Jumping onboard Nev’s bus, we met two other ladies who would be enjoying the day tour with us, a lovely mother and daughter from Cairns who were spending time together as the daughter had recently moved to the Sunshine Coast – this would be a great way to see some of your new hometown and show off to visiting relatives! Heading to Mooloolaba, we picked up the final two guests for the day’s tour, a couple of Kiwis – resplendent in short-sleeve shirts, shorts and thongs, whilst Peta and I and the two Cairns ladies were rugged up for a QLD Winter!
Nev is a font of information, and after a quick trip along the Bruce Highway, we stopped outside for the Landsborough Museum for a really interesting five-minute history lesson. I won’t tell you everything so that you can can experience it for yourself, but tales of pushing GIANT trees down the Range, and men holding hands and dancing at bush dances in the 1800’s had Peta and I astonished!
Our next stop was Mary Cairncross Park, which has to have one of the most incredible views I’ve ever seen! Nev had popped a bottle of sparkling by now (I love that he provides some bubbles to start the day in style!), and we’d all enjoyed a tipple on the way up the mountains. Standing in the very brisk wind and beautiful sunshine, Peta and I shivered our way through a few outfit shots, but the vista was worth it! Another history lesson here (lots of really interesting stuff about the local Gubbi-Gubbi people and early pioneers) and it was back to the bus for our first winery visit.
Maleny Mountain Wines was a great first stop; cosy and warm, the barrel-shaped cellar door was full of knick-knacks and stuff for wine lovers, and we took a seat to try a selection of their sparkling, white, red and dessert wines. (For those not in the know, Port can no longer be called Port. Apparently the snobs in Portugal have trademarked the name.)
Next, we were off to Maleny Cheese. CHEESE! I had never visited this cheese factory before, despite often venturing much further afield to Kenilworth to stock the fridge with cheese. No need anymore, I’m thrilled to report that Maleny Cheese has an excellent variety of really different and unusual cheeses and yogurts, friendly staff, and it’s only 40 mins away from home! There is a cafe and shop attached to the factory, a glass viewing window into the factory to watch the cheesemaking process, and the staff were more than happy to give me samples of any of their cheeses. (So I asked for a lot of samples.) I purchased a wedge of delicious bitey King Island Stormy (a washed rind cheese with a stronger taste than that of regular Camembert or Brie), as well as a great local feta which will be amazing in salads.
Lunch was at Montville Bar and Grill, a beautiful Tudor-style inn with generous and cosy seating indoors with a potbelly stove, and plenty of tables on the lawn and in the rotunda outside, which is where we settled as a group (obviously Peta and I snaffled the seats closest to the heater). I enjoyed a delicious duck main meal, but had some serious meal envy when Peta’s seafood linguine arrived.
Chocolate Country is a lovely little shop producing a lot of different types of chocolate barks and chocolate truffles, and stocking plenty of really unusual chocolate and candy. Trialing them all was a real drag. Could have stocked up big time there, but thank goodness I resisted. Right next door was Nutworks… and the scent of cinnamon candied almonds was floating up the street in a very enticing way.
After a very welcome
digestion walk stroll around the village of Montville, Peta and I snapped a few more outfit photos, then headed back to Chocolate Country for a very chocolatey takeaway hot-chocolate for the ride home.
We were a pretty quiet bunch on the drive back to the pick-up spots of Maroochydore and Mooloolaba, but I’m sure it was just that we were all blissed out, very full, and very relaxed – I know I was!
Peta and I experienced the Decadent Day Tour courtesy of Sunshine Wine Tours (thanks so much Nev), and had a fabulous day together. Sunshine Wine Tours also cater for those interested in local craft beer and microbreweries, so if enjoying a day out without the driving but with added fun is on the cards, give Nev a call.
Also, Peta wrote a fab post about our day out – you can read it HERE.
*These items were purchased with a discount voucher provided by Katies, with no obligation to feature product on the blog.