5 villages to visit during a Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges road trip

By Kate Symons

Sweet store in Olinda. Credit: Ewen Bell
Sweet store in Olinda. Credit: Ewen Bell
The Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges comprise several quaint villages, each one home to various captivating delights. Here are some of the best.


The highest village in the Dandenong Ranges, Olinda is full of charm, not to mention boutique shopping and great eateries, whether you’re craving fine dining or pub fare. You’ll also find the Dandenong Ranges Botanic Garden, RJ Hamer Arboretum and Pirianda Gardens, plus a selection of art galleries and artists’ studios, in Olinda.



Pretty as a picture, Warburton is located on the upper Yarra Valley River and further enhanced by the lush forest backdrop. The 40-kilometre Lilydale-Warburton Rail Trail, which winds its way past vineyards, mountain scenery and historic station platforms, is worth exploring, whether on foot, bicycle or horseback.

Four Pillars Gin Distillery in Healesville


It’s pretty safe to call Healesvale Yarra Valley’s food and wine hub. Some of the region’s top wineries are here, including Domaine Chandon, Rochford Wines and Coldstream Hills, while excellent food options are plentiful. Healesvale is also home to the Yarra Ranges National Park, including the lush Cambarville Cumberland Circuit Walk.

Yarra Valley Dairy. Credit: Rob Blackburn


Whether sampling artisan cheeses at Yarra Valley Dairy, enjoying a craft ale at Hargreaves Hill, or indulging your sweet tooth at Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery, you won’t leave this township disappointed. It is also home to some of the region’s best wineries and cellar doors, such as Yering Station, Zonzo Estate and Yarrawood Estate.

Marysville – Rob Blackburn, May 2014


Marysville is a dream location for nature lovers and adventure junkies. Located at the Yarra Valley foothills, the alpine region is a celebration of the great outdoors, with activities like hiking, biking, fishing and snow sports attracting visitors year-round.


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