You don't often think of the snowfields during summer. However, there is still plenty to see and do in this part of the world during the warmer months.
Nestled at the base of the Yarra Ranges National Park (Lake Mountain), Marysville is an enchanting little town the whole family will love.
Only 90 minutes drive from Melbourne, Marysville is a little town with a huge heart. Nearly completely destroyed by the Black Saturday fires in 2009, locals have dug deep to restore Marysville and make her a wonderful and inspiring place to visit.
It is hard to imagine Marysville in the aftermath of destruction. The ghostly white silhouettes of trees spanning right across the mountain ranges are the only remaining clue to the devastation.
Do not think of Marysville as simply a destination. The drive itself forms part of the experience, winding through the Black Spur from the Eastern Freeway on the route to Narbethong.
Once there, take your choice from several cafes, bakery, chicken shop or patisserie then stroll up to the playground. The Gallipoli Park Precinct was a $1.8 million redevelopment and is a gentle play space set within the Reflective Garden precinct. Walk around the lake, enjoy one of the garden rooms, picnic in a gazebo and let the kids run free on the playground complete with climbing rope, swings, sandpit, roundabout and two zipline flying foxes. Also be sure and check out my new friend, the giant lizard sculpture hiding along the pathway.
There is one small supermarket in town, so it is recommended you come prepared with all supplies if a picnic is your preferred dining option.
Perhaps the most charming thing about the Marysville area is the constantly running water. Even on a warm day the water is pretty cool, but is there anything nicer than wading across the river stones?
The Steavenson River, flowing from the Steavenson Falls, runs right past Gallipoli Park, but you cannot visit Marysville without visiting this waterfall. An easy 700 metre walk along a soft gravel walk, the falls are accessible to everyone (wheelchair and pusher friendly). Enjoy during the day, but if you have the opportunity be sure and revisit again at night. The falls are floodlit to create a spectacular night-time adventure.
The other two other waterfalls worth visiting are The Phantom Falls and Keppel Falls off Lady Talbot Drive. Lady Talbot Drive is a narrow dirt road and you need to travel some distance, but take your pick from either the Phantom Falls (A steep grade 1.6km return bushwalk) or the Keppel Falls. This one was our choice and well worth the 2km return walk through serene bushland.
There are several picnic spots along the way and, of course, an opportunity to paddle in the Taggerty River.
There are plenty of walking trails and lookouts around Marysville. We also took in the top of Lake Mountain. The gradient here is certainly steeper. The reward is a view of the entire mountain region and Marysville nestled far below. If you have the means, take your bike. The café is open during the day and there are picnic and public toilet facilities at the resort. Entry to Lake Mountain is free year round.