Magical Mount Buffalo
Submitted by admin on 12 Nov 2013
Very close to our headquarters at Porepunkah in north east Victoria lies the magical Mount Buffalo National Park. It was one of the first National Parks in the region to be established in 1898 and today covers some 31,000 hectares, encompassing the entire granite plateau and the majority of the forested foothills below it.
This extraordinary granite outcrop is home to a number of unique plants found in no other part of Australia or the rest of the world and gives shelter to lyrebirds, wombats and possums amongst many other species. Geologists calculate that the plateau was once three times higher than it is today but the effects of heat, winds, water and ice over the millenia have worn it away and formed the fantastical granite boulders which are visible today.
Aboriginal tribes were the first to visit, congregating here in the summer months to feast on the Bogong moths which lived in the caves and rock crevices and gave the visitors a diet rich in protein. It is known that the first Europeans to see Mount Buffalo were the explorers Hume and Hovell in 1824. They thought it resembled a giant sleeping buffalo - hence the name!
In 1853 gold was discovered in the Buckland Valley at the foot of Mount Buffalo and, at the height of the gold rush, over 5,000 miners worked on the diggings in the area although gold was never actually found on Mount Buffalo itself.
Towards the end of the 1800s visitors starting coming to Mount Buffalo for reasons of tourism - to enjoy its spectacular beauty, awe-inspiring views, its cooler temperatures in summer and the opportunities for skiing and skating in the winter. By 1910 the iconic government chalet had been completed offering food and accommodation for visitors to the plateau. It was closed down in 2007 but in May 2013 the chalet was granted funds for a $7 million makeover to refurbish the main body of the building, open a Visitor Centre and a cafe.
Today there are some 90 kms of walking tracks on Mount Buffalo and opportunities for cycling, fishing, swimming, hang-gliding and skiing. We are so fortunate to have this amazing National Park on our doorstep and we make the most of it by incorporating visits to it in two of our wonderful Victorian weekends: The Highlights of Mount Buffalo National Park which will run from 7-10 Feb and 7-10 March and ourItalian Food & Wine weekend from 21-23 Feb.
The highest point on Mount Buffalo is known as The Horn which sits at 1,723 metres above sea level and offers phenomenal views over the surrounding landscape. The final night of our Highlights of Mount Buffalo National Park weekend has a sunset dinner on The Horn which promises to be an unforgettable experience, bringing together the unique beauty, environment and history of this magical mountain. To take part in this unmissable weekend of food, wine and walking call us now! If you have never found time to explore this stunning part of Victoria, this could be the perfect, magical moment ....