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7 day Murray River road trip getaway

Waring Gardens, Deniliquin. Image credit: Robert Mulally through Edward River Council

19 Nov. 2021 by Daniela Sunde-Brown

7 day Murray River road trip getaway

With a week up your sleeve you’ll be able to cover plenty of ground exploring the majestic Murray River region on this epic road trip getaway that bounces between towns on the New South Wales side of the border.

The total drive time to pass through each town is just three hours and 20 minutes, so you can choose to change accommodation each night or base yourself in a couple of key locations.

Buckle up, let’s go!

DAY 1: Deniliquin

Towering red gums, expansive outback plains, starry nights and plenty of fun on the water, welcome to Deniliquin (aka Deni).

Start with a hearty breakfast at the Deniliquin Bakery, best known for its award-winning meat pies and creative sourdough bread.

Fuelled with breaky, take your wheels over to The Depot where a nostalgic collection of vehicles and memorabilia detail tales of life on the road. Next door Cruzin’ Diner is a great spot for a feed too.

Deniliquin is best known as an aquatic playground so make your next stop McLean Beach, a sandy freshwater beach that eases into the Edward River and is the perfect spot to launch a vessel.

If you prefer to stay dry, wander the historic Waring Gardens, which were established in 1888 when the park was used to test the suitability of plants for the local climate and soil.

Alternatively, chase an adrenaline rush on the local Mountain Bike Trails where you can hire a free bike at the Visitor Centre, then hit the fast and flowy cross-country routes that follow kangaroo tracks through Murray Valley Regional Park.

For lunch or dinner The Crossing Cafe is a must, to enjoy a relaxed atmosphere while choosing from a menu of thoughtful, delicious dishes that hero local producers.

Finally choose to rest your head at the BIG4 Deni, or drive the 95-kilometres to your next port of call, Barooga.

DAY 2: Barooga

An hour and 10 minutes from Deni, Barooga is at the centre of the Murray River’s food bowl and best known for its golf courses and being a twin town with Victoria’s Cobram.

Start the day with a round on the fairways at Cobram Barooga Golf Course where you’ll have the choice of two 18-hole courses.

The reward for a few hours on the green? A hearty pub lunch at Sporties Barooga where locals gather at this social hub to dine on classics like chicken schnitty or beer battered fish.

Spend the afternoon toiling about the Barooga Botanic Gardens. The lush green park is perfect for a picnic or barbecue and has a big playground for those road tripping with tiny travellers

Or skip the DIY park barbecue and visit the award-winning Barooga Hotel to test its reputation for friendly service and great pub meals.

A courtesy bus can drop you back to your bed for the night at the Cobram Barooga Golf Club.

DAY 3: Mulwala

Famous for its stunning lake and for being a twin town with Yarrawonga on the Victorian border-side, your drive to Mulwala will take 20 minutes.

Kick-start your day with an adrenaline rush at the Mulwala Water Ski Club where you can book a lesson to give water skiing, wakeboarding or flyboarding a go.

For a slower paced water adventure, Lake Mulwala Barby Boats rent floating pontoons with lounges, drink coolers, speakers and, of course, a grill so you can cruise the lake at your pace.

If you stay on dry land, the tasseled sun umbrellas of Blacksmith Provedore will transport you to a European summer, made only even more Euro when you pair your sourdough pizza with wines and craft beers from the Murray region.

Continue the afternoon with a relaxing massage, facial, manicure or spa treatment at Essenza Day Spa, and then enjoy the heated pool, spas and sauna at Lake Edge Resort, your bed for the night.

For dinner The Border Bistro at the Yarrawonga Mulwala Golf Resort offers a modern pub menu that heroes local producers like Corowa Murray Valley Pork and Kyvalley Dairy.

DAY 4: Corowa

A half-hour drive from Mulwala, Corowa is best known for its history, food, wine and culture.

Start at the Corowa Federation Museum to discover the town’s role in the birth of Federation. It’s just one of 24 stops on the Corowa History Trail.

For history served a different way (neat or on the rocks), Corowa Distilling Co, merges two passions – history and whisky – from its heritage-listed 1920s flour mill. Take a behind-the-scenes tour of this working distillery and enjoy lunch with a cheeky dram.

Kids are welcome to the old flour mill too and little ones will love making their own giant chocolate freckle.

After lunch, experience the creativity and culture of local artists at the Corowa Art Space or tee off at the 27-hole Corowa Golf Club, which even has a Gold Class cinema showing the latest releases.

Check into the Heritage Motor Inn Corowa for the night, then pop out to the historic Royal Hotel Corowa for a modern pub dinner.

DAY 5: Albury

Delicious food, arts and the great outdoors define the twin towns of Albury and its Victorian neighbour, Wodonga.

A short 40-minute drive from Corowa, make the Murray Art Museum Albury your first stop. Not your average regional gallery, MAMA has a reputation for risk taking and hosts up to six innovative exhibitions at a time by great Australian and international contemporary artists.

Peel yourself away from the gallery for lunch at on-site restaurant Canvas Eatery, a casual modern diner that uses fresh, seasonal ingredients.

Or head to award-winning The River Deck with its unbeatable riverside location. Set within leafy Noreuil Park and surrounded by mature red gum trees and Dutch elms, the contemporary menu makes use of regional produce and drinks.

Your afternoon foodie adventure continues at the Albury Brewhouse. Here you can select a tasting paddle of craft beer and snack from an all-day bar menu.

Then choose a historic stay for the night: the simple but stylish Albury Paddlesteamer Motel or the chic and arty spa hotel Circa 1928.

DAY 6: Holbrook

A 15-minute drive north of Albury, stop into the Jindera Pioneer Museum on the way to Holbrook. Explore the remarkable old store, late Victorian architecture and 25 rooms and galleries set across two acres.

From here it’s not far to Morgan’s Lookout, named after the notorious 1860s bushranger Mad Dan Morgan. He used this vantage point to watch for approaching victims and police, but today you can use it for a picnic and panoramic view.

In downtown Holbrook The Ten Mile is a cute farm gate cafe set in a historic mechanics store. Or head to one of many great pubs and bakeries in the Holbrook and Jindera area for lunch.

This afternoon immerse yourself in nature at Woomangara National Park, which is popular with campers, hikers and 4WD tourers. Keep an eye out for the regent honeyeater, superb parrot and powerful owl.

Reward your trek with a cellar door visit to Flyfaire Wines and taste the sustainable, low chemical and carbon vinos from the single block vineyard.

Choose Culcairn Hotel for a historic stay with plenty of character, or rest your head at the Riverina Hotel in Holbrook.

DAY 7: Home time

It’s your final day road tripping the mighty Murray, so there’s no need to rush off.

Enjoy a slow breakfast at your accommodation or in town, then choose to explore more of the expansive and gorgeous Woomangara National Park or begin your drive home.