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5 must-visit towns in Victoria's High Country and Murray River region

The stunning mountains of the Victorian High Country and the waterside splendour of the Murray River are all within a short distance from each other.

Here are five towns you should not miss if you're visiting the region.


Located roughly an hour from Beechworth and Glenrowan, 90 minutes from Echuca, and a little over 90 minutes from Bright, Yarrawonga is the perfect place to locate yourself if you’re looking to explore all of the treasures of the Victorian High Country and Murray River region. Check out the Central Yarrawonga Motor Inn, which offers tours taking in the best of the region, including Yarrawonga itself and all of the towns mentioned below.

The town itself is home to the beautiful Lake Mulwala, which was formed by the construction of a weir across the Murray River in the 1930s. The resulting 23km-long lake is the perfect destination for boating, fishing and swimming, and its variety of cruises.


Beechworth is a well-preserved historical town in Victoria’s High Country, known for its beautiful gold rush architecture and buzzing food and wine scene. The picturesque township is bursting with National Trust-listed buildings, from the Beechworth Courthouse to the gaol that once hosted the town’s most famous resident, Ned Kelly. This is Ned Kelly Country, through and through – the Burke Museum has a number of Kelly artefacts, including his death mask, and there are walking tours of the town where knowledgeable local guides show you places that the Kelly Gang frequented.

As mentioned, however, Beechworth today is about more than just Gold Rush history and outlaw bushrangers. It is overflowing with prized restaurants and pubs, from award-winning Provenance by celebrity chef Michael Ryan, to the famously casual Bridge Road Brewers. And if you visit during the High Country Harvest Festival, you can soak up the town’s autumnal splendour while enjoying Victoria’s best food, wine and craft beer.


The heart of Victoria’s splendid alpine region, Bright is a spectacular destination known for mountain adventures, riverside walks and stunning forest surrounds that are particularly spectacular in autumn. Head in the winter, of course, and you can access some of Australia’s best skiing terrain, including resorts like Mount Hotham and Falls Creek.

Of course, if outdoor adventure isn’t your thing, there’s still plenty to experience in Bright – particularly when it comes to the selection of local wineries and cellar doors, all while enjoying spectacular views over the area’s rolling landscapes. Or head to the nearby Red Stag Deer and Emu Farm to feed, touch and learn about deer, emus and ostriches and dine at the highly regarded Red Stag restaurant.


Situated on the banks of the mighty Murray River, Echuca is the closest point of the Murray to Melbourne, situated just a two-and-a-half-hour drive away. The town occasionally feels like it’s from a bygone era with its horse-drawn carriages and woodturners, while the town’s historic Port Precinct is one of Australia’s finest heritage icons and home to a huge fleet of paddlesteamers.

In fact, taking a paddlesteamer ride from Echuca and along the Murray River is a must-have experience while in town. Once the main transport of cargo and passengers during the 1800s, many of the paddlesteamers are now fully restored and offer a wonderful day out whether you’re a history buff, a steam buff, or just looking for an enjoyable day out in this wonderful part of the country.


Beechworth may be bursting with Ned Kelly history, but Glenrowan perhaps lays claim to the most famous Kelly Gang moment of all – the site of the famous last stand, where the Kelly Gang were sieged and finally captured. Located 15km south of Wangaratta, Glenrowan is a must-visit for anyone interested in Kelly Gang history – the Glenrowan Siege, brought to life with special effects and animatronics by the Ned Kelly Centre, is a particularly fantastic and memorable experience.

You can access all of the above towns – and many more – on air-conditioned 5-start luxury coaches with Linga Longa in Yarrawonga tours.