Imagine a fairytale village high in the Victorian Alps, nestled amongst the snow gums and featuring a unique architecture of stone and timber buildings - and you would be thinking of the alpine village of Dinner Plain. With mild summer days for hiking, biking, fishing and relaxing and in winter the range of snow sports both within Dinner Plain or 10 minutes away at Mount Hotham.
Family oriented, with around 300 houses and apartments, all built in the spirit of the high country cattlemen's huts, Dinner Plain is located above the snowline at 1520 metres and surrounded by the Alpine National Park. There's no other village in Australia like Dinner Plain.
- 1 Location
- 2 Pros
- 3 Cons
- 4 Contacts
- 5 Planning
- 6 Resort Facilities
- 7 Ride Guide
- 8 Other
- 9 Resources
The town atmosphere and architecture. The town layout works well, better than most other ski towns. The main drag (Big Muster Drive) forms a loop from the entrance roundabout, with side streets leading off it. The buildings are infinite variations on a uniform theme, they can be a bit twee, but overall the architcture is both entertaining and unique.
Whilst there there is 15 km of cross country runs, there is only a beginners lift, meaning that most skiers have to drive 10 km to Hotham for down hill. The snow isn't terribly reliable either.
Phone: 1300 734 365
In the snow season, a shuttle bus service is available between Dinner Plain and Mount Hotham. Information is also available from your accommodation provider. A night bus operates between Hotham and Dinner Plain a few nights per week.
Motel style at Rundells Alpine Lodge, High Plains Hotel, Currawong Lodge or the Retreat at Michaels. There are also three accommodation booking agents in Dinner Plain.
Harrietville or Omeo. The drive up from Omeo is easier than the Harrietville side in bad weather.
$52 Adult ticket for the platter lift.
Beginner lessons are available for both skiing and snowboarding or you can get XC lessons.
Hoys Ski Hire and Pinnacle DP.
If you are coming up from the Omeo side, Billies ski hire is a good stop for chains. On the Harrietville side, stop at Rays Ski Hire in Myrtleford or Hoys Ski Hire in Harrietville.
Cars can be driven in the village along well sealed roads. Walking is easy. The village is not as exposed as Hotham.
You can get to Hotham on the free shuttle bus which leaves from the carpark near the roundabout.
Car parking is limited at most houses and lodges, however a free overnight car park is available for additional vehicles at the Scrubbers End car park, off Big Muster Drive. Contact your accommodation provider for details and map. Don't park on other properties or the roadside as it interferes with snowclearing operations. Rundells Alpine Lodge and High Plains Hotel provide on-site parking for all guests. When parking your vehicle in winter, please ensure that you have anti-freeze in the coolant system and do not engage the handbrake (the brakes may freeze).
- EDIT ACTIVITY
Mountain Fresh Festival - July Advance Sled Dog Challenge - August 4x4 Challenge - September
Sled Dog Tours Snowshoe Tours Cross country skiing Onsen Retreat and Spa Skiing and Boarding for beginners at the DP Ski Run
There are a few short walks, notably to nearby Carmichael Falls. Details of full day walks can be found on the Hiking notes page under the heading Mt Hotham and Dinner Plain.
- Horse Riding
Huge range of rides available in the surrounding areas including the Bogong High plains and local rivers.
- Fly Fishing
Available in Bundarrah, Cobungra and Mitta Mitta rivers or even Rocky Valley Pondage
- Mountain biking
All the XC trails become walking and mountain biking trails in summer, there is some more challenging rides if you want to go looking a bit more.
Open all year round - Brandy Creek Cafe, Cilantro, DP Hotel, High Plains Hotel, Rundells, Tsubo
Bars & Entertainment
Cobungra Bar, DP Hotel, Rundells Bar, Cilantro
For alpine skiing there is a platter lift and that is the beginners area. Beyond that head up to Hotham. There are a number of beginner XC tracks in the area as well.
The beginners run is groomed when it is open and the XC tracks are groomed and set regularly if not daily when conditions permit.
Nothing for downhill.
Out of Bounds
Nothing for downhill.
There are many trails in the area with a few loops to the village. Skiing can be had all the way up to Hotham from here, and trails are groomed on a daily basis.
There are a number of loops between Hotham and Dinner Plain, and a common event is to either ski up and Hotham and take the bus back or vice versa.
Near the wire plain carpark there is also a shooting range for Biathlon events. Near the shooting range there is a ski trail underpass so that you do not have to cross the road.
There are no trail fees or park entry fees, so if you stay at DP, your XC skiing is basically free.
Parks & Pipes
The downhill run is in a sheltered bowl, it doesn't get much more sheltered than this. The only downside is if it is snowing, but not to a low level, there is a chance you will get rain here but snow up at Hotham.
When its on the ground the whole village offers snowplay! Ideal location for this activity really.
There is a fenced off toboggan area at the Ski Run.
Dinner Plain sits on the South East side of Hotham. This will mean that it will be on the lee side of storms coming from the west, and in the path of storms coming from the south east.
The dumps that give places like Baw Baw good snow (ie: east coast lows) will tend to dump snow at Dinner plain and and onto the Combungra Plateau. Dumps from the west will leave all their snow at Hotham and the clouds will dissipate near Dinner Plain. This will mean that Hotham can be getting powder, while DP can be getting sun.
DP is on the ridge top, but it is not as exposed as Hotham and is amounst the snowgums providing shelter. If XC skiing, there are open plains to traverse so take warm gear.
The site of Dinner Plain village was originally part of 640 acres selected by Rundells of Flourbag Plain and was then known as Rundells Paddock. When the coaches started running between Omeo and Bright, they used to stop here for midday dinner, hence the area became known as Dinner Plain.
Opposite the entry to the village there is a CRB (Country Roads Board) hut built early last century, one of the few local huts to survive the devastating Black Friday fires of the 1939. In later years several more huts were added to accommodate snow clearing and road maintenance operations, however these have since been removed.
Dinner Plain village was commenced in 1986 by John Castran, Peter McIntyre, Geoffrey Henke and Richard Humphries, and features buildings architecturally inspired by the characteristics of the old cattlemen's huts. Construction is restricted to timber, local stone and corrugated iron, with a limited range of colours approved. Strict covenants limit such detractions as antennae, fences and washing lines, and all buildings must be lower than the height of the trees in the area.
The architectural success of Dinner Plain has since led to the development of the Australian alpine style, which is now being adopted as a benchmark by all other alpine resorts in Australia.
Complimentary village maps and the Dinner Plain Village Guide are provided by most commercial operators in the village. A range of other maps are also available at the Dinner Plain Visitor Information Centre or from Accommodation Services of Dinner Plain, both on Big Muster Drive.