One Hour Out, the Victorian regional travel project, shares some of its favorite walking spots around the state.
The Winton Wetlands, located between Benalla and Wangaratta in Yorta Yorta Country, is a place where stories are told from the past, present, and future.
The wetlands are one of the biggest restoration projects in the southern hemisphere. Its collaborators have a mission: to renew and enhance the ecological significance of the reserve, as well as its scientific, cultural, and environmental value. Education is very important here.
It is easy to spend the day in this area due to its vastness. Your first stop should include the Welcome Trail, which contains information about the wetlands and local fauna as well as historical anecdotes.
It would be best if you did not miss the Lotjpatj Danak sculpture trail. The track features works created by 15 Yorta Yorta artist, which represent their living culture. Art is a powerful way to connect with the stories of these people.
You will also see kangaroos roaming freely, as well as lizards, birds, and other animals.
If you want to stay for more than a day, we suggest packing your camping gear and bikes and setting up a base. Enjoy the unobstructed, clear skies of the northeast, listen to birdsong as you wake up, explore the Australian bushland, or take a morning stroll.
Diamond Bay is a place that locals would rather remain a secret. We apologize to the residents of Sorrento.
The view is spectacular, especially during sunset. This bay is located three blocks from the main road running from Sorrento towards Blairgowrie.
A staircase leads you to the caramel-colored sand that stretches to meet the turquoise-colored water. The sandstone walls surrounding the bay remind you of the smaller bays on the Great Ocean Road, with their layered sand compositions ranging from pale blonde to orange.
This is one of Mornington Peninsula’s calmer areas, and it is a good place to swim.
Diamond Bay is part of a coastal walk that traverses 30km of tea-tree-covered clifftops, beaches, and dunes facing the Bass Strait between Cape Schanck Lighthouse and Point Nepean National Park. You can also head east from Diamond Bay to St. Paul’s Lookout for a view of the Bay of Islands, a group of small rocky outcrops. The west trail will take you along the clifftops to Coppins Track, which offers excellent views of Sorrento at sunset.
Stick to the designated paths and the beach, as this area is currently undergoing a revegetation program and contains several fragile middens.
The truly adventurous can join the Two Bays track to cross the peninsula to Dromana. The 26km trail takes you through the lush green fern valleys, Greens Bush eucalypt forest, and up to almost 300m above sea level as you cross Arthurs Seat.
It is tempting to continue the 100km walk around the Mornington Peninsula by joining the 28km bay trails all the way to Sorrento.
Yeddonba Aboriginal Cultural Site
Thylacines inhabited Australia for over 30 million years. Around 4,000 years ago, their numbers began to decrease on the mainland as dingo populations grew. In 2,000 BC, the thylacine was extinct in the mainland. When the Europeans arrived, they named them Tasmanian Tigers. In the 1930s, the last Tasmanian Tiger died in isolation in a Hobart Zoo. A thylacine image in ochre can be found on the wall of an overhang of rock at the foot of Mount Pilot. The ochre image was painted by the ancestors of the Dhudhuroa tribe when these marsupials hunted for small prey while in the granite hills surrounding what is now Beechworth. This remarkable image, though faded with age, can be seen at the Yeddonba Aboriginal Cultural Site, along with a picture of what appears to be a goanna climbing a tree.
The artist, despite the fact that the images are drawn in line, has managed to capture some of the character and movement of the goanna and thylacine.
The site is located on Yeddonba Road in northeast Victoria. It’s off Toveys Road and Beechworth Chiltern Road. The site is accessible by a self-guided trail through the box forests. There is also a boardwalk where you can see the ancient art. This site is sacred not only to the Dhudhuroa tribe but also to local clans that would gather for ceremonies on what is now called Mount Pilot.
Australian Botanic Gardens
Botanic gardens built on top of an old landfill will appeal to anyone interested in sustainability, nature, recycling, and reusing.
That’s right. You read that correctly.
The master plan included the creation of themed gardens to rehabilitate and reuse the land while also incorporating the historical, cultural, and environmental features of the Goulburn Valley. Infrastructure works included the remodeling of floodways into life-giving wetland areas where the nearby Goulburn River and Broken River annually flood.
Honeysuckle Rise offers a panoramic view over Shepparton. We recommend visiting at sunrise or sunset to enjoy the best view. From the river paths up to the Honeysuckle Track, there are many cycling and walking trails to explore. The paths are all accessible and range in length.
The Goulburn Valley will have four bioregions represented by a new section of development dedicated to land management practices used by the Yorta Yorta before European settlement.
It is still in the early stages of development, but how often can you see something so important at its beginning?
Budj Bim cultural landscape
Unesco recognized Budj Bim Cultural Landscape as more than 6,000 years old in 2019. It is located just 40 minutes from Port Fairy, near Heywood; it is the remains of the Gunditjmara culture, who built a series of stone settlements on the edge of an intricate system of water channels and weirs from 4,000 BC to colonization. The settlers constructed the water system around a large body of water named Lake Condah. Its purpose was to trap southern short-finned fish, or kooyang. The lake was drained around the mid-20th century.
Gunditjmara residents have quietly and carefully nurtured this vast, powerfully rugged area. The drained lake levels are now close to their original levels.
After decades of planning with the local community and working together, the Gunditjmara opened up its sacred landscape to visitors in 2022. The $2m complex includes a cafe, interpretive area, and other facilities. This will allow the local Gunditjmara to harvest, process, and smoke eels once again, but in a modern facility. It is open from Wednesday to Sunday and looks out onto the lake. Visitors can enjoy smoked short-finned fish in many different ways.
These two-hour tours will open your eyes. You’ll be taken from the visitor center to the beginning of the lava flows that created Lake Condah, and you’ll hear some stories about the region. Budj Bim, which erupted 27,000 years ago and spewed red-hot lava for miles around the Lake Condah area, was a true eye-opener.
Archaeologists found a stone axe buried under the lava flow, indicating that humans had been living in the area before the eruption. The Gunditjmara still tells the story 37,000 years after the eruption. This is likely the oldest story on earth.
This half-day tour allows you to explore this maze of ancient channels, reservoirs, and village sites. The tour took us to a smoking tree – a hollowed-out manna gum – where scientists found eel oil, which was rendered by eels when they were smoked for trade. The tour includes old weirs, a dam, and an area where Luoyang was trapped and kept.
This full-day excursion immerses you in the Gunditjmara culture. Visit a volcano that has been hollowed out and filled with a deep lake. You will see the world from the Gunditjmara’s perspective when you visit their stone huts, weirs, and celestial clock site. The eel tale is only the beginning.