48 hours in Albury Wodonga

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Maria Rosa, Wodonga RACV Shop

Albury Wodonga has long been a coffee stop on the Melbourne-Sydney drive. If you take the time, you will discover that the region is worth visiting for its own sake. The twin cities – Albury in New South Wales and Wodonga in Victoria – are separated by the Murray River. Maria Rosa, manager of Wodonga’s RACV Shop, has lived in the area for 12 years. She shares some of the twin cities’ highlights.

Breakfast

Albury cafe The Proprietor sits in one of the city’s oldest buildings; formerly a saddler and then a butcher. It offers an all-day menu with ingredients from local backyards and paddocks. Expect twists on cafe staples, such as twice-baked French toast with streaky bacon and local ice cream or a pulled pork brioche roll, as well as great coffee.

Bear facts

What do Princess Mary and Wodonga have in common? The answer is Eunice Eisman’s Stanley Bears. The Princess and Prince Frederik’s son Christian is a proud owner of a gorgeous traditional teddy, handcrafted in Wodonga. The secret to the bears’ longevity is the German mohair and top-quality acrylic, ensuring they last from generation to generation. Eunice’s workshop is open by appointment.

A slice of history

Fewer than 1000 people call Bonegilla home. But an estimated one in every 20 Australians has links to the area, which is 10km east of Wodonga. That’s because in 1947, the country’s first migrant reception centre was opened at Bonegilla as part of the post-war immigration to Australia. The Bonegilla Migrant Experience brings their stories to life. Take the time to explore Block 19, an example of post-war migrant accommodation camps, as well as a changing display of exhibitions.

Albury botanic gardens

Children's paradise

Nestled within Albury’s Botanic Gardens, the magical Children’s Garden will thrill the little ones (and the young at heart). A life-sized dinosaur, fairy temple and troll cave are among the highlights that spark the imagination.

The award-winning gardens are also home to the Hume Monument, Albury’s tribute to Hamilton Hume who explored the area in 1824. Within a few minutes walk from Dean St, there’s an array of decent spots for lunch.

Sugar stop

Indulge your sweet tooth at Geoffrey Michael Patisserie. The modern French patisserie is celebrated for its mouth-watering desserts and pastries (the decadent triple chocolate cake is a favourite). It hosts a high tea on selected Sundays.

Dinner time

David Sutherland’s Border Wine Room is one of the region’s top restaurants. Choose from the six-course tasting menu, available with matched wines, or the a la carte menu.

Or, for something completely different, step back in time at Q Manhattans. The 1940s style restaurant specialises in tapas and cocktails, and serves a buffet breakfast on weekdays.

A little country style

Country music fan? Make sure you schedule a visit to the Kinross Woolshed Hotel, just five minutes’ drive from Albury. Set in a former shearing shed and boasting a huge covered deck, the hotel hosts live country music every Friday and Saturday night. Yee-haw!

Wodonga RACV Shop is at 174 High St. Open Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm and Sat, 9am-12pm. Services available include finance, insurance, merchandise, membership, tourism and ticketing. Ph: (02) 6055 1300

War memorial
Downtown Pizzeria
Bonegilla migrant experience
High country rail trail
The Proprietor Albury
Hideout Cafe Wodonga
Written by Kathryn Kernohan, Photos Anne Morley
December 01, 2015