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The Great Gippsland
gippslandThe Gippsland region of eastern Victoria is home to Australia’s largest inland system of rivers, lakes, beaches and lagoons. The high country rests in the north and with beautiful beaches dotting the south. This area is full of incredible beauty and an abundance of recreational activities for every age group. The many facets of this scenic region make it a fantastic option for a campervan, because the freedom a self-drive holiday will give you will reward you in more ways then one.

The Mountain Rivers are one of the most sought after regions of the Gippsland. Walhalla is the most central tourist spot and is a town that is visited by thousands each year. The activities on offer here are endless and include bushwalking, biking, canoeing, horse riding and white water rafting. For something a little more laid back and quieter, board the heritage train, pay a visit to a tea house or find a spot by the river for a relaxing picnic with the family.

If you take a drive through Bairnsdale you will come across the East Gippsland wilderness region. This is Victorian country at its best, and it is the charm and comforts of the town that makes it the perfect base for your exploration of the surrounding countryside. Be sure to pay a visit to the Aquatic Centre or hire a canoe at the banks of the Mitchell River as this will allow you to experience the best of the Gippsland waterways. There are beaches, mountains, rivers and snowfields all within driving distance from Bairnsdale, making it a remarkable gateway to the Gippsland.

While in Bairnsdale, the Bairnsdale Holiday Park is a great place to staye as it is located only 2km from the town centre and only minutes from the Gippsland Lakes. The park has excellent facilities and acres of gardens, making it the perfect choice for a longer stay in this incredible region.

The heart of Central Gippsland ventures through the dairy district via the Gippsland Plains Country Road. There are a plentiful amount of wineries in this area with lots of art and craft shops to delight keen shoppers. The Gippsland Lakes are also easily accessible from here, which are great for fishing, bird watching and gem fossicking and are home to many varieties of wildlife including kangaroos, possums, black swans and koalas, and awe inspiring scenery that is constantly changing. The Macalister River Valley Road also winds along the Great Dividing Range with rolling hillside scenery and is a must-do while you are in this area.

South Gippsland is equally spectacular, with the Strzelecki Ranges to the north and Wilsons Promontory National Park stretching to the south. Take a few steps back in time and visit the Coal Creek Historical Village for a slice of local history. Close to the lakes entrance, the Lakes Beachfront Holiday Retreat is located at Ninety Mile Beach and is a fantastic setting with gum trees overhead and pristine beachfront to enjoy. You simply must spend at least a few days here to sightsee and unwind in this relaxing environment.

For those adventurous at heart, the High Country will be the highlight of your trip. It is rugged beauty at its best, with stunning national parks and forests, streams and amazing views everywhere you look. This place is absolutely perfect for a camping retreat or day trip. The Gippsland also comes to life in winter, with snow skiing a favourite and bushwalking, fishing and exploring for the other seasons. Be sure to bring your warmest clothing as the temperatures do drop suddenly, and be prepared for exhilarating moments as you weave your way through this remote region of Victoria.

The Snowy River Region of the Gippsland takes you back to the movie that captured Australia, where wild horses and misty mountains will take your breath away. There are plenty of rural activities and many farms to visit, not to mention the underground caves at Buchan, and plenty of tourist parks if you want to stay for a while.

The diversity and uniqueness of this area will completely capture your hearts and imaginations. Since the main highway runs directly through the Gippsland region, it couldn’t be more accessible for tourists who want to experience all there is to offer. Plan your itinerary to suit your favourite activities. Whether it is bushwalking, bird watching, thrill seeking or just lazing on the beach, this part of the world offers it all.

Christine Barton

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