” A daydream is an evasion” – Thomas Merton
It was a daydream, a reverie that Miss Hoggy could only do to escape the mountain of work stacked in front of her. Assignments, deadlines, household chores… it’s no surprise that the travel bug hit her in her moment of stationary. All she has left is reliving the moments of her leaving the camp site of Aire River East, on towards to the pampering capital of Victoria: Daylesford/Hepburn Spring. Yeah, it was nice.
After fighting wasp in toilet and very fair attempt of cleaning herself in a river, Daylesford was a sight for sore eye. This time, she took no chance in ensuring the luxury she deserves after the hard yakka of camping, by booking a 2 days 2 nights stay in The Grange Bellinzona, Hepburn Spring.
Now Reader, in a moment of reverie, Miss Hoggy did forsake any memory hoarding activity (namely photography) of the elegant Edwardian interior, the lush beautiful garden, the luxurious Egyptian cotton bedroom, the wonderful shower head upon arrival, due to an urge of a cleansing shower and a fitful sleep.
And did you think that was it? No one comes to Daylesford and Hepburn Spring just for a drive through, they come here to be taken away from reality, either by rejuvenation of its spa water or enjoying the decadence of the local food and wine scene. On a hot weekend that it was, she chose the latter.
Here’s some of her favourites:
Wombat Hill House, another brain child of Alla Wolf Tasker, the founder of the Lake House, was a simple yet enchanting cafe by the garden of Wombat Hill. Everything here is locally sourced, and she can tell that though this could be the simpler version of the internatianal acclaimed Lake House, no quality was forsaken and she can guarantee an afternoon well spent.
Good news, Chocoholics! Alas, someone recognised that there’s such affliction and this place is where you want to be. It’s very curative. And this is one place where they can say their chocolate is so good, that they can trash Cadbury and Lindt. That’s quite gutsy, and I dare say, they were right to do so. Yeah, it’s that good. Welcome to the Chocolate Mill.
Just down Main Road in Hepburn, is Ruben’s. It’s one of the most popular restaurants around here and there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be. With a relaxed atmosphere with a delicious menu, I do wish that I have pictures to match them. Apologies, no matter how delicious their deep fried Camembert salad was, or how deeply satisfying their salmon fettucine was, words just can’t describe it as well as a picture could. All I could say is, I had them gulped down within minutes, with no time to spare for the camera.
Back to reality now, it was a good daydream. I’d like to go back there again. And now that the winter is approaching Melbourne, maybe it’s a good time too, this time to rejuvenate myself with the spa water of Daylesford.
Next week, I’ll wrap up my journey with the pub and wine culture of Victoria.Facts: Daylesford and Hepburn Springs are an easy hour away from Melbourne CBD. If you do follow Miss Hoggy’s route starting from the Great Ocean Road, it would be a 2 hour 30 mins drive. Please plan accordingly.