Overview

Touring the Goldfields, The Murray and the Grampians
About 960 kilometres, plus the Silo Art Trail

Dine in at renowned regional restaurants, explore the historic towns of the Goldfields and stretch your legs in the Grampians National Park, or at stunning Lake Tyrrell. This five-day getaway will take you through the Goldfields region, right up to the banks of the mighty Murray River, stopping at Echuca and Swan Hill. Cruise on to explore the regional town of Sea Lake, before you begin your journey along the Silo Art Trail, Australia's largest outdoor gallery. Finish your journey in the Grampians, as you drop into the world-renowned wineries of Great Western to sample their award-winning wine.

  • Day one – Melbourne to Bendigo, via Castlemaine
    (Approx. 150km)

    Jump in your car and drive to Castlemaine. Stop in for a filling breakfast at Johnny Bakers Drive Thru, a local bakery serving up coffee, pastries, cakes and delicious pies. Travel up the road to Harcourt Produce and General Store, to load up on local produce. Grab a bottle of wine to share later with your designated driver.

    Continue your journey to Bendigo, in the heart of Victoria's Goldfields. Along with its beautiful heritage streets and strong arts scene, Bendigo is a UNESCO City of Gastronomy, the first of its kind in Australia. Grab a coffee from El Gordo and take a wander through Chancery Lane, which offers an eclectic mix of fashion boutiques, eateries and street art.

    Settle in for a delicious lunch at either Hoo Gah, a cool urban cafe on Mitchell Street, or micro roastery Old Green Bean.

    Once you're sufficient filled and fueled up, walk over to Bendigo's Art Gallery, one of Victoria's finest regional art galleries, to check out the current, world-class exhibition. From there, head along View Street, to shop its range of boutique stores, offering antiques, vintage clothing, creative homewares, artisan products and indie labels. Or, take advantage of good weather and stroll down to Rosalind Park. Time your visit with spring to see 45,000 colourful tulips lining the park.

    Urban exploring is thirsty work. Stop in at Ms Batterhams, a recently restored basement turned speakeasy lounge for a cocktail, or two. Alternatively, head back to Chancery Lane for a drink at the Dispensary, an intimate bar and diner reminiscent of European gastrobars.

    Enjoy a delicious degustation at Masons of Bendigo, or order an expertly chargrilled steak at the Woodhouse. Call in advance to book, to avoid disappointment on the day.

    Sufficiently fed and watered, head on back to Balgownie Estate, to spend a restful night's sleep in one of their luxury glamping tents.

  • Day two – Bendigo to Echuca-Moama
    (Approx. 150km)

    Wake up to the sight of the morning sun spreading out across Balgownie's verdant vineyards. Pack up and head back into Bendigo for brekky, at Harvest Food and Wine. Order a gourmet sandwich or croissant, and grab some snacks from their deli to enjoy on the road.

    Say goodbye to Bendigo and travel on to Echuca. Learn about the town's local history at the Port of Echuca Discovery Centre, located on the banks of the mighty Murray River. Drop into Johnny & Lyle's for lunch. Named after the two business owner' fathers, this cafe sources fresh ingredients for its menu and roasts its own coffee on site.

    Arrive at Murray River Paddlesteamers at 1:15pm, to board the PS Emmylou for a two hour cruise along the river. Enjoy a drink from the fully licensed bar, as you take in the surrounding sights.

    Stretch out your sea legs with a forest walk through Banyule State Forest, and grab a bottle of the perfect plonk at St Anne's Winery cellar door in the Port of Echuca.

    Cap off the day with dinner at The Mill. Built in 1881, this former flour mill now operates as a restaurant bar, and serves up a distinctly Australian menu. Opt for the kangaroo fillet, or order the Murray cod, and round things out with Vegemite flavoured macarons for dessert.

    Roll on to your accommodation. Moama on the Murray offer self-contained villas with views out to nearby lakes and bushland. You can continue your glamping adventure at Talo Retreat, where you'll spend the night in an eco-friendly yurt, surrounded by native flora and fauna.

  • Day three – Echuca-Moama to Sea Lake, via Swan Hill
    (Approx. 230km)

    Start your day with breakfast at plant-based cafe The Sweet Meadow, and have a final walk around Echuca's city centre before you hop back in your car.

    Head towards Swan Hill, a border-town nestled on the banks of the Murray. Fuel up on coffee and a homemade treat at Boo's Place Cafe & Provedore. Continue on to open-air museum Pioneer Settlement, for an insight into life on the Murray in the 19th and early 20th century. Stock up on lollies from the General Store, watch blacksmiths hard at work, or settle in for a Devonshire Tea at The Paragon Cafe.

    Take lunch right next door at Spoons Restaurant. Watch the river float by from inside their ambient dining room, or grab a table outside on their expansive deck.

    Continue on to the town of Sea Lake. Make sure you catch a glimpse and maybe a photo or two of the Giant Murray Cod as you leave Swan Hill.

    Grab an early dinner at the Royal Hotel, before jumping on a sunset Sea Lake Tyrrell Tour. The 120,000 year old salt lake's reflective surface offers amazing views at any time of the day or night. Paired with an epic Wimmera-Mallee sunset, it makes for a truly spectacular sight.

    Head back to Sea Lake to check in to Lake Tyrrell Accommodation or Sea Lake Motel.

  • Day four – Sea Lake to Halls Gap, via the Silo Art Trail
    (Approx. 700km, allow around 7 hours to complete the trail )

    Enjoy a complimentary breakfast at the Silo Art Hotel, before you pack up and head off to see the rest of the Silo Art Trail.

    Begin at Sea Lake's own silo art, the newest addition to the trail. Travel from town to town, to see the giant, vibrant murals in Nullawil, Patchewollock, Lascelles, Rosebery, Brim, Kaniva, Goroke, Sheep Hills and Rupanyup. Keep an eye out for more street art by internationally-renowned artists, splashed across the buildings and walls of these towns.

    Take a break in your journey in Beulah – best known as the film set for The Dry (2020) starring Eric Bana. Prop up at the Beulah Victoria Hotel and order a hearty pub counter meal.

    Head on towards the Grampians National Park. Drop into independent microbrewery Paper Scissors Rock Brew Co for dinner and craft beer on tap, before checking into your accommodation for the night. Sleep peacefully in the heart of the Grampians at Halls Gap Lakeside, or relax into luxury in one of DULC's funky cabins.

  • Day five – Halls Gap to Melbourne, via Great Western
    (Approx. 260km)

    Wake up bright and early for a morning hike to Pinnacle Lookout, to take in the spectacular scenery of the Grampians.

    Wander back down to your car and drive on to Livefast Lifestyle Cafe, for a delicious, well-earned brunch-time meal.

    Start to wind back towards Melbourne, stopping in Great Western along the way. This pretty little town is known for its world-renowned wineries, award-winning bottles and underground cellars. Its age-old vines produce some of the best wine in the world, notably shiraz of both the still and sparkling variety.

    Try a sample for yourself at the cellar doors of Best's Great Western, Grampians Estate and the region's winemaking pioneers, Seppelt. 

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