Wangaratta's broad main street, historic buildings and riverside parklands groove to the sounds of jazz music every November, while appetites are sated year-round thanks to the rural city's proximity to the Milawa and the King Valley gourmet food region.
Wangaratta offers all the services of a bustling rural city and the warm welcome of a traditional country town, making it a popular touring hub for exploring the region. A short drive in any direction will lead you to great wineries, gourmet food, spectacular scenery and heritage towns.
Time your visit to coincide with one of the city's memorable festivals and events. The three-day Wangaratta Festival of Jazz and Blues, held annually in hotels, concert venues and nearby wineries, is one of the biggest jazz events in Australia. Comedy, theatre and opera can be found at the gleaming performing arts centre, and fine art at the Wangaratta Exhibitions Gallery.
Wangaratta is the starting point for two distinct touring routes; the Murray to the Mountains Rail Trail attracts seasoned cyclists and casual walkers, while the Great Alpine Road is a scenic route extending from Wangaratta across the alps all the way to Bairnsdale and the Gippsland Lakes.
Nearby Milawa and King Valley boast gourmet food and spectacular scenery. Meet family vintners as you tour intimate, authentic wineries.
Wangaratta has fascinating bushranger and gold history. The grave of infamous bushranger Mad Dog Morgan lies at the Wangaratta Cemetery, and Power's Lookout is where bushranger Harry Power kept watch for approaching troopers. The nearby town of Eldorado is home to Cock's Eldorado Dredge, built in 1936 for deep mining gold and tin. The Dredge Walk takes in the restoration of this gold mining relic.
Wangaratta is approximately 250 kilometres north of Melbourne, or around two-and-a-half hours by car along the Hume Highway.