Bairnsdale is the gateway to many attractions. Here is a few that stand out.

Buchan Caves:

Near the township of Buchan, lies a honeycomb of caves full of
spectacular limestone formations.

The caves were formed by underground rivers cutting through limestone rock. The formations are created by rain water seeping through cracks and dissolving some of the limestone. As each droplet comes through the roof it deposits calcite which crystallises in a small ring. In time, stalactites are formed on the roof of the cave, and stalagmites build up from droplets which fall to the floor.

Discover the beautiful calcite-rimmed pools of Royal Cave and the elaborate stalactites and stalagmites of Fairy Cave on a guided tour. Tours are conducted daily.



Lakes Entrance:

Boasting Australia’s largest inland network of waterways, Lakes Entrance has long been a popular Gippsland holiday spot, especially for young families. Lakes Entrance is situated on the edge of Ninety Mile Beach where the Gippsland Lakes meets the Southern Ocean. The town is well equipped with accommodation, services and facilities for those enjoying their coastal getaway.

Cross the footbridge to the popular Ninety Mile Beach, patrolled by lifesavers during the summer months to enjoy the pristine surf beach. Explore the lakes in a kayak, join a boat cruise or hire a paddleboat and hit the sparkling waters.

Get the gang together and join the local and visiting boating and fishing enthusiasts who flock to Lakes Entrance all year round. Choose from a wide range of camping spots that surround the calm lake waters and line the shore of Ninety Mile Beach.

Lakes Entrance is renowned as a seafood capital due to the large number of fishing trawlers operating in the area. Catch your own fish or savour the catches from fresh seafood shops around town.




Known as the boating capital of Victoria, Paynesville is a great place for those just looking for a getaway by the water or to enjoy activities on and around the foreshore. Explore the lakes and canals or take the Raymond Island Ferry across the water to the home of a large koala population at Raymond Island. Walk or cycle the island’s Koala Trail and spot the resident koala’s, usually asleep in a gum tree….

Paynesville offers direct access to Lake King and Lake Victoria in the heart of the Gippsland Lakes. It’s a great place for those just looking for a getaway by the water or to enjoy the summer activities on and around the foreshore. Join a cruise or tour, bring your own boat or hire one to explore the lakes and canals. Whether you wish to waterski or jet ski, sail, windsurf, kayaking or just take a leisurelly walk, Paynesville has it all. Take a short drive to nearby Eagle Point and the world-renowned Mitchell River Silt Jetties. 

The Mitchell River Silt Jetties located in Eagle Point are naturally formed narrow banks of silt that run for 7km.  The silt jetties are the second largest in the world after those at the mouth of the Mississippi River as it enters the Gulf of Mexico.


With an array of cafes, restaurants and beautiful scenery all around, Paynesville, Raymond Island and Eagle Point is sure to delight all those who come to visit this magic part of East Gippsland.


St Mary’s Church:

St Mary’s is one of the most notable landmarks of Bairnsdale. Construction of the Church was commenced in 1913, replacing an earlier brick church which had been built thirty years earlier in 1883.

The murals, painted by out of work Italian artist Francesco Floreani during the Great Depression, cover the walls and ceiling.

They depict the saints, the trinity and scenes of hell, purgatory, heaven and the crucifixion.



East Gippsland Rail Trail:

Experience the diversity of East Gippsland as this trail weaves past undulating farmland, tall forests, rivers and flood plains. Cross historic timber railway bridges and enjoy views of the Gippsland Lakes before arriving at the Snowy River.

Bairnsdale to Nicholson (8km)
A fully sealed section of the rail trail offering lake and bushland views, with a highlight being a trestle bridge across the Nicholson River. Stock up on supplies or use of the picnic areas at Nicholson.

Nicholson to Bruthen (20km)
Follow the hard packed gravel surface out of Nicholson with views of Slaughterhouse Creek Valley. Take the time to stop and explore the scenic town of Bruthen and enjoy a cheeky refreshment at Bullant Brewery.

Bruthen to Nowa Nowa (30km)
Enjoy the cool, shady forest, as you begin your steady climb to Colquhoun on the hard packed gravel surface. A highlight is the iconic Stony Creek Trestle bridge just before reaching Nowa Nowa. In the Colquhoun Forest, the Gippsland Lakes Discovery Trail provides a connection to Lakes Entrance, suitable for mountain bikes only.

Nowa Nowa to Orbost (38km)
Ensure you stock up on supplies before departing Nowa Nowa as there are no towns on this long section of the trail. The shady trail crosses three major wooden trestle bridges. The trail ends at Newmerella, but there is an off road shared pathway that begins at Burn Road and is 2km to Orbost.

tressle bridge tunnel


Nicholson River Winery:

European styled Australian wines that reflect the intense flavours unique to the area. The extensive range of wines is ideal for people wanting more than the mainstream can offer, and are great with food.

Visit our Cellar Door for a tasting and a chat. We have a picnic area that is ideal for enjoying lunch or a snack over-looking the lovely Nicholson River while the kids play in the playground.

Local cheese platters are now available at Cellar Door. Bookings appreciated.



Bairnsdale, Mitchell River:

Bairnsdale is known as the ‘gateway to the lakes’. It is the region’s commercial centre set on the Mitchell River. In the hinterland lies the ‘Twin Rivers’ area comprising the towns of Nicholson, Johnsonville and Swan Reach. Other delightful villages are Lindenow in the west and Nowa Nowa in the east. Refresh and unwind in Lake Tyers renowned for its fishing and forest-clad shores. Delight in the ocean-lake experience, serviced by the holiday village of Lake Tyers Beach.

But it is the boating and fishing that most come for. Hire a boat here, or bring your own, these incredible waterways offer so much, with 40 casual jetties and top amenities on offer. Three coastal parks stand between the lakes and the ocean. This magnificent arm of coastline is just 10 minutes by fast boat from any lakeside village. Fish, golf, tour or simply slow down – the Gippsland Lakes will engage you. Stay in any town or village and explore the shores or waterways.

tambo  mitchell-upstream