Lake Eildon picnic areas
Just two hours away from Melbourne, Lake Eildon is a great place for a day out with the family. Herb Fitzroy and Forsyth Flat have free gas barbecues and there's access to the water via boat ramps. Go fishing and boating - and watch the sunset over Merlo Lookout before returning home.
The wide watery expanse of Lake Eildon, with its many quiet bays hemmed in by thickly forested hillsides, is a popular destination for a holiday from Melbourne. But it's close enough for a daytrip, too.
Enjoy a picnic or barbecue at Herb Fitzroy or Forsyth Flat Day Visitor Areas. These picnic spots are right at the centre of things, next to the main boat ramp and on the main cycle and walking trail that links the campgrounds and attractions of Coller Bay.
Go fishing, boating, canoeing or kayaking - or take a walk. The Coller Bay Trail follows the edge of the lake, while the the Perfect Cure Creek Nature Trail and Candlebark Nature Trail are two short walks that explore the forested hinterland of Lake Eildon - and offer a better chance of seeing a kangaroo or wallaby.
While you are here, a stop off at Merlo's Lookout is a must. Here you can look out on to Wallaby Bay and - if the water level is low - check out the protruding tip of a homestead that now sits at the bottom of the bay.
The homestead belonged to an Italian immigrant called John Merlo who bought the land after he discovered gold in the area. He later planted grape vines which he used to make wine. It was flooded in 1956 when Sugarloaf Reservoir was enlarged and renamed Lake Eildon.
A short but steep walk departs from here on the other side of the road from the lookout. It's about a 1km to climb to Blowhard Summit, for fantastic views over the lake. You can either return the same way or turn right on to the Blowhard Spur Track to make a loop walk. Take another right when you reach the lake to get back to Merlo Lookout and complete the circuit.