Episode 15: Walhalla
This week, the Postcards team find gold at the historic mining town of Walhalla.
Star Hotel, Grey Horse Cafe and Goldfields Railway
The old mining town of Walhalla sits at the foothills of Mt Baw Baw, a three-hour drive from Melbourne. Prospectors stayed at the Star Hotel in1800s and you can still book a room in the replica hotel. This award-winning hotel has 12 luxurious suites, a guest bar and Parkers restaurant, which offers modern Australian cuisine and a place to relax.
For a delicious snack or hearty meal, the Grey Horse Cafe has great coffee and treats like their famous chunky beef pie and Walhalla hedgehog, which can all be enjoyed on the deck looking at the scenery.
The Walhalla area is very popular with hikers and cyclists looking to explore the surrounding bush land and the old mines, but don't miss the Walhalla Goldfields Railway. Once aboard the journey from Walhalla to Thompson crosses eight bridges and has terrific views of the Stringers Creek Gorge and surrounding bush that hasn't changed too much since gold was first discovered in the area.
Walhalla's Star Hotel
Ph 03 5165 6262
Grey Horse Cafe
Ph 03 5165 6293
Walhalla Goldfields Railway
Ph 03 9513 3969
Silvertop Cottages and the Long Tunnel Extended Gold Mine
Situated between Erica and Rawson, a short drive from Walhalla, Silvertop Cottages are a great place to escape as a couple or with a group. The cottages are only a few years old and have all that you need like televisions and gas log fires.
It's said there's still gold in the hills surrounding Walhalla, so why not try your luck with a visit to the historic Long Tunnel Extended Gold Mine. Put on a hard hat to head into the huge machinery chamber that was carved from solid rock over a century ago and there's a museum with mining tools, photos and documents preserved from the mining era.
96 McLelland Road, Erica
Long Tunnel Extended Gold Mine Tours
Ph 03 5165 6259
Bruntons Bridge, Mill House, the Corner Store and museum
Walhalla's historic attractions extend beyond the town to nearby sights like Bruntons Bridge. Built in 1888, the 66-metre long, six-metre wide, 15-metre high structure crosses the Thomson River, and is now for pedestrians only.
For accommodation with old world charm, there's the Walhalla Mill House. The two-bedroom cottage blends history and luxury with antique furniture that goes well with the splashes of red in the cosy lounge.
It's a short walk to explore the town and taking pride of place on the corner at the top of Main Street is the Corner Store, post office and museum, where your can pick up souvenirs and wander through exhibits about the town's colourful past.
Walhalla Mill House
Church Hill Road, Walhalla
Ph 03 5165 6245
Corner Store, post office and museum
Main Road, Walhalla
Ph 03 5165 6250
Valhalla House and the Post Office
The Walhalla Post Office is the only government building in Walhalla that survives from the heyday of the town's gold mining period. Recently the building was restored and visitors can take a tour with a local historian through its amazing heritage. The Walhalla Post Office is made up of the post and telegraph offices at the front and a residence at the rear for the postmaster's family. It survived two floods and a major fire that destroyed around 30 neighbouring buildings in 1888.
Another hidden treasure is Valhalla House, which has been built in the style of the gold era. Decorated with period furniture, it had three large guest bedrooms, each with hand painted details, walk in robes, ensuite bathrooms and plenty of room to relax.
Walhalla Post Office Tours
Main Road, Walhalla
Ph 03 5165 6285
La Fiera festival
For an indulgent weekend of Italian history and culture, head to Myrtleford in Victoria's north east.
When: 25–27 May
High Country Harvest
Or feast your way around Victoria's High Country.
When: to 27 May
Melbourne International Jazz Festival
If you're passionate about jazz, join the cool cats at this year's festival.
When: 1–10 June