Vaughan Springs and Southern Castlemaine Diggings


Vaughan Springs and Southern Castlemaine Diggings

Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park

Womin-Dji-Ka (Welcome)

Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park is part of the traditional lands of the Dja Dja Wurrung People. The Dja Dja Wurrung people’s rights were recognised through a Recognition and Settlement Agreement with the State of Victoria in March 2013. The Dja Dja Wurrung People maintain a close and continuing connection to Djandak, their traditional Country.

In the southern section of Castlemaine Diggings Heritage Park is Vaughan Mineral Springs. Take a stroll along the Loddon River and spot the various birdlife. Make sure you stop and sample the mineral water along the way!

The large open grassy areas are ideal for family picnics. Children will love the giant slide and the opportunity to splash in the river on a hot summer’s day. Toilets, picnic tables, a shelter and free electric barbecues are provided.

Want to stay a little longer? Pitch your tent on the hill above the visitor area. With access to all the amenities of the picnic area, this is a popular family campground. Please note, dogs are not permitted.

Take a short walk from Vaughan Springs along the Goldfields Track to the Central Springs Heritage Site. You'll find the remains of a Chinese market garden. This peaceful spot is also great for wildlife and birdwatching.

Not far from Vaughan Springs, you can pull over and enjoy the view over Red Knob. This extraordinary landscape was created by sluicing – using a high-pressure water hose to wash away the soil. The result is an other-worldly landscape of dramatic red cliffs.

Bring a picnic to Glenluce Mineral Spring and enjoy the sounds of birdsong while exploring the intriguing rock formations in this tranquil bend in the Loddon River.

Another easy to explore spot is Irishtown. The landscape around is marked by the extensive remains of the early gold rush. This includes shallow diggings, a ruined house site and other signs of settlement.

Things To Do

A man watches his children swim in the Loddon River from his campsite at Vaughan Springs.

Camping at Castlemaine Diggings

Camping is available at Vaughan Mineral Springs, Warburtons Bridge and Chokem Flat Campgrounds. No fees or bookings are required. All sites are unpowered and facilities are limited.
A giant slide in the playscape at Vaughan Springs, Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park

Enjoy a family day out

Families will love historic Vaughan Springs, a popular picnic and camping area set on the banks of the Loddon River which makes an excellent base for exploring the southern section of Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park.
A family enjoys an autumn picnic at Vaughan Springs in Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park

Picnicking with family and friends

The large open grassy area beside the river is ideal for games and large groups or family gatherings. Parking, picnic tables, free electric barbecue, a shelter, and toilets are provided.

How to get there

Vaughan Springs and Southern Castlemaine Diggings

Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park is about 120km north of Melbourne. Turn off the Calder Highway at Elphinstone and travel 13km through Chewton to Castlemaine. The Park can also be accessed via the Pyrenees and Midland Highways. A regular rail service runs between Melbourne and Bendigo stopping at Castlemaine.


BBQ - Electric/Gas

When to go

Need to know

Vaughan Springs and Southern Castlemaine Diggings

Change of Conditions

Nature being nature, sometimes conditions can change at short notice. It’s a good idea to check this page ahead of your visit for any updates.

  • Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park

    Planned burn - Glenluce - Irishtown Track

    Planned burning operations are scheduled in Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park which will result in parts of the park near Irishtown Track being closed from the time a burn is approved for ignition until the area is declared safe. Ignition of the burn is scheduled from 21 April to 30 April and is subject to favourable weather. 

    Please see attached neighbour letter for more information, including maps.
    Burn name:                     LM-MGF-CAS-0625 Glenluce - Irishtown Tk
    Size:                                  399.22 hectares  
    Location:                          2.2km North of Glenluce
    Scheduled date:              Sunday 21 April - Tuesday 30 April 2024  (weather conditions permitting)
    For more information

    Attachments: LM-MGF-CAS-0625 Glenluce - Irishtown Tk Neighbour Letter 18-04-24 (388KB)

    Loop track closed due to Phytophthora outbreak

    Loop access will have limited vehicle access to reduced the risk of spread of phytophthora cinnamomi pathogen. 

  • Chokem Flat Camping Area

    Chokem Flat Campground Closure

    Chokem Flat Campground will be closed for approximately two weeks starting on 20/05/2024. 

    Annual weed spraying and mulching works will be conducted during this time. 

    Please use the camping facilities located at the nearby Warburtons Bridge Campground. Warbutons Bridge Campground can be accessed by travelling 1.34km South East on Campbells Creek Fryers Rd, a further 1km South on Vaughan Chewton Road and then turning at Drummond Vaughan Rd before travelling 1.75km and then crossing over the bridge until you reach the campground. 
    We apologise for any inconvenience.

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