Visit Swan Hill (Invited)

Friday, March 23, 2018 Sharon Halim 0 Comments

Swan Hill is a place that I don't know it existed before it was featured on MasterChef Australia last year. I think it's because the long distances from my house that it never comes to my radar for a road trip. But since then, I have been wanting to visit the small town especially it's located to Lake Tyrell. When Crackling Media offer me the chance to stay two night at Swan Hill and I can bring my family, I happily jump to the occasion.

We started the drive from Melbourne CBD around 2.45 then without any stopping we arrived at Swan Hill around 6.30pm. It's a long drive with average view, pretty much the same all the way, Brown dessert or farm with cows. I went in straight to Pioneer Settlement, where the Swan Hill Food and Wine Festival Opening Cruise departs at 7pm. On the cruise I got to meet Sandi Sieger from Onya Mag and Jean from Honey Bird Travel, we got along pretty well for three people that never met each other. They served us various canapes and free flow wine through out the cruise on the might murray. The weather was perfect, sun but not too hot then at night time, a lil bit of wind to get by. My favourite was truffle profiteroles as dessert, it look like the real truffle with strong taste of truffle as on the cream. Love it.

While I'm on the cruise, my husband and baby went straight to check inn at Comfort Inn Lady Augusta. The owner was friendly and greeted them personally, we were given the ground level room which we can park our car right in front. Perfect, since we have a lot of baggage and we have a baby with us. The room it self was spacious, clean, with tv, small desk for eating or writing, sofa, kitchen pantry complete with tea making set and microwave. Bathroom was stated newly renovated, it's clean, bright and just enough space.

The next day, we had breakfast at Cafe 202 before going to the Olson Game Birds farm tour. We meet Ian Harbour, the current owner of the farm. He just take over late last year but have done a good job in maintaining the largest pheasant farm in Victoria.

We got a lil bit of time before Swan Hill Food and Wine Festival start, we stroll over the city but then we realise everybody has already been crowding the festival area. It's located on the same location as the cruise last night but the whole area is now open and full of various stalls; food, wine and games for children. First up is grape stomp competition, it's the first time ever my husband see it and he seems to be fascinated by it. Then off hunting for some drinks cause it's so hot that day, we cane across Harcourt Apple Juice. We were lucky enough to get a free bottle, then we quickly fall in love with this fresh, no preservative or sweetener, 100% apple juice. We bought 2L home cause I think it's the best apple juice. Then one of the best fried calamari I have tasted in a festival by Ink-Redible Calamari. Generous size and super crispy as well as perfectly cooked. Move on to pulled pork burger by Burbury+Mathers. Rich and tender meat just melted in the middle of sweet brioche bun, what's not love? Accompanied by Prickly Moses cider.

After the hot day at Swan Hill Food and Wine Festival, I decided to get a lil nap before heading to Taste of Murray dinner. Skipping to next day, we begin the day with breakfast at Boo's place. The chef was kind enough to come out and have a lil chat with us, she even joke around and button up my baby shirt. She's a grandmother after all.

Off to the last bits and pieces of our Swan Hill trip. First up, Swan Hill Regional Art Gallery which is a small modern art museum that sometimes hold a musical concert as well. Located just beside Spoons Riverside restaurant and Produce & Design Market. That brings us to the market, small size with a lil bit of everything; coffee, fruits, art, clothes and children's games. We brought some beautiful large nectarines home with a fraction of a price we bought in Melbourne.

Last part of our Swan Hill tour is Catalina Flying Boat Museum located in Lake Boga, 15 minutes drive from the main city. Daryl Allen show us around and give us a little bit of back story then there's also an underground bunker. This wrap up our tour. But before we had home, we went up a lil bit more to see Lake Tyrell.