Distance: 227 kilometres Melbourne to Hepburn Springs return
Duration: 2-3 days
Head north-west out of Melbourne on the Ballarat Road (also known as the Western Freeway), then follow the signs to Daylesford. Head along the main street of Daylesford, following the signs to nearby Hepburn Springs.
Refresh your body and mind in the region that boasts Australia's largest concentration of naturally occurring mineral springs. Discover the natural waters straight from the spring in and around many of the townships including Daylesford, Hepburn Springs and Kyneton. Make time for some soothing, wellness and health treatments at one of the many day spas. The twin towns of Daylesford and Hepburn Springs offer myriad options, but it is a good idea to book ahead.
Feeling relaxed and revitalised, it must be time to eat. A stroll along the main street of Daylesford reveals a good choice of cafe, restaurant, pub, and takeaway fare. The restaurants and local produce in the area are so good that the area has become a favourite foodie destination for Melburnians.
For a leisurely afternoon consider a browse through the many antique stores and galleries in the area, such as the stylish Convent Gallery at Daylesford. Set in a historic building that was a convent and boarding school for nearly 100 years, the gallery houses sculpture, fine art, pottery, antiques, local fare and jewellery all under the one roof.
Relaxed and well fed, embark on a drive through the townships of Malmsbury, Kyneton and Lancefield to Mount Macedon or, alternatively travel via historic Kilmore, Victoria's oldest inland settled town, all the while taking time to enjoy the historic bluestone buildings, botanical gardens, antique shops and galleries along the way. Don't forget to detour and visit some of the local wineries en route.
When you arrive at Mount Macedon, take time to wander around the stunning 19th century gardens and explore the natural beauty of the area. Highlights not to be missed include the Memorial Cross at Mt Macedon and Camels Hump Lookout.
Finally make your way back to Melbourne via Woodend and Trentham making sure you take in natural attractions, such as the mysterious Hanging Rock and spectacular Trentham Falls and the state parks such as the Lerderderg State Park and Werribee Gorge State Park.