Warragul is an agricultural town in West Gippsland, on the plains between the Great Dividing Range in the north and the Strzelecki Mountains in the south.
This is the economic, service and cultural centre of West Gippsland, located along the settlement corridor through which the Princes Highway passes.
Warragul hosts Victoria’s premier agricultural show every March and preserves some beautiful parks and walks, as well as a major regional performing arts centre.
You never have to go far down the highway to go to museums, shopping and outings, while the highlands to the north and south have vast rainforests, lakes and spectacular lookouts just minutes from the CBD.
1. Civic Park
Warragul’s main park is located in the civic area at the northern end of the CBD.
On gently rolling ground, the Civic Park features a series of ponds fed by artificial waterfalls, and many magnificent mature trees, including the Aleppo pine, the Chinese Friendship Garden, an elegant rotunda, a spacious children’s playground, and barbecues and picnics Area.
This beautiful space is also home to the Warragul Farmers Market and Art Market, both held on the third Saturday of each month.
2. West Gippsland Arts Centre (WGAC)
At the Civic District at the southern end of Civic Park sits Wallagher’s regional performing arts destination.
Opened in 1982, WGAC has a multi-million dollar redevelopment in the works, with tours, musicals, live musicians, comedians and dance performances by institutions such as the Victorian Ballet.
The theatre is also a venue for community and school productions, as is the WGAC’s exhibition space, which showcases the work of national, regional and local artists through a variety of media, from fine art to textiles.
3. Linear Park Art Discovery Trail
Take a colourful stroll along the 3.65km trail through several parks in Warragul along the banks of Hazel Creek.
Here, a community art project has provided murals, mosaics and painted bollards for the route, some of which pay homage to the Brayakoloong people, the traditional owners of the land that camped by the creek.
Featuring seating and entertainment such as outdoor fitness stations, the trail is divided into three distinct sections, with the first loop lit at night.
4. Radner Park
If an event of true scale were to take place in West Gippsland, it would likely take place at Lardner Park, a few kilometres south of Warragul.
Lardner Park is elevated with panoramic countryside views and 5,000sqm of flexible underground and alfresco space.
Keep up to date with a calendar of spectacles including four-wheel drive events, international music festivals, markets, various sporting events, outdoor ballet, equestrian competitions and commercial events, not to mention Warragul’s farm world, which we’ll discuss in more The following is a detailed introduction.
5. Farm World
To highlight Warragul’s agricultural reputation, one of the state’s largest agricultural shows will take place at Lardner Park at the end of March.
Now in its sixth decade, this four-day event showcases the latest and greatest in agribusiness equipment, technology and methodologies, giving you access to experts in their fields.
But, like those in the industry, there’s a lot to draw casual tourists.
You can check out the many different livestock breeds and watch Kelpies at work, while Farmer Darryl’s Animal Farm will have cute animals to pet and learn how to walk an alpaca.
One of the big events every year is Farm World’s Fittest Farmer, where contestants win this coveted award for physical feats.
6. Two Towns Trail
This paved 8km walking and cycling trail connects to Warragul’s Linear Park Arts Discovery Trail and runs west to the centre of Drouin.
This route is primarily for commuters on bikes, but for tourists it’s a great way to experience local history and culture and appreciate the West Gippsland countryside.
There are interpretive signs detailing the history, art and creative stories of the indigenous ancient Naikunai people, and plenty of places to pause if you need a breather.
At various points along the way, you’ll enjoy stunning views of Mount Worth, Bob, and Strzelecki, while a trail near Buln Buln Road takes you over the creek via a boardwalk.
7. Mount Worth State Park
If you want to escape the breathtaking highland scenery close to Warragul, the easiest option is Mount Worth in the western Strzelecki Ranges.
In the park, there are dense moist mountain rainforest, growing black wood, tree ferns in ravines, mountain ash glue, mountain ash, up to 90 meters.
You can see one of these monsters on the 1.8km Giant’s track, which is tracing an ancient timber tramway leading to a specimen believed to be 300 years old and measuring 14 meters in circumference.
On the park’s trails, you may spot crimson rosettes, wombats, the common brush-tailed possum and the stunning ground-dwelling lyrebird.
8. Gumbuya World
Just next to Drouin in Tynong is the largest theme park in the entire Melbourne region.
Gumbuya World is spread across four zones, including roller coasters, wave simulators, playground-style rides, and animal attractions, but it’s the water slides at Oasis Springs Water Park that grab the headlines.
These are the dazzling Boomerango, with its near-vertical reverse ramp, and the 180-meter dark slide Taipan.
Littler families will be thrilled with the animals along the wildlife trail, where you’ll see crocodiles, wallabies, kangaroos, koalas and amazing birds, while the petting zoo has lovely domestic animals, Such as goats, lambs and ducks.
Finally, Outback Explorer has rides and entertainment designed for younger travelers, from bumper cars to pirate ships.
9. Town and Country Gallery
If you want to see the work of the best professional artists and craftsmen in the area, Yarragon’s Town & Country Gallery is the perfect stage to showcase their work.
The gallery has partnered with dozens of talented painters, sculptors, glass artists, potters, jewelry makers, printers, furniture makers, illustrators and textile artists to provide you with plenty of gift and souvenir inspiration.
The galleries are free to enter, and if you want to turn your visit into an outing, there are plenty of lovely cafes and locally run dining options on the same strip off the Princes Highway.
10. Trafalgar Houghton Museum
Australia’s iconic muscle car is the subject of this great private museum housed in a 1930s spongy butter factory building.
The amazing thing about the Trafalgar Holden Museum is that it is the collection of a man, Neil Joiner, who has some important models in his collection.
There’s a 1965 Holden HD Premier with just 13,000 miles, a barely driven 1963 EJ Holden (7,500 miles) and a 1967 Holden HK.
The museum tells the story of the brand’s long history from saddle making to aero engines, and in addition to interactive displays, there is a theater showing rare footage.
11. Cannibal Mountain
You don’t have to stray far from the Princes Highway to walk in fantastic natural scenery.
Cannibal Mountain is located a few kilometers behind Gumbuya World and you can experience it on a steep 2.5km loop that takes you to the top and back again.
The best bit is the northern lookout, where huge granite spikes protrude from the side of the mountain like a giant pulpit.
Stop for a dramatic photo and gaze at Gippsland’s iconic rolling hills in stunning 180° vistas.
12. Laurie Collins Sculpture Garden
The small town of Jindiwick is home to the studio of regional Victorian artist and former teacher Laurie Collins, who uses rubbish and recycled sheet metal to create fascinating sculptures.
If you’re exploring the area around Warragul, you can visit his 1-acre property, which has been transformed into a transformative sculpture garden filled with these inspired creations.
If you book in advance, Laurie will be happy to show you around, explain his work and invite you into his studio to show you his process.
The gardens are delightful with stunning panoramic views of the Gippsland countryside.
13. Old Gippstown
A little further afield, in Moe, Old Gippstown is an open-air museum that takes you back to the roots of Gippsland’s European settlement and has a busy calendar of events.
From the 1850s to the 1950s, there are more than 40 historic buildings worth contemplating and relocating here from across the region.
Some outstanding ones include the General Store in 1889, the Library/Masonic Inn in 1905, the Bank Building in 1900, the Homestead built in 1848, the School in 1889 and the Holy Trinity St in Moe established in the mid-1890s Guild Church.
In the museum’s old coach house you’ll find Australia’s largest collection of stagecoaches, and other buildings are filled with historical objects ranging from machinery to furniture, documents, books, household items, military and various antique decorative arts.
14. Wallagher Country Club
Home to one of the best golf courses in the Gippsland region, Warragul Country Club is key to the town’s social scene, regularly hosting events such as raffles and bingo, as well as other social events and even stage shows.
This is a non-profit community facility and is pleased to welcome non-members.
If you just want to play a round of golf, the green fee for 18 holes (walking) is $18, with a $3 discount if you book online.
After a round, Fairways Bistro offers an international menu, whether you’re craving something lighter like a Thai pork belly salad or a pumpkin spinach risotto.
15. Blue Rock Dam
The 873-hectare reservoir on the Tanjil River is a family favourite and is easily accessible by car along Old Sale Road from Warragul.
The Blue Rock Dam was built in the 1970s to provide cooling water and supplement drinking water to the Latrobe Valley power station.
The building is 72 meters high and 600 meters long, with a spillway that can transport 1,200 cubic meters of water per second.
The reservoir is a big draw for day trips, and its wooded shore has two recreational areas for safe swimming, picnicking, kayaking/canoeing and fishing.
If you just want to stroll and savor the verdant nature around the reservoir, there is a trail that runs through most of the perimeter.
Where to Stay: Best Hotels in Warragul, Australia
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