Loddon Valley the destination AFL Grand Final Long Weekend

Published on 09 September 2016

Not going to the AFL Grand Final this year?

Victoria’s newest three-day weekend couldn’t come at a better time, with the worst of winter behind us and the countryside never more charged with life and energy.

For people thinking of taking advantage of the long break and reconnecting with nature, Loddon Valley offers a rich smorgasbord of hands-on, sensory experiences, with the 2016 “Naturally Loddon” Spring Festival in full swing.

The 5882ha Terrick Terrick National Park, 4km north of Mitiamo and 60km from Bendigo, hosts its annual activities weekend from 30 September to 2 October, with displays, working bees, mini-coach tours, bird watching and plant walks.

The park supports more than 200 species of native flora and is home to over 100 species of birds, as well as the black wallaby, fat-tailed dunnart, striped legless lizard and tree goanna.

A TV set normally operates in a shed for those who really want to keep up with news from the MCG.

Nearby Pyramid Hill invites visitors to enjoy the views from the iconic hill made famous by Major Thomas Mitchell, while Boort’s plentiful native wetlands are rich in flora, fauna and indigenous history.

The town’s central lake is popular for camping and water sports and its encircling walking track is home to a developing metal sculpture arts trail.

Further south, Tarnagulla hosts its first Strictly Vintage Fair on 1-2 October, opening on the Saturday with all-town garage sales, followed by a town tour and historical display and High Tea in the 1860s-built Victoria Theatre.

Sunday sees collectables shops and stalls, wagon rides by Sandy Creek Clydesdales from Maldon, vintage fashion, a cupcake competition and veterans’ cycling races.

Bridgewater’s new caravan and camping park alongside the Loddon River provides a great environment for kids to enjoy, with bike riding, swimming, fishing, walking, canoeing and boating all at hand.

Visitors can sample the wares of the Water Wheel Winery and renowned Bridgewater Bakehouse, before a short drive to Inglewood to browse in its famed collectables stores and Blue Eucy Museum or detour to the nearby Kooyoora State Park.

Wedderburn’s Hard Hill Tourist Reserve invites travellers to see eucalyptus processed in a stew pot, pan for gold or step back in time at the Coachhouse Museum.

A variety of accommodation is available throughout the Shire, ranging from caravan and camping parks to motels, self-contained units and RV-Friendly stopovers.

For more details, contact the Loddon Visitor Information Centre on (03) 5494 3489 or go to www.loddon.vic.gov.au .