After another year of gruelling lockdowns, it is time to awaken your senses in the Pyrenees.
As the weather warms you can look forward to sampling the fresh flavours and seasonal produce in the region. Enjoy the outdoors and explore glorious gardens, and vineyards in budburst. Reconnect with friends and loved ones, pack a picnic basket full of delicious local treats and hang out for the day in one of our delightful picnic locations.
Here are some of our favourite things to do in the Pyrenees during spring.
NATURE WALKS AND WILDFLOWERS
Pack a pair of comfy walking shoes and your drink bottle and discover our beautiful trees, flowers, waterfalls and wildlife. Find yourself on the peak of a Mountain Top taking in spectacular views, and you don’t have to walk for hours to experience it! Less than an hour from Ballarat, Mount Cole and Mount Buangor Parks have a great network of easily accessible walks that take less than two hours to stretch your legs and fill your lungs with fresh air and your mind with the peacefulness of nature. Here are some suggestions to get you started.
Spring is the time of year that our parks burst with the stunning colours of wildflowers. Come see, touch and smell the natural beauty of our region.
VISIT A LOCAL MARKET
On the 4th weekend of each month, the Pyrenees celebrates locally made. The Beaufort Farmers Market takes place on the 4th Saturday of the month in the Beaufort Memorial Gardens which comes alive with colour in Spring. The following day, the Avoca Riverside Market is held along the banks of the Avoca River offering a variety stalls stocking home made crafts.
PICNICS IN NATURE
Picnics offer some of the best dining out options, so grab your rug, friends and family and enjoy eating in nature. There are so many great places in the Pyrenees to enjoy a picnic. Be sure to drop into our local Bakeries or pick up a specialty hamper pack from our regional café’s and be sure to pick up a bottle of wine from one of our cellar doors. Here are some picnic destinations that will allow you to reconnect with nature and relax in the outdoors. From Spring gardens bursting with colour to natural forest surrounded by towering trees or vantage points with panoramic views, you are sure to find your new favourite picnic location in the Pyrenees.
FRESH PRODUCE AT CAFES AND CELLAR DOORS
You’ll find it hard to squeeze the Pyrenees into a day trip so stay a whilst indulging in regional produce and seasonal menus.
Taste the wines from the 25 cellar doors in the region. Take a tour of a working winery or join the local winemaker for a barrel tasting at Taltarni. Many of the cellar doors offer cheese platters and share platters so it is easy to fill the afternoon enjoying the local wines.
Sit down for a plate piled high with fresh seasonal flavours at The Avoca. The daily specials menus is entirely inspired by the season and surrounds. Blue Pyrenees Estate believe wines are best enjoyed with good company and great food. Their menu is created from fresh, local ingredients and written with sharing in mind. Summerfield Winery is a versatile indoor and outdoor restaurant, cellar door, event and entertainment destination in the heart of the Pyrenees Wine region.
Beaufort is peppered with some great cafes offering amazing coffees. Combine this with contemporary breakfast and lunch options and you have yourself a memorable café experience.
The Pyrenees turns into a breathtaking sea of yellow in Spring. A trip along the Pyrenees Highway allows travellers to admire endless fields of canola flowers dwarfed by towering windfarms, just 30 minutes out of Ballarat
Spring is all about renewal. Spring always brings new life, and new hope. It reminds us that no matter what happens in our lives, the basic laws of nature tell us that if you hang in there, if you have faith, it will all start again, with new opportunities. The Beaufort Memorial Garden is best enjoyed in Springtime. Feel the fresh spring breeze on your face and embrace the scent of the roses and flowers while sitting amongst the variety of colour. Avoca Chinese Garden also springs to life at this time of year. The trees are filled with blossoms and the paths lead visitors on a journey through a mixture of carefully selected plants both of Australian and Chinese origin.
Spring is arguably the best time of year for fishing. Lengthening days and warming weather sees many of the fish species shaking off the winter doldrums. Beaufort Lake is located in the township of Beaufort, just 30 minutes from Ballarat. Pack a picnic and make the most of the great picnic and barbecue facilities or grab a bite to eat at one of the fantastic eateries in town.
There is a leisurely 3km or 1km walking/running/riding track around the lake with fitness equipment dotted along the way. Join countless locals running, strolling and cycling the track year-round. As you stroll the banks of the lake, you will find the Koori Art Trail with 12 art installations strategically placed around the lake.
You may find, after spending just a few hours in nature that you want to stay the night and camp under the stars. Our parks and forests are sprinkled with scenic campsites. Who doesn’t love being in nature? Our outdoors are so beautiful. Escape the crowds by picking a secluded chilled out campsite within Mount Cole, Mount Buangor or Pyrenees State Forest that have basic campsites with non flush toilets, wood fired BBQs and get your dose of nature. If you prefer a few more amenities, Avoca and Beaufort have Caravan Parks located by water or for the camper that doesn’t want to compromise on comfort, we recommend Cave Hill Creek Glamping tents. Cave Hill Creek offer “glamorous camping” with six eco-tents that all have comfy beds, carpeted floors, heating and power, and have spectacular views over the nearby Mount Cole State Forest. With plenty of places to choose from, Pyrenees has plenty of opportunity for you to unplug and unwind and appreciate the beauty of Mother Nature.
And if that’s not enough, simply head to visitpyrenees.com.au for more inspiration.