Central to the countryside's rich farming land and well-known attractions, Cobden is a small town located 208 kilometres southwest of Melbourne. Situated just 10 minutes from the Princes Highway and 30 minutes north of the Great Ocean Road, Cobden's friendly locals, community spirit and lovely accommodation options make it the perfect base from which to explore the surrounding sites.
The land around Cobden was first settled by Scottish immigrant Dr Daniel Curdie in 1840. He quickly selected a run and established “Tandarook” homestead, one of the earliest properties on the western plains, in the low lying hills surrounding the Curdies River. The name itself came from two aboriginal words: ‘Tan’ meaning hill and ‘Darock” meaning native bread.
A January 1922 issue of the Cobden Times reported how at that time local aborigines regularly visited an isolated hill near the Tandarook run to obtain a local fungus known as blackfellows’ bread. Perhaps they were of the Kuurn Kopan Noot tribe, who were thought to have lived in this area before European settlement.
Cobden was surveyed in 1860 and was originally known as Lovely Banks. At this time blocks of land were selling for 8 pounds an acre. The population grew considerably, with many new settlers being tradesmen and agriculturists. In 1865, the town’s name was changed to Cobden after leading British Statesman and free trade advocate, Richard Cobden. Early industry was diverse, but the dairy industry was particularly prosperous and the first centralised dairy factory was opened in Cobden during 1888.
Visit the Welcome to Cobden website