SCENIC DRIVES

Escaping the fanfare of the larger King Valley wineries to their east, the boutique vineyards of the Kiewa Valley, sitting pretty beneath the alpine peaks, are thrillingly intimate. The warm summer days, crisp fresh nights and terra rossa soil produce intensely flavoured premium grapes crafted into award-winning cool-climate wines by passionate vintners. Likewise, the pure alpine water used to create the small-batch brews at Crank Handle Brewery results in a wonderfully superior taste. So sit back, take your time, and sample the flavours of this pristine mountain valley.

MYRTLEFORD & BRIGHT LOOP

Distance: 137km

This beautiful drive from Mount Beauty explores the Kiewa and Ovens Valleys, the towns of Dederang, Myrtleford, Porepunkah and Bright, and passes excellent views of Mount Buffalo and lookouts over Mount Bogong.

The route goes north out of Mount Beauty along the Kiewa Valley Highway. At Dederang, turn left onto Dederang Road, then left onto Tunnel Gap Road toward Mudgegonga.

At the end of the road, turn left onto Myrtleford-Yackandandah Road which will lead you to the Great Alpine Road in Myrtleford.

touring happy valley summer 1_1

Myrtleford is a great place to stop for a bite to eat or to go for a walk alongside the Ovens River on the Mosaic Trail. Follow the Great Alpine Road south-east through to Porepunkah and the town of Bright and its boutique stores. To return to Mount Beauty, turn left onto Tawonga Gap Road at Germantown. Make sure to stop at Tawonga Gap Lookout and Sullivans Lookout for views of Victoria's highest mountain, Mount Bogong.

Photo by Brendan Holland

ALPINE DISCOVERY LOOP

Distance: 239km

Explore the alpine landscapes of the Victorian High Country and visit the quaint towns of Omeo and Dinner Plain on this rewarding scenic drive from Mount Beauty, which ends with spectacular views of Mount Bogong.

Please note: this is a drive for summer and autumn only; the road between Falls Creek and Omeo is closed during winter and spring.

This is a big day, so start early in Mount Beauty and take the Bogong High Plains Road east to Falls Creek past Bogong Village and Fainter Falls, both definitely worth a stop.

Continue through Falls Creek, following the sign to Omeo. At 7.7km past Rocky Valley Dam, take a short walk to the oldest remaining Cattleman's Hut – Wallace's Hut.

Travel further South to Anglers Rest and then through to Omeo for lunch. Leave Omeo on the Great Alpine Road and stop at the Kosciuszko Lookout on your way to the alpine village of Dinner Plain, which is a nice place for a coffee while checking out its unique Australian alpine-style architecture.

Continue on through Mount Hotham and over the highest section of sealed road in Australia with panoramic views that span from Falls Creek, past Mount Feathertop, Mount Buffalo and to Mount Buller.

Head down the mountain to Harrietville, where you might like to stop to check out The Dredge Hole – the site of the largest gold dredge in the Southern Hemisphere. From Harrietville drive north then take Tawonga Gap Road back to Mount Beauty. Make sure to stop in at the two lookouts along the way for beautiful sunset views over Mount Bogong.

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