What is significant?
Chinamans Bridge is an extensive timber bridge which spans the Goulburn River 2.7 kilometres west of the Goulburn Valley Highway. It is believed to have been constructed in 1891 and at the time was known as Kerris Bridge. The bridge was funded with a joint grant from the Public Works Department and the Water Supply Department. It was designed by the Goulburn Shire Council Engineer and constructed by the contractor JB Parkinson at a cost of £4188 3s 6d.

The bridge included a lift span to enable sawmill and recreation steamers to continue to utilise the Goulburn River. The Nagambie Sawmill steamer passed through the bridge six times a week during the 1890s. Chinamans bridge originally carried the Nagambie-Heathcote Road across the Goulburn River, however the road has now been re-aligned to be carried over the river by a new bridge nearby. Chinamans Bridge was given its name because the Nagambie-Heathcote Road, once known as Chinamans Road, was in an area populated by Chinese market gardeners up until 1916. Chinamans Bridge is a timber girder bridge with hand hewn squared timber stringers strutted to the piers and timber corbels and deck.

The arrangement of spans supports the view that the bridge at one time incorporated a lift span to provide for the passage of river traffic, however only the timber fenders remain. The drawbridge span was replaced, around 1940, with a steel span.

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The thing that strikes you most about the Nagambie Lakes region is its accessibility to Melbourne – just 80 minutes from go to whoa. Hardly time for a single “Are we there yet?”

Travelling north along the Hume Hwy and take the Shepparton turnoff along the Goulburn Valley Hwy. The first town is Nagambie the heart of the Nagambie lakes region, extending along the Hume Freeway from Avenel to Longwood and following the Goulburn Valley Highway to Nagambie and the historic Goulburn Weir.
The Nagambie region also boasts one of the most temperate climates in Victoria: not too hot, not too cold …just right! And with less average rainfall than Melbourne and other areas, you’ll be free to enjoy much more of the outdoor activities the region has to offer.

As you reach the Nagambie Lakes region you will pass a number of famous wineries – landmarking them for subsequent viticultural research! – while other magnificent natural attractions such as rivers, lakes and wetlands loom large. All so near and clear… indeed, you’ll find that you’re asking yourself how this jewel in Victoria’s crown can be so close to the hustle and bustle of Melbourne.