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The Great Alpine Road

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  • The Great Alpine Road

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    Wangaratta to Bairnsdale
    308 km / 190 miles, 4.5hr

    The Great Alpine Road is a 308-kilometre route that extends from Wangaratta in the north-east to Bairnsdale in the heart of Gippsland. The road is Australia’s highest year-round accessible sealed road and winds past lofty mountains, valleys, forests, rivers, vineyards and farms. Sample local food and wine, and fish, cycle, climb or ride along the way.

    Wangaratta to Bright
    76 km / 47 miles, 1 hr
    The Great Alpine Road starts (or ends) at Wangaratta. Time your visit for the annual November jazz festival.
    Make mouth-watering memories with the fine wine and local produce in the valleys along the northern leg of the Great Alpine Road. At Milawa call in at the famed Brown Brothers cellar door and sample your way through Milawa Mustards and the Cheese Factory. Meet the bold young winemakers reinvigorating historic Rutherglen, famous for its muscats and fortifieds.
    Detour to Beechworth, a village built on the wealth of the gold rush of the 1800s. Explore the historic honey granite buildings, including the courthouse where bushranger Ned Kelly’s final trial commenced. Get a taste of Beechworth's burgeoning food and wine scene and try for reservations at Provenance, Wardens Food and Wine, Green Shed Bistro or Gigi's of Beechworth.
    Discover Mount Buffalo and its unique rock formations. Take a gentle walk to see waterfalls, granite formations and lookouts with great views of the alps, or go extreme on horseback or two wheels. Try your hand at rock climbing and, in winter, cross-country or downhill skiing.
    This leg ends at Bright, a beautiful town on the Ovens River, filled with grand deciduous trees that are breathtaking in autumn. Bright is also home to Simone’s, one of Victoria's most celebrated restaurants, and magnificent Italian villa-style accommodation at Villa Gusto.

    Bright to Omeo
    110 km / 68 miles, 2 hr

    From Bright the Great Alpine Road ascends through Harrietville to the alpine resort of Mount Hotham. The landscape changes from alpine ash to snow gum forest and heathland as you climb. Mount Hotham offers 245 hectares of ski area, including a wide selection of downhill and cross-country trails for beginners as well as experienced skiers.
    Take advantage of mild summer temperatures on Mount Hotham, with cross-country treks, horse riding and fishing. Take in the spectacular views from Danny’s Lookout to the summit of Mount Feathertop, the second-highest mountain in the state, over the Alpine National Park and as far as Falls Creek and Mount Buffalo on a clear day.
    Nestle in among the snowgums and the spring wildflowers in architecturally designed spaces in Dinner Plain, just 10 kilometres south of Mount Hotham. Dinner Plain is a popular centre for horseback trail rides, with local tour operators offering year-round treks through the High Country.

    Omeo to Bairnsdale
    122 km / 75 miles, 1.5 hr

    From Omeo, the service centre for the local cattle, sheep and timber industries, the Great Alpine Road continues south towards Bairnsdale - East Gippsland's only city.
    Bairnsdale originally settled as an inland port, sits on the banks of the Mitchell River and leads into the Gippsland Lakes. The town is now a major gateway to Victoria's east. Visit St Mary's Roman Catholic Church, the interior of which was painted in the 1930s by Francesco Floreani, attend an annual musical and sporting event, or explore the Mitchell River silt jetties that extend eight kilometres into nearby Lake King.
    At Bairnsdale the Great Alpine Road touring route ends, and your exploration of Gippsland and its spectacular lakes begins.

    Last edited by Hannah-Mercedes; 6 August 2012, 05:41 AM.