Episode 07: Country cottages
As daylight savings ends next week, it's time to start thinking about escaping to the country for a warm weekend in front of an open fire. So this week, Rebecca Judd and Postcards team share some of Victoria's best country cottages.
Ballarat: Montrose and The Art Gallery
Montrose of Ballarat is a 90-minute drive from Melbourne. This stunning cottage was the first bluestone residence built on the Ballarat goldfields and, interestingly, is the last one standing. Here you can snuggle into softly upholstered French provincial furniture in front of the fireplace, after a day exploring Ballarat.
It's hard to go past the Art Gallery of Ballarat. Currently showing is an exhibition of renowned English photographer Sir Cecil Beaton's photos of the Queen from an exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. And you can start or end you visit at the onsite cafe for lunch or coffee.
Montrose of Ballarat
111 Eureka Street, Ballarat
Ph 0429 439 448
The Art Gallery of Ballarat
40 Lydiard Street, North Ballarat
Ph 03 5320 5858
Healesville: Black and White on Green and HCAS
Healesville in the Yarra Valley is just over an hour's drive from the city. One of its many treasures is Black and White on Green, a modern self-contained cottage in one one of the oldest buildings in town with luxurious features like a double-sided gas fire place, large ensuite with free standing bath and private front and rear decks.
It's a short stroll to the town's renowned restaurants and shops, and don't miss the new Healesville Contemporary Art Space and Palate. Created in the basement of a former wine cellar there/s contempoary art and fresh healthy local food.
Black and White on Green
8 Green Street, Healesville
Healesville Contemporary Art Space and Palate
Basement 177–179 Maroondah Highway, Healesville
Ph 03 5962 6928
Castlemaine: Grey Gardens and The Good Table
Castlemaine is a 90-minute drive from Melbourne and to some fantastic dining destinations like Alexander Perry's The Good Table. The menu is a mix of rustic Spanish and Italian cuisine that's big on colour and flavour.
And if you want to stay in the area, look no further than Grey Gardens. This gorgeous new country cottage is in historic Wattle Gully in the town of Chewton. A large open-plan living, kitchen and dining room separates the two bedrooms and there are two decks and a veggie patch overlooking the old goldfields and national heritage park. And it's in walking distance of the pub, general store and pool.
The Good Table
233 Barker Street, Castlemaine
Ph 03 5472 4400
Daylesford: Milk and Honey Lodge and Wombat Hill House
Daylesford is an easy hour's drive from the city and Milk and Honey is a picture perfect country cottage that lives up to its name.
For delightful treat, there's Wombat Hill House in the Wombat Hill Botanical Gardens. The latest project of Alla Wolf Tasker, from nearby Lake House, this once derelict caretaker's cottage is now a cafe, garden and store, complete with a cosy fireplace and comfy couches and, of course, fantastic food to enjoy while you're there and to take away.
Milk and Honey
Ph 03 5348 4422
Wombat Hill House, Wombat Hill Botanical Gardens
Central Springs Road, Daylesford
Ph 03 4373 0099
Giant Steps, Innocent Bystander, Bold Cafe and Begonia House
When visiting Healesville don't miss Giant Steps/Innocent Bystander, home to all the good things in life with wine and beer, a bistro, a cheese room, a pizzeria and an artisan bakery.
East meets west at Bold Cafe in Castlemaine where their seasonal menu of delicious handmade food is perfect for enjoying quality cuisine in a relaxed environment.
The Wombat Hill Botanical Gardens were established in Daylesford in the 1860s and are one of Victoria's finest regional botanic gardens. There are panoramic views from the top of the Pioneers Lookout Tower and another highlight is the Begonia House, which is home to a magnificent display of colourful blooms.
Rip Curl Pro
Surfing action takes over the Melbourne sporting world at Bells Beach over Easter.
Where: Bells Beach,
When: 3–14 April
Man from Snowy River Bush Festival
Or head inland to the Bush Festival in Corryong.
When: 29 March – 1 April
Australia Post Stawell Gift
Or go west for the carnival atmosphere and the famous race.
When: 6–9 April