Albury/ Wodonga is a region located on the NSW and Victoria borders. It’s the most bush or outback David and I had been since we were in Orange. The region makes for the perfect country weekend getaway from Sydney.
Albury is just under a six hour drive from Sydney, less if you leave from the city’s western suburbs. It’s straight down the M7 motorway and the Hume Highway until you reach Albury. There are plenty of notable stops along the way which makes it easy to make a road trip of the journey!
The road trip
Ever heard the saying “live for the journey, not the destination”? That couldn’t be truer when embarking on a road trip in Australia. We left Sydney at around 8am on a Friday morning on one of those 45 degree days in early January and head south towards Albury. We had a full tank of petrol, freshly made coffees and a playlist to last the whole 5.5 hour drive. Thank the car gods for air conditioning!
Our first stop was in Goulburn, home to the big Merino. Here we used restrooms and visited one of our favourite country bakeries, Bryants Pies, for a morning tea snack. Then it was back on the road to Dog on The Tucker Box where we stretched our legs and had some lunch at Oliver’s Real Food.
From here we drove to Holbrook where we climbed the submarine the town is famous for. Who would have thought you could climb aboard a submarine in the middle of Australia? We also grabbed an ice cream here because it’s the only way to survive the heat in Australia.
Then it was on to the final stop, Albury. We stayed in the Best Western Plus Hovell Tree Inn, right near the Murray River in South Albury.
On the drive home we stopped in Yass for lunch so we didn’t have to see the same things on the way back.
David and I walked around town on our first afternoon in Albury to see the colonial style buildings which now act as restaurants, shops and government buildings. You can also climb the Eastern Hill Rotary Lookout for views over the city and wander through the botanic gardens. On Saturday mornings there are markets by the famous Hovell Tree which commemorates the discovery of the Murray River and the Hume route by Hovell and Hume in 1824. We grabbed some locally sourced breakfast and strolled along the Murray River to marvel at the paddle boat docked by the wharf.
After breakfast we drove to Beechworth, just over the border in Victoria, where we went on a self-guided Ned Kelly tour through the Ned Kelly Vault, a collection of colonial jail buildings where he and his mother were held. Entry to the Burke Museum is included with the $8 Ned Kelly Vault pass and is one of the best museums I’ve visited. There’s a really cool recreation of the main street of the town in the building’s ground floor. You’ll feel like you stepped right into the year 1850.
We stopped for lunch at Bridge Road Brewers for pizza and so David could try out the local craft beer. Then we wandered the stores lining the main street and grabbed an ice cream to help survive the heat.
We ended up having so much fun wandering through the Ned Kelly Vault that we didn’t make it in time to visit a berry farm where you can pick your own fruit. I’d recommend doing that if you’re in the area!
If you can’t handle the heat, don’t visit in summer. I love the dry Australian summers but they’re not for everyone so keep that in mind when planning your trip.
Have you visited Albury & Wodonga? What do you love about the Australian bush? Let me know in the comments below!