It’s an idea that just about everyone who’s ever visited a winery had, two vineyards in: wouldn’t it be genius if there was a hop-on, hop-off bus? Finally, some bloody legends in Victoria turned your dream Yarra Valley wine tours into reality.
Married couple Jon and Sara Lee made the same observations as the rest of us — that traditional wine tours can be over-priced and offer zero flexibility, and being deso driver sucks — except they actually did something about it.
With neither of the couple wanting to be designated driver, but wanting to show their guests a good time, they put their combined experience in hospitality and tourism together to create Hop It, the new hop-on, hop-off bus service.
Just like those tour buses that go around cities, Hop It has tours in the Yarra, Mornington Peninsula and the Bellarine Peninsula, with an extensive stop list so you can create your own itinerary. It’s not just wineries either.
“A lot of people know about the wine country, but it really is such a magical place, with so much to do and see,” says explain to Broadsheet. “It doesn’t have to be an alcohol-fuelled day – you could focus on taking in the scenic views of the valley from different points instead”.
You can get picked up from the Melbourne CBD outside Grand Hyatt Hotel or Lilydale station. From there you can pick where you want to go from stops including Yarra Valley Chocolaterie, Yering Station, The Taphouse, Punt Road Wines, Domaine Chandon and Healesville.
Tickets range from $69.95 to $124.94 depending on which route you’re after — which is bloody decent if you’ve ever tried booking a winery tour. You’ll be in an 11-seat Toyota van with room for a small bag to carry all your vino, obviously.
Check out the full details and book your tour here.
Imagery all sourced from Hop It
This article was originally published on January 8th, 2021 and has since been updated.
Kassia is the Editor of AWOL, and a straight-up travel addict. She was born without a sense of direction, yet an intense desire to explore the world. As such, she's lost 90% of the time but she's learned to roll with it. You can catch her latest adventures on Instagram @probably_kassia.