Check out what is open over the Christmas and New Year's period to plan your visit.

Mount Macedon Nature Escape

Only an hour’s drive from Melbourne, the tiny mountain village of Mount Macedon was originally a summer retreat for the city’s elite of the post-gold rush era of the 19th century. With scenic trails and lookouts in Macedon Regional Park, quality accommodation, cafes and cellar doors, it makes for the perfect getaway for couples and friends seeking a rejuvenating escape to nature.

Mount Macedon Nature Escape

Only an hour’s drive from Melbourne, the tiny mountain village of Mount Macedon was originally a summer retreat for the city’s elite of the post-gold rush era of the 19th century. With scenic trails and lookouts in Macedon Regional Park, quality accommodation, cafes and cellar doors, it makes for the perfect getaway for couples and friends seeking a rejuvenating escape to nature.

Mountain Air & Hanging Rock | Mount Macedon

Experience a sensory walk at Sanatorium Lake

Rise early and head to the mountains. After only an hour’s drive from Melbourne, you’ll arrive in the picturesque mountain village of Mount Macedon. Kick start the morning with a strong coffee and house-made treat at the town’s hub – the Trading Post Cafe. This is the perfect pit stop to stock up on gourmet picnic supplies to graze on throughout the day.

From here it’s time to explore the cool forests of Macedon Regional Park, which offers a range of trails to suit all abilities and energy levels.

The pine-scented air becomes cool and crisp as you wind your way further up the mountain to Sanatorium Lake, where you can experience the ‘Murmuring Walk’.

You’ll need to turn off at Lions Head Road and make your way to the trailhead to begin the experience. Tip: Make sure to download the Murmuring Walk soundtrack prior to departing Mount Macedon.

As you start the walk, put on your headphones and be led by a sublime multi-layered vocal and poetic soundtrack. This blissful audio-guided walk reflects the environment, birdlife and natural rhythms of the lake, which is on Dja Dja Wurrung, Taungurung and Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung land.

If you brought picnic supplies, enjoy lunch at Days Picnic Ground, otherwise, take a short drive down the other side of the mount to Hanging Rock Reserve for lunch at the Hanging Rock Café followed by a walk up, or around, ‘The Rock’.

Coffee and Picnic Supplies Here
Hike Here
Days Picnic Ground Here
Lunch Here
Sunset on the Summit | Memorial Cross

Catch the sunset from summit of Mt Macedon

After lunch, if you’re still feeling energetic, take a walk up Camels Hump for sweeping views. Or see the Macedon Regional Park Notes for details of other walks you may wish to tackle depending on your energy and fitness level.

The afternoon can be spent enjoying the peace and serenity of your accommodation, before catching the sunset from Mt Macedon’s summit.

Take a scenic drive up to the peak to view Mt Macedon Memorial Cross. After Melbourne’s Shrine of Remembrance, Mt Macedon Memorial Cross is considered the most significant war memorial in Victoria. It’s an imposing structure that stands 21 metres high and commemorates all those who served in wars and conflicts.

It’s a short and pleasant walk along a sealed path from the Top of the Range Tea Rooms to reach Memorial Cross. You’ll catch beautiful sunset views from the lookout along the way.

After the sun has set, head back down to Mount Macedon village for a hearty meal and local beer or wine at the local pub, the Mount Macedon Hotel. Alternatively, drive a little further down the mountain to the nearby villages of Macedon or Woodend. You might even be able to catch some live music at the Macedon Railway Hotel’s band room.

Open Gardens | Mount Macedon

Explore a magical garden on the slopes of Mt Macedon

Start the next day on your terms. Either sleep in, or if you’ve come to ride, tackle one of several loop rides from the Macedon Ranges Ride Guide. For a more leisurely option either ride or drive to Macedon village and enjoy breakfast at MR Macedon Café.

After breakfast, it’s time for some more mountain air as you wander through Forest Glade Gardens, a stunning heritage garden open to the public. The garden has been designed with four distinct themes that will be sure to capture your imagination.

If visiting in autumn keep your eye out for other private gardens that may be open to the public as part of the Macedon Ranges Autumn Festival.

If you’re feeling inspired by the beauty of the open gardens, drop by nearby Dicksonia Rare Plants nursery in Mount Macedon village and treat yourself to a mountain-loving plant to take home and nurture.

Note: During April, Mount Macedon can get busy over weekends and public holidays. Find out more about getting around the area during this time including parking options, road closures and free shuttle services. Bookings are recommended for cafes and restaurants.

Lunch and Wine Tasting | Mount Macedon

Visit cellar doors for a taste of cool climate wines

What better way to round out the day than a long lunch at one of the nearby cellar doors. The Macedon Ranges Wine Region is the coolest on mainland Australia, renowned for its sparkling, pinot and chardonnay. Mount Macedon village has two nearby cellar doors offering tastings and lunch options to satisfy any appetite.

Mount Macedon Winery is a great choice for wine tasting and a gourmet lunch showcasing locally sourced produce. The restaurant has a wood-fuel fireplace perfect for cooler months, along with beautiful views. Delicious picnic hampers are also available from the cellar door to enjoy on the grounds of the winery.

Mount Towrong Vineyard offers hearty, home-style Italian cooking intentionally created to pair perfectly with their wines. As well as their superb pinot and chardonnay, the winery also produce a range of Italian varietals including estate-grown Nebbiolo and Prosecco. If you’re a gin fan, make sure to ask for a tasting of their award-winning, locally distilled artisan Mountain Gin.

Reservations are highly recommended for both cellar doors if planning to eat lunch.

Enjoy your easy drive home knowing that both body and mind are in a better place than when you set out. Or stay another night so you bank some more time in nature.

Find out what’s happening in the Macedon Ranges this month

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