Are you engaged and looking for a Southern Highlands wedding venue for your wedding? Hi, I’m Adam, a wedding photographer who loves to shoot weddings all over the Southern Highlands of NSW. I have been shooting around the Southern Highlands for over twelve years so I have seen my fair share of wedding venues. And there are some amazing wedding venues in the Southern Highlands. So on this page, I’d love to share with you some of my favourite wedding venues and also share some venues that I have not photographed yet, but would absolutely love to.
The Southern Highlands is a region 110km south-west of Sydney known for its beautiful landscapes, rolling green hills, quaint little towns, old mansions & homesteads and amazing food & wine. It is so close to Sydney that it makes a perfect location for that destination wedding for most Sydneysiders. It is also known for its amazing wedding venues. The Southern Highlands hosts over 1500 weddings per year.
The thing that really sets the Southern Highlands apart from other Australian destinations is its fairytale-like beauty. It is really like a step back in time, and into a cooler and greener climate with historic romantic homes and estates. Having your wedding in the Southern Highlands is really right out of a fairytale.
From a wedding photographers point of view, Southern Highlands wedding venues have all the ingredients you need to capture beautiful photos. Rows of vineyards, rolling hills, long grass, beautiful trees, historic homes and a rustic environment. You are also able to base your whole wedding day at most properties. That means you don’t need to spend time travelling from one location to another. You can do everything at the one wedding venue. And it means you will spend more time with your family and friends.
So these are some of my favourite wedding venues in the Southern Highlands. Some of them I have photographed weddings at. And some of them are on my ‘ bucket list ‘ of venues that I would love to photograph one day.
So, in no particular order, here are 15 stunning Southern Highlands wedding venues that I absolutely love!
1. Centennial Vineyards
Centennial Vineyards would have to be one of my absolute favourite locations in historic Bowral. And one of the best Southern Highlands wedding venues around.
It is a beautiful large property with lots of land and beautiful locations. The ceremony is conveniently done just outside in the garden area next to the reception room.
Centennial Vineyards also has one of the most epic vineyards to photograph. If you walk up the hill a bit you get a beautiful view of all the vines and the landscape around.
They have a large, high ceiling reception room that can accommodate up to 180 guests.
Address: 252 Centennial Rd, Bowral
2. Somerley House
Somerley House is a large Victorian house located on a beautiful country garden property, located in the Southern Highlands suburb of Sutton Forest.
Somerley House used to be known as ‘Summerless’ and it continues to be one of the most elegant and enchanting garden wedding venues around. It has a long history in the region and has been the setting for hundreds of private and exclusive garden parties, banquets, wedding ceremonies and dances since c.1875.
There is plenty of local accommodation in the area, but Somerley House also has “The Guest House” which is a charming three-bedroom cottage on-site which is perfect for wedding preparations.
Address: 7207 Illawarra Hwy, Sutton Forest
3. Briars Country Lodge and Historic Inn
Briars Country Lodge and Historic Inn have a long history in the Southern Highlands, dating back to c.1827 when it first began as a Coaching Inn.
Today, Briars Country Lodge is a 4-star facility, located on 15-acres, with 32 accommodation rooms that all look onto beautiful gardens, a lake and a gazebo.
Wedding ceremonies are held in the garden and the reception room can accommodate up to 130 guests. The beauty of this venue is that it is beautiful and, depending on how many guests you have, they could all potentially all stay on-site and then stumble back to their rooms at the end of the night.
Address: 653 Moss Vale Rd, Burradoo
4. Montrose Berry Farm
Montrose Berry Farm has been hosting country weddings since 1988
This spectacular estate with beautiful gardens and rolling pastures provides you with a perfect place to spend your wedding day. What could be more fitting than celebrating your wedding with friends and family in such a beautiful garden setting? They can accommodate up to 140 guests within their blank canvas, rustic barn setting.
Even if you don’t book your wedding here, you should go here just to try their Berry Pies!!
Address: Ormond St, Sutton Forest
5. Peppers Manor House
Peppers Manor House is a classic country retreat, in the Southern Highlands, located in a romantic estate will rolling green hills and is a perfect setting for any wedding.
There is ample accommodation available on-site for you and your guests. You can choose from a variety of locations on the property for your wedding ceremony. And Peppers Manor House can cater weddings from an intimate wedding of two to a larger, grander wedding of up to 180 guests.
Address: Kater Rd, Sutton Forest
6. Growwild Wildflower Farm
Growwild Wildflower Farm is a marquee wedding venue, set on 25-acres of property on a gorgeous Australian wildflower farm. It is a pretty perfect setting for any wedding.
A permanent timber floored marquee is set up at Growwild Wildflower Farm and when you book a wedding there, you get three full days… to set up, have your wedding and then pack down. Which is more than what a lot of other places will give you.
Address: 916 Old Hume Hwy, Alpine
Website | Real Wedding Feature
7. Peppers Craigieburn
Peppers Craigieburn is a truly beautiful luxury country resort situated on a breathtaking property with its own 9-hole golf course, just minutes away from the historic Southern Highlands village of Bowral.
There are 72 guest rooms, so there is plenty of on-site accommodation available for you and your wedding guests. Ceremonies are held outside in their lovely garden lawn areas and you can choose your exact location. There are also plenty of locations for photos after the ceremony. Some old rustic building, forest areas and there are areas around the golf course that also look lovely.
There are two wedding reception rooms to choose from. And you can have a wedding for just the two of you or a wedding of up to 180 guests. I love that you can have your wedding here and then everyone can just walk back to their rooms at the end of the night. No need to organise buses or other guests transportation.
Address: Centennial Rd, Bowral
8. Milton Park
Milton Park Country House Hotel & Spa is a grand mansion and five-star hotel offering luxurious accommodation, amazing cuisine and is an amazing Southern Highlands wedding venue.
There are 42 various luxurious accommodation rooms available for you and your wedding guests. Wedding ceremonies take place outside in the gardens and there are a few reception rooms to choose from, which is based primarily on your guest count. And Milton Park can host weddings from an intimate 20 to a grand 200 guests.
Milton Park is the perfect wedding venue if you are looking for a luxurious, elegant and classy affair with beautifully manicured gardens with a country touch.
Address: 200 Horderns Rd, Bowral
9. Bendooley Estate
Bendooley Estate is one of the best Southern Highlands wedding venues around and they are extremely popular and do a lot of weddings. They are located near the historic township of Berrima, on a beautiful 200-acre property and it is also where the iconic Berkelouw Book Barn is located.
There is some on-site accommodation available, with three cottages available. Which would be perfect for you, your Bridal Party and maybe some family. The ceremony can take place at the Lakeside Pavilion, The Gardens or The Stables. You can have your reception at either the Book Barn or at their country-style barn, The Stables.
The wonderful thing about Bendooley Estate is that you can spend the whole day and even the whole weekend at the one location. There is no need to travel around. So you can spend more time with each other and your loved ones.
Address: 3020 Old Hume Hwy, Berrima
10. Mali Brae Farm
Mali Brae Farm is a historical and boutique vintage style Southern Highlands wedding venue, located on 90-acres of countryside that was formerly a dairy farm. And is a beautiful location for your wedding day.
Mali Brae Farm has lush rolling green hills, a dam surrounded by five acres of gardens and a boat shed. So there are many, many beautiful and different locations on the property to take photos.
Your wedding ceremony can take place at six different locations around the property. You can even say your vows at the ruins of an old classic chapel. And the wedding reception is a fully-renovated former hay barn that can accommodate up to 100 guests for a sit-down meal.
Address: 562 Nowra Rd, Moss Vale
11. Hopewood House
Hopewood House is a private grand estate situated in Bowral, a 90-minute drive from Sydney by car. Hopewood House weddings are expertly woven into the residence’s tremendous past, the new provincial addition to the Pavilion building surrounding outdoor sanctuaries and eleven hectares of truly enchanting gardens.
It is also the wedding venue the Emma & Lachy from the Wiggles got married!
Hopewood House has on-site accommodated with four cottages available. Which is perfect for the both of you and your bridal parties. For your wedding ceremony, there are several locations to choose from. And your wedding reception would take place in The Hopewood Pavillion, which can cater up to 150 guests.
Address: 201 Centennial Rd, Bowral
12. Wombat Hollow
Wombat Hollow is a 20-acre property, in a tranquil bush setting that is full of rustic charm and country goodness.
Wedding ceremonies are held out on the gardens in lush green surroundings. There are very good wet weather backup alternatives as well. For the wedding reception, you have a few choices depending on the number of people at your wedding. There are two marquee venues and two smaller rustic shed venues.
There is no on-site accommodation available, but there are many lots of hotels, resorts, b&bs and private rentals available nearby
Address: 300 Kirkland Road, East Kangaloon
13. Sylvan Glen Country Estate
Sylvan Glen Country Estate is located on 60-acres of private land in the Southern Highlands, offering you and your wedding total privacy for the whole weekend.
There is amazing on-site accommodation with The Guesthouse. A heritage guesthouse built in c. 1870 and it features 15 ensuite rooms, that can accommodate up to 42 people.
Wedding ceremonies are held outdoors in the garden and there is a marquee available as a wet weather backup. With 60-acres of land, there are plenty of locations for beautiful wedding photos. And the reception can accommodate up to 140 guests. This wedding venue has everything you need to have an awesome wedding weekend.
Address: 570 Kareela Rd, Penrose
14. Gibraltar Hotel, Bowral
Gibraltar Hotel Bowral is an elegant mixture of contemporary and country charm with resort-style comfort and facilities in the Southern Highlands.
The Gibraltar Hotel Bowral has on-site accommodation with plenty of luxury guest suites available for your wedding guests. You can say your vows in the Gallery, with huge floor to ceiling windows or have a beautiful lakeside wedding ceremony.
There are one hundred acres of land at the Gibraltar Hotel Bowral so there are plenty of locations for beautiful photos. And there are three reception rooms to choose from that can accommodate up to 260 guests.
Address: 7 Boronia St, Bowral
15. Weddings in the Wilde
Weddings in the Wilde is like a big, rustic, green blank canvas Southern Highlands wedding venue that is located in the Australian bush.
They have a bunch of different spaces to create your ultimate wedding. There is a bush chapel, a little faerie cabin, rustic wedding calls, a green field with a marquee. And there are even a whole bunch of bohemian wedding tents. There are beautiful photo locations galore and they have enough glamping accommodation for all your wedding guests. Sounds pretty awesome to me.
Address: 71 Ryans Lane, Wildes Meadow
Other awesome Southern Highlands wedding venues
There is a huge variety of wedding venues listed above. From the ultra-elegant to the resort-style wedding, to the rustic boho wedding. But if none of those venues worked for you, here are some other wedding venues in the Southern Highlands you could check out. They could be your dream wedding venue…
Burrawang School of the Arts
The Robertson Hotel
Mowbray Park Farm
The Long Shed – Mowbray Park Farmstay
Red Cow Farm
Solar Springs Retreat
Hillview Heritage Hotel
Southern Highlands Winery
Fitzroy Inn – Mittagong
Tips for choosing your Southern Highlands wedding venue
The Southern Highlands is famous for its historic houses, food & wine and its amazing wedding venues. The Southern Highlands region has over 1500 weddings per year and is an extremely popular wedding destination. And rightly so.
If you asked me what my favourite wedding venue is, I really couldn’t answer you. My favourite venue is probably anywhere I have never photographed before. I love shooting in new and different locations and exploring different regions and landscapes. But there are some things, in my opinion, that make some wedding venues better than others. So where is what I look for…
Onsite Accommodation at your venue
The beauty of the Southern Highlands is that there is some much unique accommodation options. Nearly every other property is some sort of Airbnb or Stays rental. They are so much better than some generic hotel room. But what I love even better for weddings is when there is accommodation available at the actual wedding venue.
In the Southern Highlands, you don’t need to spend your whole wedding day travelling from one location to another. You can find wedding venues where there is accommodation onsite. It will make it so much easier for you on the wedding day and it means that you will spend less time travelling and more time hanging out with the people you really care about. And, heaven forbid, you are running late during your wedding day preparations… it’s not like you need to hop in a car and travel to the venue. You are already at the venue, so you just need to walk out your door and walk to the ceremony. It takes all the stress away.
Good wedding ceremony options
When I look for good wedding venues, I look for places where you can have the wedding ceremony and the wedding reception at the same place. Again, not needing to travel makes the day so much easier and less stressful for everyone.
For outdoor ceremonies, look for locations with shade and a nice background. If you are planning an outdoor ceremony, check out my outdoor wedding ceremony tips to help get you started.
It is also very important that you have a nice wet weather backup for your wedding ceremony. Prepare for your wedding as if it might rain. Don’t go in blindly just hoping it won’t rain, because chances are it will. And I have seen couples in tears because they just didn’t think it would rain and had no alternative.
Southern Highlands photo locations
A good wedding venue also has some good photo location on their property. You should be able to find a venue where there is no need to venture offsite to get nice photos. A little bit of land with some nice locations for photos.
In a perfect world… or a perfect venue… there would be some trees, a field of long grass, rows of vines, a rundown shed, a big hill with a single tree, a maze garden, a wall of ivy, a huge outdoor concrete staircase, a rustic wooden fence, with a view of the sunset, on a dirt road, with a lake a pier and a rowboat, a single kangaroo an alpaca and about 1000-acres of land. But I’ll settle any of the above ;)
Here is my main tip for the wedding reception room. Choose a wedding venue and a reception room that is a bit unique. I personally hate rooms that look like generic function rooms that could be in any hotel in any city of the world. You are choosing to get married in the Southern Highlands, so choose a venue and room that shows this off. It can be elegant and historic, bohemian and rustic or modern and classic. Whatever your tastes are.
The staff, management or sales people
Go with your gut instinct here. But only choose to work with a venue (and other wedding vendors) if they are warm and friendly and give you good professional service. Don’t choose a venue if they are not particularly friendly or helpful to you, just because you like the venue or the price is right. Because on the wedding day itself, they are not going to instantly become friendly and helpful.
Choose the venue you trust and trust the venue you choose.
Southern Highlands Average Temperatures
Summer – The average temperature is 13°C to 25°C
Autumn – The average temperature is 8°C to 19°C
Winter – The average temperature is 3°C to 12°C
Spring – The average temperature is 8°C to 19°C
Southern Highlands Average Rainfall
Looking at the average rainfall in the Southern Highlands according to the Bureau of Meteorology, the statistics are quite interesting and not what you might expect. The highest rainfall comes in Summer, in February. And the lowest is in Spring in September.
Summer – December 52.3mm, January 59.5mm, February 94.5mm (highest rainfall)
Autumn – March 82.0mm, April 51.4mm, May 38.3mm
Winter – June 84.9mm, July 41.6mm, August 46.9mm
Spring – September 37.5mm (lowest rainfall), October 43.8mm, November 66.1
My advice in regards to rainfall and your wedding is to plan your wedding like it might rain. Always have a backup plan, particularly for your ceremony. But rain is not a bad thing. From a photography point-of-view, some of my favourite weddings ever have been rainy-day weddings. So don’t worry if it rains. It looks great in photos. Australia needs rain, so if it does rain on your wedding day, run out into the rain and dance, kiss, sing. Have fun! You will have the most unique and awesome wedding photos if you just embrace it.
Best time to have a wedding in the Southern Highlands
Autumn & Spring Weddings – Peak times for weddings in the Southern Highlands are always Spring and Autumn. Key dates during these periods will book out very quickly. And you will find that popular venues will quickly book out a year to two years in advance.
You will also find that dates around school holidays and long weekends will book out quickly.
The beauty of the Southern Highlands is that it is a cooler climate zone. Which means you can have a wedding in the Southern Highlands all year round.
Summer weddings – During the summer months, when most of New South Wales is way too hot for a wedding, the Southern Highlands averages around 25°C. Which makes summer a perfect option for weddings.
Winter weddings – Winter is definitely an off-peak season for weddings in the Southern Highlands, but I think that it is a season you should strongly consider. Photographically speaking, the sun is lower in the sky. Which is amazing for photos. It means that it is like sunset all day. You seriously get the most amazing light in winter. You are more likely to get mist and fog, which makes photos even more romantic.
From a temperature point of view, it’s not that cold during the day. Guys will be wearing a suit so they will be fine and girls will just need to wear a jacket, coat or something similar and appropriate for winter. Once the sun sets it will get cold, yes. The sun will set earlier, around 5pm. And once the sun sets you can go into your warm wedding venue with a roaring fireplace. They build venues and accommodation in the Southern Highlands to be insulated and warm during winter.
Photographers love winter weddings. It is great for photos. And because winter is considered off-peak for weddings, you may be able to book your dream wedding venue more easily. And you may be able to get it at a slightly cheaper price… maybe?
How to get to the Southern Highlands
The Southern Highlands is just 1½ to 2 hours from Sydney, depending on where you are coming from in Sydney. And it is about 2 hours from Canberra.
Coming from Sydney – Take the M7 or M5 motorways south to Mittagong. Take the Mittagong exit 11.
Coming from Canberra – Go via the Federal and Hume Highways, then just use one of the Southern Highlands exits. Moss Vale, Berrima or Mittagong.
Hey, I’m Adam. A Southern Highlands wedding photographer who loves to shoot fun, relaxed couples in a natural and candid way.
I shoot weddings all over Australia, so if you are engaged and looking for a photographer, please check out my work. If you can see yourself in these photos, feel free to get in contact to check my availability. Thanks :)