Golden Plains is like the little sister of the beloved Australian festival, Meredith Music Festival. Same heritage, same features, and whilst one is significantly smaller than the other, it is still a legend.
Golden Plains is located at the Supernatural Ampitheatre, out in the Moorabool Shire of Victoria. The event offers a relaxing weekend for those who prefer a chilled vibe at a festival, and although Meredith Music Festival is renowned for its sense of chill, Golden Plains has a smaller capacity, by the thousands, so it is a lot more intimate in consequence. So if you’re not into huge crowds but are still keen for a weekend vibe, get yourself a ticket for GP. Lay out a picnic rug, settle in on your sofa and relax with new friends and old, because this will be a weekend that you won’t forget.
Golden Plains has her (in)famous ‘no dickhead policy’, so they tend to attract a good bunch - almost as legendary as the talented musos up on the stage. So do take the time to have a yarn with your neighbours.
If you’re coming from Melbourne, take the route via Werribee and the edge of Geelong. On the way, check out Clyde Park Vineyard & Bistro, in Bannockburn. The beautiful Vineyard sits on a ridge with open views that will take your breath away and it serves food that compliments this countryside, featuring local and regional produce of only the highest quality. Try out their delicate chardonnay, their pinot noir and make sure you leave room for some of their delicious pastries and cakes to give you a sugar hit before the festival starts.
This is an especially good stop over as the music doesn’t start until late in the afternoon and the downside to Golden Plains are the long queues to get in. So while you might not get the best camping spot on the grounds, avoiding the wait is worth it especially if you’re fresh to Melbourne and you have the time to check out the picturesque surrounds instead.
Just before you reach the gates stop in at the Meredith Corner Store. Grab some delicious bakery items or snacks for the weekend as well as any essentials, like your toothbrush and toilet paper, that you might have forgotten.
What to bring
Your ticket is given to you as a wristband which will give you access to the whole festival. It must be kept on you at all times. So don’t leave your ticket at home! Bring a tent, a camping chair and a sleeping bag, and make sure you bring warm clothes. Golden Plains falls on a weekend where the weather can be highly unpredictable. You might find that within one hour you need both sunscreen and a poncho, so be prepared for rain, hail and shine.
Golden Plains and Meredith have an added chill spot - the couch area - situated between the dance floor and the top of the hill. Bring a couch for the ultimate relaxation (but please remember to take it home with you when you leave - as you can’t expect others to pick up after you.)
What to do
Golden Plains will be over faster than you can imagine. The duration of the weekend is a bit shorter than most other Aussie festivals so try to galavant around the grounds as much as you can over the weekend. Night time is totally mesmerising so try not to go to bed too early and do try to watch the sunset at the beautiful ‘Inspiration Point’, with rolling hills and mystical wind turbines as the backdrop. And on Sunday evening, Inspiration Point features a pro (aka totally amateur) golf tournament that is not be missed.
And definitely don’t forget to take a ride on the free sky top ferris wheel to enjoy the sounds and lights from high up in the air.
On your way home, treat yourself to a hearty meal at one of the local pubs. Try the Royal Mail or Hearn’s Meredith Hotel. Foxy’s is a cute little cafe adorned with ornaments, while the Meredith Roadhouse is the perfect place to kick back with the locals before you drive home.
Take the same route you came in and stop off in Geelong City, Victoria’s second largest town where you can relax along the picturesque waterfront. Check out Eastern Beach, a man made sea pool where you can do backflips or bombs from a large diving tower into the salty depths. Because let’s face it, there is no better cure for a hangover than a swim and some adrenaline.