Twenty minutes from the Murray River port of Echuca, the northern Goulburn Valley town of Rochester is famous as the birthplace of one of the world’s all-time greatest cyclists, Hubert Opperman.
A man for all seasons, Oppy not only set cycling world records in both Australia and Europe, but he rose to the rank of Immigration Minister in the Federal Government and also served as Ambassador to Turkey.
The dairy town of Rochester honours the legend with a statue of Sir Hubert aboard his trusty Malvern Star bicycle, as well as by way of The Oppy Museum in the old railway station in Moore Street. The museum collection includes personal records, photographs, and the bike Opperman rode on a final circuit of Rochester on his 90th birthday in 1996.
A Northern Highway town of about 2500 people, Rochester flanks the Campaspe River, 28km south of Echuca. Rivalling the Opperman connection as the town's star attraction is the Campaspe Siphon, a singular engineering achievement which directs Waranga-Malleee irrigation channels under the river bed. The channels provide productive fishing grounds for anglers targeting Murray cod and bream.
Striking Random House homestead is set in 4ha of landscaped, riverside gardens.