Let the kids pick an A to Z regional adventure in North East Victoria or the Southern Riverina
I spy with my little eye ...
PICK a letter – any letter – from the alphabet and you can (almost) bet there is a city, a town, a village, or a hamlet somewhere within our region starting with that letter.
OK, even we were stumped on a couple, but what we did choose for them are at least worth a look.
Check out our list, or let the kids pick out a drive for you.
It's a bit like pin the tail on the donkey, except this game is circle a town on a map starting with A (for Albury for example) and working right through the alphabet to Z. Simple! Or is it?
A - Albury-Wodonga: The retail, professional, educational, medical, accommodation, and industrial hub of North-East Victoria and the Southern Riverina are the twin cities of Albury-Wodonga which sit on opposite banks of the Murray River, Albury being located in New South Wales, Wodonga in Victoria.
The twin cities are the perfect, central location, for those visitors wishing to take day drives to the far corners of the region yet still have time to return to their own bed each night.
B - Beechworth: This historic gold-rush town of the 1850s-1890s is one of the best-preserved towns of its era in the country.
It has become one of the most popular tourist towns in the state as visitors thrive on its history, its well-preserved Colonial buildings, its famous bakery, sweet shop, hotels, cafes, and fine eateries.
Its old gaol once accommodated bushranger Ned Kelly and it was from the town’s courthouse where he was sentenced to stand trial for murder.
C - Corryong: This sub-Alpine town sits at the head of the Upper Murray Region and lies in the shadow of the magnificent Snowy Mountains.
It is the regional hub of The Man from Snowy River country, Jack Riley, the man Banjo Patterson centred his famous poem on.
The town is famed for its hospitality, picturesque scenery, and natural attractions including rivers, mountains, and forests.
D - Dartmouth: This small village was established in 1973 as a construction camp for workers building the Dartmouth Dam which sits close to the mouth of the Dart River where it joins the Mitta Mitta River.
The dam is a major reservoir in the Murray-Darling River system, while the former camp site now has a permanent population around 50 people.
It caters to fishermen, tourists, and local workers who maintain the dam and its two power stations.
E - Eskdale: This picturesque small town on the Omeo Highway in the Mitta Valley sits on the banks of the Mitta Mitta River near the confluence of Little Snowy Creek.
It boasts a supermarket, café, post office, primary school, a classic country pub and up-to-date sporting facilities.
F - Falls Creek: The Falls Creek Alpine Resort is one of Victoria’s most skied regions in the Alpine National Park.
Located 30 kilometres from Mount Beauty, Falls Creek is beginner/intermediate friendly and hosts many international cross skiing events, including the Kangaroo Hoppet.
During spring and summer, it is the ideal base to explore the surrounding national park, including nearby Rocky Valley Dam.
G - Glenrowan: If you have heard of bushranger Ned Kelly and his gang, then you have heard of Glenrowan as that is the small town located between Wangaratta and Benalla where the final siege and the capture of Ned took place in 1880.
Their story is preserved in the town’s attractions, museums and historic walks which include markers as to who was where and when during the siege of Ann Jones’ Inn.
H - Henty: ‘Going to the Henty Fields Days’. We have all heard the jingle and it is the annual field days of this Southern Riverina town which attracts farmers and farm supply dealers and manufacturers in their thousands every September.
The bustling rural town on the Olympic Highway mid-way between Albury-Wodonga and Wagga, is where local farmer Headlie Taylor invented the header harvester which revolutionised the grain industry worldwide.
I - Indigo Valley: More a location than a place, the picturesque Indigo Valley stretches between the Wodonga-Beechworth Road near Leneva, to the Hume Freeway town of Barnawartha.
It is home to farmers and hobby farmers alike and while it is short in distance, it sure makes up for it in scenery.
Middle Indigo Primary School serves the local community.
J - Jindera: Located 15 kilometres north of Albury-Wodonga is the satellite town of Jindera which is home to many families wanting a semi-rural lifestyle yet still be within proximity to the many services of the nearby twin cities.
The town has a strong connection with its past with several buildings of historical significance, the most popular being Jindera Pioneer Museum which includes the original Wagner’s Store.
K - King Valley: What a magnificent and stunning region of North-East Victoria.
Stretching from Wangaratta in the north to Cheshunt in the south, the valley is a wine and foodie lover heaven.
Hospitality, fine wine, and good food are a way of life. Explore the many cellar doors, visit the villages and towns along the way and do not forget to visit the Milawa Gourmet Region, the gourmet epicentre of the North-East.
L - Laurel Hill: This small hamlet which sits on the Tumbarumba-Batlow Road, is surrounded by the Bago State Forest which attracts visitors in every season.
The Sugar Pine Walk was the most Instagrammed location in the Snowy Valleys but was destroyed by bushfires in early 2020. The pines must be removed.
The Pilot Hill Aboretum and a visit to Laurel Hill Forest Lodge are a must.
M - Myrtleford: There are two great ways to arrive in the bustling Ovens Valley township of Myrtleford - by vehicle via the Great Alpine Road, or by bicycle, horse or on foot via the Murray to the Mountains Rail Trail.
Either way there is plenty to do, including visiting Mount Buffalo National Park, the numerous wineries scattered around the region, cruise along bicycle paths, partake in some retail therapy, sample local produce in the town’s restaurants and cafes, or have a family picnic on the banks of the picturesque Ovens River.
N - Nug Nug: This small rural location sits in the shadow of craggy Mount Buffalo on the banks of the Buffalo River.
Admittedly there is not a lot there, but popular tourist attractions include the Nug Nug Reserve camping ground and Nug Nug Wah Homestead which has several self-contained units with both river frontage and spectacular views.
Bushwalking, hiking Mount Buffalo National Park, horse riding, and swimming, fishing and water skiing at nearby Lake Buffalo are popular past times.
O - Omeo: How can you not fall in love with this quaint High Country township located on the Great Alpine Road east of Mount Hotham and Dinner Plain.
It oozes history as gold was discovered in 1851 which saw the small village boom and while the precious metal soon petered out, remnants of the town’s gold-mining history can be found at the Oriental Claims Historic Area.
The town’s historic precinct includes a magnificent courthouse and an original police log lock-up.
P - Porepunkah: A few kilometres along the Great Alpine Road from Myrtleford is the pretty township of Porepunkah which sits at the confluence of the Ovens and Buckland Rivers at the junction of the Great Alpine Road, Buckland Valley Road, and the Mount Buffalo National Park road.
Just minutes from the popular tourist town of Bright, Porepunkah offers easy access to a wide range of High Country activities, including cycling the Murray to the Mountains Rail Trail.
Q - QEII Square: Named in honour of Queen Elizabeth II, QEII Square is the centrepiece of Albury’s cultural precinct.
This large, open green space, with its mature shade trees and seating, sits between Dean and Swift Streets and is home to the Albury Entertainment Centre, Albury LibraryMuseum, St Matthew’s Church, Murray Art Museum Albury (MAMA), Albury Court House, Albury Police Station, and Canvas Eatery.
R - Rutherglen: Mention North-East Victoria and arguably the first place to spring to mind is the former gold-mining town of Rutherglen located on the Murray Valley Highway west of Albury-Wodonga.
It is one of Victoria’s ultimate wine and food destinations, boasting over 20 award-winning wineries, outstanding restaurants and cafes, and world-class local produce.
It is also home to some of the most picturesque camping, fishing, cycling, swimming, and boating locations in Australia, making it the perfect holiday destination.
As a billboard in town says: ‘Sydney may have a nice harbour, but Rutherglen has a great port’. How true.
S - Shelley: It may only be a dot on a map and a location on the Murray Valley Highway between Tallangatta and Corryong, but Shelley boasts some rich history.
Shelley Railway Station was once Victoria’s highest railway station at 781 metres above sea level. What is left of the station forms part of the High Country Rail Trail.
It is home to a large pine plantation, Avondale Gardens, picnic areas and the Shelley Forest Camp.
T - Tallangatta: It is not often a town is picked up and moved, but that is what happened to Tallangatta in the 1950s when it was transported to higher ground a few kilometres west owing to the raising of Lake Hume for downstream irrigation purposes.
New Tallangatta, which is situated on the shores of the lake just off the Murray Valley Highway, was a major stop-off on the old Wodonga to Cudgewa Railway line which, these days, forms part of the High Country Rail Trail.
A feature of the town is its twin triangles park which offers plenty of picnic tables and chairs for those who just want to sit and relax in the middle of the shopping precinct and watch the world go by.
U - Urana: Located on the north-west edge of what we define the Southern Riverina is Urana, a small service town located between Lockhart and Jerilderie.
In its heyday the town met the needs of the surrounding wool and wheat graziers but today it is more a sleepy settlement with just a few services.
Its treasures from the past include a huge Soldiers Memorial Hall, and a fascinating courthouse.
Close by is the Lake Urana Nature Reserve.
V - Violet Town: A kilometre from the Hume Freeway between Euroa and Benalla is Violet Town, famous these days for its community town market which is held on the second Saturday of the month.
Unfortunately, the town has a dark past.
On February 7, 1969, the crack overnight interstate passenger train the Southern Aurora ploughed into a goods train just west of the town, killing nine and injuring 117.
All of the town’s streets are named after flowers.
W - Wandiligong: This small, historic village lies six kilometres south of the popular tourist town of Bright, although sited at a much higher elevation.
It was the site of a small gold rush in the mid-1850s which saw the town’s population swell to over 2000, with most miners panning Morses Creek.
The whole village is registered with the National Trust as a classified landscape and features historical buildings as the Manchester Unity public hall, general store, churches, and several quaint cottages.
The Wandi Pub is popular with locals and tourists alike but, be warned, you do need to book.
X - Xavier College: OK, so we haven’t got a hamlet, village, town or city in the region starting with X, but Albury does have Xavier High School, a Catholic co-educational secondary school whose history dates back to 1885.
X also marks the spot from where you can start your regional adventure.
Y - Yarrawonga: Like many towns along the Murray River, Yarrawonga (Victoria) lives in harmony with its cross-border neighbour, Mulwala (NSW), each facing one another across Lake Mulwala, an inland aquatic paradise enjoyed by locals and tourists alike for its water skiing, swimming, canoeing, fishing, and cruising.
Joining the two towns is a very unusual bridge, the result of some miscalculations during construction.
The twin holiday destinations boast fine clubs and golf courses, magnificent holiday homes and holiday lets, as well as first-class camping and caravan parks.
Yarrawonga is the larger of the two towns and is the main retail, professional, education, entertainment, dining, and cultural centre.
Z - Zion Lutheran Church, Walla. Walla Walla, to give the town its correct name, sits amidst prime cropping pastures between the towns of Jindera and Culcairn in the Southern Riverina region of New South Wales.
It was established in 1869 when 56 settlers of German extraction travelled by horse and wagon from near the Barossa Valley in South Australia in search of farming land and, once settled, what did they build?
A church, of course, the original Lutheran Church built from white granite in 1872.
The present, or third, Zion Lutheran Church was built in 1924 and it is the largest Lutheran Church in New South Wales.