Ride the steam train, feed cockatoos and visit historic homesteads

That’s what Wanping and her group from Singapore wanted to do on their tour last weekend, so John collected them from their Pegasus apartment in Melbourne and took them straight to Belgrave Station where they boarded Puffing Billy, the Dandenong’s hundred year old steam train, for their train journey through the stunning giant trees and ferns lining the route to Emerald.

Fondra and Joe, and their two nieces – Wanping and Yuxian were in Melbourne for a week’s holiday, alongwith Fondra’s colleague Prema and her son Yashvan.

After their ride on Puffing Billy which they all loved, John took them to Grants Picnic Ground so they could see cockatoos and feed them – which caused plenty of laughter as they bravely made friends with the birds!

Knowing they would appreciate the history of an old historic Australian homestead, John called in to Paynes Rise Winery and sowed them the original Paynes’ family home Circa 1860, before heading to Beechworth Bakery – their request – for lunch.  Joan called in to meet them and welcome them to Healesville as she and Wanping had shared so many emails back and forth she wanted to meet her in person.

After lunch, the group popped next door to Brown Brothers’ Innocent Bystander for a wine tasting and they particularly enjoyed the reds.

Then it was time to hit the Chocolaterie for a spot of hand-made Belgian chocolates and ice cream and John even managed to fit in a final wine tasting at Yering Station before heading back to Melbourne.

They all loved their day in the Yarra Valley and Dandenongs – commenting on the views and the space, the stunning Autumn leaves and how much fun they had had being together on tour.

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