Wangaratta Tourism & Travel
Located in the beautiful high country of Victoria, 233 km northeast of Melbourne, Wangaratta has a population of some 18,000 souls, and is situated in a rich agricultural district that produces a diverse range of crops.
Wangaratta - History
In 1838 the Reverend Joseph Docker became one of Wangaratta's earliest settlers and in 1843 he built the beautiful towered Bontharambo homestead north of Wangaratta. In the mid 19 th century, the impoverished son of Irish convicts, notorious 'bushranger', Ned Kelly and his gang stalked the north-eastern area of Victoria. Ned Kelly's last stand took place in1880 some 15 km south of Wangaratta in the town of Glenrowan, when clad in a suit of homemade armour Ned Kelly had his final gun battle with the police. The hotel was put under siege and set on fire, Ned Kelly was shot in the legs and the police finally caught him. In spite of a petition signed by 60,000 citizens asking for him to be spared, Kelly was hanged at Old Melbourne Gaol and the broad features of his death mask can be sighted today in the Melbourne Museum.
Wangaratta - Attractions
The rich history of Wangaratta is evident in the colonial architecture of the area: The beautiful original mansion Bontharambo is a heritage listed building with the National Trust of Australia and is still in the Docker family ownership. Mr Joseph Trotman, one of Wangaratta's first settlers, built Waldara homestead in 1883; Waldara is now the Club House of the Waldara Golf Club. The Wangaratta Exhibitions Gallery has exhibitions by national and regional artists and locally made wool products can be purchased at Wangaratta. The Wangaratta Cemetery has the grave of another infamous bushranger Daniel ' Mad Dog' Morgan while at Glenrowan there is a Ned Kelly statue and museum.Nearby the Warby Range State Park provide excellent viewing points; the Pangarang Lookout, near Pine Gully Picnic Area, and Mt. Glenrowan Lookout at513 metres the highest point of the Warby Range. Eldorado is a fascinating old goldmining township with huge gold dredge, the largest in the Southern Hemisphere, which was built in 1936. Reids Creek is popular with anglers, gem fossickers and gold seekers. At Newton's Prickle Berry Farm you can pick blackberries and buy organic berry jams and the scenic drives are spectacular along the great Alpine Rd through the beautiful King Valley and to Paradise Falls.
Wangaratta - Wineries
From Rutherglen to Glenrowan and the King Valley, wineries are emerging offering cold climate wines. Many offer the visitor the opportunity to taste and buy quality wines at the Cellar Door; All Saints Estate, Anderson Winery, Buller Wines or Rutherglen Estates are at Rutherglen. Some wineries in the beautiful King Valley are Politini Wines, Boggy Creek Vineyards, Avalon Vineyard and the fabled Brown Brother Milawa Vineyard. The quaint country town of Glenrowan offers Auldstone Cellars, Baileys Bundarra Vineyards, booth's Taminich Cellars, Buffalo Mountain Wines and the HJT Vineyards.