A local’s guide to Orbost, East Gippsland

Sailors Grave Brewery

Orbost can be chilly place to visit in winter, tucked on the Snowy River in East Gippsland, but local brewers Chris and Gab Moore reckon the coldest time of year is worth celebrating.

The Moores will turn their Sailors Grave brewery into the central hub for Orbost’s first ever Deep Winter Festival, a three-day celebration of craft beer and local food from June 29 to Sunday, July 1. The program includes dinners, live music and workshops, with expert tips from Chris and 3 Ravens‘  Brendan O’Sullivan on the dark art of beer making, and fermentation masterclasses with The Fermentary‘s Sharon Flynn and Roger Fowler.

The Sailors Grave brewery is usually closed to the public, so the Deep Winter Festival is a great opportunity to take a look around the former Orbost Butter and Produce factory, while tasting beers inspired by the region’s beach, bush and farmland. And while you’re in East Gippsland, Chris has shared his five favourite places to eat, drink and play around Orbost.

  1. The Marlo Hotel

    1. Marlo Hotel
    2. 19 Argyle Pde, Marlo (03) 5154 8201
    3. The Marlo Hotel is an institution, with a huge deck, great meals, country hospitality and Sailors Grave beer behind the bar. This pub is a must-see in the region… a landmark to tick off your bucket list.
  2. Cape Conran Coastal Park

    1. Cape Conran, East Gippsland
    2. The beautiful Sailors Grave Beach in the Cape Conran Coastal Park inspired the name of our beer. It’s stunning. For me, in winter, the wild beauty of the East Gippsland coast is best seen along Cape Conran, and during the summer months it’s a great place to camp with safe swimming spots for kids at East Cape and the Yeerung River.
  3. Cycling the Rail Trail

    1. Snowy River Cycling
    2. Our local Rail Trail is just under 100km of gentle bike riding with no traffic, just forest, farmland and friendly country towns. Our neighbour at the butter factory, Snowy River Cycles, offers tours ranging from leisurely half-day rides through to fully supported six-day cycling tours.
  4. Stand Up Paddle Boarding

    1. SUP Marlo
    2. 4 Willis Ave, Marlo 0439 419 468
    3. Marlo’s Stand Up Paddle Boards (SUP) do tours and hire equipment at Marlo on the mouth of the Snowy River, which is a great place to learn to paddle before heading out into more challenging waters. The local bird and animal life is amazing, and whales come to visit. The small estuary has many lakes, backwaters, islands and tributaries to explore. They’re also prefect for fishing.
  5. Beachside Take Away & Kiosk

    1. Beachside burgers, Marlo
    2. 21 Marine Pde, Marlo, 0491 018 055
    3. This place makes really, really great burgers. Our son says they are they are the best in the world. With brioche buns and local hand-pressed Marlo beef patties, they’re the real deal. We also love the spicy southern fried chicken burgers, crumbed to order with their own house blend of spices.

A local’s guide to Orbost, East Gippsland