A last minute decision was made to getaway for the weekend prior to New Years Eve. This can be typical behaviour of my parents, a lot of things they plan but they are also very spontaneous, I love this about them. Mum is the main driver of suggesting where we go. A day prior to going away she hit the internet and started searching for inspirations on where we should go.
Being a last minute decision and Peak Season Mum and Dad didn’t want to risk arriving at a free camp area late at night to find out there were no vacancies. Mum was determined to find us a place to camp and where we could fish. You guessed it we got new fishing rods for Christmas which fold nicely away to store in the camper van.
Do you read the reviews when deciding on a camping ground?
Mum and Dad will read the reviews, however are very open minded whilst reading them and know what their expectations are of a camping ground and what they want to make their stay enjoyable.
Being the festive season a lot of places were booked out. Mum found a place along the Goulburn River called Thornton Caravan Park which had one vacancy left on the river front. Mum was unsure if we should stay there or not as the reviews were mixed, but decided we’d give it a shot as it was a comfortable drive from Melbourne CBD.
About the Thornton Caravan Park
We prepared ourselves for the worst after reading the reviews and knowing a number of camping grounds squash as many campers in as they can in Peak Season. We were pleasantly surprised. It turned out to be a beautiful spot and we had an extremely spacious camping area right along the Goulburn River. This was perfect for us to relax and watch the fast moving River and to throw our lines in.
The lady at the caravan park advised they don’t squash people in when Mum booked. We witnessed this and were very grateful especially as it was the week of Christmas and New Years Eve.
The caravan park had a lot of permanent vans which reviews advised gave the park a bogan feel, however everyone was friendly and it was an extremely quiet park. We will definitely visit here again.
Thornton Caravan Park Location
- The Thornton Caravan Park is approximately 128 kms, 2 hr drive from the Melbourne CBD
- 1288 Goulburn Valley Hwy, Thornton VIC 3712
Day 1 Itinerary
- We drove to Thornton Caravan Park after work and arrived late
- The evening was spent relaxing around the camp fire, taking in the peacefulness. Fire pits are provided (you need to provide your own fire wood)
Day 2 Itinerary
- Theres plenty to do near the area, however we chose to spend a day relaxing.
- We walked around the neighbouring streets
- Spent a number of hours fishing in the Goulburn River
- Relaxed whilst cooking on the camp fire
- Evening spent listening to the river and taking in the ambience as we sat around the fire
- Enjoyed yummy roasted marshmallows
Day 3 Itinerary
- Checked out of the caravan park
- Visited the nearby Snobs Creek Falls at Eildon
- Checked out the town of Alexandra, Alexandra Timber Tramway & Museum
- Drove to Eildon to check out the small town and grab lunch
- Walked around some of the lake
- Made our way home detouring through the Cathedral Ranges in search of a camping place for another adventure
- Drove home via the famous and gorgeous Yarra Ranges National Park
Alexandra, Alexandra Timber Tramway & Museum
Alexandra township is a lovely country town and worth a look at if you are in the area. It has a lovely feel to the town. We walked the streets before heading to the Alexandra Timber Tramway & Museum which unfortunately was closed due to a private function, but looks a cool place to visit if you’re into history and trams.
Alexandra Timber Tramway & Museum Location
- 14 Station Street, Alexandra VIC 3714
Snobs Creek Falls, Eildon
From Thornton Caravan Park you can take a road trip to see the nearby Snobs Creek Falls at Eildon. It’s a 15 min drive (13.4km). There’s a very small car park at the Falls then a short 100m walk downstairs to the viewing platform. When we went it just literally finished pouring with rain so there was definitely plenty of water even though it was summer time. Due to the rain and clouds we were unable to see what looked like would be a gorgeous view down to the Goulburn River.
Snobs Creek Falls, Eildon Location
- Snobs Creek Road is located along the Goulburn Valley Hwy between Thornton and Eildon
- The Falls are approximately 141 km (2 hr 15 min) from Melbourne CBD
How Long Should I Spend Here?
You’d spend about 10-15mins here depending how many selfies you’d like to take.
After the Snobs Creek Falls we drove to Eildon 16 mins (12.5km) where we stopped for lunch and looked around the small town. There’s plenty of places to take a picnic lunch to enjoy around the Goulburn River or overlooking the large lake which it’s shoreline measures approximately 500 kms.
Eildon is certainly the place to come if you enjoy recreational water sports, it’s well known for its house boats and fishing whether from a boat or the many spots along the shoreline
- Eildon is approximately 2 hr 10 mins from Melbourne CBD, 139km
The dam was built in the 1950’s and has a controlled spillway across the Goulburn River which forms Lake Eildon.
Eildon Dam Location
- Its a 5-10 minute drive from the township of Eildon
How long should I stay in Eildon?
Although we only spent an afternoon in Eildon you could definitely enjoy a couple of days or more here depending how much you enjoy recreational water sports, exploring the nearby areas and going on hikes.
Cathedral Range State Park
Is a popular spot for camping, hiking, rock climbing and fishing. The Cathedral Range is 7km ridge of upturned sedentary rock. We haven’t yet climbed the peaks but its on our to do list, Mum has seen friends photos and as soon as she saw them she put it down on our places to visit list!!
We checked out the different camping areas as some are not suitable for a camper van/caravan, some areas are for walk ins only. We did however find a couple of spots which we loved the look of and will one day return. I can’t wait to explore this beautiful area and check out the views for ourselves!!
Cathedral Ranges Location
- Little River Road, Taggerty VIC 3714
Yarra Ranges National Park
The drive through the Yarra Ranges National Park is absolutely gorgeous, the huge mountain ash trees and the lush green ferns makes for an enjoyable journey home. The air is so fresh, with the smell of the gums.
I’d love to hear of your experiences at any of these places or any places you recommend we should explore.