Five days to stay and play in Wimmera Mallee
In Wimmera Mallee, the perfect family-friendly holiday awaits. With playgrounds, skate parks, welcoming accommodation, picnic spots, and endless attractions to choose from, you’ll have no problems keeping the kids happy with five days of excitement and adventures.
Below is a 5-day itinerary that goes from Dadswell Bridge to Rupanyup with plenty of pick-and-choose activities along the way, which you can choose based on what your family loves the most.
With plenty of accommodation options to suit all needs, you can stay at a new place each night, or base yourself somewhere central and do day trips. Whatever option you choose, you’re going to wish you had more time to fit it all in!
Days 1 & 2 — Dadswell Bridge and Horsham
The perfect mix of indoor and outdoor fun, base yourself at Dadswell Bridge or Horsham for the night and pick and choose from the activities below.
The Giant Koala
An Australian road trip isn’t complete without a giant ‘thing’ or two. The first stop of your stay and play itinerary is the Giant Koala in Dadswell Bridge. The Giant Koala is a must-see and is bound to make kids and adults alike smile.
Spend the rest of the afternoon exploring Beehive Falls. It’s one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the Grampians, and also one of the easiest to access, meaning it’s fun for all the family. The walk is 2.8km and takes around 1.5 hours.
Down the road in Wartook is the delightful Rosehaven Farms. Book into one of the ‘Country life experiences’ and you’ll be able to get up close and personal with the farm’s donkeys, alpacas, and sheep. There is also a range of natural, handmade products sold in the farm shop, with the backdrop of Mt Zero reminding you of just what a special place you’re in.
Whilst you’re in the area be sure to visit the local aboriginal art sites. Gulgurn Manja —which stands for ‘hands of young people’ — is a rock shelter accessible via a 15-minute gentle walk. There is also a self-guided walk to Ngamadjidj shelter, accessible to everyone, including people with limited mobility or those with prams.
Happy Wanderer Resort
Set up camp for the night at the Happy Wanderer Resort in Wartook and take in the peaceful scenery and convenient location of this small, family-owned and operated resort. Or, continue to Horsham.
Be sure to grab some dinner at the Wander Inn in Halls Gap. This fully licensed restaurant is nestled in native bushland and home to some friendly roos to keep you company while you indulge in the delicious food and drinks.
Horsham, 30 minutes from Dadswell Bridge
Horsham Lanes & Games
While we hope that the sun shines for you during your visit, but if it doesn’t have no fear. The city of Horsham is packed with things to do. From tenpin bowling to inflatables and laser tag, it’s never possible to be bored when you visit Lanes & Games.
Horsham Centre Cinema
You can watch all the latest movies at Horsham Centre Cinema. Check out their website for all the latest movies available.
Horsham Aquatic Centre
Water lovers rejoice! At Horsham Aquatic Centre there is a 25-metre lap and recreation pool, a leisure pool that’s perfect for toddlers and a 50-metre seasonal outdoor pool. There’s also an onsite cafe, gym, and more.
Horsham Skate Park
Thi’s the largest skate park and BMX track in the area and it’s open during daylight hours in summer. Don’t let darkness top you though; it’s also floodlit till 10 pm in winter.
Apex Pump Track and Adventure Island
Apex Adventure Island is home to the Apex Pump Track. Never heard of a pump track? This unique track is designed to be ridden without pedalling. Instead, riders use the up-and-down movement of their bodies to gain momentum.
Day 3 — Horsham to Kaniva via Goroke and Edenhope
There’s a little bit more driving to do today, but trust us — it’s worth it. There are plenty of outdoor activities to choose from today, alongside some of the silo art that the region is famous for.
Goroke, 50 minutes from Horsham
Goroke Silo Art
Painted by Geoffrey Carran, this giant silo is one of 12 silo arts in the region. Giant Australian birds including the magpie and the kookaburra adorn the side, guaranteeing to take your breath away as you wonder how such a feat was possible.
Goroke Little Desert Nature Playspace
This fenced play space has been recently re-designed and is the perfect place to let the children burn off some steam on the slides, swings, and other play equipment.
Lake Charlegrark caravan park
Lake Charlegrark is one of the most popular lakes in the area, and it’s easy to see why, with watersports, fishing, and bushwalking all popular activities. The camping facilities let you enjoy nature with the comforts of home, and it’s even dog friendly.
Edenhope, 30 minutes from Goroke
Meander along the 5.5km walking track that surrounds Lake Wallace and see how many native water birds you can spot. Or, take to the water and enjoy water skiing or kayaking. If fishing is more your thing, you won’t be disappointed.
Hit the shops
Edenhope has a fantastic selection of cafes, shops and quirky sights like the Dachshund Museum and the Old Court House.
Kaniva, 50 minutes from Edenhope
Wetland and Fauna Park
You’ll be hard pushed to get the children to leave once they’ve discovered the Kaniva Wetland and Fauna Park. There’s an aviary, flying fox, play area, exercise area and picnic area. A visit here and you’ll spot native animals and birds including the iconic White Western Grey Kangaroo.
Kaniva Silo Art
The Kaniva Silo Art was painted by David Lee Pereira and features a giant Australian Hobby Bird, surrounded by bright pink and blue flowers.
Sheep Art Trail
Located along a 900m stretch in Kaniva, you’ll discover the Sheep Art Trail. There are 40+ sheep in total, painted by local artists and community groups. A guaranteed hit with the kids.
Kaniva Puppet shop
One of only a few puppet shops left in Australia, this is a magical place home to puppet demonstrations, a private marionette collection, and impromptu puppet plays are all part of a visit here.
Day 4 — Kaniva to Dimboola, via Nhill
With so much to choose from in Kaniva, you’ll want to get up nice and early to fit in anything you couldn’t yesterday. Then, hit the road to Nhill to immerse yourself in history. The final stop of the day is Dimboola, home to the seen-to-be-believed Pink Lake.
Nhill, 25 minutes from Kaniva
An interactive experience, the volunteer-run Australian Pinball Museum showcases Australia’s largest collection of pinballs from 1932 up to today.
Nhill Aviation Heritage Centre
Aviation history buffs will be flying high with a visit to the Nhill Aviation Heritage Centre. The museum celebrates the town’s 100-year aviation history and recognises the 10,000 young men and women who trained at the Nhill RAAF Base during World War II.
This park is ideal for stopping to stretch the legs. You’ll find excellent facilities such as toilets, baby changing facilities and BBQs. There’s also a boardwalk that takes you over the Nhill Swamp Wildlife Reserve. Be sure to do the 600-metre Birdhide walk and see if you can spot any of the native birds.
Dimboola, 30 minutes from Nhill
You’ve never seen anything like this. The Pink Lake is an absolute must-visit, with its bright pink colour caused by microscopic algae.
The magestically-named Dimboola Imaginarium is a gift shop housed in the former National Bank of Australasia Limited building. A truly whimsical place, it’s filled with quirky and unique gifts from all over the world. Architecture buffs will also find this a must-visit.
Nine Creeks Walk
Over four kilometres of well-formed and maintained walking tracks meandering through the Nine Creeks Reserve and along the Wimmera River.
Riverside Caravan Park
Located on the Wimmera River and surrounded by red gums, the Riverside Caravan Park combines tranquillity with the convenience of being located just a short walk from the local shops and restaurants.
Day 5 — Dimboola to Rupanyup, via Warracknabeal, Hopetoun,
Charton and Donald
It’s your final day and we’re going to make the most of it! From fauna parks where you can see native wildlife to moorish cookies home-baked in Donald, your last day will be one to remember.
Warracknabeal, 30 minutes from Dimboola
Lions Park/Warracknabeal Fauna Park
Located on a gorgeous creek, you’ll find free electric BBQ facilities, picnic tables, and a children’s playground. The real treat is the native birds and animals available to view including kangaroos and emus.
Hopetoun, 45 minutes from Warracknabeal
Swimming, walking, fishing, watersports…it’s all possible at Lake Lascelles. There is also free camping just a short walk from the convenience of town. The lake is popular with water skiers, with an easy-access boat ramp available.
Charlton, 1.5 hours from Hopetoun
This art deco theatre will transport you to a bygone era. You can expect cinema and live performances, mixing classic history with modern-day comforts.
Donald, 30 minutes from Charlton
Lions Train Park
The small town of Donald is known for its locomotive history and to celebrate this, a full-sized train has been installed in the local playground. Children will love climbing abroad and playing train driver in the cab.
Kooka’s Country Cookies
A holiday is a perfect time for a little sugary treat, and you can’t go past Kooka’s Country Cookies.
Home-style biscuits in all kinds of flavours, you won’t be able to stop at one.
Rupanyup, 40 minutes from Donald
The Woods Museum has a huge collection of stationary engines, tractors, tools and farm memorabilia, helping visitors learn more about the farming history of the region.
Thank you for visiting Wimmera Mallee
So there you have it, a packed itinerary for five days in the Wimmera Mallee region. Be sure to come and visit us again; with our Three Day Silo Art Trail, Art Lovers Escape and Nature Escape itineraries there’s still plenty to discover.