• Top Five of Daylesford

There are many scenic getaways near Melbourne, but none quite so relaxed and romantic as Daylesford. The small town has done very well to establish a long-standing spot on the tourist map. A lake, spring water, a convent, a few restaurants… It is not nearly as plentiful in its scenery as the coast, the Dandenongs, or the high country. It is not nearly as plentiful in its gastronomic delights as the Yarra Valley, Mornington, or the Bellarine.  It is not as inspirational in its art as Ballarat, the Heide, or even Bendigo and Geelong. But it is charming, and this charm has couples flocking to the banks of the Daylesford Lake each weekend.

1) The Lake
I can’t deny it, the lake is beautiful. If you are needing a solid dose of nature to calm you from your stressful life, there may be no better place. The walks are flat, and paved in parts, for an easy stroll. There are also many walking and mountain bike riding tracks extending from the lake. The wild geese add an extra dimension to the romanticism and the surround bushlands remind you that you are in the countryside.

2) The food
The best restaurant is, of course, The Lake House. I went here for the first time 14 years ago. I was impressed then. I am still impressed now. The dining room is formal, with a bizaar absence of any female staff the night I was there. There is an enticing wine list, and a creative and delicious degustation menu. I will write another post on that one…

Delicious tasting menu at the Lake House

For lighter meals, Wombat Hill House serves a decent lunch with pizzas, healthy soups and salads. In the botanic gardens, it is a pleasant spot in summer, also with an open fire in winter.

3) The Convent
The old convent is a popular wedding venue, café and art gallery. There are rotating exhibition of modern art – mostly paintings. It is interesting to read its history, and see the little museum in the basement. You can also stop for afternoon tea in the ground floor café, with a tempting array of cakes and a more relaxed atmosphere in the rooms towards the back of the building.

4) Cider
Daylesford Cider is a popular place for a game of boules or a pint in the sun. In winter, you can snuggle by the fire with a tasting paddle of their seven different styles. Unfortunately I am not a fan of cider, but my partner really enjoyed this tasting – especially the Summer Petillant.

5) The relaxation
The spas at Daylesford are what put it on the map. Whilst still relaxing, in my view, they have become expensive and too busy.  A dip in the shared mineral pools will cost you around $50, which seems expensive for a bath (even if the water is meant to be nourishing). Private bathing, massages and spa treatments are also popular but should be booked well in advance.

Unfortunately, I cannot recommend the accommodation from our weekend away. It was in a great location but basic and over-priced. This should also be booked in advance.

In all, a weekend in Daylesford is sure to rest your mind and body and have you feeling refreshed.

The Details: 

Lake Daylesford

The Lake House
4 King Street
Daylesford VIC 3460
03 5348 3329

Lake House Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Wombat Hill House
Wombat Hill Botanic Gardens
Daylesford VIC 3460
03 4373 0099


Wombat Hill House Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Convent Gallery
7 Daly St
Daylesford VIC 3460
03 5348 3211

Daylesford Cider
155 Dairy Flat Road
Musk VIC 3461
03 5348 2275