hunter Valley

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Our first official stop on our July road trip was at Cherson Cottage, in the Upper Hunter Valley.

I met Annie and Louy Bell at a Hosting Masterclass in Byron Bay earlier this year, and they invited me to stay at their Airbnb. They have created a homely space in this old farm cottage, and we were lucky to call it home for four nights.

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We made sure we brought all the food we needed with us from the grocery store for a self contained four days at this cottage. Annie made the most delicious cake for us too.

With so many places to relax, we most often chose to follow our afternoon river wander with a wine on the veranda and movie by the fireplace at night.

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Not only is the interior gorgeous, but so is the surrounding landscape. Just a short walk from the house is the Hunter River, where we followed kingfishers with the binoculars in hand, I gathered stems of pepperina tree and just took the time to breathe and soak it all in.

One day during our stay we visited Barrington Tops National Park. While the drive there is a fairly sceptical dirt track, there are some amazing views to be had and some magical forests to explore.

Next up: A church in Lower Portland (TBA)

July road trip - Goonoo Goonoo Station

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The joy of a road trip is discovering things along the way.

On our way to Cherson Cottage, one of our hosts there suggested we stop at Goonoo Goonoo Station for lunch. I quickly looked it up on instagram and knew it was definitely worth a stop.

Down a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it driveway, this old sheep station has been transformed into an amazing restaurant and event space, in practically the middle of nowhere (but quite close to Tamworth).

And so, rather spontaneously we had a super amazing lunch there (with no booking, we were just lucky we arrived just at the beginning of their lunch service).

With stunning views, and both indoor and outdoor seating this is one worth noting down for your next trip down the New England Highway.

We took the inland route from Yamba to Cherson Cottage (Moonan Flat) through Armidale, and Tamworth. I much prefer this drive compared to the Pacific highway. There is so much more to see and more places to stop.

Not featured here, but some other places we stopped that are worth a mention:

  • Uralla - for a leg stretch and second hand bookshop browse.

  • Ebor Falls - magnificent waterfall, just a short drive from the highway and close to the carpark.