On July 8, 2007 Matthew Attwood established an elite Swan Valley Tour company for the wine lovers of Perth. Its purpose was to teach the lost art of wine tasting combat and to insure that the handful of drinkers who graduated from the tour were the best wine tourists in the world. He has succeeded. Today, Perth calls it another Swan Valley Tour. The passengers call it: TOP GUN.
Not just for penis-tiara wearing hen’s do parties…
All aboard the Pink Bus! When a scoopon came up for a half day Swan Valley Wine tour for 2 PLUS a bottle of wine for AU$79, I just couldn’t turn it down. I have to admit I was a bit worried about how I was going to get Mr. Spittoon on a hot pink bus but that was hardly an issue. These days guys are into pink aren’t they? Except you don’t call if pink, it is ‘salmon’ in guy speak!
The Swan Valley Pink Bus books up quickly, so I urge you to book ahead. I can honestly see why it books up early as it’s such great value (with or without the discount – our friends paid AU$50 each, bargain!) and it’s just so much fun. Myself and 3 friends decided to pink it out for the day. I was surprised to see that it was pretty much 50/50 on the bus in terms of a female to male ratio.
On the way out to the Valley (pickup is included in the price from the city or from Guildford) the bus was deadly quiet, I knew after a few stops this was bound to change. By the end of the tour it was so chatty. Don’t you love how alcohol is the start of so many new friendships!
Our driver Rardi (or as someone nicknamed him “Rowdy Rardi”) was a true highlight of the trip, his hilarious commentary and knowledgeable chattiness about the Valley were fantastic. Every time I go on a tour of the Swan Valley I learn something new.
The half day tour runs from 11:45am till about 5:30pm – a perfect way to spend a weekend afternoon. You visit 2 wineries, 2 breweries and the Margaret River Chocolate Factory. And the best bit is if you’re not keen on the chocolate stop then you can stay at the last brewery and the driver will stop by and pick you up on the way back.
At each stop you’re taken through a guided tasting and at one of the wineries you can even snack on a cheese board and nougat – all included in the price of your ticket.
Highlights of my trip:
- Aki at Edgecombe Brothers winery, this guy is truly fabulous. He had the whole tour bus in fits of laughter as he guided us through tasting 6 wines overlooking the vineyard. Probably one of the funniest wine tastings I have ever been too, he was classic! Check out a short video of Aki here.
- Elmars Brewery: despite only getting a teeny weeny tiny tasting – it was good. Just loved the wheat beer and the music at the venue was pretty great too.
- Plus as mentioned before, Rardi was the best driver!
It’s safe to say that I no longer think of the Pink Bus as just a tour for penis-tiara wearing hen’s do parties but I now know it’s a well-priced bloody awesome Swan Valley tour that will leave you with a very ‘rosy’ outlook on the Swan Valley. For more information on Pink Bus Swan Valley Tours check out their website or Facebook page.