Wednesday 15 August 2018

A Weekend in Bright, Victoria

In the first week of August, two friends and I decided to take a road trip to Bright, a town in Victoria which is the start of many walking trails, as well as the skiing areas. Bright being roughly a 4-hour drive North of Melbourne, we had a few stops along the way, including a little town called Glenrowan, best known for being the place that Ned Kelly was finally caught and captured in, in 1880 after a siege and shoot-out with the police. I'll admit I had heard of Ned Kelly but didn't have a clue who he was or what he was known for, so I did a bit of research on the journey and found that he is widely considered a Robin Hood type, however in my opinion (and many others on internet it seems), that reputation is very wide of the mark.

Glenrowan is a fascinating little town which feels that it is many years behind, with lots of little cafes and a real Australia country vibe. Not surprisingly, most of the accommodation and shops are named after Ned Kelly himself.

Away from the city, there are so many things to look at and beautiful areas of countryside, so we stopped a fair few times to have a look and take pictures.

We stopped along the way at a town called Beechworth, known in its heyday for its gold, but we stopped specifially because we had heard that the Beechworth Bakery was highly recommended. We stopped for pie and cake but I must say it wasn't anything out of the ordinary! It's a tiny town with a population of under 3,000, and is another very quaint-looking Australian place.

It was really nice to be outside of the city and to be able to explore the countryside. We all enjoy walking, so decided to walk the Apex Lookout walk, as we'd heard there were fantastic views from the lookout point. We had a bit of lunch 'al fresco' before making the walk up to the viewpoint.

The views were fantastic and we had a nice clear day. The only disappointing thing was at the lookout was a power generator, which we had not expected to be there, and the views were therefore only decent from one side.

We took another stop to admire Mount Beauty, which I was very surprised to see was snow-capped. All of my preconceived ideas about Australia told me that they experience nothing but sun, so in my naivety I was rathersurprised to find that you can actually go skiing in Victoria and that there is snow at this time of year!

We were adamant we wished to go to a motel or hotel that had a jacuzzi (or 'spa' as they call them here), and fortunately we managed to find one. We spent a good couple of hours drinking prosecco in the spa before we decided to sort ourselves out for dinner. I'd had a shower and washed my swimmers, before wrapping myself in a towel to dash to the room. Unfortunately the rooms all looked remarkably similar, and some poor guy stood looking very surprised when Laura and I walked straight into his room before staring at him in confusion! Luckily he saw the funny side and laughed it off, although given that he didn't speak any English I have just assumed he was not traumatised.

Sunday morning was spent at a lovely little cafe on the river called the Ginger Baker, which served the most delicious selection of brunch dishes. On the way back to Melbourne we stopped at several wineries in the King Valley Prosecco Road region (yes it is as great as it sounds, wineries all in a row all offering prosecco) for a few tastings, before driving back to the city. 

It was great to get away even if only for the one night, and it has shown me there really is so much to see away from the city. It really made me miss having a car, as it would make it so easy to take off for days out here and there, and so I am really considering whether I want to get myself a car once I start work. 


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