Episode 35: Cycling Victoria's High Country
With glorious weather now upon us, it is definitely time to get on your bike and explore all that Victoria's North East region has to offer, especially with the launch of the 'High Country Cycle Guide'. The guide is now available in bike stores and cycle cafes around Melbourne and at various visitor information centres across the region. To see some of the experiences on offer within the guide, check out this week's episode.
Beechworth – Riding High, Bridge Road Brewers and Lakehouse Beechworth
Just over 4 hours' drive from Melbourne you'll find the town of Tallangatta, where you can hook yourself up with Jonathan Correll from Riding High Cycling tours for a nice relaxing ride around Lake Hume. The rides are suitable for people of all levels of fitness and riding ability where you can set your own pace and they can also tailor itineraries to suit your specific needs.
Once the ride has finished you can take the short trip into Beechworth where you'll find a cleansing ale and something tasty to eat at the Bridge Road Brewers.
Of course when it comes to luxury accommodation, Beechworth offers up some great options. The Lakehouse Beechworth is like something straight out of a Hollywood movie. There are three magnificently styled spacious bedrooms with enough room for up to six guests.
Riding High Cycling tours
Ph 03 5725 1343
Bridge Road Brewers
50 Ford Street, Beechworth
Ph 03 5728 2703
2A Jarvis Road, Beechworth
Ph 0408 847 199
Mansfield – Horse riding and bike riding
If you're looking for a little action and adventure, the area around Mansfield has plenty of tracks and trails to explore, and a trek on horseback is the quintessential High Country activity. Hidden Trails offers rides for those with or without experience and explore the new Goulburn River High Country Rail Trail which runs between Mansfield, via Bonnie Doon to Tallarook.
For something a little different, Victoria's High Country offers year round access to extensive cross country and downhill mountain bike trails, graded for all levels of ability and All Terrain Cycles runs different courses for everyone to enjoy.
Ph 03 5776 9867
All Terrain Cycles
58 High Street, Mansfield
Ph 03 5775 2724
Mansfield-Mt Buller High Country Reservations
Ph 1800 039 049
Bright – Ginger Baker, Ringer Reef Winery, Rail Trail Café
With over 100 kilometres of sealed paths, the Murray to Mountains rail trail connects some of the North East's most loved culinary villages. One village in particular is Bright, where Ginger Baker is positioned by the bank of the Ovens River and an ideal place for breakfast.
From Bright it's a 6 kilometre ride to Porepunkah where there are many great places to make a pit stop. Ringer Reef Winery is conveniently located on the Great Alpine Road, just off the rail trail. Drop by for a tasting and you'll experience the personal touch of a small vineyard.
The next stretch of the trail is relatively flat and easy to follow, making it great for families. A top spot to stop is at the Rail Trail Café, which opened as Porepunkah's first stand-alone cafe. Head chef and owner, Jesse Rios hails from L.A. so you can expect to see tempting selections of Tex Mex on the menu, along with other classic café dishes and all-day breakfast options.
Ginger Baker Wine Bar & Cafe
127 Great Alpine Road, Bright
Ph 03 5755 2300
Ringer Reef Winery
6835 Great Alpine Road, Porepunkah
Rail Trail Cafe
2 Service Street, Porepunkah
High Country Bike Adventures
Ph 03 5727 3784
Rutherglen – Victoria Hotel, St Leonards Winery, Cofield Wines and Pickled Sisters Café
The Victoria Hotel is a Rutherglen icon and little has changed with the heritage listed building over the past 140 years, but they do have a new biking package which is sure to get your bell ringing. The Belles, Bikes and Bubbles package is aimed at women and includes accommodation at the Victoria Hotel, breakfast each morning, plus a welcome cocktail or champagne to set the mood before the ride, and don't forget to pick your pink t-shirt.
In search for some wheels, head to St Leonards Winery. Located alongside the banks of the Murray River, the historical estate is a must-see destination for wine and food lovers. If you're keen to get a few km's under your belt, travel onto nearby Cofield Wines. They happily welcome ladies taking part on the tour with a few tastings included in the day's festivities. You can have a picnic amongst the vines or simply pop into the onsite Pickled Sisters Café. Their menu showcases the very best regional produce.
90 Main Street, Rutherglen
Ph 02 6032 8610
St Leonards Vineyard
201 St Leonards Road, Wahgunyah
Ph 1800 021 621
Distillery Road, Wahgunyah
Ph 02 6033 3798
Pickled Sisters Cafe
Ph 02 6033 2377
Mansfield – Howqua Holidays
Lake Eildon in the Victorian High Country is a place where you can combine the perfect family holiday with some thrills and spills. Nestled in the historic Howqua Hills and set on the shores of Lake Eildon, Howqua Holidays offers a fantastic family holiday experience. There are caravan park facilities or you can choose to stay in a newly built cabin or cottage like the Spa Cottage, which sleeps up to eight people.
2740 Mansfield-Woods Point Road, Howqua
Ph 03 5777 3588
Bright – CyclePath
Victoria's High Country community loves cycling and one of the hubs that can help to organise everything you need for your cycling holiday is at CylePath in Bright. Whether you're after bikes to buy or hire, maps, helmet's, accessories or a new set of lycra, they'll get you prepped and looking the part, as well as giving you some helpful advice on how to best experience the alpine region on two wheels.
74 Gavan Street, Bright
Ph 03 5750 1442
Rutherglen – Parker Pies
Parker Pies in Rutherglen is said to be one of the greatest pie shops in the country, making some of the best pies in Australia. Parker Pies is a family owned business that specialise in making gourmet and traditional pies, pasties and sausage rolls using fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Over the years they have snagged over 100 awards in the Great Australian Meat Pie competition.
88 Main Street, Rutherglen
Ph 02 6032 9605
Geelong Gala Day Parade
Join in the fun on Saturday November 17th with this year's Geelong Gala Day Parade, held right in the city of Geelong.
When: Saturday November 17th
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum
Come along to Broadway's funniest comedy musical for a night of priceless entertainment held at Her Majesty's Theatre.
When: Until Nov 25th
Where: Her Majesty's Theatre
More: ticketek.com.au, 1300 795 012 or funnything.com.au
Myer Christmas Animated Windows Unveiling
The Myer Melbourne Store in the Bourke Street Mall will come to life next Friday at 12.30 when this year's Myer Christmas windows are launched with celebrity guests and performances for the public to enjoy!
When: 9 November, 2012
Where: Bourke Street Mall