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Big things

Road trips are anything but boring, especially when you know you're bound to pass some pretty surprising roadside monuments that, due to their colossal size, are weird, wonderful and wacky all in one.

Victoria boasts a number of "big things" along its roadsides, some of which appear to have a genuine reason for existence, but others that appear to have been erected only to rouse a smile from weary road trippers in need of an excuse for a rest stop.

Big Cigar

Big Cigar

Located outside the Latrobe Valley town of Churchill you will find the Big Cigar.

The unique landmark was erected in honour of Sir Winston Churchill and was fashioned to look like a very large replica of the type of cigar he was regularly seen toting.

The town of Churchill was named after the British leader, Sir Winston, who was an outspoken political figurehead and who played an important role in the early history of Australian.

Churchill residents originally thought they would be getting five of these giant cigars erected at various spots across their town, but only the one was ever actually built.

Giant Earthworm

Giant Earthworm

The small rural town of Bass has a population of less than 1000 inhabitants, but it boasts the biggest worm around.

The Giant Earthworm is brightly decorated with murals depicting Australian nature and wildlife. It is located at Wildlife Wonderland, on the corner of the Bass Highway and Acton Road. Wildlife Wonderland and the Giant Earthworm have now closed, but you can still view this iconic big thing from the entrance gate.

Gippsland earthworms can grow up to 3 metres in length and have sometimes been confused with snakes due to their size and shape.

Giant Koala

Giant Koala

Trek through the Grampians region of Victoria and you shall stumble upon a larger than life big koala, made out of a faux-stone type material and known to draw attention from busloads of visitors every day of the week. The Giant Koala has a little gift shop, snack bar and tavern located within, a welcome stopover for tired travellers and amused tourists.

The Giant Koala is located on the Western Highway at Dadswells Bridge, between Stawell and Horsham.

Further information: The Giant Koala

Giant Murray Cod

Giant Murray Cod

An accommodation hot spot and picturesque location with the lot, that is Swan Hill, located on Victoria's famous Murray River.

A favourite stopover for fishing enthusiasts, it is little wonder that Swan Hill is also home to the Giant Murray Cod, an 11 metre long blue and green fish which was originally built as a prop for the movie Eight Ball and adopted by locals in Swan Hill in an effort to make the "big things" list of Victoria.

Big Ned Kelly

Big Ned Kelly

Readied for gun battle and donning his infamous tin mask, stands the colossal statue of Ned Kelly, within the north-eastern Victorian town of Glenrowan.

Glenrowan was the sight of the famous bushrangers "last stand" and the Ned Kelly statue pays homage to the Glenrowan shootout that ended the life of Ned Kelly and his notorious gang in 1880.

Visitors with interest in the Ned Kelly statue may wish to visit the monument erected in honour of the three police officers murdered by the Kelly Gang in Mansfield.

Further information: Glenrowan tourist centre

Big Pheasant

Big Pheasant

Not only is Gumbuya Park at Tynong a family fun park with an array of fun-sized features, but it is also home to the Big Pheasant.

The pheasant is a native bird in the area, and the Big Pheasant monument is an icon along the Princes Freeway south-east of Melbourne.

Visitors to Gumbuya Park, which is open daily, can enjoy the toboggan slides, mini car circuit, paddle boats and mini golf games.

Further information: Gumbuya Park

Giant Potatoes & Forks

Giant Potatoes & Forks

The Spud Shed is a fruit and vegetable retail outlet which specialises in the sale of local Thorpdale potatoes and is located on the Princes Highway between Yarragon and Trafalgar.

In front of the shed is a huge sculpture of potatoes on a dinner plate with forks inserted into them. Created by a local artist in 2008 to coincide with the United Nations International Year of the Potato, the potatoes are made from large local bluestone rocks, some of which weigh over 2 tonnes, while the 6 red forks are made from steel and stand over 3 metres high.

The Giant Potatoes & Forks sculpture highlights the importance of agriculture to the region and the role of potatoes as an important food source.

Big Wine Bottle

Big Wine Bottle

Hidden within Victoria's premier wine region is the town of Rutherglen, a country village with plenty of history, plenty of vineyards and a big wine bottle to boot.

An attraction for road trippers, the Big Wine Bottle is believed to pay homage to the growing number of award-winning cellar doors in the region and is located on Rutherglen's Tower Hill on the outskirts of the town.

The Big Wine Bottle hosts a water tank on its top, which was originally a secondary water supply for the community, but is now unused. The whole structure is over 35 metres in height.

Big Wool Bales

Big Wool Bales

Nestled in western Victoria and to the south of the Grampians National Park is the town of Hamilton.

Hamilton is well-known as the "wool capital of the world" so it's little wonder that you can feast your eyes on the Big Wool Bales on Coleraine Road. They stand tall as a tribute to the local wool industry.