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Budj Bim Cultural Landscape

What is the Budj Bim landscape?

To the east and north east of Heywood is the Budj Bim National Heritage Landscape. The landscape is home to one of the world’s oldest and most extensive freshwater aquaculture systems and human settlement sites. The ancient ancestors of the Gunditjmara clans along the Budj Bim landscape engineered and constructed channels, traps and ponds to traditionally farm eels and other fish. Alongside the ancient engineering are the remains of stone village sites where Gunditjmara families would live with their traditional beliefs and cultures. Gunditjmara stories of the volcanic eruption that created the stony landscape date back 30,000 years with parts of the traditional aquaculture dated at 6,700 years old.

The community owned and operated Budj Bim Tours Company conduct tours along the Budj Bim landscape including Lake Condah, Kurtonitj, Lake Gorrie and Tyrendarra. Shire residents and visitors are invited to take the self-guided walk at the Tyrendarra Indigenous Protected Area at the end of Taylors Road, Tyrendarra and learn about this world-renowned cultural landscape.

Heywood’s “Wood, Wine and Roses Festival” showcases the art and craft of the region. This festival is held the last Saturday in February each year with competitions for the best cut flowers, floral art, crafts, painting, photography, general art and woodcraft. The festival begins with a street parade and culminates in a spectacular fireworks display. Throughout the day you can visit many gourmet food and wine stalls, enjoy the entertainment of bands, parades and rides while perusing the work of many talented local artists.

On the Henty Highway towards Heywood, treat yourself to some freshly packed punnets of strawberries. Also of interest is the nearby rose farm, where you can stroll around the area during flowering season between December and April and marvel at the wide variety of roses available.

The area surrounding Heywood has some fantastic bush land and picnic areas. Surry Ridge Picnic Area is situated off the Cut Out Dam Road in the Cobboboonee National Park and is a tranquil setting for picnics and short walks. Similarly, the Saw Pit Picnic Area near Narrawong is a great place for a picnic before heading to the Whalers’ Lookout for a magnificent ocean view.

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