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Wilsons Promontory National Park

Wilsons Promontory National Park Just three hours from Melbourne is one of the finest national parks in the country, the 50,000 hectare Wilsons Promontory National Park.
Wilsons Promontory - which juts out into Bass Strait - constitutes the southernmost point of the Australian mainland. It was described by explorer George Bass as the "cornerstone of this continent called "New Holland" after he saw the Prom in the first days of 1798.
Bass named the area Furneaux's Land but it was later renamed in honour of a prominent London businessman, Thomas Wilson. It is believed Wilsons Promontory was once part of a "land bridge" connecting the mainland with Tasmania. In another age the Prom is thought to have been an island. The gradual build up of a 20 kilometre stretch of sand dunes, known as the Yanakie Isthmus, is said to have reconnected the Prom with the mainland.
The Aborigines who once lived here were members of the Boon-Oor-Rong tribe and their middens are still evident on the western side of the promontory. Long before Bass's official visit, the area was frequented by sealers and whalers. Whale bones can still be seen in the waters of Sealers and Refuge Coves on the eastern side.
In many respects it is still much the same as it was at the time of Bass's first visit. It is comprised of imposing granite mountains, sweeping plains, thick forests and some of the finest beaches in the country. These range from sheltered little coves to long surf beaches.
The Prom is the ideal place for bushwalking and a full appreciation of the magnificent array of native wildlife Australia has to offer. The friendliest are the parrots which flock around anyone offering food at Tidal River.
Tidal River is the "capital" of the Prom. It is made up of an information centre, museum, caravan and camping grounds with some cabins. Here you will find a cairn which acknowledges the use of the Prom as a commando training camp during World War II.

# 1: Fox's Fishing and River Adventures, Vic

Experience the Murray and surrounding waterways
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A range of Fishing and River Tours are offered on board the
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This magnificent vessel allows access for up to four wheelchairs
and groups of up to 10 people.
Fox's Fishing and River Adventures

CASTLEMAINE

CASTLEMAINE
Within a year of gold being discovered, the population in Castlemaine soared to 25,000. Today it stands at a humble 7300. The famous Castlemaine Market Place became a distribution point for food to all central Victoria goldfields. It is now a museum and well worth seeing.
There's something for everyone in Castlemaine. Lovers of architecture, fine arts and history, photographers, field naturalists and families all find something to delight them.
Spend some time looking at the fabulous architectural gems which remind us of the boom mining town this once was. Wander through the garden and house of Buda, once the home of a noted goldfields silversmith. Take time to view one of the finest regional art galleries in Victoria.
Visit the Castlemaine Gaol or take a walk through the wonderful Botanical Gardens. You might even stop for a picnic.
The gardens, private and public, are superb, particularly in Spring and Autumn when the wildflowers are spectacular.
If you are feeling a bit more energetic why not make use of some of the excellent sporting facilities for a game of tennis, golfer bowls. Try a spot of fishing or visit a local football match.
Follow one of the many marked walking tracks or head bush yourself. Bring your bike and enjoy one of the day rides.

CHEWTON

CHEWTON
At Chewton visit the Dingo Farm, wander down the winding village street, or throw a line in at the Expedition Pass Reservoir. Take time to view the Wattle Gully Gold Mine which is still operating from the 1850s.

CORNER INLET Duck Point Walk

CORNER INLET Duck Point Walk - Commencing on Foley Road, this trail leads through thickets of Coastal Tea-tree to the sheltered waters of Corner Inlet. Scenic views across the Inlet to the peaks of Wilsons Promontory are the feature of this walk. Distance 800 metres/30min return Shellcot Road - enter reserve area marked 'Red Bluff' and follow track to beach. It is very pleasant to walk in either direction, but to the right you will see the 'Red Bluff' jutting out. ('Red Bluff' is formed out of a very reddish clay) This is a very tidal area. Bluff Road - Follow a very bushy track down to the boat sheds. This is a mangrove area and can be quite squelchy under foot. To the left, towards 'Red Bluff', the very rare 'Yanakie Berry ' (bright red berries with very prickly leaves) can be seen in fruit in the late Autumn and early Winter. From this location enjoy the wonderful views over the Inlet Be aware that this is a tidal area, and even at low tide the shoreline can be very boggy. Yanakie Landing Walk - Starting at Foley Road the track wends its way down to the rocky beach area, then back up through the Old Quarry. Distance approximately a 1.3km circuit with some steep sections. The lookout has good views of Corner Inlet and over Mt.Singapore, Mt.Vereker, Mt.Margaret, Mt.Hunter, Mt.Roundback and Chinamans Knob. Charles Hall Road - an excellent location for observing the pristine environment and habitat of many species of wading birds. This is a very fragile and significant location with its marshes and small creeks, so tread gently.

CORNER INLET Duck Point Walk

CORNER INLET Duck Point Walk - Commencing on Foley Road, this trail leads through thickets of Coastal Tea-tree to the sheltered waters of Corner Inlet. Scenic views across the Inlet to the peaks of Wilsons Promontory are the feature of this walk. Distance 800 metres/30min return Shellcot Road - enter reserve area marked 'Red Bluff' and follow track to beach. It is very pleasant to walk in either direction, but to the right you will see the 'Red Bluff' jutting out. ('Red Bluff' is formed out of a very reddish clay) This is a very tidal area. Bluff Road - Follow a very bushy track down to the boat sheds. This is a mangrove area and can be quite squelchy under foot. To the left, towards 'Red Bluff', the very rare 'Yanakie Berry ' (bright red berries with very prickly leaves) can be seen in fruit in the late Autumn and early Winter. From this location enjoy the wonderful views over the Inlet Be aware that this is a tidal area, and even at low tide the shoreline can be very boggy. Yanakie Landing Walk - Starting at Foley Road the track wends its way down to the rocky beach area, then back up through the Old Quarry. Distance approximately a 1.3km circuit with some steep sections. The lookout has good views of Corner Inlet and over Mt.Singapore, Mt.Vereker, Mt.Margaret, Mt.Hunter, Mt.Roundback and Chinamans Knob. Charles Hall Road - an excellent location for observing the pristine environment and habitat of many species of wading birds. This is a very fragile and significant location with its marshes and small creeks, so tread gently.

The Ballarat Vintage Tramway

The Ballarat Vintage Tramway is operated by the Ballarat Tramway Museum Inc., formed to keep alive the tramway experience that has otherwise disappeared from the streets of Ballarat.

The Museum's members are volunteers from all walks of life. They spend their own time operating and maintaining the tramway. The 1.3 kilometre track is located in the Botanical Gardens, on the western shore of Lake Wendouree. It was part of the former tramway system which commenced running in 1887 as a horse tramway. The horse tramway was taken over by another company which extended and electrified the routes in 1905. The lines were closed during 1970 and 1971.

The Museum is one of a couple of purely volunteer group in the world operating tramcars in a public road and over a section of original track.

At the depot there is a museum display of photographs and tramway memorabilia for visitors. The tramcar fleet and workshops area can also be inspected.

The rolling stock includes Ballarat Horse Tram No. 1 and ten tramcars which initially ran in Melbourne between 1913 and 1951, plus two acquired directly from Melbourne by the Museum in 1975.

Phillip Island Penguins

Phillip Island Penguins

Suddenly a voice cries: "Look! Over there!" Necks crane, eyes strain hard to see. But in the gentle surf at sunset it is impossible to recognise what it is in the water. A head, a beak perhaps, a tiny wing...

No sooner is the first cry heard when it is followed by another. You look out to sea and, yes, there's something there, some movement, something ... and suddenly not just one by many...

And a hush of expectancy falls.

They come as if riding on the surf, and you can pick them out now.

And they're coming home

On a patch of sand not too far away you now glimpse a pair of wobbly feet. You can see the bird then, a tiny bird, a litle penguin, a fairy penguin.

Another comes on shore, and another, and another, and soon the beach is alive with these birds.

They have had their day foraging out at sea and now they are coming home.

They walk across the sand in small groups (some almost in single file), as if in a triumphant march, and they head for their home in the dunes.

An awesome sight to see

Wave after wave they come from the sea and waddle, like only penguins can, across the sand of Summerland Beach on Phillip Island.

They arrive in their hundreds, these tiny, frail-looking birds who've braved the seas, and are now coming home.

They are an awesome sight to see, this massive avian display before the dark finally swallows the sea and earth and sky.

And you pray for Someone, please, Someone, please look after these tiny brave ocean explorers and see that they come home, always, to their home on the shore.

The Grampians

The Grampians
VICTORIA
There's a place in Victoria where time seems to have stood still. A place of dreamtime legends. Where you can see and experience one of the greatest national parks in Australia. Stay a while. Experience this place the Koories call Gariwerd. A place you've known as The Grampians.
Even from a distance you're struck by the way the mountains rise up abruptly from the flat plains below. It is the most western point, the grand finale of the Great Dividing Range, which runs down the coastline of eastern Australia.
As you get closer, the massive rock outcrops and deep gorges become more apparent. The exposed faces, carved and engraved by millions of years of wind and rain, create a unique natural backdrop to the surrounding bush.

MOLIAGUL

MOLIAGUL
Who can forget Moliagul? This is where the world's largest nugget was unearthed in 1869. Weighing 65 kilograms it became affectionately known as The Welcome Stranger'. The descendants of one of the lucky miners who discovered it, John Deason, are well known in the district today.

The Goldfields

The Goldfields
VICTORIA
Just an hours drive north-west of Melbourne lie the Goldfields. With a heritage as rich as the ground on which it stood, this was once the home for tens of thousands who flocked here over a century ago in search of instant wealth. And while the goldrush has passed quietly into history, you can still capture the spirit of the pioneers in a region of ornate Victorian architecture, grand streetscapes and picturesque botanical gardens.

LATROBE VALLEY

LATROBE VALLEY Supplying about 85 per cent of Victoria's power, the Latrobe Valley has long been regarded as the state's "engine room" and contains three major cities - Morwell, Moe and Traralgon.
Begining at the town of Yarragon, the Princes Highway plots the extent of the Latrobe Valley to its end just east of Traralgon. "The Valley", as it's called by its residents, is home to the State Electricity Commission's giant open cut coal mine and its extensive power generation plants. Regular free tours are conducted of the Morwell Open Cut and Hazlewood Power Station.
This area is sports mad as two top class racecourses (Moe and Traralgon) and four I8-hole golf courses help testify.
The Latrobe Valley boasts about 40 a la carte restaurants, more than 30 hotels/motels, extensive convention facilities and a good range of caravan and camping grounds.
The Valley puts the visitor within striking distance of some magnificent country such as that found at the Tarra-Bulga, Baw Baw, and Morwell National Parks, and at the Mount Worth, Strezlecki, Moondara, Tyers and Holey Plains State Parks.
It is also only a short drive from the extraordinary former goldmining town of Walhalla.
Just 45 minutes drive north of Moe and found within the Baw Baw National Park are the excellent cross-country ski resorts of Baw Baw and Mt St Gwinear.
And, at Moe, is the Latrobe Valley's pride and joy - Old Gippstown. Found right on the Princes Highway this recreated township of more than 30 buildings is situated on 3.5 hectares of parkland. It has recaptured the life of early Gippsland through the eyes of the primary producer, the gold prospector, the retailer and the early industrialist.
At Morwell is the Latrobe Regional Gallery which has provided great support to talented local artists through both its acquisitions and exhibitions.

The Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road VICTORIA
Take an unforgettable journey along Victoria's Great Ocean Road, the world's most inspiring coastal drive. Follow its winding trail through the lush Otway rainforests, to the breathtaking, windswept drama of the Shipwreck Coast. For much of the way the road clings to the coastline, twisting and turning, with every bend revealing a sight more spectacular than the last. See the grand architecture where the ocean has carved mighty arches, caverns and coves from the rock. Then follow its trail past soothing estuaries and gentle bays.

CRESWICK

CRESWICK
It's hard to believe that tiny Creswick once had a population of 60,000. Typical of a former gold mining town, today it just tops 2700. Creswick was the scene for Australia's worst gold mining disaster. In 1882, water broke in from the already flooded Australasia No. 1 into the No. 2 mine. Twenty-two helpless miners drowned in the darkness far underground. You can read about this tragic story which is recorded in detail at the site of the mine. You can also see the old government battery which was built to crush rock for the extraction of gold. It is one of the few remaining in Australia. Creswick is also the home town of Australia's former Prime Minister, John Curtin and the famous artists, the Lindsays

# 1: Boomerang bicycle tours: Great Ocean Road, Vic.

This tour has tremendous diversity from surf beaches to pristine rainforest to incredible limestone cliffs along the spectacular coastal route called the Great Ocean Road.
Boomerang bicycle tours: Great Ocean Road

Gippsland, Victoria

Gippsland
VICTORIA
Gippsland is a region which stretches eastwards, from the periphery of Melbourne, to the magnificent Lakes in the east and to the extraordinary Wilsons Promontory in the south east.
It is riddled with masses of green forests and gardens, stunning mountains, rocky rivers, picturesque towns and, to a large degree, is defined by its long sandy beaches. It was the Polish explorer Count Paul Edmond de Strzelecki who named the region after Governor Gipps.
The Princes, South Gippsland and Bass Highways provide the major access to its destinations.

Victoria Physical

AREA: 227,600 sq. km, POPULATION: 3,500,000
CAPITAL: Melbourne (3,000,000)
CLIMATE: Highest temp. 50.8° C at Mildura in the north-west. -12.8°C at Mt. Hotham in the Highlands. High rainfall with extremes of heat in summer in the western and north western regions.
Melbourne was first settled in 1835. Victoria is Australia's smallest mainland state with 1800 km of coastline.
Known the 'Garden State', a reference to the rolling green hills and valleys which make up the majority of the state, and varied in scenery, it is has much to offer. To the north the mighty River Murray makes up the bulk of its border to New South Wales, while to the east and south, the Tasman Sea, Bass Strait, and the Southern Ocean have carved out a spectacular coastline which varies from golden beaches to stark outcrops such as the Port Campbell National Park. Also in the north is the Alpine National Park, a skiing area which offers winter sports from around June to September, and mountain-climbing and exploration throughout the rest of the year.
In the west of the state, close to its border with South Australia, desert wilderness areas can be seen. The Little Desert and Wyperfeld National Parks are renowned for the wildflowers which bloom throughout the year, mainly around September, and are popular walking and exploring parks.
Among the major attractions of the state is The Grampians National Park, west of Melbourne. This beautiful area offers walking trails, spectacular lookouts and lake swimming and fishing. South-east of Melbourne, Phillip Island is a popular place to observe the nightly procession of pengiuns returning to their nests after a days activities.
The capital of Victoria, Melbourne, enjoys the reputation of being Australia's Cultural capital, and this is reflected in the many live shows which are presented at the theatres which abound in the city.

North-East Victoria

Ned Kelly, "Mad" Dan Morgan and "Bogong Jack" are some of the Bushrangers from the goldrush era of this area now made famous in Australian folk law. The area around the upper Murray is the first in the country to be irrigated and has been transformed into rich farm land producing citrus fruits and world-class wine.This is also a great place for a summer holiday with many water-sports to enjoy including;- fishing, sailing, waterskiing and swimming.

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