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Tahbilk Winery: Explorers Way tourist drive launch

April 18, 2023 @ 11:00 am - 2:00 pm

The Australian Heritage Festival 2023 is coming to a venue near you!

Tahbilk Winery has generously offered their Wetlands View Restaurant to host the launch of the Explorers Way tourist drive and brochure, a project of Nagambie Historical Society, in collaboration with the Strathbogie Shire.

The event will take place on Tuesday April 18, 11am to 2pm. This is also International Monuments and Sites Day.

The Explorers Way revives the Major Mitchell Bicentennial Trail through the Shire, from Mitchellstown to Violet Town. It then travels, in reverse, the tracks of Hume and Hovell, returning through Euroa and Longwood to Avenel. The drive visits every cairn and memorial to the explorers in those areas, and the map brochure details other points of interest in each town.

Roads less travelled have been used for the drive to highlight the beauty of the Shire, away from the freeways; long arching tunnels of eucalypts, golden pastures with stands of ancient trees, wooden bridges and tree-lined creeks, with the blue of the ranges always in the distance.

Society secretary, Judy Macdonald, explains that “the Major Mitchell Bicentennial Trail was a popular get-away experience in the 1990s as people took a few days to travel through Victoria and experience tiny townships and areas not seen before. However the extensive brochure, available from every information centre on the route, and including field notes of Mitchell, was published by a Government department which became obsolete. The next edition was printed by another department but that also was discontinued. Consequently what was arguably the best tourist attraction to include so much of Victoria has fallen into disuse. Existing roads were used in the first instance so the trail is still there. The finger posts remain in many areas, but the brochure itself has become a rare book!”

The new brochure is a simple foldout but remains true to the directions given in the original.

The theme of the 2023 Festival is shared stories and the Society feels the earliest stories of Europeans in our district are those of these explorers, told from their journals. It is hoped that future grants can provide funds for interpretive panels at Mitchellstown, telling the story of the local indigenous people who were displaced by the consequences of successful exploration.

Two passionate speakers will be the highlight of the launch. Surveyor Gregory Eccleston was instrumental in creating the 1700 km Major Mitchell Long Distance Trail and has written a fascinating and beautifully illustrated book, Granville Stapylton Australia Felix 1836: second in command to Major Mitchell, some copies of which will be available on the day. Drone footage will support Greg  Eccleston’s talk, showing the party’s approach route, the Crossing Place on the Goulburn River, the camp site of October 8, 1836 on what is now Tahbilk land, and beyond.

The second speaker, Ken McInnes devised the extensive Hume and Hovell trail through New South Wales. Both will give insights into the experiences of these intrepid men as they crossed what is now Strathbogie Shire.

Councillor Reg Dickinson has been asked to launch the drive and brochure.

Bookings are essential click here: Explorers Way launch at Tahbilk Winery Tickets, Wetlands View Restaurant, Tahbilk Winery, Tabilk | TryBooking Australia


April 18, 2023
11:00 am - 2:00 pm
Event Category:


Nagambie Historical Society


Tahbilk Winery
254 O'Neils Road
Tabilk, Vic 3608 Australia
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