When Nick Carpenter wakes each morning on his secluded 20 acres of natural bushland, the creativity is already in flow.
Nick has built musical instruments for more than 30 years, and his business, Wildwood Instruments, runs regular guitar-making classes. Going beyond the traditional practice of a luthier, Nick creates unique sculptures that tell the story of our connection with music and musical instruments.
His work has a special relationship with Daylesford, and he feels fortunate to be able to share its beauty with his customers.
Nick shares with us some of his favourite spots around Daylesford & the Macedon Ranges.
Nick can't recommend anything before his beloved home town, Daylesford. He says it's 'more a community than a place'. Daylesford is known for its healing mineral springs, community events, natural beauty and abundant native fauna, so it's no wonder it's a hit with tourists and locals alike.
2. Mount Franklin
Just up the road from Nick's workshop lies the impressive Mount Franklin, a beautiful landmark steeped in history that goes back to the Dreamtime. It's an extinct volcano, with plenty of tracks and trails for walking and reconnecting with nature.
3. Trentham Falls
Stunning Trentham Falls is one of the longest single drop waterfalls in Victoria, at around 32 metres high. The falls are surrounded by lush bush land and wildflowers in spring. Nick says it's a 'truly breathtaking natural wonder,' and one of his favourite places.
4. The local pubs
Nick loves a good pub. Lucky for him, there are a few in the area, where he can drop in for a cold beer and catch up with friends. He recommends grabbing a meal at the Farmers Arms or the Daylesford Hotel. Be sure to drop into the Cosmopolitan Hotel too, or Lyonville's Radio Springs Hotel.
5. Lake Daylesford
For postcard-perfect views, Nick heads to picturesque Lake Daylesford. If you're following in his footsteps, allow around 45 minutes to walk around the lake's gentle, sloping tree-lined path, taking in a couple of stops (the jetty is a good one) to soak up the stunning vistas.
6. Restaurants and cafes
Daylesford certainly punches above its weight when it comes to restaurants and cafes. As Nick says, he's spoilt for choice. Start with a coffee at Cliffy's Emporium, then tuck into expertly prepared fresh produce at Koukla. For Italian cuisine with a modern take, snag a seat near the wood-fired oven at Beppe Kitchen + Bar.