Warburton – the hidden gem at the start of the Yarra Valley4/20/2018
Warburton impresses the moment you enter the quiet streets of the main shopping strip. Don’t get us wrong, the streets are not empty because there is nothing to do, on the contrary, it’s rather because visitors are truly filling their day with making the most out of this beautiful region. Figure 1 Sculptures in Warburton (http://www.trover.com/warburton-australia)
So what’s on exactly?
It wouldn’t be called the Centre as it won’t have a historical background. The Great Steps of Warburton, a community arts project, brings to live the unique beauty of the region, its flora and fauna and showcases the strength of community spirit in the township. Once reaching the top, a huge waterwheel welcomes you. Prior to 1908 this 4.3 meter wheel was used to power a generator to provide electrical lighting at the gold mine in Contention Gully about 10 kilometers south of the Upper Yarra Dam. Its rich history covers more than 100 years; including powering a hotel, surviving fires etc. Furthermore, 51 hand painted murals are showcasing scenes from the history of Warburton over the past 150 years. Some of the scenes depicted include historical sites such as the Sanitarium building, The Alpine Hotel and recognisable shop fronts on the main street. A QR code based system provides more information on your smart phone.
Figure 2 Ada Tree Walk (http://www.visitwarburton.com.au/rainforest-gallery-warburton)
With over a dozen of different walks, the area can be explored to anyone’s level. Two worth mentioning are the Peninsula Tunnels and the Ada Tree walk. With the Yarra Valley at its purest meandering through the region, a lush tropical vegetation guarantees encounters of the wildest kinds such as Lyrebirds. A very enjoyable one is the track to La La Falls (1,5hr return). The track has a moderate grade, which can be slightly challenging, but very rewarding with spectacular views on the falls. Warburton area has also excellent cycling and running routes. If you like to keep the activities closer to having overjoyed taste buds, then you might be all ears knowing about the local Farmgate Produce, local wines and ciders and excellent little eating places such as the Warburton Pantry. For your daily chocolate intake, you can drive up to Yarra Valley Chocolaterie. Excellent wineries are Whispering Hills, Tarrawarra Estate, Payne’s Rise, Killara Estate or Bulong Estate Winery.
Figure 3 Warburton Pantry (https://vic.welcome-to.com/the-warburton-pantry (https://vic.welcome-to.com/the-warburton-pantry (https://vic.welcome-to.com/the-warburton-pantry/)
Where to stay?
From bush camping sites to cottages, there is accommodation that will suit anyone’s needs. A perfect camping ground is Warburton Holiday Park, a few kilometer outside the Centre, nice draped along the Yarra river with an assortment of camping sites or cottages. An ideal place to start all your exploration.
For more accommodation options, visit the Warburton Visitors site.
Figure 4 Warburton Holiday Park http://warburtonholidaypark.com.au/caravan_and_camping/)