Hunter Valley: Picnic at an orange orchard

  Our set up at the  Hillsdale Citrus Orchard .

Our set up at the Hillsdale Citrus Orchard.

I'm very fortunate to have grown up in a quaint coastal town. It's something that has helped mould me into the person I am today, with true appreciation for the great outdoors and the slow pace of life that resides within. Because of this upbringing, it's important for me to escape every few weekends to shake off the city grind. And so this weekend, my partner and I headed to the Hunter Valley, eager to bask in the open space and drink bottomless wine.

A key highlight during our country escape was our visit to the Hillsdale Citrus Orchard. We spotted a ‘Oranges For Sale Pick Your Own’ sign at the end of Thompsons Rd, nestled in a valley amongst Yengo and Wollemi National Parks. Upon arrival we were greeted by Betty who gave us a bucket to fill for only $12. Betty led us through rows and rows of navels waiting to be picked before leaving us on our own to explore. She insisted we "find the perfect spot and stay awhile" and that we did. We weaved our way through trees, picking fruit along the way, before setting up for a picnic. Three hours and a bottle of wine later, we left with enough oranges to last us for weeks and more than enough rest to face the week ahead back in the big smoke.