The Yarra Valley Lodge, set on the Heritage Golf Course, is a convenient base to explore the valley & nearby ranges on a short break from Melbourne city.
We couldn’t visit Melbourne and not spend a couple of days exploring the beautiful Yarra Valley and Dandenong ranges. This region has some stunning scenery, charming small towns, wineries, artisan food producers and many excellent gardens with a very well deserved reputation. While you can book some excellent winery day tours from Melbourne city the region really does deserve more time to appreciate it fully.
The Yarra Valley Lodge hosted us for our stay in their luxury lodge in the heart of the Yarra Valley. It’s located within the Heritage Golf Course and Country Club and is a gorgeous location. As you approach along their long meandering driveway overlooking the greens there’s a definite sense of peace and solitude. Despite the relative seclusion, it’s an easy drive into the Dandenong and Yarra Ranges from here and there are plenty of things to do not far away.
We enjoyed visiting the gardens throughout the Dandenong ranges, especially the National Rhododendron gardens with their autumn colour on full show and the William Ricketts Sanctuary which is one we’d wanted to see for a long time.
The roads through the Dandenong and Yarra Ranges are narrow and winding but are stunning with the enormous Mountain Ash trees looming up above you and dense tree ferns forming a blanket of vibrant green at road level, the Black Spur Drive is a must for the scenery and small towns along the way if you have a chance.
Of course there are plenty of vineyards, either take an organised tour or appoint a duty driver and head off on your own to explore. We visited in autumn time and Domaine Chandon was a riot of jewel toned leaves as we drove up, well worth it for that view alone!
There are a variety of other artisan food products available in the area with cheese of course featuring prominently in the list. You won’t be at any shortage of choices for lunch and dinner in the area, it just a case of deciding which one to stop in at.
The Lodge rooms are spacious and modern, ours offered gorgeous views out to the golf course and towards the west for the setting sun. The room has full height doors opening onto a step out deck and allowing plenty of fresh air and ventilation. I must admit to feeling a little guilty waking up in this morning to a stunning view out over the Jack Nicklaus designed course and dragging Drew away to go exploring. I’ve promised next time we’ll make sure there’s time for a round or two.
The rooms are well-appointed with a large bathroom including a separate bath and shower. There’s a minibar incorporating local wines and produce plus basic tea and coffee making facilities in the room.
We found the king-sized bed was super comfortable and there’s a sofa and chairs with a table in addition to a large desk unit making it a comfortable space to relax before dinner. We did have a problem with the internet connectivity that we couldn’t resolve unfortunately but this may have been less of an issue if our devices had been suited to LAN connectivity.
The grounds are especially beautiful, there’s something appealing about the wide-open expanses of perfectly manicured golf greens. In the early mornings and late afternoon you’ll see mobs of large grey kangaroos making the most of the area, eating the grass and hopping around, it really adds to the country atmosphere and doesn’t seem to do any harm to the greens either.
Winding through the grounds and around the perimeter of the golf course are walking tracks following these are a great way to get some fresh air, enjoy the serenity and get a glimpse of the mobs of kangaroos and flocks of birds that live in the area. Further down as you come to a creek the path diverts through a wetland area and you can continue on walking along the trail for several kilometres if you want. There are paths for golfers and buggies along the perimeter of the course but for your own safety stay off of the golf greens.
Finding Yarra Valley Lodge
The Yarra Valley Lodge is located on the Heritage Golf Course and County Club at 2 Heritage Ave, Chirnside Park VIC 3116. The Google maps below show the correct location but do key in the address not the name if you are using a navigation device. Google has a second Yarra Valley Lodge address in Coldstream, also in the Yarra Valley but it’s a 20-minute drive away if you head out that way first. Click on ‘view larger map’ for navigation from your current location or to take a closer look at nearby attractions.