Quick Guide to Hepburn Springs/Daylesford

End-of-year fatigue calls for a weekend in the heart of spa country. Only a 1 hour and 25 minute drive from Melbourne, Hepburn Springs/Daylesford brings the sense of relaxation everyone deserves this time of the year.

I was feeling the need to breathe myself, so I was delighted when Hepburn Springs Chalet invited me on a weekend away. My best friend and I packed our bags and set off for a girls' vacay of cocktails, food and relaxation. We ventured out to find the best restaurants, cafes and shops.

Keep reading for the guide to Hepburn Springs/Daylesford.

  Hepburn Springs Chalet.  Photo by Darin Collison

Hepburn Springs Chalet. Photo by Darin Collison

STAY

Hepburn Springs Chalet

The Hepburn Springs Chalet is a blast from the past. Once only open to tour groups, this remodelled 80's guest house was given a new lease of life with a retro facelift. The chalet is full of vintage nostalgia, reminding me of Palm Springs, California. Think Danish brown leather furniture and memorabilia lining the walls, adding to the charming vibe of this old style guest house.

"Guest houses are few and far between," says owner Jaret, who wanted to revive the idea of a shared space where guests can socialise and mingle.

The guest rooms are simple yet comfortable, but with plenty of communal space there's no need to spend much time in your room. Instead enjoy drinks with friends at the cocktail bar, play pool, or relax in the courtyard. Curl up with a book and a coffee in the lounge or sunroom, the chalet is the perfect place to unwind.

The space is excellent for large groups or parties. Those who want to have the entire place to themselves, can rent it out (it sleeps up to 55). Similarly, it's great for couples wanting downtime in Hepburn Springs.

The cocktail bar is open to the public from Thursday through to Sunday night. Pop in, say hi and stay for a drink and a game of pool.

Hepburn Springs Chalet

78 Main Road,

Hepburn Springs, Victoria

Hepburn Springs Chalet Lei Lady Lei

SEE/DO

Hepburn Springs Bathhouse

The Bathhouse is one of the main draw cards for tourists in Daylesford and Hepburn areas. Providing the experience of traditional communal bathing since 1895, the natural minerals in the baths have rejuvenating properties that add to the relaxation.

The Sanctuary Retreat at the Bathhouse calls upon ancient cultural spa bathing traditions. With more pools on offer than the Bathhouse area, it is worth visiting The Sanctuary for a heightened spa experience. 

The Spa Pool with spa couches contains a mineral water mix heated to 35°C. The Aroma Steam Room has a high humidity, heated to 43°C and the Salt Pool is a wonderful place to relax.

The Outdoor Creekside Bathing is my favourite. Looking out over a creek and nature, breathing in the fresh air is wonderful. 

Having been to Morocco, I was delighted to go into the Moroccan-style Hammam. A warm room heated by a continuous flow of hot and humid air, it's a great place to relax.

The Sanctuary Retreat at the Bathhouse is a must-visit when you're in the area.

BOKEH DAYLESFORD

Beautiful shop full of Australian artisan wares. Pick up gifts for loved ones and yourself here.

WOMBAT HILL gardens

Recommended by all locals, Wombat Hill Gardens is located on an ancient extinct volcano. The original 1940's garden caretaker's cottage has been restored as the cafe and store.

The Mill Market

At the Amazing Mill Markets you will find a selection of vintage clothes, vintage furniture, collectables, antiques, memorabilia, home decor... the list goes on!

Artedeco

A beautiful collection of 1920's and 1930's clothing, furniture, jewellery, deco and collectables. Worth the visit.

Daylesford Sunday Market

The place to find antiques, collectables and odds and ends.

Manteau Noir

Beautiful unique pieces found from Parisian brocante markets as well as locally sourced clothing, perfume, candles and homewares.

Walking Tracks

Daylesford and Hepburn Springs are home to beautiful walking tracks. Find them here.

 Photo:  Hepburn Springs Bathhouse

Photo: Hepburn Springs Bathhouse

 Moroccan-style Hammam

Moroccan-style Hammam

EAT/DRINK

The Surly Goat, Hepburn Springs

Anything on the menu at The Surly Goat is delicious. Feel like a drink? The bar is the perfect place for wine.

Belvedere Social

We visited at lunch and had drinks and nibbles in the courtyard. However the Belvedere Social really comes alive in the evenings. Come for a cocktail and stay for more cocktails and the food. They're hosting a New Year's Eve event, check that out if you're in town. 

Cliffy's Emporium

Coffee is great here, as are the baked goods and breakfast. Make sure you have a signature hash brown and the breakfast bagel.

Lavandula Swiss Italian Lavender Farm

Bring a picnic, say hello to the roaming geese or order lavender scones and lemonade. They're delish!

The Perfect Drop

One of my favourite places to eat in Daylesford. A homely wine bar with delicious food made from local ingredients.

Sault Daylesford

Great fine dining restaurant on magnificent grounds. A great wedding venue.

Mercato's Daylesford

An institution in Daylesford, this fine dining restaurant is a must visit.

Awkward Jeffrey

Order the chick peas, but get a side of bread too (Used to be Breakfast and Beers).

The Grand Hotel

Ex-chef of Breakfast and Beers. Recommended by Hepburn Spring Chalet.

 Sault Daylesford

Sault Daylesford

 Sault Daylesford

Sault Daylesford

 Sault Daylesford

Sault Daylesford

 Sault Daylesford

Sault Daylesford

 Sault Daylesford

Sault Daylesford

 The Surly Goat

The Surly Goat

 Belvedere Social

Belvedere Social

 Cliffy's Emporium

Cliffy's Emporium

Lei xx

Thank you Hepburn Springs Chalet for the wonderful night stay.