Park Trek walking holidays, Australia
Email info@parktrek.com.au | Call us on (03) 5639 2615
Duration: 4 days
Location: Daylesford ex. Melbourne
Price: from $1,850
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Walking across rocks in the Northern Territory

This relaxed four-day walk on the Goldfields track around Daylesford, Hepburn Springs and Castlemaine, includes great walking on well-maintained trails and many other activities which the region is most famous for. It is an easy walk for people with a reasonable level of fitness.

On this tour, you will spend time at the Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa to soothe your muscles, enjoy a morning tea stop at the Chocolate Mill, visit the historic Red Beard Bakery and taste some local cider.

We stay in gorgeous purpose built accommodation in the heart of Daylesford and enjoy daily walks with light day packs only each day returning to our accommodation

Tour inclusions

  • 3 nights accommodation at the Manor House, Daylesford, a lovely 8 bedroom, 8 bathroom property
  • Morning tea at historic Red Beard Bakery
  • Evening bathing at the iconic Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa
  • Visit to the Chocolate Mill and chocolate tastings
  • Tastings of local cider at the Daylesford Cider House
  • Visit to the Convent Gallery
  • All transport and guiding
  • Small group of 10 or less
  • Guided walks each day with experienced and mature guides
  • Return group transfer from Melbourne to Daylesford

 

Trip dates 2017

  • Monday 18th to Thursday 21st September
  • Monday 25th to Thursday 28th September
  • Monday 16th to Thursday 19th October
  • Monday 30th Oct to Thursday 2nd Nov
  • Monday 6th to Thursday 9th November
  • Monday 13th to Thursday 16th November

 

Trip dates 2018

  • Tuesday 6th to Friday 9th March (Adventurous Women – women only)
  • Monday 26th to Thursday 29th March
  • Tuesday 3rd to Friday 6th April

 

Day 1

Daylesford to Hepburn Springs
14km walking, approx. 6 hours of walking, including breaks (easy grade)

Once we depart from Melbourne, we head in a north-westerly direction and arrive in the idyllic village of Trentham where we will stop at the Red Beard Bakery for morning tea. This historic bakery houses an original wood-fired oven. The original Scotch oven was used continuously from 1891 to 1987, weighs 75 tonnes and can bake 600 loaves from one firing. It has been producing sourdough breads since 2005. You can see the bakery in action.

From Trentham we head to the famous mineral springs town of Daylesford for our first walk which starts at beautiful Lake Daylesford.

There is the chance to have a toilet stop before we embark on our walk. The walk itself is approximately 2.5 hours to Bryces Flat where we enjoy a lovely lunch provided by Park Trek at the picnic area.

After lunch we begin our walk toward Hepburn Springs which will take another 3.5 hours. The track passes by the blow hole, revealing rugged, sheer-sided gorges along the creek. The path is narrow and rocky and a distinct view awaits around each bend.

From the Blowhole the trail crosses the willow-lined Spring Creek several times via handmade bridges. We finish for the day at Golden Springs at approximately 3.30-4pm.

We will head to our accommodation at Daylesford Manor House to unpack and change, and one of the Park Trek guides will take you to the famous Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa for a relaxing dip in the natural mineral springs pools. The Bathhouse has been providing the experience of traditional communal bathing since 1895 and comprises of the Relaxation Pool and Spa Pool both providing mineral water bathing, which rehydrates and oxygenates the body giving you a total sense of wellbeing.

After a relaxing dip, guests are able to purchase wine from the local Hepburn Store or Savioa Hotel before being taken back to the guest house for pre-dinner nibbles followed by a two course dinner prepared by the guides.

Accommodation: Daylesford Manor House
The Manor House, Daylesford, is an 8 bedroom and 8 ensuite bathroom property. This magnificent, vast home was purposely built giving consideration to both privacy and group stays. There is ducted heating, a double sided wood fire place, ceiling fans and split system airconditioning. Guides prepare group meals in the kitchen and group dining is around a large bespoke table in the main dining room inside or in the large outdoor barbecue and dining area. All linen and some toiletries are provided at this lovely accommodation.

Day 2

Hepburn Springs to Porcupine Ridge
14km walking, approx. 6 hours of walking, including breaks (easy grade)

After breakfast and lunch making we head out from our accommodation to Hepburn Mineral Springs Reserve, to begin the walk along the Goldfields Track. Here we have the opportunity to sample some of the local mineral spring water.

Today’s walk takes us through Beehive Gully, which resembles a mini Grand Canyon 10 – 15m deep, a result of extensive mining. Remnants of shafts, water races, quartz crushing battery and a fan of tailings can be seen.

The track meanders up and down through bushland, emerging at the Chocolate Mill. This local chocolate manufacturer offers a mouth watering selection of chocolates, and you will get the opportunity to sample some, as well as an indulgent hot chocolate, on your visit. If you wish to purchase any we will have an esky in the vehicle so they can be kept cool and taken back to our accommodation for you.

The Goldfields Track takes us towards porcupine ridge road to our lunch stop at the view point just before the ridge. At the highest point of the trail we get good views through the trees in both directions. After lunch we will hop back in the Park Trek vehicle and drive to Daylesford Cider in Musk. This boutique cider maker produces a wide range from organically grown heritage apples and we can enjoy some cider tasting in the picturesque setting.

Mid-afternoon we depart Musk and head to the Convent Gallery in Daylesford. The Convent Gallery was once known as the Holy Cross Convent and home to a group of Presentation Sisters. Since opened in 1991 the heritage building complex has expanded to include several galleries, bars, reception spaces, museum, gardens, gift shop and a café.

Park Trek covers the entry to the Convent Gallery and once inside you can wander around at your leisure. From here guests can wander to Vincent Street – the main shopping strip in Daylesford or can choose to revisit the Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa (own expense) before nibbles are served around 6pm followed by a lovely two course dinner prepared by your guides.

Meals – breakfast, lunch and dinner

Accommodation: Daylesford Manor House

Day 3

Porcupine Ridge to Fryerstown
17km walking, approx. 6 hours of walking, including breaks (easy grade)

After breakfast and lunch making we pack up and depart from our accommodation and make our way back to Porcupine Ridge (the end of yesterday’s walk). From there the track takes us through Sailers Gully where we stop for morning tea.

We continue our walk onto Vaughan where there is are mineral springs and a picnic area where we stop to have our lunch, and a swimming hole in the Loddon River. If the weather is warm, swimming in the water hole is an option.After

After lunch we continue onto Fryerstown (approximately 2 hours). Nestled in the Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park Fryerstown has a strong gold history and was home to 15,000 miners at the height of the gold rush. Several fine buildings remain. The town had a butcher, a blacksmith, a boot factory, 25 hotels and a lolly shop.

Following the end of the walk, guests are then transported back to Daylesford where there is some free time to explore the sights of the town such as the Botanic Gardens, Lake Daylesford, Vincent Street or simply relax at Manor House.

This evening we eat out at a local restaurant (own expense) and enjoy some local Daylesford Hospitality.

Meals – breakfast, lunch

Accommodation: Daylesford Manor House

Day 4

Porcupine Ridge to Fryerstown
8km walking, approx. 4 hours of walking, including breaks (easy grade)

After breakfast and lunch making, we pack up and check out of Manor House. Our final day of walking commences from Fryerstown where after a short distance we find the remnants of the Spring Gully mines which was one of the most famous mines of the Castlemaine district operating from the 1850s until the 1930s. The most prominent feature is the high stone-faced loading ramp from which quartz was fed into a stamping battery for crushing.

As we approach Castlemaine, a short sharp climb brings us onto The Monk. In season there are wonderful wildflowers and orchids on this prominent viewpoint. The summit is 200m south of the track with vehicle access via Jacobs Track and is our morning tea stop.

After lunch, which we enjoy at the Botanical Gardens there is time to visit two popular attractions The Mill and Castlemaine Art Gallery and Historical Museum.

The Mill, formerly operated as the Castlemaine Woollen Mills built in 1875. This rambling complex of brick factories and chimneys now houses artisans, food and wine outlets, vintage goods and a great Austrian coffee house ‘Das Kaffeehaus’. A large Vintage Bazaar is open Thursday to Monday 10am – 5pm.

The Castlemaine Art Gallery & Historical Museum celebrated its centenary in 2013 and is housed in a magnificent heritage listed art deco building. The permanent art collection boasts significant works of the late 1800s by such artists as Roberts, Streeton and McCubbin. The museum displays historical items including photographs, costumes, decorative arts and artefacts from the goldfields. Park Trek covers the entry fee to the museum.

After we leave Castlemaine and bid farewell to the Goldfields Track we make our last stop on our way back to Melbourne at the well-known Duck Duck Goose and Larder, Kyneton.

Located in Piper Street this establishment offers café, larder and providore where you can browse or purchase any items you may like to take home with you.

We return to our drop off location in Melbourne outside the National Gallery of Victoria between 4.30 and 5pm. If you are flying out after the tour, please do not book flights any earlier than 7pm to allow travel time to the airport and check in.

A single supplement is available for an extra $300 per person.

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