As the weather begins to cool, gather friends and loved ones, and relax with a glass of wine by a roaring fire.

Dine hearthside in pubs, restaurants and wineries, and enjoy a toasty toast beside the fire at breweries and distilleries.

Retire to country retreats and warm your toes.

Boutique accommodation

Just out of Melbourne, on the edge of the Yarra Valley, you'll find The Woodlands Rainforest Retreat. Hidden in the spectacular rainforest, each of the architect designed secluded cottages features a large brick open fireplace and a sunken therapeutic spa.

Over in spa country, Clifftop at Hepburn is one of Australia's best romantic getaways. The five-star villas have a fireplace, framed by floor-to-ceiling panoramic views of native bushland.

Down along the Great Ocean Road there's Points South by the Sea in Wongarra. Stay in a self-contained cottage set on a 160-acre farm opposite the beach. Snuggle up in front of the stone wood fireplace or enjoy a spa as the sun sets. Escape to the regions this autumn-winter and let sparks fly.

Fireside dining

Dine on seasonal produce and local drops at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Trentham. Fire is the focus at The Woodhouse in Bendigo, where a huge two-sided fireplace warms the dining room and wood cooking features throughout the menu.

Enjoy south east Asian cuisine at Fook Shing on Kyneton's Piper Street, or indulge in fine dining at TarraWarra Estate in the Yarra Valley. Both have large open fireplaces.

Toasty tipples

Stay warm at Sutton Grange Winery in the Goldfields region, as you relax in front of the fireplace, with views over the lake.

At Daylesford Cider Company's fire-warmed tavern, you can sample a range of ciders made using 17 varieties of English-heritage listed organic apples.

Head to the Bellarine for an afternoon of fireside tasting and dining at Jack Rabbit Vineyard, or gin cocktails paired with delicious pizza at The Whiskery – a distillery cellar door in a rustic tin shed in Drysdale.

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