The State Government will hand over $1.6 million for the development of the 1001 Steps at Darley’s Bald Hill for arts and nature-based tourism.

One of Moorabool’s hidden gems, the 340m hill has several communication towers but is only accessible via a series of rough tracks. It has also been the subject of Grow West revegetation over the last decade.

Tourism, Sport and Major Events Minister Martin Pakula said the 1001 Steps Accessibility and Sculpture Trail would include the acquisition of original artwork “to add to the spectacular 360-degree views”.

RELATED STORY: State Government giving $500k for Bald Hill revamp

The funding is one of the largest grants awarded under the $46 million Regional Tourism Investment Fund (Stimulus Round 1) – and comes after Moorabool Council’s Bald Hill Reactivation project received $500,000 in May.

Today’s $1.6 million injection will go towards stage two.

The Bald Hill park design is expected to be finished early this year – and work is due to start in late 2021.

Awesome view up Good ol baldy!

Posted by Allan Pirotta on Saturday, February 2, 2019

Among the 30 tourism projects announced today (Wednesday) are a $2.8 million development of the Dandenong Ranges Botanic Gardens in Olinda.

Another $3.5 million will go towards track upgrades on the Bellarine Railway.

Closer to home, $400,000 will go towards a Dja Dja Wurrung installation at the Castlemaine Market Building, showcasing the stories of local indigenous people.

In Ballarat, $750,000 will go towards a distillery at the railway station Goods Shed in Lydiard St.

The spirit brand will be served in Ballarat with an intention to expert around the world.

Stage one of the Ballarat-to-Bendigo Goldfields Track Transformation will get $1.9 million for consistent signage, interpretative experiences and tourist facilities.

The 210km track takes in Buninyong, Ballarat, Creswick, Hepburn, Castlemaine, Harcourt and beyond.

Hepburn Shire will also get $2.1 million for a 100km mountain bike trails project centred on Hammon Park, Creswick.

“Victoria has many natural appeals but the main reason we lead the country in tourism is because we invest in our attractions and its people,” Mr Pakula said.

“We’re investing in the great outdoors to ensure more Victorians can access nature with their families and help our regional communities recover.”

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Gabrielle Hodson
Author: Gabrielle Hodson

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