The Best Things to Do in Daylesford, Victoria

Lake Daylesford, Victoria

With its indulgent blend of natural mineral springs, hatted restaurants, quirky cafes and funky vintage shops, beautiful historic buildings, breathtaking views, and a bounty of natural wonders, Daylesford is a charming destination where time seems to slow down. 

Victoria’s spa town has something to offer everyone – and it’s just an hour from cosmopolitan Melbourne. But where do you start with so much on offer? We’ve got you – here’s everything that should top your must-do list when visiting Daylesford.

17 Fantastic Things to Do in Daylesford

The Convent Daylesford

Discover this stunning art and history gallery located in a former convent and delight in the exhibits and stunning views of the gardens. The Convent Daylesford spans across four levels and features seven gallery spaces, a museum, chapel, gift shop, café, bar, and function rooms, all showcasing art, history, and culture.

This mansion’s intriguing past is a story in itself. Initially built as a private home for the gold commissioner during the Gold Rush in the 1860s, it was later turned into a convent before being transformed into the magnificent gallery visitors can enjoy today.

Lake Daylesford

Lake Daylesford
Courtesy Visit Victoria

 The lake is a major sightseeing drawcard in central Victoria, attracting locals and visitors from afar. It’s a beautiful spot to enjoy a picnic or BBQ here – a nostalgic experience where you can stop and let life slow down, time to appreciate nature’s simple pleasures.

You can enjoy the peaceful loop walk around the lake, taking an average of 37 minutes to complete, sip from the famous mineral springs, and swim at the serene Lake Daylesford jetty, with its small sandy beach.

Wombat Hill Botanic Gardens

The Wombat Hill Botanic Gardens have been a popular destination for both locals and visitors since the 1860s. The garden was planned by notable designers, who incorporated rare, unusual and beautiful plants for everyone to enjoy. All these years later, thousands of visitors continue to admire and appreciate the stunning gardens.

Stroll through the gardens, where you will find colourful blooms, majestic trees, and delightful picnic areas. It’s the perfect spot for a romantic walk or a relaxing picnic with friends and family.

The gardens are located atop an extinct volcano, offering breathtaking panoramic views and a picturesque backdrop for picnics. They are open every day from dawn to dusk. Admission is free for everyone to enjoy.

Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa

Treat yourself and your partner to a rejuvenating spa experience at this iconic day spa and hotel. Relax and unwind in the healing mineral waters and enjoy luxurious treatments that will leave you feeling refreshed and revitalised. This spa has been a popular destination since 1895, so you can trust that they know how to help you relax. Choose from various spa therapies, including facials, wraps, scrubs and hydro massages.

Related: Relaxing Spa Getaways in Victoria

Hanging Rock

Hanging Rock Victoria
Courtesy Visit Melbourne

Embark on an adventure to visit the iconic Hanging Rock. This beautiful place attracts picnickers, walkers, Goldrush bushrangers, and day trippers.

Perhaps you’ve watched the 2018 drama series “Picnic at Hanging Rock” produced by FremantleMedia, which was based on Joan Lindsay’s 1967 Australian Gothic novel of the same name. This novel also inspired Peter Weir’s 1975 film, and the site still retains an air of mystery, so it’s a must-visit site in Daylesford.

Explore the trails, enjoy the panoramic views, and uncover this unique landmark’s mysteries.

Indulge in Cider, The Daylesford Way

Daylesford Cider
Daylesford Cider

Experience a delightful cider-tasting session amidst the picturesque orchards at Daylesford Cider. You can savour various handcrafted ciders at their beautiful English-style tavern cellar door while enjoying the refreshing country air. You can also have lunch there if you want to extend your stay.

In summer, linger a while in the patio courtyard and gardens, while in winter, you can cozy down in front of an open log fire with a glass of warm spiced cider.

Daylesford Cider specialises in producing traditional styles using English heritage cider apples grown organically on their property. It boasts an award-winning range that includes single varietal ciders and traditional still styles – some dry and others more full-fruited.

Visit Passing Clouds Winery 

Passing Clouds Winery
Passing Clouds Winery

Passing Clouds is a renowned winery that offers a range of wines that have won the hearts of sommeliers and wine enthusiasts worldwide, so you want to pop it on your Daylesford itinerary.

The winery was established by Graeme Leith and Sue Mackinnon in 1983 to produce the finest wine in the world. Their 1982 Shiraz won a gold medal at the Melbourne Wine Show, and since then, Passing Clouds wines have become a popular choice among wine lovers.

You can taste the fragrant cherry-red pinot noir and crisp citrusy chardonnay at the winery’s cellar door. Or, make it an occasion and indulge in a three-course feast cooked entirely over a charcoal fire pit.

Related: The best restaurants, cafes and wineries in Daylesford

Daylesford Day Spa

Daylesford is famous for its mineral water springs, spas, and health treatments, so an indulgent treatment at Daylesford Day Spa is a unique experience to indulge in when visiting the area. Ask about Their signature package, the ‘Art of Relaxation,’ which includes a delicious lunch.

Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm

Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm, Daylesford

Indulge in a delightful experience by visiting the enchanting Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm, located just ten minutes north of Daylesford on Newstead Road near Shepherds Flat. Enjoy a delicious meal at La Trattoria Bar & Eatery, a beautifully rustic café serving gourmet cuisine, or bring your own picnic and choose your preferred spot to spread out a rug.

The farm spans 100 acres of lush gardens and rustic country landscapes, offering more than just lavender. Visitors can explore the diverse grounds for a nominal fee, take a guided tour of the original homestead, and even meet the highland animals that call the farm their home.

History Tours are available at noon, 2 pm, and 4 pm, providing insight into the Swiss Italian heritage of Lavandula Farm and its renowned lavender cultivation.

This idyllic European sanctuary is an ideal way to spend a sunny afternoon, stretching across vast landscapes that encourage exploration and relaxation.

Uncover unique treasures and local crafts at this vibrant market. Browse through handmade goods, indulge in delicious treats, and soak in the lively atmosphere. You’ll find it at 18 Raglan St.

Trentham Falls

Trentham Falls

Around 20 minutes from Daylesford, these stunning falls are one of the longest single-drop waterfalls in Victoria, plunging some 32 metres over ancient basalt columns.

You can walk from the car park to the viewing area for the best view of the falls. Also, if you want to enjoy a quiet picnic amidst the beautiful surroundings of the bush, you can visit the picnic area, which is just a short walk away from the car park and the viewing area.

Restaurants & Cafes for Your Must-Do Daylesford List

Daylesford is a food lover’s paradise, offering an array of culinary delights to indulge in. Put these restaurants on your list of things to do when visiting.

RedBeard Historic Bakery

RedBeard is one of the oldest-running bakeries in Victoria. Although technically located in Trentham, it has earned its spot in the Daylesford visit list. The bakery is famous for its sourdough bread, made using a unique wild yeast culture. Additionally, customers can enjoy a wide range of home-baked biscuits, cakes, slices, jams, chutneys, baking books, tea, and coffee. The bakery also offers bread-baking workshops, which are extremely popular and tend to book out quickly.

Wombat Hill House

Wombat Hill House
Photo: Wombat Hill House

Immerse yourself in a unique dining experience surrounded by the enchanting mural art created by Allan Wolf-Tasker, the husband of renowned restaurateur Alla Wolf-Tasker, who established the highly regarded Lake House in the 1980s at Wombat Hill House.

Allan has created a captivating storybook-style mural at Wombat Hill House, located in the beautiful Wombat Hills Botanic Gardens. The mural adds to the magical ambience of the place and depicts a blend of real and fantastical creatures in the picturesque gardens.

Cliffy’s Emporium 

Cliffy’s Emporium has been around for almost 60 years, and its legacy is evident in every corner of the cafe and providore. This quaint wooden and tin-roofed establishment is one of Daylesford’s top spots, offering a nostalgic experience of yesteryear. The shelves are stocked with a wide range of local produce, including jams, pickles, cheeses and more. If you’re visiting Daylesford, the brunch is a must-try. Try the Turkish eggs with smoked chilli butter, cardamom yoghurt and fried halloumi.

The Bad Habits Cafe

Located in The Covent Gallery, The Bad Habits Cafe offers a relaxed and casual dining experience. The cafe’s latest addition, the Altar Bar, is a contemporary and stylish lounge that serves an extensive selection of cakes, light snacks, cocktails, refreshments, and a wide range of wines.

The Lakehouse, Daylesford

The Lake House Daylesford Dining Room

The Lake House is a renowned restaurant famous for pioneering the farm-to-table movement several decades ago, which helped put Daylesford on the culinary map.

Owned by the Wolf-Taskers, The Lakehouse is a masterpiece that continues to lead the way in an ever-growing landscape of regional fine dining restaurants, offering a seasonally-focused menu paired with an internationally acclaimed wine list.

The dining room is elegant, with crisp white tablecloths and plush carpets. The waitstaff is knowledgeable, diligent, formally dressed, and happy to guide you through the menu.

The Lake House has their own 38 acre regenerative growing facility 10 minutes down the road with a five-acres currently dedicated to vegetable gardens, a working barn for future classes and workshops, three hoop houses, a glasshouse, an orchard of 300 trees, an existing rejuvenated olive grove, and a half-acre vineyard.

You can visit The Lake House for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or overnight.

Related: Gourmet Getaways in Regional Victoria


As you approach the vast 100-acre estate of Sault, you will immediately realise that an exceptional gourmet experience awaits you. The surroundings are spectacular with its stunning lake, well-maintained gardens, and fragrant lavender fields. You can savour a delicious meal while taking in these breathtaking views through the large bay windows, providing a 180-degree view.

Sault serves a stunning variety of Modern Australian dishes that change with the seasons, all featuring locally sourced ingredients. As a Daylesford Macedon Produce group member, Sault is committed to minimising its food miles.

Daylesford beckons you with its charm, natural beauty, and cultural richness. From exploring cultural landmarks and indulging in romantic experiences to savouring local cuisine and embarking on outdoor adventures, Daylesford offers so much to do and see, ensuring you’ll have an unforgettable holiday or weekend getaway experience.

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