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Discover Shepparton

Shepparton

Victoria

Located a leisurely two hour drive from Melbourne, the Greater Shepparton region offers a blend of both provincial and metropolitan lifestyles with a diversity of attractions, events and accommodation perfectly suited for visitors. Discover first hand why Greater Shepparton is renowned internationally as Australia's food bowl with farm gate sales, factory outlets and cellar door options. As Shepparton lies on the banks of the Goulburn River in Victoria's Goulburn Valley, a major agricultural and food processing region with great weather, gourmet food and wine, and excellent recreational and entertainment facilities are part of everyday life in the regional centre. Known as a family friendly destination, Greater Shepparton offers something for everyone. The region is home to Australia's largest adventure playground, KidsTown and Victoria's best small museum for 2012, the Shepparton Art Museum (SAM) home to the MooovingArt initiative. For a fun photo opportunity, look out for Greater Shepparton's unique public art exhibition, a colourful collection of life-sized three dimensional fibreglass cows known as the Moooving Art cows. With more than 90 cows in the herd, each has its own design and are a much-loved celebration of the region's agricultural industry. Learn about Aboriginal culture and history at the Bangerang Keeping Place. Fishing, boating, canoeing and bike riding, all of these can be enjoyed at the Victoria Park Lake precinct or the Yahna Gurtji Shared Path Network, allowing you to discover the majestic Goulburn and Broken Rivers. The stories of the region are reflected in its intriguing history that can be experienced with a visit to Gallery Kaiela, the Bangerang Cultural Centre or exploring 'the Flats' interpretive walk. Visit the Discover Shepparton website to learn more about attractions and upcoming events. They look forward to welcoming you to their wonderful region and all it has to offer.

Lakesland

Lakesland

New South Wales

The orchards of Lakesland grow a wide range of stone fruit including persimmons that are a popular export product to Asia. The district is most famous for producing the first cherries to reach the Sydney markets each year. The property was purchased in 1876 by William Barker, who claimed the title Baron Mowbray, and is known today as Mowbray Park.

Frances, Limestone Coast, South Australia

Frances

South Australia

Once known as the railway town, the rural community of Frances is now famous for the annual Frances Folk Gathering. Held every February, Australia's only participation-based Folk Festival features music awards, workshops, song writing, dancing and poetry. More than 3000 people get involved each year. Enjoy bushwalks and picnics at Little Desert National Park, just five minutes from the town centre. Gaze in wonderment at the majestic red gums and rich bird life at Mullinger Swamp Conservation Park. One 800-year old tree is so large that a family is said to have once lived in its hollowed out base! Frances is located between Bordertown and Naracoorte.

Gregory, Western Australia

Port Gregory

Western Australia

The beachside village of Port Gregory is famed for its pink lagoon, exposed reef, spring wildflower scenery and settler history, complete with convict-era buildings and shipwrecks. Swim, dive, fish and immerse yourself in this quintessential Western Australian beach holiday spot. Just under six hours north of Perth by car, this picturesque fishing village is nestled between the beach and Hutt Lagoon, near the mouth of the Hutt River. With its five kilometres of exposed reef forming a natural harbour, Port Gregory is a sheltered aquatic playground. From the safe swimming beach to the water-skiing area, there's something for everyone. Launch and anchor your boat. Scuba dive in the clear waters. Explore the reef. Try your hand at offshore fishing, or drop a line off the jetty - rock lobster is a local favourite. A host of natural delights await on land too. In spring, colourful wildflowers blanket the surrounding countryside. Take a scenic drive through the hinterland's hills and valleys, or contact a local tour guide to ensure you see all the native flora hotspots. Or, for an adventure of a more interactive kind, try a guided self-drive quad biking tour at Wagoe Beach. It's a unique opportunity to discover the pristine Indian Ocean coastline between Port Gregory and Kalbarri. While you're exploring inland, head to nearby Lynton - a historic settlement built by convicts in the mid-19th century. The townsite was home to a depot that served as an early employment agency, recruiting convicts to work at the local Geraldine Mine and pastoral stations. Today, you can visit restored buildings, the hiring depot and Sanfords House - a must-see for history buffs. There's much to see and experience in and around Port Gregory, with an equally diverse range of accommodation options, from the town's caravan park to nearby farmstays, chalets and beach cottages. Wherever you stay, be sure to visit Hutt Lagoon at sunset when this magnificent salt lake changes colour, from mauve to pink to

Venus Bay

Venus Bay

Victoria

Beyond the vegetated sand dunes of the South Gippsland town of Venus Bar lie wild waters and golden sands - no less than five superb surf beaches as well as sheltered swimming beaches. Venus Bay has a population of around 500, but can surge into the thousands as anglers, surfers and families converge during holiday periods. Just outside the town are the five surf beaches patrolled by surf lifesavers in the summer months. The state's longest sand spit at Anderson Inlet is where you can find safe, sheltered beaches ideal for swimming. The coastline from Venus Bay to Cape Liptrap offers visitors the chance to see an old lighthouse and native Australian plants and wildlife. The Point Smythe Nature Trail traverses thick coastal vegetation, while the Tarwin Lower boardwalk follows the Tarwin River - a good spot for fishing. View abundant bird life and mangroves at Bald Hill wetlands, close to Tarwin Lower and heading towards Walkerville. The Tarwin Lower to Venus Bay Pathway is a scenic and easy cycle between two towns that follows the banks of the Tarwin River on a gently undulating shared pathway. Venus Bay is approximately 170 kilometres from Melbourne, or around two hours and 10 minutes by car along the M1 and South Gippsland Highway.

Lithgow Steam Train

Lithgow

New South Wales

Lithgow is located in the foothills of the Blue Mountains, on the western side of the Great Dividing Range. It is popular for bushwalking, heritage-listed guesthouses, luxurious resorts, spa treatments and dining experiences. Lithgow played a significant role in the shaping of Australian commerce and industry in the 1880s reflected in its historic public and private buildings. Take a self-guided walking tour and explore the town's heritage. Surrounded by the World Heritage Blue Mountains National Park, visit Hassans Walls Lookout, the highest in the Blue Mountains, and admire Mt Wilson, Mt York, Mt Tarana and Mt Blaxland. Tour the Lithgow State Mine Heritage Park and Railway, fish at Lake Wallace or visit the historic Esbank House Museum. Don't miss the Glow Worm Tunnel at Newnes Plateau offering magnificent views of pagoda rock formations, extensive flora and a wide array of native wildlife including glow worms, kangaroos and wallabies.

Brookton, Western Australia

Brookton

Western Australia

The historic Wheatbelt town of Brookton gives you glimpses of what life was like before and after the arrival European settlers, with grand heritage architecture and natural habitats teeming with rare native wildlife. You can make the journey from city to Brookton country charm in less than two hours, hitting the Brookton Highway south east of Perth. This is the quickest route to reach Wave Rock - an awe-inspiring granite cliff shaped over 2,700 years to form a huge wave. Alternatively, why not head southbound at a more serene pace, following one of the world's great long-distance walk trails - the Bibbulmun Track. Stretching nearly 1,000 kilometres from Kalamunda in Perth, it passes just to the west of Brookton on its way to Albany on the south west coast. This section of the track is accessible to wheelchairs and prams and makes an ideal day walk and picnic spot. Just 10 kilometres south-west of Brookton lies another idyllic picnic setting at Boyagin Rock Nature Reserve. Walking among the powderbark, jarrah and marri trees, you'll see the bush as it was before its transformation into the Wheatbelt. Widely recognised as a significant remnant of original flora, the reserve is also a habitat for lesser-spotted fauna, including Western Australia's emblem, the numbat. If you're visiting in spring, head up to Nine Acre Rock and take in expansive views of the picturesque countryside carpeted in colourful wildflower blooms stretching to the horizon. Here, the ruins of an old stone house stand in tribute to one of the region's European settlers of the early 1900s, known as the 'Animal Doctor'. Some of Brookton's lovingly restored heritage can be enjoyed at the Old Railway Station and Pioneer Park in the centre of town, where you'll also pick up some authentic country arts and crafts. Whether you're heading to the central west or deep south, Brookton makes for a pleasant stay offering hotel and caravan park accommodation, as well as the opportunity to experience the Wheatbelt way

Eton

Eton

Queensland

Eton is situated on the Peak Downs Highway and is approximately 25 kilometres west of Mackay city. This little sugar town has a popular country hotel, lovely catholic church, butcher, general store and showgrounds where the local pony club is regularly seen practising and competing. Just past the township of Eton, you can enjoy country life to the full at Stoney Creek. Go horse trail riding or join a cattle muster, complete with a barbecue lunch including damper and billy tea. Budget and cottage accommodation is also available.

Bendalong

Bendalong

New South Wales

Bendalong is a small coastal village just north of Manyana on the New South Wales South Coast. It is set on a magnificent jutting section known as Red Point, named by Captain Cook on his voyage of discovery. Here you can take a stroll on some of the finest beaches on the coast. Choose from the tranquillity of Boat Harbour and Washerwoman's Beaches, or head to Inyadda Beach, one of Australia's most renowned surfing beaches. Bendalong borders Conjola National Park where accommodation is available in cabins, cottages and caravan parks.

Ginger Factory, Yandina

Yandina

Queensland

This is the famous 'Ginger Town' of the Sunshine Coast hinterland, which boasts some of the most beautiful country in Queensland. Yandina lies just to the north of Nambour, the centrally-located retail and service town for the central Sunshine Coast hinterland. This area is extremely rich in natural rainforest parks and reserves. Native animals such as kangaroos, koalas and wombats, which can often be elusive in the wild, are on constant show here. Yandina is home to the Ginger Factory, where you can sample all things ginger, and taste the delights of the award-winning Spirit House restaurant. Yandina is 107 kilometres north of Brisbane.