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Published June 17th 2016
These Amazing Insider Secret Ideas Will Warm Up Your Winter
An insider's guide to the top things to do in the surrounding areas of the Melbourne CBD on a wintery day.
It's cold outside, the sky is grey and you've got your winter woolies on; surely it makes sense to just simply snuggle up indoors with a movie. Whilst that is a great idea, sometimes you just want to get out and not be taken down by the weather.
On these sorts of days it's great to rug up warmly, put on some good walking shoes and head out somewhere where you know you are going to be cosy and nurtured over the winter period.
My favourite thing to do in Winter is head to the snow fields, however this can be a costly experience. Going for a day trip with no overnight stay will drastically reduce the cost and if you leave early in the morning, you can be on the slopes in time for early bird tickets and tucked up back in your own bed in the night time. I have compiled a list of how to get into skiing, snowboarding and snow play cheaply HERE.
If you prefer to make this a more serious adventure of perhaps extend your stay, HERE is a list of the best value snowfields in Victoria.
We would love to hear about all your favourite places you like to go outside of the CBD on a wintery day.
To get the ball rolling here are a few of my suggestion:
I love to head up to the mountains. Somehow when it's cold and bleak and the fog is falling all around the mountains, it seems just a perfect setting to drive through and maybe stop for some comfort food.
Heading up to Sassafras you will find the famous Miss Marples tea rooms and nothing does comfort food like a generous serving at Miss Marples. Whether you snuggle up with a hot pumpkin soup, some warm scones or a large serving of bread and butter pudding with lashings of cream, it will certainly set the mood for a wintery day.
If it is not raining and you are dressed warmly, then you can come back to Olinda and visit the National Rhododendron Gardens. There is no longer any entry fee so it costs nothing to visit and it is quite invigorating to walk around these beautiful gardens in winter.
However, if it is raining you may prefer to wander through the little shops in Olinda, Sassafras and the surrounding areas.
Heading around 1 hour to the East of Melbourne is the charming village of Warburton. A lovely picnic place in summer, however in winter it is a gateway to the snow areas and a lovely place to drive through with it's heavily wooded valleys and mountains and delightful selection of old fashioned shops.
I love the old fashioned charm of The Patchwork Tea House. On the "tea trail" you may also enjoy some special herbal teas, especially those designed to ward off winter chills and flu at[ LINK=https://www.weekendnotes.com/the-old-tea-shop/]The Old Tea Shop[/LINK].
A warming, hearty, home made pie will warm you up along with a steaming mug of tea and some of the best ones are available at Gladysdale Bakehouse & Tea Room.
If your interest in Warburton and it's surrounding areas is piqued, here's a whole list of things to do in Warburton, including some very special places to stay if you prefer to overnight.
Heading in an entirely different direction one of my other favourite destinations is Daylesford filled with spas, cafes, shops, relaxation centres and indulgences, including some of my favourites - dusty, huge book stores. You can take a massage, have a warm spa and generally indulge yourself for the day or a couple of nights away. It's only a 1 and a half hour drive from the Melbourne CBD, closer than you may think.
Just outside of Daylesford you will find Herbal Lore Liqueurs, a great place to have a warming and healing tipple, all whilst uncovering mysteries about yourself and your life direction.
Slide into the warmth of mineral rich hot springs at Peninsula Hot Springs. *Image Peninsula Hot springs Website
Feeling like a little bit of a tipple in the Yarra Valley might be just the ticket. Generally we reserve wineries for something lovely to do on a warm summery day, however a lot of the wineries now stock fortified wines such as Tawny Port, or perhaps some hot mulled wine over the winter. It's definitely worth while taking a look at what the different wineries in the Yarra Valley have on offer over winter.
The charming town of Warrandyte is always full over Summer. As Winter descends, it is filled with art galleries, unique shops and even an organic wine cellar. The kids will love Warrandyte Lollies and Treats and you can have a warm snack at the Warrandyte Bakery.
Heading down to the Mornington Peninsula you encounter Peninsula Hot Springs. Whilst it is all outdoors and if it is raining heavily it may not be perfect, however if it is just simply a cold winter day, sliding into a steaming hot outdoor mineral springs might be just the thing to warm up those wintery chills out of your bones.
Somehow when deep in the middle of winter, sliding into the mineral springs here, I always feel like one of those monkeys in Japan sitting in the hot springs in the snow or perhaps reminiscent of a ski lodge; either way you'll feel warm, nurtured and cosy.
Get caught up in the magic of the story of Banjo Patterson's famous - "A Man From Snowy River" at Emu Bottom Homestead. It is the perfect setting for storytelling sessions with the bush poet, beer and bush tucker.
Deliciously Warm Fires and Billy Tea with Yarns at Emu Bottom Homestead. *Image Emu Bottom Website.
Camping is certainly not the first thing that comes to mind over winter, however take camping to a whole new level & go glamping. You can be warm and dry and have a great winter experience without any fuss. Click HERE to find out how.
Sometimes some of the best / top things to do can be done without even leaving your home.