Ensay is a charming town at the base of the Nunniong High Plains sitting alongside the Tambo and Little Rivers. It is well known for producing prime beef cattle and is now the home of the Ensay Winery. Two historic hotels are in picturesque locations at either end of the town. The Little River Inn started as a shack in the 1840s and is believed to be the oldest hotel in East Gippsland where you can enjoy a cold beer, good pub meal and budget accommodation. At the other end of town is the magnificent Pub Gallery, once the Ensay South Hotel built in 1892. It last served patrons in the early 1960s but it is now the home to Robert Logie's works of oil based paintings and drawings.
Tambo Crossing is a locality full of high country history on the Great Alpine Road between Ensay and Bruthen. It served as an important rest area for travellers in the 1800s who stayed at the Sir Walter Scott Hotel which tragically burnt down in 1961. Today it is prime farming land set alongside the magnificent Tambo River.
Must See & Do
- Break your journey at the Tambo Crossing Monument and relive the history of the area.
- Camp along the Tambo River at camping sites such as Double Bridges & Kennedy’s Pool.
- Relax at the local Ensay winery and indulge in a red ‘Devils Backbone’ or a crisp Chardonnay whilst soaking up the beautiful scenery and warmth of the Tambo Valley.
- Visit the historic Ensay South Hotel, Pub Gallery featuring paintings of local artist Robert Logie and see some of the original lace-iron verandah work.
- Enjoy a quiet ale while relishing in the history of the Historic Little River Inn.
- Take a drive through the Ensay Valley to the Moscow Villa Hut on Bentley Plain, sub-alpine grasslands and heathlands surrounded by attractive snow gums and mountain gum forests. Marvel at historic Washington’s Winch once used by loggers to snig logs up steep hillsides or catch a glimpse of a wild brumby on the Nunniong High plains.
- Learn about High Country Cattle at the Newcomen Cattle Stud & Nunniong Herefords.
- Stop off at Connor's Lookout and admire the view, recently referred to in the novel written by local author, Barry Heard ‘The View from Connor's Hill’.
- Take the scenic route around Doctor’s Flat which follows the beautiful Tambo River, and find yourself a good camping ‘posi’.
Bits of interest
- Despite the Little River Inn’s history of burning down at least three, and possibly four times, the original rings on which past customers tied up their horses still remain.
- The aboriginal name for Ensay is Numblamunjie, meaning ‘black fish”.
- In 1843 the original Ensay Station covered an enormous 38,400 acres (15,500 ha). Archibald Macleod named the station after the now unpopulated island of Ensay in the Outer Hebrides of his homeland of Scotland