This area is part of the Bendigo Region UNESCO City of Gastronomy - an accolade that is testament to our commitment to First Nations history, food and living culture, creativity, health and wellbeing and environmental sustainability in an era of climate change.
With an emphasis on seasonal and fresh, Castlemaine and its surrounding villages are a magnet for discerning diners and chefs alike. Try locally produced coffee, award winning wines, stunning local ciders and boutique beers at cellar doors, local markets, relaxed cafes or quality restaurants. A visit to The Mill is a must, just like visiting a market in Tuscany. There’s onsite smoked meats, locally roasted coffee, chocolates, a bakery, a boutique brewery and winery and a vegetable store that stocks organic and local produce. Pack up a picnic and head across the road to the magnificent Castlemaine Botanical Gardens.
If you love a good pie or pastry from a country bakery or General Store, you've come to the right place. Castlemaine, Maldon, Guildford, Harcourt and Newstead all boast great options to keep your cravings at bay.
The Harcourt valley has long been renowned for growing quality apples and pears.....make sure you grab a bag full for the road trip home. Where you find apples, you must find cider. Harcourt boasts one of the largest cider apple plantations in Australia and you'll love meeting the passionate local cider makers. The fertile soil of these valleys also produces some delicious wines, so stop by the cellar doors for a tasting.