Eating Out in the Collie River Valley

For a country town we are not short on fantastic places to eat out. Here are some of out favourites!

The Colliefields

Sitting on the corner of Throssell and Steere Sts, the Colliefields is one of the oldest buildings in town.

They are open 7 days a week for breakfast and lunch and with a variety  of vegan, gluten, egg, soy and dairy free options, no one is left out. Choose from big breakfasts, scrumptious lunches and decadent cakes. Most menu items are available dine in or take away.

With generous servings, excellent coffee and a huge range of teas the Colliefields gets a thumbs up from us.

Harris River Estate Winery

You will find Harris River Estate Winery 5 kms north of Collie on Harris River Rd.
They are open Wednesday to Sunday from 12 to 3.30 pm and offer delicious tapas style lunches. You can choose between a table indoors or out on the balcony. During the milder weather, we recommend a table out on the balcony over looking the vineyard and the dam.

Take the opportunity to try some of the award winning wines and treat yourself to a bottle or two to take home with you.

The Feddy

Everyone loves a good pub feed and the Federal Hotel, or Feddy, the locals call it, is the perfect place to take the entire family.

They are open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner and the large outdoors grassed area is perfect for the kids to run around, while the grown ups enjoy their meal. Just check opening times on public holidays.

The menu changes frequently, offering old favourites and fresh new options.

Wagon 537

Wagon 537 is  a real vintage rail car that has been converted into a stylish modern cafe with a fresh menu that you would expect to find in the city, not a country town.

They are conveniently located in Central Park and open early for breakfast and lunch.

The Adventure Playground and Water Park located in the same space meaning you can grab a coffee and eats while the kids play!

8 Thai Ladies

If you like quality Thai food, you will love 8 Thai Ladies. With an incredible menu of genuine Thai food to choose from, you will soon be heading back for more.

If Thai is not your thing, there are western options available as well.

You will find them, down town on Forrest St and have the choice of dining indoors or at a table on the footpath, where you can sit and watch the world go by.

Old Collie railway Station

The Old Collie Railway Station is on Throssell St, opposite the Colliefields Hotel and serves simple traditional station meals; scones, sandwiches, rolls, salad plates and pies, just like the meals that were sold there decades ago.
As you sit and eat, imagine all the people who sat in the same spot  eating similar food while waiting for the train, 100 years ago.
When you visit, allow time to watch the model trains weave their way through the tracks of the old Collie townsite.

The Kiosk at the Dam

Located just above the Wellington Dam, the Kiosk offers a range of pies, burgers and delicious home made cakes served with real coffee.

Whether you are just there exploring for the day or spending a few nights at one of the nearby Potters Gorge or honeymoon Pool, make sure you allow time to call into the Kiosk and sit and watch the blue wrens frolic in the bird bath surrounding gardens.

Their opening hours vary seasonally so check their Facebook Page for current opening times.

Jax Corner Deli and Diner

Jax Diner is located at the western end of Johnston Street. They offer both indoor dining and a lovely alfresco area.

Their menu is modern and fresh, with a delightful mini salad bar.

They are open for breakfast and lunch Monday to Saturday, plus dinner on Friday evenings. Check their Facebook Page for details and times.

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Top 10 Picnic Spots!

Autumn is here!

Well that’s Summer done and dusted for now. As we pack away the unicorn floaty and selfie stick our thoughts wander to what we may get up to in the cooler months.

For Collie this means it’s trail walking and mountain biking season. Sections of the brand new Wiilman Bilya Trail, in the Wellington National Park have been completed. This multi day hike will, when completed, circumnavigate Wellington Dam, taking in Potters Gorge and a purpose built campsite only available to users of this trail, much like the campsites built exclusively for Bibbulmun Track and Munda Biddi users. Another trail under construction right now leads walkers and riders from the CBD to the gorgeous Minninup Pool. 

All this trail talk is making us hungry, thats where a good old fashioned picnic comes into play!

We’ve sussed out the top 10 picnic spots in the Collie River Valley. Most locations come equipped with picnic tables, toilets and parking but ALL definitely come with a gorgeous and unique setting to enjoy a quiet afternoon. Add a nice bush walk or mountain bike ride and it sounds like a perfect day to us!

Top 10 Picnic spots in the CRV.

Harris River Dam is located 13km to the North of the Collie CBD along Harris River Rd.  This dam is used for drinking water and features a lovely park area adjacent to the carpark. A large toilet block, various picnic tables and free BBQ’s are a highlight as are the walking paths that connect each area. Just prior to the dam sits the exquisit Harris River Estate Winery. The #visitcollie team thoroughly recommend a stop in at their cellar door to sample the award winning wines, craft beers and ciders. 

You can discover more about Harris River Estate Winery here.

Soldiers Park in the CBD is a fantastic central location for a picnic. Featuring towering trees, a terrific playground, brand new toilet facilities, picnic tables and free BBQ’s it’s and ideal spot to pick up some tucker, let the kids off the leash and unwind. The adjacent skate park means there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Bring the mountain bikes and hit the awesome Wagyl Biddi trail. The trail head is right at the park and takes you along the river around a bush section and back again. Perfect to work up an appetite!

You can find out more about the Wagyl Biddi Trail here.

Glorious Stockton Lake sits 10km east of Collie. This once open cut coal mine now recreation lake is popular with campers and water skiers. The magnificent blue lake is Black Diamonds big brother and makes a terrific spot to pull out the camp chairs and enjoy a picnic.

You can read more about Stockton Lake here.

World famous Honeymoon Pool needs little introduction. Perched on the banks of the Collie River, fed from the depths of Wellington Dam, glorious Honeymoon Pool is shaded by stunning peppermint trees and features free electric BBQ’s, a toilet block and lovely boardwalk to enjoy. Busy during the summer months, weekends and school holidays, if you visit midweek and off peak you’ll almost have it to yourself. If a nice bush walk is on the cards follow the waters edge with it on your right shoulder and you’ll pick up the Jabitj Trail. This two hour walk follows the river all the way back to the Kiosk at the Dam. You can read about our hike on the Jabitj Trail here.

Honeymoon Pool is situated 15km west of Collie within the Wellington National Park. Please note: Pets are not permitted within National Parks.

You’ll find Minninup Pool just a couple of kilometres from the Collie CBD along Mungalup Rd. This wide bend in the river is a popular swimming and kayaking spot during summer. Featuring a toilet block, bitumen parking, picnic tables with shade and a glorious vista, it’s no wonder Minny made it into our top 10!

Also situated within the stunning Wellington National Park, Potters Gorge campsite has undergone a remarkable renovation in the last few years and is a firm favourite. Keep an eye out on the entrance road for the Day Visit area. Featuring a large car park, toilet facilities, various gazebo style picnic areas with free electric BBQ’s that offer magic views across the water. From here you can pick up the new Wiilman Bilya trail for walking or pack the bikes and hit the pump track located within the Potters Gorge camping area.

You can read more about Potters Gorge in our recent blog here.

By now you’d be getting the picture that the Collie area is blessed with an abundance of picturesque water!

Cute as a button Glen Mervyn dam is located 20km south of the Collie townsite along the Preston-Collie Road. Popular with campers and water skiers. The day visit area is on the highway side of the water and generally campers camp on the opposite side. There is two toilet blocks provided, one on each side of the lake. There are picnic tables at the southern end near the dam wall. The world famous Bibbulmun Track passes through here along the western shore. It can be picked up from the dam wall and followed for 4km to the best bush pub around. The Mumby. Visit for lunch and a refreshment, you may even catch a great live music act!

To find out more about Glen Mervyn Dam, go here.

No water views this time, but this dramatic granite rock wall makes an excellent backdrop for a picnic. The quarry was active when the granite was used to build the Wellington Dam wall. Now popular with rock climbers and abseilers (by bookings only) it makes an excellent choice to let the kids run riot around the vast grassed area. Featuring picnic tables and BBQ’s the Quarry has snuck into our top 10 picnic spots in the CRV!

The Quarry is within the Wellington Dam National Park, unfortunately our four legged friends will have to stay home.

Photo: Courtesy Explore Parks WA

Another total gem within the Wellington National Park is Lenard Drive. This gorgeous one-way sealed road leads from the base of the dam wall to Honeymoon Pool, and is packed with 4 stunning picnic spots. Our pick for the top 10 is Long Pool. The last stop before turning off into Honeymoon Pool. Leave the crowds behind and pack a sumptuous feast, sit back under the shady trees on the provided picnic tables and get that perfect insta-selfie on the steps into the water.

You can discover more about Long Pool in our blog post here.

Smack bang in the middle of town, right on the main street sits Central Park. Loaded with features a mile long, stunning Central Park boasts it’s very own Vintage Train wagon serving up the best range of food and coffee going. Dotted with various tables to perch at it also has free BBQ’s, a brand new toilet and shower block, free water park for the kids, adventure nature playground and a large grassed area to kick the footy around. Free WIFI is available and the local bakery is conveniently just across the road!

You can read more about WAGON 537 here.


Well there you have it folks, Collie seems to be an absolute Picnicking Mecca. We love the Leave no Trace philosophy here at #visitcollie. You can google it, but it means basically to look after these areas and clean up after ourselves. Even better, leave these areas better than how we find them. That way everyone can enjoy them.


If you’re wondering where to go to gather supplies for your picnic we’ll give you some hot tips:

For that classic, country butchers shop you can’t go past SPRY’s – Located on the corner of Atkinson and Jones Streets you won’t go wrong if you plan to make use of the free BBQ’s listed in this top 10.

For an epic range of house made Salads head to Jax Diner – Located on the Corner of Atkinson and Johnston Streets.

For Coffee and Cake stop by the Colliefields – Located on the corner of Throsell and Steere Streets

For wraps, cold pressed juices and coffee visit Wagon 537 in Central Park on Forrest Street.

That Classic Aussie Country Pub, it’s why we LOVE the Federal Hotel!

Perched on the hill overlooking town...

Perched on the hill overlooking town, the Federal Hotel or “Feddy” as it’s known has been around since Moses was a boy. It’s been reborn in various stages of its life, today it’s known as Collie’s food and family pub. Featuring a huge dining room, the Feddy can cater for the largest of groups as well as small gatherings. The accommodation upstairs is iconic country hotel simplicity and offers an affordable stay for those weekenders away.

Hands up who loves a great Beer Garden!

No pub is complete without a good alfresco area in our book, the Feddy has the best in town. A large grassed area attracts the little ones for a good run around as Mum & Dad enjoy their lunch. A stage is located in the corner of the yard and often features great cover bands from all around WA.

Through the warmer months the beer garden is packed on a Sunday afternoon as the ubiquitous Sunday Session kicks off. If you’ve not much on list to do early Monday morning, put on your dancing shoes, order a meal from the mouth watering menu and settle in for a big one!

Food, Glorious Food...

The Federal places a strong emphasis on their food and menu which changes each season. Currently on the Summer Menu for a little longer, we recently enjoyed the Spicy Nacho’s – this dish is the real deal with quality beef mince, salsa, corn tortillas, sour cream and jalapenos balanced on top. The perfect dish to share between a group as the sun sets on another weekend.

If communal dining isn’t your thing, you can always choose from the really well thought out menu. Perfectly cooked Steaks, eye watering Parmigianas, Steak Sandwiches are the top of our list and there’s a great selection for the little ones too.

Definitely put the Feddy on the list for lunch or dinner when you’re next adventuring in the CRV. 

The Track – MundAl

‘The Track’ is a 4WD track starting in Mundaring, near Perth WA and ending in Albany on the south coast. It is not hard core 4WDing, but it is 900 km of mostly gravel roads, with some amazing scenery and heaps of fun along the way. The Track will eventually be 4000 km long and each section will have it’s own name. This section is known as the MundAL, by combining the names Mundaring and Albany.

You can camp out at various places along the track or chose to stay in one of the towns the Track passes through, such as Collie. Read on for several great suggestions on camping and accommodation, where to eat and what not to miss.

Collie boasts two major supermarkets, open 7 days a week; two fuel outlets, one of which is open 24/7 and numerous specialty stores selling clothing and gift ware.

There are several options for accommodation ranging from a caravan park with tent/van sites and onsite chalets, a back packer style motel, several country pubs and an upmarket motel with modern apartments; plenty of eating places offering a variety of cuisines and some fantastic attractions that are well worth a visit.

Accommodation

You will most likely pass through Collie on the first day and if you are looking for a comfy bed you have a number of choices. Click on the pictures to be redirected for more info and bookings etc. For even more accommodation options contact the Collie Visitor Centre

The Colliefields is very reasonable priced and offers clean rooms, comfy beds and awesome hot rainfall showers. A simple breakfast of cereal, fruit and toast is included in the price of the room.
Collie River Valley Tourist Park offers caravan and tent sites and onsite cabins. The park is known for its immaculately clean facilities.
If you want something a little more up market, The Ridge Motel is a fairly new, modern motel with all the trimmings you would expect. if you really want to indulge, you could even book a spa room.
The Federal Hotel Collie offer comfy clean rooms and serve all the pub favourites for lunch and dinner in the restaurant downstairs, all in a family friendly environment.

If camping is more your style

There are two designated camping spots, in the Collie Shire, along The Track. (For info on other camping spots near Collie click here) Camping and lighting of fires is not allowed outside these areas. Fires are not permitted at Glen Mervyn at any time of the year.

Stockton Lake is situated 10 km east of Collie and although it is a slight diversion from The Track it is well worth it to see the amazing blue water.
Glen Mervyn Campsite is right on The Track, a short drive out of Collie and offers free camping on the banks of the dam.

 

Places to eat

There is no shortage of places to eat in Collie and a good variety of cuisines available. Here are a few of our favourites, but you will certainly find others if you go for a stroll along Throssell or Forrest Sts.

The Colliefields are easy to find on Throssell St and open early for breakfast. They also serve delicious lunches, decadent cakes, superb coffee and a huge range of teas. If you dare, try one of their megashakes.
Wagon 537 are located in Central Park and are open early for breakfast and lunch. They serve up delicious wraps, fantastic burgers, great coffee and fresh juices.
Jax Diner are on the corner of Forrest and Atkinson Sts and open from 7 to 3 on Monday to Saturday. They offer a range of delicious meals and healthy salads. Choose to eat indoors or alfresco.
If you like genuine Thai food then don't miss 8 Thai Ladies on the corner of Forrest and Steere Sts. They are open for lunch and dinner on Tuesday to Saturday and lunch on Sunday and Monday.

 

Things to do in Collie

If you are travelling with kids and they need to let off steam, Central Park and the Water Playground is perfect. In the warmer weather the kids love the free water park and coffee is nearby at Wagon 537.
Soldiers Park is another favourite spot for families with kids. The littlies love the playground and the bigger kids have a blast at the skate park. There is even a Liberty Swing for kids with disabilities.
Here in Collie we are very proud of our A Class Art Gallery that attracts some pretty impressive exhibitions. Check out their Facebook Page for what is on show currently.
Once inside The Replica Underground Mine is just like a real mine. Take the self guided tour, or ring ahead to arrange a tour with a real retired underground miner as your guide.
The Coalfields Museum houses the most amazing collection of items from Collie's coal mining past.
Collie is home to some amazing MTB and Walking Trails suitable for all the family. Check out the #CollieTrails tab on the menu for details

 

Stay safe, be responsible and have fun!

While using The Track, always drive carefully and exercise common sense.

Stay on The Track to avoid the spread of dieback . There is a Car Wash in Collie, where you can thoroughly wash your vehicle, including the underneath, to prevent the spread of disease that can kill our local forests. You will find it on the corner of Throssell and Brunswick  Sts at the eastern end of town.

Avoid causing unnecessary damage to The Track, so others can enjoy it after you. Remember for the people who live in the communities you are passing through, these are their local roads and they need to be able to use them to go about their daily business of getting the kids to school and going to the shops etc.

Carry plenty of water just in case, take all your rubbish away with you, check current local fire restrictions before lighting a fire and consider investing in a camping toilet before you set off, or at the very least a small shovel or trowel to dig a hole with.

But most of all have heaps of fun and bring home some amazing memories!

NOTE: ‘The Track’ is what is known as a live track. The actual route may change seasonally if roads are closed due to fires and floods etc. To get the current route, go to the WA 4WD website a few days before setting off and download the Way Points   DOWNLOAD THE WAY POINTS HERE 

WATCH THE VIDEO – THE TRACK  

A restored Vintage Train Carriage located in Central Park serving up Dude food, lighter options and the BEST coffee!

In the beginning...

It all started a couple of years ago, a tender was put out to have a permanent food vendor set up shop in the brand new Central Park, the jewel in the Crown in the Shire of Collie’s Royalties for Regions funding application. 

The park boasts a kids water park, nature playground plus all the usual park play items, the Bendigo Bank Music Shell and the new Collie Art Gallery. Free BBQ’s and seating compliment the original gazebo in the eastern corner which was retained from the original design. On the western side of the park facing Forrest St, the main shopping strip, some blockwork appeared along with a set of railway tracks, this gave a clue as to what may appear!

Locals were hoping for something a little bit special, something original, not only in structure but also in food offerings. Proprietors Rachel & Emma tells us it was the plan all long to blend with and complement Collie’s strong rail heritage.

The wagon was originally in use in 1900’s. Loveling restored by family and the Collie Men’s Shed group and then converted to a cafe by Rachel & Emma in a contemporary style with funky vintage style lighting and decor it really is easy to see these girls have style.

The southern side of the wagon features a really clever ramp allowing great accessibility for people of all abilities and on the northern side steps and a deck bring you up to shop level to place an order.

The stroke of genius for many is the little buzzer thing that allows you to place your order then disappear off to enjoy Central Park whilst you wait for it to flash its lights and buz away to let you know your order is ready

The Food...

Did someone say Dude Food?

The menu at Wagon537 evolves and changes like most, but of late, we’ve been massive fans of the loaded Hot Dogs and the Wagon CheeseBurger. We’re not exactly sure what it is but we’re certain it’s the little things these guys do right that just hits you in the feels. Damn they’re good!

It’s not all hearty fare though, the Wagon crew offer up some seriously quick and tasty health conscious tucker too! 

Chose from wraps, toasties and Cold Pressed juices, Pulled Pork burgers or tackle the epic “Wagon Burger” 

 

The Coffee...

Like any Cafe worth their salt, coffee is the backbone of the operation. Haven’t got good coffee? Forget it!

Well just as luck would have it, these guys know good coffee! Their beans are roasted right here in the South west and sourced responsibly from the Margaret River Roasting Co. Choose from Espresso, Flat White, Latte, Cappuccino, Mocha, Macchiato, Hot Chocolate, White Hot Chocolate, Baby Chinos plus a wide selection of teas!

Emma tells us the responsible business model fits right in with the Wagons mantra to keep their environmental impact low.

Future Focused...

Rachel and Emma like any new start up have ridden the rollercoaster of business but tell us they’re not losing sight of their mission to …”provide Collie and it’s visitors excellent coffee, compliment Central Park and keep our environmental impact low” Emma wraps up our chat by saying “…we’re forever grateful to our community for the on going support. It sounds cliche, but we’d be nowhere without the loyalty from our customers. Without their support, there would be no business, which means we couldn’t offer new jobs in town. We really want to see our town thrive. We’re seeing more and more tourists coming through the town – it’s amazing. We have so much to offer here in Collie, we’re very lucky!”

We reckon too Emma!

To keep up to date with what’s going on at Wagon537 or to find out more go to : facebook/wagon537