If you’re like us, you’ve never had itchier feet in your entire life and you’re champing at the bit to get out of your house to go… well, anywhere really! But with local businesses all across the state hurting through all this, we reckon it’s important to help them out by visiting places found in our own backyard before we start heading interstate and - eventually - overseas again.
And there really are some incredible places to visit around Victoria, many of which you may have never even heard of. To help you plan your next holiday around the awesome state of VIC, we’ve put together a list of some lesser-known places that are bound to surprise and delight.
Day trips ahoy
Redwood Forest, Warburton
An hour and a half’s drive east of the Melbourne CBD, just 8 kilometres past the township of Warburton, is the Redwood Forest. It’s really a sight to behold, as a forest teeming with Californian redwood Douglas fir and Bishop pine trees that were planted all the way back in the 1930s that stand up to 55 metres tall. There are walking tracks that will take you through the forest, and when you’re in the mood for a bit of food, Warburton offers a range of restaurants and cafes for you to choose from.
Travel north from Melbourne on the M31 for just shy of 140 kilometres and you’ll find yourself in the gorgeous little regional town of Nagambie. And while it’s a town you’ve probably heard of before, you probably haven’t actually taken the time to visit it yet. Visit the Mitchelton Winery and its stellar cellar door, then pop past the Nagambie Brewery and Distillery while you’re making your way to the supremely relaxing Mitchelton Day Spa.
There’s also the picturesque Lake Nagambie to visit as well as loads of activities like scenic walks (be sure to check out the Black Caviar statue while you’re in the area!).
Silo art spotting
Checking out all the amazing silo art throughout Victoria - there are 18 in total - will probably take you more than just one weekend, but we reckon it’s worth mapping out all the ones you’re dying to see and splitting it up into a few weekends instead to ensure you really take it all in. The Wimmera/Mallee region, where all the silos are located, is a gorgeous part of the world boasting plenty of things to see and do no matter what your interests.
We highly recommend staying in Hopetoun at the Mallee Bush Retreat.
A little over 3 hours’ drive to the northeast from Melbourne, King Valley is located in Victoria’s beautiful High Country. Bursting with tracks and trails for walking and bike rides as well as some of the freshest produce and delicious wines you’ll ever taste, you’re sure to love your visit. You’re surrounded by truly breathtaking scenery including rivers, mountains and rolling vineyard hills, and can get an even better view by heading up in a hot air balloon.
Whatever your food preferences, you’ll find something to match in and around King Valley, and we suggest putting your head down for the night at either Orange Tree Cottage or the King Valley Lodge.
Coastal road trip
Sometimes, it’s good to just pack some things and hit the road without doing too much planning beforehand. The beauty of Victoria is that you’re never too far away from a beach, and with so many absolutely spectacular beaches on offer you have the opportunity to get away for a week (or even more) while making your way from one to the next.
From countless surf beaches to the umpteen small, quaint and marvelously-charming coastal towns waiting for you to visit and a heck of a lot more, taking a road trip along Victoria’s coast might be just what the doctor ordered!
Bright, which is just over 3.5 hours to Melbourne’s northeast, is really very easy to spend a week in. In summer, get yourself an inflatable ring or mattress and head down to the Ovens River, where you can float at your leisure down to the neighbouring small town of Porepunkah for a pick-up (the ‘punkah pub serves great meals, too). During winter, you’re not too far from both Mount Buffalo and Falls Creek should you feel like doing some skiing or tobogganing.
And we certainly mustn’t forget about the absolutely must-see local attractions including the Bright Brewery which is famous for its beer brewed using fresh Alpine water and (mostly) local ingredients, the countless bushwalking and biking tracks, Bright Splash Park and everything else on offer.
There are a lot of choices in terms of accommodation covering budgets of all levels, though we recommend booking well in advance - especially during holidays and other busy periods.
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