Spring has arrived, and one of the best places to enjoy the warmer weather is in the beautiful Victorian town of Bright. Located in the heart of the alpine region, Bright’s tree-lined streets, and relaxed atmosphere coupled with an outstanding food and wine scene and abundance of activities, make it the perfect weekend escape from bustling city life. A must-visit for foodies, cyclists, nature lovers, and anyone seeking a relaxing couple of days surrounded by stunning natural scenery so be sure to read on for some things to do on a weekend getaway to Bright this spring.
After taking the easy 3.5-hour drive from Melbourne, check into your beautiful cottage or self-contained accommodation and get yourself all settled in. Now its time to fill those hungry bellies with some delicious local delicacies and a few locally brewed ales, wouldn’t you agree? Some of the best places for casual Friday night fare include Tomahawks, Don Mongos, Velo (a very sophisticated new addition to the Bright foodie scene), and for hearty pub meals you can’t go past the Alpine or Star Hotels. There are plenty more options, but this is just a few to get you started.
Wake up to the beautiful sounds of the mountains, and gently ease yourself into the day.
There’s no better way to spend a relaxing morning than meandering through a market and there are a few to see when you visit Bright and surrounds. The most popular one would have to be the Bright Bake it Make it Grow it Market, held on the 3rd Saturday of every month from 9 am until 1 pm in Howitt Park by the Ovens River. You will find local products, artworks, homewares, fresh produce, freshly baked breads, olive oil, beer, and wine, locally made cheeses and much more to sample.
Myrtleford, a short 20-minute drive, also hosts a regular farmers market held on the 4th Saturday of each month that closely aligns with the seasonality of the regions produce & hails the local farmers. Depending on when you’re in town hopefully you will be able to catch one of these local markets.
Now it’s time to grab your bikes and venture out for a cycle along the Murray to Mountains Rail Trail, which follows the old Bright railway line, linking Bright to Beechworth, Wandiligong and beyond. If you don’t have a bike you can hire both regular bike and ebikes in town.
The 24-kilometre stretch between Porepunkah and Myrtleford follows the stunning Ovens River past some of the region’s best wineries, breweries, and providores. Depending on your level of fitness you could do all or part of the ride with pit stops at Feathertop Winery, Ringer Reef, and Gapsted Wines if you ride that little bit further beyond Myrtleford. You could also head the other direction out to Harrietville along the scenic Great Valley Trail, a shared path that runs for 27km along the foot of the Victorian Alps.
After a quick refresh at your Bright accommodation, settle in for a pre-dinner gin and tonic at Reed & Co Distillery, our local distillery and then make your way to one of Bright’s many award-winning restaurants for a sumptuous meal and glass of vino or two, to complete your day.
So now you’re all relaxed and feeling at home, why not venture out for a hearty breakfast and a good coffee to fuel up for the day. There are loads of bakeries, and cafes to choose from in town. Sixpence Coffee, a family owned and run small batch roastery is an all-time favourite with the cyclists along with Ginger Baker Cafe. Food Wine & Friends, found at the top of town, is definitely another hot local favourite to sample so why not add them all to your foodie hit list. We all know one coffee is never enough.
Now it’s time to enjoy a leisurely stroll to soak in the town’s historical charm. Be sure to make your way along the Ovens River to breathe in the crisp mountain air, natural beauty, and spring sunshine then meander the streets for an afternoon shopping spree. You could also swing by the local art gallery to check out the exhibition in town. You will find an eclectic mix of stores and boutiques selling locally made homewares, clothing, accessories, and outdoor adventure gear around town so there should be something for everyone.
Take a drive and explore the neighbouring towns of Harrietville, Porepunkah, Mount Beauty, or venture up the glorious Mount Buffalo to explore the ancient granite landscape. If you are feeling adventurous, why not take to one of the many walking trails in the region, we promise you will be surrounded by breathtaking views, blossoming local flora, and an abundance of wildlife in their natural habitats.
Finally, why not enjoy a leisurely Sunday session at your last stop, the Bright Brewery. One of the most popular places for visitors, the brewery makes a core range of beers that include Alpine Lager, Blowhard Pale Ale, Hellfire Amber Ale, and Bright Sour. For those who don’t like beer, they serve a curated selection of local wines from the area. Enjoy casual pub-style meals such as sharing boards, pizzas, burgers, or salads whilst sitting outside on the banks of the Ovens River with the sweet sound of live acoustic music on every Sunday afternoon.
The perfect way to spend a spring day!
Where to Stay?
While there’s an abundance of hotels and cottages in Bright, Victoria’s High Country is home to the charming towns of Porepunkah, Harrietville, and Wandiligong, all of which offer a variety of clean and comfortable accommodation options. If you are looking for Harrietville accommodation, holiday homes for rent in Wandiligong, or pet-friendly Bright cottages, Victoria’s Alpine Valley Getaways is here to help. Book online now or get in touch with us online or by calling 03 5759 2555 / 0408 874 437 for assistance or expert recommendations.