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Heading towards Victorian alpine country.
Heading towards Victorian alpine country.
A Ned Kelly monument.
A Ned Kelly monument.
Stopping off to taste the local cuisine
Stopping off to taste the local cuisine.

Victoria drive

Thursday, November 16, 2000
Take a leisurely drive from Seymour to Bright, passing through old towns, visiting historic buildings, art galleries and restaurants along the way.

The Hume Highway links Sydney with Melbourne. There are some interesting towns to see along the way with just a small detour.

Seymour is an old railway and army town. The railway line splits the town into old and new and the station is heritage listed. Eight kilometres away is Victoria's biggest army base, with about 3000 people working and living there. It also boasts a boat museum and Australia's biggest collection of armoured vehicles.

One of Victoria's biggest rivers, the Goulburn, winds around Seymour, giving the area its name, the Goulburn Valley. It's blessed with rich, fertile soils and there are little towns dotted throughout the area where fruit, vegetables and wine are grown.

Benalla is called the Rose City and is on the Broken River, which was dammed to form Benalla Lake. The infamous bushranger Ned Kelly had associations with Benalla and at the age of 14 had his first court appearance there. You can see the cell where he was locked up.

In the botanic gardens is the Weary Dunlop Memorial, dedicated to Sir Edward Dunlop, a highly respected and decorated army doctor, regarded as a saint by those prisoners of war he tended in Japanese prison camps.

Also in the gardens is the Benalla Art Gallery, where some of the Heidelberg School's most famous works are hung.

Benalla is also a gliding and ballooning centre. You can take joy flights or go on a scenic champagne breakfast high above the area.

Glenrowan is where Ned Kelly's exploits came to a bloody end in 1880. The Kelly Gang has become an industry in the small town and it's impossible to go there and not see or hear something relating to the outlaws.

The Snow Road runs from the Hume Highway near Glenrowan and a visit to Milawa is a gourmet treat. Brown Brothers Winery opened there in 1889 and is still in the same family. It is a huge vineyard, both in size and successes, locally and abroad. Milawa cheese is also top quality and the bakery turns out the most delicious pastries, pies and breads. It's the perfect combination: cheese, bread and wine, locally grown and made.

Beechworth is a beautiful and historic town in the northern foothills of the Victorian Alps. It was a thriving centre for the Ovens Valley goldfields, is well preserved and has 32 buildings covered by the National Trust. The streets are broad and tree-lined and it has won an award for being the ideal tourist town. Apart from its wonderful countryside and gracious architecture it has beautiful gardens, galleries, craft shops, museums and plenty of good accommodation and eating places.

Bright is a very pretty holiday town, also in the Ovens Valley in the Alps foothills. Its streets and the banks of the Ovens River are lined with deciduous European trees, giving a colourful display in autumn. It's the gateway to the Alpine National Park, ski resorts and an hour's scenic drive to the snowfields of Mount Hotham and Falls Creek. Mount Buffalo National Park is about half an hour away.


From Seymour to Bright in Victoria.

More information

Seymour Tourist Information: Ph: (03) 5799 0233
Euroa Tourist Information: Ph: (03) 5795 3677
Benalla Tourist Information: Ph: (03) 5762 1749
Glenrowan Tourist Information: Ph: (03) 5766 2367
Beechworth Tourist Information: Ph: 1300 366 321
Bright Tourist Information: Ph: (03) 5755 2275

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