Four Days: 10th – 13th April 2019
Twin Share: $1195 per person. Sole Use: $1390 per person.
- Home pick-ups & set downs (most metro areas – please contact us for details)
- Picnic-style morning teas & all meals as per the itinerary
- All accommodation & admissions to all attractions
- Experienced & informative tour driver/guide.
Mildura is renowned for its big blue skies, Mediterranean climate, lush produce and fascinating local history. This is all located near the region’s life source—the magnificent River Murray. During our stay we take two very different cruises on two different rivers: a dinner cruise from Wentworth which travels the Murray and the Darling, as well as trip on a historic paddlesteamer departing from Mildura. Join us as we sample local produce, explore the heritage and enjoy the changing landscapes of this beautiful Riverland destination.
Day One – WEDNESDAY 10 APRIL 2019
(includes lunch and three course dinner)
We depart after completing home pick-ups (limited areas*). Soon the suburbs fall behind and we make our way towards Truro, stopping to have morning tea in Gawler. We continue along the Sturt Highway through Blanchetown and on to Waikerie where we enjoy our light lunch.
Refreshed, we drive through the Riverland, passing Cobdogla and Barmera on the way to Renmark where we pause to stretch our legs.
We then head for the Victorian border and towards our destination of Mildura, located in the Sunraysia region. It is a major agricultural centre known widely for its grape production which supplies about 80% of Victoria’s grapes. Many wineries also source their grapes from Mildura.
We check into our accommodation for the next three nights at the Best Western Chaffey Motor Inn (Ph. (03 5023 5833) where we can unpack and settle in before gathering to enjoy dinner together.
Day Two – THURSDAY 11 APRIL 2019
(includes cooked breakfast, light lunch and three course dinner)
We wake in Mildura this morning, in the region discovered by explorer Captain Charles Sturt in the 1830’s. The Murray and Darling Rivers with their surrounding natural pastures brought settlers and drovers to its banks, but after a major drought from 1877-1884 the state government was forced to develop the irrigation of the area. The settlement of Mildura was established in 1887, and after breakfast we set out to discover more with the assistance of a local guide on a town tour.
Next we enjoy morning tea and visit the Alfred Deakin Centre. Here can have a good look around the Information Centre, a complex which also incorporates the library and aquatic centre
Following lunch we visit Woodsies Gem Shop, which is home to a private collection of gems, rocks and crystals from around the world that are displayed in “Aladdins Cave” – a man-made creation that gives the feel of really being in a cave. There is time to browse the huge range of jewellery, novelties and giftware, all beautifully displayed.
We return to our accommodation in the afternoon for a bit of relaxation and time to freshen up for this evenings attraction. Our driver takes us the short distance over the New South Wales border to Wentworth, located at the confluence of the Darling and Murray Rivers. This town was once the busiest inland port in New South Wales and at the time of Federation, one of the locations considered for the Australian capital. By the late 1800s the rivers were busy with the traffic of boats carrying supplies to, and carting wool from, the region’s stations and homesteads. Wentworth developed quickly and became a grand town.
We depart the historic port on a wonderful dinner cruise. Travelling along both the Murray and Darling Rivers this cruise offers a wonderful perspective of the river as we relax in the comfort of a modern air-conditioned boat. Take in the magnificent scenery of the river in the evening and listen to the informative commentary as we enjoy a fish and chip dinner!
Upon disembarking we return to our accommodation in Mildura.
Day Three – FRIDAY 12 APRIL 2019
(includes cooked breakfast, light lunch and three course dinner)
We cross the bridge again this morning, to the other side of the river, for our first visit at Orange World, a 50 acre orchard in Mourquong. We are taken around the picturesque property on a tractor train where we see many varieties of citrus and avocado trees and enjoy an educational and informative tour. We can sample their fresh orange juice and there is a range of souvenirs and gourmet foods available to taste and purchase, including home-style citrus marmalades, orange blossom honey, citrus soaps and other local produce.
Australia’s most unique Botanic Gardens are also situated here in Mourquong. These award-winning inland gardens are the first semi-arid botanical gardens in the southern hemisphere and an outstanding example of what a community can achieve. There is a wide variety of Australian and exotic plants and a rose garden featuring over 1600 colour co-ordinated bushes.
Returning to Mildura we board the wonderful paddleboat, the PS Melbourne, which will be taking us for a delightful two hour luncheon cruise. Originally built for the Victorian Government as a work boat in 1912, the ‘Melbourne’ was restored to be a passenger carrying steamer in 1965. We can relive the sights and sounds of the pioneer days on this relaxing cruise in Mildura’s original steam driven paddle boat, giving us a completely different experience to yesterdays cruise.
This unique river journey takes us downstream through Lock 11, which was built to bypass the weir across the river. We experience the workings of a lock as the Melbourne is lowered to the downstream level and raised again on the return journey. You can also see the fireman tend the boiler as we enjoy the magic of the old engine driving the massive gears of the paddlewheels. An informative and comprehensive live commentary of the river and its history, fauna and flora is also conducted throughout the cruise.
After a splendid day we head back to the hotel to relax for our final night together on tour.
Day Four – SATURDAY 13 APRIL 2019
(includes cooked breakfast and two course lunch)
After breakfast we farewell our hosts here in Mildura and depart west for South Australia.
Once across the border we continue along the Sturt Highway and meet the Murray River once more in Renmark where we stop to stretch our legs and enjoy morning tea.
From Remark we continue through Barmera, past the vineyards and citrus groves of the area, to Waikerie, where our two course lunch will be waiting for us.
Refreshed, our afternoon drive takes us over the river once more at Blanchetown before we cross the flat Murray Plains and into the hills, passing along the edge of the Barossa Valley. We pause at Gawler for a comfort stop before entering the suburbs of Adelaide, returning everyone to their homes after soaking up the best of Mildura and it’s wonderful river scenery.