The following day found us wandering along The Diggings Walk in the old gold mining town of Wandiligong. It was here I discovered that I might have a bit of a bridge fetish.
It being a nice warm day, we started the Diggings Walk in thongs, as a proper Aussie would. Naturally, we didn’t think about snakes, spiders or other harbingers of death, until it became evident that a large grassy hill leading down to the Walk proper was probably going to be our downfall (geddit?!?) if we attempted to negotiate a descent in flimsy footwear.
One Appropriate Footwear change later, we began the knee busting lurch down to the Wandiligong Diggings Reserve, only to find that the hill itself was a doddle and it was maniacs on bikes hurtling down said hill that posed the most danger. We made it to the first bridge to cross Morses Creek (without getting mangled by cycling hooligans) and meandered along the trail to the Chinese Swing Bridge. Built in 2003, the bridge honours the thousands of Chinese who lived and died in this area during the Victorian Goldrush in the 1850s and '60s.
The Diggings Walk crosses many bridges as it weaves its way over and around the creek, and along the way are dotted information signs, bird hides, disused mine shafts, and a Chinese Pavilion.
It's possible to walk the entire length from Wandi to Bright, but we're far too lazy for that so we finished up at Royal Bridge which, cleverly, we'd parked the car near!
Wandi is also home to Australia's largest (allegedly) living maze so we thought we'd go have a look. I have no doubt it could be the largest because there are a lot of pathways, but 'living' might be a bit of a stretch. The only part of the maze that's green is the foliage at the very top (and the sign obviously), and the camellia and rose bushes are more twig than bush. I'm surprised they grow at all really given the lack of light, but meh. What do I know about plants?
Sadly, the maze looked like it was just all too hard. I know nothing of its background or current situation, but when we arrived, there were about half a dozen other cars in the car park, indicating patrons but not a stampede of them (which is good). The cafe doubles as Admissions and there seemed to be only one person trying to juggle incoming maze wanderers, hungry lunch-a-lots and those who just required caffeine, stat. We hadn't been waiting 5 minutes when the poor soul behind the counter declared that lunch was off the table (so to speak) and she'd only be doing drinks. At lunchtime. Glad we had our customary 15 muesli bars with us, then.
We exited the maze grounds and stopped at the nearly Alpine Recreation Park for a bit of lunch and guess what? Found another bridge!