Driving has its perks as the country back roads are lined with cherry blossoms in spring, fiery leaves in autumn, and snow-dipped trees in winter. Though it’s prettiest in person, you'll want to bring your camera to capture the breathtaking night skies.
Whether you plan your trip around the seasons, or one of the many major festivals that rolls into town, there’s no wrong time to visit Orange. Here are our top recommendations for where to eat, drink, shop, and stay.
Where to eat in Orange
Even though it’s located in a supermarket car park - and even if you’re short on time - Racine Bakery should be at the top of any foodie’s to-do list. Not only does it attract tourists galore, but locals love it just as much (which is how you know it’s worth the hype). Try their range of baked goods, or if you'd rather a five-star home cooked meal, they offer an at-home catering service for hire.
The Union Bank’s courtyard is a great spot to meet people and while away the afternoon, dining al fresco. The spacious building has been standing since 1857 and has both indoor and outdoor dining with seasonal menus.
3. Mr Lim
For dinner, head to Mr Lim where you’re promised ‘the best night in town’. With Korean barbecue on Sunday and Mondays, and a tasty Japanese menu using local ingredients on every other day, the food is hard to top. But Mr Lim really kicks off at 9.30pm on weekends when the restaurant converts into a late-night karaoke bar.
Where to drink in Orange
Orange is a cool-climate region, making it a good spot for grape growing. It's home to more than 80 high altitude vineyards and 30 plus cellar doors, so narrowing down the list is tough work. To kick off your visit, start with Rowlee winery. This intimate venue has expansive grounds where you can settle in with a picnic hamper and some high-quality drops.
Next, head to the rustic Nashdale Lane Wines which offers a stunning view of the setting sun, making it the perfect place to be with a glass of wine in hand come magic hour. The 60-acre vineyard is planted with eight varieties of grape that include chardonnay, shiraz, pinot gris and sauvignon blanc, riesling, pinot noir, tempranillo and arneis.
Though you might come for the wine, it’s worth taking a detour to the family-run gin-joint Parrot Distilling Co. "Parrot Distilling Co is the newest and coolest spot in town. A converted warehouse, offering the best Gin experience. Whether you’re up for a tasting experience, looking for a fun night out or craving some wood fired pizza, Parrot should definitely be on your radar," says Alex Pilcher.
Where to stay in Orange
If you’re bringing the whole family or meeting up with friends, The White Place boutique accommodation is your best bet. With two stunning homes only a few streets away from each other, you can spread the whole tribe across the two properties and get country cosy. Both homes are newly renovated and incorporate coastal influences in their styling with warm textures. The Byng Street home draws upon its heritage with more traditional elements, while the Casey Street home features a crisp all-white palette.
They each feature multiple bedrooms, wood fireplaces, and cosy lounge and dining areas. The homes are complete with lush furnishings and homewares from The White Place store in town, so, if any particular décor item takes your fancy, you can pick it up from the shop to take home!
If you're after something fancy, it’s hard to look past Byng Street Boutique Hotel. A luxe and theatrical one-stop-shop with accommodation, lounge and dining areas, and events. This colourful spot is best suited for a couple, or someone on a work staycation who can make use of the many board rooms.
For a destination accommodation, Nashdale Lane Wines offers luxury glamping cabins for couples, just a short stroll from the winery. The spacious cabins have a kitchenette, four-poster bed, and the perfect view of the vineyard. Settle in beside the cosy wood fire and enjoy some wine and stargazing.
Where to shop in Orange
The White Place store requires a visit, even if you aren’t staying in their nearby accommodation. Run by Alex Pilcher who describes the curated lifestyle store as being "designed like a house with linking rooms to include two bedrooms, living, dining and fashion, accessories, and jewellery." Get ready to shop, because you won't be leaving this store empty handed!
No trip to Orange is complete without a browse at Jumbled, a one-stop-shop for all things pretty. The popular store stocks homewares, fashion, and art. Operating since 2013, Jumbled sells colourful and unique items for every area of the home.