Tour Description

Silo Art Trail

Five Days: 19th – 23rd September 2019

Twin Share: $1395 per person. Sole Use: $1659 per person.

Included in the tour:
  • 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.

 

Silos have come to shape the landscape of many rural towns around Australia. Now many of the disused grain towers are providing a new ‘canvas’ for magnificent giant works of art. The Silo Art Trail takes us to the Victorian country towns of Patchewollock, Lascelles, Rosebery, Brim, Sheeps Hill and Rupanyup. But that’s not all!  With two nights in Mildura we enjoy a cruise on the Murray River and visit Rio Vista. The other two nights are spent in Stawell where we delight in the beautiful scenery of the area. Of course our trip home also includes a stop at Coonalpyn to see South Australia’s very own silo art.

 

Day One – THURSDAY 19 SEPTEMBER 2019

(includes light lunch and three course dinner)

We depart this morning after completing home pick-ups (limited areas*). Soon the suburbs fall behind as we make our way towards Truro, stopping along the way to have morning tea in Gawler. We continue on the Sturt Highway through Blanchetown and on to Waikerie where we enjoy our light lunch.

Following lunch we drive through the Riverland, passing Cobdogla and Barmera, and continuing on to Renmark where we can stretch our legs. We continue our journey towards the Victorian border and 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.

We check into our accommodation for the next two nights at the Best Western Chaffey Motor Inn (Ph. 03 5023 5833) where we can unpack and settle in before coming together to enjoy dinner.

 

Day Two – FRIDAY 20 SEPTEMBER 2019

(includes cooked breakfast, light lunch and three course dinner)

After breakfast we visit Woodsies Gem Shop to view a private collection of gems, rocks and crystals from around the world that are displayed in a man-made “Aladdins Cave”.  There is time to browse the huge range of jewellery, novelties and giftware and make a purchase if we wish.

Following morning tea we head over to Rio Vista, a stately house completed in 1891 located by the Mildura Arts Centre.  WB Chaffey’s grand house symbolises the dreams of the Chaffey brothers. Built in Queen Anne style with Californian references, the house commands river views and parkland surroundings. We have the opportunity to wander through the beautiful house and Arts Centre before enjoying our lunch here.

In the afternoon we head to the Murray riverside to board the paddleboat ‘PS Melbourne’, which will be taking us for a delightful afternoon cruise. Originally built for the Victorian Government as a work boat in 1912, the ‘Melbourne’ was restored to a passenger carrying steamer in 1965. We can relive the sights and sounds of the pioneer days on this relaxing cruise on Mildura’s original steam driven paddle steamer.

We take a unique journey travelling 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. An informative and comprehensive live commentary of the river and its history, fauna and flora is conducted throughout the cruise. We can see the fireman fire the boiler and enjoy the magic of the old engine as it drives the massive gears of the paddlewheels, resounding the times of the “Old Paddlesteamer Days”.

We return to the motel for dinner and a good nights rest.

 

Day Three – SATURDAY 21 SEPTEMBER 2019

(includes cooked breakfast, light lunch and three course dinner)

We begin our day travelling south, passing through Ouyen on our way to the tiny farming town of Patchewollock where the silo trail ‘starts’. Following the towns annual music festival in 2016, one of the guests Fintan Magee stayed for a fortnight to paint the town’s disused silos. Magee is an Australian artist known for his murals internationally and his large-scale paintings are often seen in isolated or abandoned areas. The locals of Patchewollock have high hopes for what the transformed silos might do for their tiny community, hoping it will be the beginning of a new era for the town.

After enjoying our morning tea we continue to Lascelles, a small rural village on the Sunraysia Highway. Here we will view the silo art work by Australian street artist Tyrone Wright .  Wright uses the interior and exterior walls of often derelict buildings as his canvases. To quote the artist they are “beautiful works in places of neglect, to highlight what we may have lost”.

After lunch we reach Roseberry and the latest addition to the trail. Painted by Kate Kaff-Eine, the silos depict the tenacity and character of the regions female as well as male farmers working in the Mallee.  Next is Brim, where the huge 1930s decommissioned grain silos, which have always been a prominent feature of the town, have been transformed by Australian artist Guido van Helten. Known for his large murals adorning walls around the world, and the artist of our very own Coonalpyn silos, van Helten tries to incorporate specific local elements into his art, as well as what is culturally important to the area in which he is working. This stunning artwork has turned this small town into a tourist attraction and is a welcome stimulus at a time of drought and shrinking population.

After lunch we journey to Sheep Hills, where a giant mural dedicated to indigenous culture adorns the silos. This captivating work was created by international artist Matt Adnate from Melbourne. Featuring two Elders, a young boy and girl set in the night sky, the mural is about passing culture and knowledge from generation to generation.

Our last visit for today is the little Victorian town of Rupanyup.  Russian artist Julia Volchkova paints what she sees as the ordinary people who depict the essence of the community or geography of the area.  In this case two young members of the local Rupanyup Football and Netball Clubs.

During the afternoon we make our way further south, with the stunning landscape of the Grampians as the backdrop. We check into our accommodation for the next two nights at the Magdala Motor Lodge, Stawell (Ph. 03 5358 3877) with time to unpack before dinner.

 

Day Four – SUNDAY 22 SEPTEMBER 2019

(includes cooked breakfast, light lunch and three course dinner)

After breakfast we take a scenic drive towards Halls Gap and into the Grampians National Park. This heritage listed landscape features a striking series of sandstone mountain ranges and as we travel, we will pass through lush bushland and past fascinating rock structures. Our first stop will be Boroka Lookout. After a short walk to the platform we will have one of the most expansive views looking straight along the Gap, over the township to Lake Bellfield.

Our next stop is at Reed’s Lookout which offers its own vantage point of the Grampians from a unique perspective. We then drive through the range to Broken Falls, where the lookout on the edge of the gorge offers sweeping views of the river tumbling over the aptly named, dissipated waterfall.

We’ll journey back to Halls Gap and the Brambuk Cultural Centre, where we will take time to look around and enjoy our lunch in the café.

Before leaving Halls Gap this afternoon, we’ll explore Lake Bellfield, a water supply for the local townships and a popular recreational spot. Arriving back at our accommodation in Stawell there’ll be time to freshen up and relax before our last evening together on tour.

 

Day Five – MONDAY 23 SEPTEMBER 2019

(includes cooked breakfast and two course lunch)

We farewell our hosts in Stawell this morning and begin our journey homeward.  As we leave behind the beautiful landscape of the Grampians and head towards the South Australian border, we stop for morning tea along the way.

We continue our journey towards Keith where our two course lunch will be waiting for us.

Early afternoon, we make our way through Tintinara and on to Coonalpyn where we stop to view the other silos transformed by Guido van Helten. Here, on the operational 30 metre high grain silos, there are breathtaking portraits of children from the local school; the theme being ‘Youth are our Future’. This great work was the first project in an arts-renewal program called ‘Creating Coonalpyn’, which also includes five smaller art projects. The town has been struggling for many years and is now showing signs of rejuvenation and strengthening community pride.  The aim was to attract more visitors to the struggling farming town and bring the community together through art.

We continue on the last leg of our journey, crossing the Murray River and pausing for a comfort stop before making our way through the Adelaide Hills.

We enter Adelaide’s suburbs and begin taking people home after a tour filled with unforgettable art and superb country.