It’s just a 30-minute drive from Melbourne’s CBD, but seems like a world away. Visit wineries, explore historic sites and take in the natural world on a day out in Hume.
Asked to guess where the closest vineyards to Melbourne City might be, many people would suggest it was to the east. They’d be wrong. In the City of Hume, north of the CBD, wine has been produced since the 1860s. Visit some of these vineyards around Sunbury, Bulla and Yuroke and you’ll be able to sample the excellent cool-climate shiraz grown in the region — some even have cafes and restaurants with sparkling views of the surrounding landscape.
History abounds in Hume. Sunbury is the birthplace of the Ashes, you can visit one of Melbourne’s most significant homesteads at Woodlands Historic Park, and Victoria’s oldest place of worship, Scots Church, is still open for business in Campbellfield.
It perhaps should come as no surprise, since many consider Hume to be the place where the suburbs meet the country, that there are abundant parks and reserves to explore. Merri Creek stretches this far north and provides a corridor of native vegetation and protection for wildlife. Go hiking along the trail known as Murrip Gurrong Yan in Greenvale to observe wildlife and birds thriving in a pristine environment. Jackson Creek’s clean, deep pools can be observed at the Emu Bottom Wetlands Reserve. This is home to shy platypuses, as well as frogs and waterbirds. Stroll around the 32-hectare park and you might spot kangaroos. Whatever you do, find its waterfalls in Sunbury because the banks here are the perfect spot for a picnic.
Got kids? They’ll love it here. Take them to the lake and playground at Campbellfield’s Jack Roper Reserve and they’ll run and explore for hours. For those who love horses, there’s the opportunity to meet retired racers at Living Legends. Then they can dive right in at Craigieburn’s Splash Aqua Park with its waterslides, pools, play zone and toddler area.
Don’t forget that any day out in Hume can include a huge range of dining options. Sunbury’s O’Shanassy Street, with its tree-lined footpath with outdoor dining areas, has a number of excellent casual restaurants and takeaways, including local favourite cafe, The Spotted Owl, and Vietnamese diner, District 3429. There are diverse flavours in cuisines from as far afield as Italy, the Middle East and all corners of Asia, and many welcoming pubs with excellent bistros and dining rooms.
It’s fair to say, you’ll never be bored, with art galleries, shopping and cinemas all to be discovered. Plus, throughout the year, there’s a host of events and festivals. One of the biggest is Carols by Candlelight in Craigieburn each year, but there’s also the Broadmeadows Street Festival in April — think street food, performances, kids’ activities and fireworks — and the annual Craigieburn Festival held each March. Whether you’re here for a day or considering a move to the City of Hume there’s so much to inspire, admire and entertain, just 15 minutes from the airport and half an hour from Melbourne’s CBD.