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Best places to visit in Singleton and the Hunter Valley in Australia
Location of Singleton, New South Wales
A bit about Singleton
The first European discovery of Singleton was in 1820 making it one of Australia's oldest towns. The town was named after one of the first settlers in the region, Benjamin Singleton.
For about 100 years from 1820 to 1920, Singleton was dominated by agriculture. Then the discovery of vast resources of coal in the area transformed Singleton into the states (New South Wales) largest producer of coal. Singleton now has a population of approximately 24,000 people.
With its coal and agriculture, Singleton has evolved from a quiet country town to one of the most progressive commercial centres in the state. Approximately 15,000 are employed in mining or associated industries throughout the Hunter Valley region. The tourism industry is also growing rapidly.
Singleton is located approximately 180 kms (approx.110 miles) or 2.5 hours drive north of Sydney. It is about a 1.25 hour drive or 80 kms (approx. 50 miles) to the coast and Newcastle's beautiful beaches. It has a population of about 24,000. Singleton is situated in the heart of the Hunter Valley. You can catch a train to Newcastle or Sydney from Singleton and it's about a 90 minute drive to the main Hunter region airport.
Hunter Valley Wineries
When it comes to enjoying a glass of wine, the Hunter Valley is one of the best known wine regions in Australia. You only need to drive about 20 minutes from Singleton or 2 hours drive north of Sydney to get to some of the best wine making vineyards in the world. Australia's wines, particularly Hunter Valley wine is equal to the best in the world. The regional gourmet food products includes homemade cheese, chocolates, olives, smoked and cured meats and free range poultry meats.
There are literally hundreds of wineries in the Hunter Valley. The Hunter Valley is now known as a multi-billion dollar-a-year wine making industry.
There are so many ways of exploring the wineries. You can drive yourself or be chauffeur driven around and enjoy wine tastings by bus or limousine or even horse and cart or hire some bikes and cycle your way around!
Hunter Valley Gardens
The Hunter Valley Gardens is a very popular tourist attraction. It is about 30 kms, half an hour drive from Singleton. There are 60 acres of spectacular gardens divided into 10 stunning feature 'garden rooms'.
Enjoy strolling along the 8 kilometers of walking paths that are surrounded by more than six thousand trees, one million ground covers and over six hundred thousand shrubs! The floral displays are of a standard that you won't see anywhere else in Australia.
The Hunter Valley Gardens also have function venues, restaurants and many shops. During the Christmas season the Gardens are lit up in an amazing light show with over a million lights. It is Australia's biggest light display! A truly incredible sight.
Lake St Clair
Lake St Clair is approximately 30 minutes drive north of Singleton. It is situated at the foot of Mount Royal Range. It's a huge lake where visitors can enjoy swimming, sailing, water skiing and camping. But it's the fishing that the waterway is best known for.
Lake St Clair has been stocked with Bass, Golden and Silver Perch and Catfish. The Lake is venue for a number of high profile fishing competitions.
The foreshores of Lake St Clair have great areas for picnicking and barbeques. It really is worth a visit if you come to Singleton.
Largest Sundial in the Southern Hemisphere
Singleton is home to the largest sundial in the Southern Hemisphere, weighing 30 tonnes and stretching 12 meters. The Sundial represents Singleton's bicentennial celebrations, forming a gateway to the Hunter River, picnic areas and sporting facilities. So come and check out the very first form of time-keeping.