Whether guests are seeking relaxation or adventure, the surrounds of The Buffalo Motel and Country Retreat offer a wealth of activities, from hiking in the high country and cycling the Murray to Mountains Rail Trail, to visiting renowned restaurants and wineries, skiing, playing 18-hole country club golf, fly-fishing in the crystal clear streams, or trying adventure sports.
Popular with cyclists of all ages, Murray to Mountains Rail Trail is on our doorstep. Over 100 kilometres of sealed off-road trails provide riders with the perfect link between the already popular tourist villages of Wangaratta, Beechworth, Rutherglen and Bright.
The Buffalo Motel also makes a great base for the Audax Alpine Classic bike tour, and for mountain bikers taking on ‘The Dirty Dozen’ iconic MTB trails located in North East Victoria, including national competition-standard MTB parks at Mount Beauty and Beechworth.
The Buffalo Motel and Country Retreat has hybrid adult-sized bicycles for hire for $20.00 per day.
Food and Wine
We are central to Victoria’s Alpine Valleys, one of the finest food and wine destinations in Australia. Ringer Reef Wines and Boynton’s Feathertop Winery (where alfresco dining is a feature) are within walking distance of the Motel. A short drive away, the village of Bright offers the renowned restaurants Simone’s of Bright, and the French-styled bistro Poplars, as well as cafes, specialty food stores, and the Bright Brewery on the banks of the Ovens River. The historic Happy Valley Hotel at Ovens offers the quintessential Aussie pub experience. The towns of Myrtleford and Beechworth offer yet more restaurants, cellar doors, cafes and boutique shopping.
The Alpine Valleys are also a great place to sample local specialty produce: venison and trout, olives and preserves, are available year round; while seasonal produce includes berries, chestnuts, hazelnuts and walnuts, asparagus, and the most aromatic, freshest apples you will ever taste. Look out for the ‘Open’ signs at the growers’ gates.
The Buffalo Motel and Country Retreat makes the perfect overnighter en route to the major ski resorts of Falls Creek, Dinner Plain and Mount Hotham. It also offers an ideal base for family skiing at Mount Buffalo, which features beginners’ and tobogganing runs, as well as cross-country trails.
Mount Buffalo is surrounded by sheer granite cliffs, which guard a unique landscape of imposing tors and boulders, cascading waterfalls, snowgum woodlands and wildflower meadows. One of the oldest national parks in Australia, Mount Buffalo offers numerous day walks of all grades. No trip to our region is complete without a walk along the Mount Buffalo Gorge and to the mountain’s highest peak, The Horn. Wildlife is easily spotted, particularly at dusk, and the plateau is home to several plant and insect species found nowhere else on earth.
The nearby Bright Country Golf Club has a unique 18-hole golf course designed by Tony Cashmore. This par 72, 6097 metre course has manicured grass greens and beautifully developed tree lined fairways.
There are plenty of options for getting your adrenalin fix, only a stone’s throw away. Mount Buffalo is one of Australia’s premier rock-climbing and abseiling venues. The Bright area is world renowned for its great ‘air’, ideal for paragliding. You can take a tandem introductory paragliding flight or start a beginners’ course that will take you to flying with the birds. Hang-gliding is also popular, with both sports having the same favourite launching spot at Mystic Hill in Bright. There is also a hang-gliding ramp on the Mount Buffalo Gorge. Only a short drive down the Buckland Valley, the Porepunkah airfield is the place to catch scenic microlight and plane flights for an aerial sight-seeing tour of the valley and high country.
While North-east Victoria has many rare bird species, including the Regent Honey-eater, our immediate surrounds are known for their wetter forest bird species, which can be found at Mount Buffalo at sites such as Lake Catani and Eurobin Creek, and around Bright along the Ovens River. Target species include the Superb Lyrebird, Pilotbird, Red-browed Treecreeper, Olive Whistler, Rufous Fantail, Eastern Whipbird, Australian King Parrot, and White-throated Gerygone.