Set in the Southern Highlands, Berrima is a unique and historic village. Established in 1831, it remains as the only example of an existing and largely preserved Australian Georgian colonial town. It will not take long to see why this town is so special, and with so many things to see and do it certainly makes for an ideal getaway whether it be for just the weekend or longer.
Today’s visitor to Berrima can experience the quiet charm and romance that comes from those features of the village which remained frozen in time and which now so wonderfully portray those earlier times. Berrima is home to one of Australia’s oldest licensed pubs, Surveyor General Inn, built by convicts in 1834 from local sandstone.
The village is no longer merely a stopping point on the way to somewhere else. Today’s Berrima is a delightful destination in its own right – for a day trip, for a weekend, or for a much longer holiday.
Historic Berrima is best experienced by taking a walk through the village streets followed by a walk along one of the river tracks.
There are plenty of things to do and see, from browsing galleries and shops such as the Bay Tree Gallery and Mrs Oldbucks Pantry to exploring colonial buildings, wine tasting and savouring fresh local produce. Book lovers will be amazed with the thousands of titles at winery Bendooley Estate’s fabulous Book Barn. In a postcard setting, taste acclaimed wines at the cellar door and fine food in Bendooley Estate Restaurant. In the pretty hills north is Joadja Estate, the oldest winery in the highlands.
For elegant European cuisine dine at Eschalot, which has won awards in The Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Food Guide and has its own produce garden. The Tasting Room at The Loch is open Sundays for an exquisite paddock-to-plate experience. A great way to discover the attractions is on the self-guided Berrima Heritage Walk. The Berrima Courthouse is a Regency-style design built in the 1830s from hand-hewn sandstone.
The National Trust-listed Harper’s Mansion is a beautifully preserved Georgian-style residence open on Saturdays, Sundays and most public holidays. Amble in the gorgeous gardens and try your luck navigating the maze.
While you explore the sites of Berrima why not stay at the Berrima Bakehouse Motel nestled on almost two acres of beautiful gardens full of native birdlife. These back on to the Wingecarribee River where you can often see families of platypus at play. BerrimaMotel.com.au