It’s that time of the year when our thoughts turn to celebrating the wonder woman in all our lives – Mum.
Flowers, chocolates, spa treatments, long lunches and high teas are all time-honoured ways to say ‘I love you’ on Mother’s Day. However, if you really want to do something super special, extend the theme with a Mother’s Day getaway. Here are five amazing options.
1. Indulge Mum’s inner chocoholic in Melbourne
If another box of soft centres from the supermarket just isn’t going to cut it this Mother’s Day, consider whisking Mum off to the chocolate mecca that is Melbourne. The Victorian capital’s CBD is home to a high concentration of chocolatiers, including boutique options like Ganache Chocolate on Collins and Chocamama HQ in the charming Royal Arcade, and bigger names like Haigh’s Chocolates in the sumptuous old-world surroundings of the Block Arcade, and Koko Black in the Royal Arcade.
Chocoholic Tours offers a guided walk that takes in several chocolate salons for tastings. The experience ends with dessert and a matching glass of wine at a chocolate-themed restaurant. Also seek out Mörk Chocolate Brew House in North Melbourne during your stay, for a hot chocolate that will blow Mum’s mind. Pick your accommodation from these Choice Hotels in Melbourne.
2. Say it with flowers in Toowoomba
There are plenty of destinations where you can treat your green-thumbed Mum to a floral-inspired short break. Toowoomba in the Darling Downs west of Brisbane is renowned as Queensland’s ‘Garden City’, thanks to its high altitude and profusion of plant species that are generally found in much cooler climates. There’s plenty to keep garden lovers on the go here, including visits to the Queens Park and Botanic Gardens, the renowned Ju Raku En Japanese Garden (one of the largest in Australia) and the Queensland State Rose Garden. Drop by The Springs Garden World for a relaxed lunch in a sublime garden setting and treat Mum to a special dinner at Encores at the historic Empire Theatre. Book your accommodation in one of these hotels in Toowoomba.
3. Give a foot rub and facial in the Hunter Valley, Newcastle
Given how much time she spends looking after everyone else, Mothers’ Day is the perfect opportunity to give Mum some serious ‘me-time’. Newcastle makes the perfect base for accessing the plethora of soul-soothing day spas located in and around the stunning Hunter Valley. Top options include Spa Elysia and The Spa at Château Élan. For something extra special, book a package at Reflections Day Spa at Adina Vineyard – which offers a superb range of treatments in a tranquil, vine-fringed setting. Back in the big smoke, treat Mum to the exquisite seasonal five-course set menu at hatted eatery Subo. Book your stay in Newcastle here.
4. Cook up a storm in the Barossa Valley, Adelaide
Mum has no doubt prepared thousands of meals, so cook up a culinary short break for her in Australia’s premiere gourmet food and wine region – the Barossa Valley. Located just 1.5 hours’ drive from Adelaide, it’s worth the early start in order to make the Barossa Farmers Market, which takes place on Saturday mornings. Barossa Walks offers a guided market walking tour, which will have Mum mixing with a variety of local producers and providores.
Next, book in at Casa Carboni for an authentic Italian cooking class under the expert eye of Matteo Carboni. Participants learn the art of making fresh pasta using regional Italian techniques, before enjoying the fruits of their labour during a four-course long lunch. Mum can either muck in or be your guest for lunch. In the afternoon, head for Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop for the opportunity to taste test many of Maggie’s extensive range of gourmet products (most of which are made locally). Book your stay in Comfort Inn & Suites Manhattan.
5. Discover high tea heaven in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth
High tea and Mother’s Day are a perfect match, so extend the theme with a short break dedicated to enjoying the crème de la crème of high teas in Australia. If Sydney is your destination of choice, book a table at the Vaucluse House Tearooms, which serves the classic three tiers of tasty morsels overlooking the gardens of this heritage property. If Mum is actually in it for the tea, then The Tea Room at Queen Victoria Building is another must-try. There are several pages of fine leaf teas to choose from, and the old-world charm of the former ballroom is mesmerising. Choose your stay at one of these amazing Sydney hotels.
Brisbane is another contender for high tea capital of Oz. Base Mum’s short break around high tea at the iconic Room with Roses – located in the heritage surroundings of the Brisbane Arcade. There are several different high tea menus, including one that features a delightfully gooey house-made chocolate fondue. Customs House on the riverfront also goes heavy on the historic charm and serves high tea with an included glass of French bubbles. We’ve got just the place for you to stay in Brisbane.
If you plan to go west, Perth offers no shortage of superb high tea options. The George in London House is a sophisticated bolthole that boasts a two-hour high tea service on Saturdays and Sundays. Expect something super special at Rochelle Adonis in Highgate, including handcrafted confections and a very European feel. Book your Perth accommodation here.
About the writer
Adam Ford is editor of The Big Bus tour and travel guide and a travel TV presenter, writer, blogger and photographer. He has previously had the opportunity to travel the world as host of the TV series Tour the World on Network Ten.