Natural beauty, abundant local produce and a Mediterranean climate are what Mildura, located on the mighty Murray River, is known for.
The late 1840 saw the region settled by Europeans and good seasons, good wool prices and the early riverboat trade made for a booming economy for the station.
Modern-day Mildura was founded on the work of the Chaffey brothers who moved from California in 1887 to set up an irrigation colony on the site of station which had fallen on hard times due to drought.
There is a self-drive tour called the Chaffey Trail, where you can visit the historical landmarks and learn about the story of Mildura starting off at the Mildura Visitor Information & Booking Centre with a short film.
Bringing the irrigation part of the story to life are stops at Lock 11, the Mildura Weir and the Psyche Pumps, whilst the early lifestyles are displayed at stops like the Old Mildura Homestead, a reconstruction of the 1847 first station; Mildura Grand Hotel and the ornately decorated Rio Vista House – home to W.B. Chaffey in the 1890s.
If you want to get a true sense of Mildura, it is best experienced through its food.
The market gardens, orchards, cellar doors, restaurants and markets of Mildura provide a sensory encounter not to be missed.
The climate allows olives, mushrooms, asparagus, melons, citrus and more to flourish in the region with Mallee lamb and salt also produced here.
The Australian Inland Botanical Gardens houses the Sunraysia Farmers’ Market where you can sample and buy some of this produce every second weekend.
If you want to learn more about citrus orchards and of course sample some of the fruit then a visit to Orange World is a must, particularly when the orange blossoms are in bloom in spring.
Mildura is also a wine producing area and there are a number of cellar doors in the area where you can taste the wines and meet the winemakers. Food, wine and music are celebrated every November at the Jazz and Wine Festival, with experiences at wineries, in the town streets and local restaurants.
For dining options all year round head to Langtree Avenue, better known as Feast Street.
If you are staying in Mildura for more than a few days then a trip to the amazing Mungo National Park, 110 kilometres north-east is a worthy diversion.
The Great Wall of China is the name given to the spectacular 40 kilometre stretch of sand dunes that have been eroded into beautiful colours and shapes and lie next to the ancient lake bed.
There is a self-drive 70 kilometre loop track that takes you past the lake, the sand dunes and into Mallee country.
No matter what time of year you visit, Mildura’s calendar is fully booked with festivals and events.
Country music fans shouldn’t miss the annual Mildura Country Music Festival, a 10-day extravaganza showcasing over 100 independent country musicians held in September/October. Also in September, the cyclists of the 8-day Tour of the Murray cross the finish line in Mildura; July brings the Writer’s festival and Golf week; and at Easter the Murray River plays host to the Mildura 100 Ski Race.
If a slower pace is more your style then take a cruise on a paddleboat, a trip on the Red Cliffs Historical Steam Railway or a walking tour of the art deco buildings in town.
If you would like to read additional information regarding Mildura, please follow this link: Mildura
This article is brought to you by Lyndon Sparrow