The King Valley is a wonderful area which is easily reached from Wangaratta. The King Valley is famous for its excellent wineries and a variety of natural attractions. Whitfield is the hub of many of the King Valleys attractions with Paradise Falls, Lake William Hovell and Powers Lookout all within easy reach and each is certainly worth the drive.

There is a good selection of Wangaratta accommodation available to suit all budgets and needs. Offered within central Wangaratta as well as the surrounding communities travelers will find and excellent variety of motels, hotels, pubs, caravan parks, cottages and guest houses specifically catering for both short and longer stay temporary accommodation. There is plenty of accommodation in the heart of Wangaratta plus the nearby regions of the King Valley, Glenrowan, Milawa, Eldorado and many other also have some excellent accommodation choices. Furthermore, with the region hosting a large number of annual festivals, celebrations and events, accommodation can be scarce. For that reason if you require Wangaratta accommodation be sure to book early.

Paradise Falls is one of those places that is often overlooked by visitors to the King Valley but for those that make the effort they are well rewarded. The short walk from the car park leads you down a series of rocky steps into the ravine below that gets cooler and more welcoming as you approach the falls. Be sure to visit after recent rains as the water flow does dry up in the warmer months There are some very interesting conglomerate rock formations along the path and around the falls. If you are particularly lucky you may even see some of the resident Peregrine Falcons that nest in the cliff tops above the falls. Paradise Falls are a great destination for families but do pack a spare set of clothes as the temptation may be to get a bit wet.

The Warby Ranges is only a 10km drive from central Wangaratta and is officially known as the Warby-Ovens National Park. It offers a variety of spots for family picnics and natural experiences such as Ryan’s Lookout, Briens Gorge Falls, The Forest Camp and Pine Gully. Fishing, Camping, Walking, Bike Riding and Gem Prospecting is also available in some areas.

Wangaratta and the surrounding rural communities offer a year full of festivals, celebrations and events that attract people from across the country and in some cases from around the world. Events such as the annual Wangaratta Festival of Jazz and Swap Meet are all centrally located, and across the region there are wine and food events which are hugely popular. Wangaratta also offers an excellent selection of accommodations from which to explore and enjoy some of the many events that are held in nearby communities such as Beechworth, Myrtleford, Bright, Rutherglen and Yarrawonga. Wangaratta is also host to regular markets, youth events, senior citizen events and sporting competitions including Australian Rules Football, netball, squash and swimming.

If you are looking for something unique then one of the many regular Wangaratta and regional markets are a great place to begin your search. Each year residents and visitors alike can enjoy markets such as the Wangaratta Festival of Jazz Market, Oxley Bush Market, Wangaratta Swap Meet as well as those close to Wangaratta in Mansfield, Yarrawonga, Jamieson, Myrtleford, Beechworth, Peechelba, Rutherglen and Benalla. These markets include everything from clothes and popular foods through to unique handcrafts and gourmet local produce and wines. These markets are a great opportunity to stock up the pantry with all your favourites from one convenient location and in many cases by dealing with the producer direct.

One of the great things about Wangaratta is its central location to a number of regional attractions. Whether you are planning on visiting the natural wonders around the Warby Ranges or wineries of the King Valley and Rutherglen Wangaratta is a convenient location. If you are travelling to the snowfields then Bright is a comfortable drive and for a taste of history Glenrowan and Beechworth are close by. Wangaratta’s own Performing Arts Centre hosts regular shows. There are also a number of annual, seasonal and special attractions across the region that attract large numbers of visitors to the region each year. If you are planning on visiting during the holiday season be sure to book your accommodation early as rooms do fill up.

Sir John Bowser John Bowser was born on 2 September 1856 in Islington, London to John Henry Bowser, an Indian Army veteran, and Marian (née Hunter).

His family migrated to Victoria Australia when John was only three years of age and soon established themselves in the Bacchus Marsh area where he was enrolled at the local state school.

As a youth his first experience in the media industry was at the age of fourteen at the Bacchus Marsh Express. He then moved to printers McCarron, Bird and Co. inMelbournewhere he headed up their poster production division. After a short illness with his eyesight which required him to return toScotland, Bowser was able to return to study journalism and English literature and at the same time took an interest in politics working as a shorthand writer for the commission into the condition of the Skye crofters.

Around 1880 Bowser again travelled toAustraliaand this time settled at Wangaratta where in 1884 he became editor and part-owner of the Wangaratta Chronicle with George Maxwell, He quickly established himself in a variety of community activities including founding the local rifle and tennis clubs in addition to the library committee. During a meeting with the local Milawa community in 1894 he was convinced to run as a parliamentary candidate.

The following 20th November he won the Wangaratta and Rutherglen seat in the Legislative Assembly, albeit by only thirteen votes. He safely held his seat thereafter and was eventually elected Premier of Victoria in 1918. Bowser was knighted in January 1927. During this time he had also become the sole owner of the Wangaratta Chronicle in 1905, and only gave up control, due to ill health around eighteen months before his death. Bowser passed away from cancer on 10 June 1936 and is buried in Wangaratta cemetery in the Presbyterian section.