Situated in the foothills of the Great Dividing Range, Mansfield is surrounded by grazing land and mountain forests, with the area well-known for its stunning scenery.
The town centre has several historical buildings, dating back to its days as a stock route camp in the 1940s and a gold mining service centre beginning in the 1850s. High Street and Highett Street form tree-lined boulevards with gardens along their wide central strip as they meet in the town centre. At their junction is a marble monument which was erected in 1880 as a tribute to a group of constables killed by bushranger Ned Kelly.
Mansfield is very much a tourist town featuring a wide range of accommodation and vibrant commercial centre which caters for the many visitors who then travel to the ski resorts of Mount Buller or Mount Stirling via Merrijig.
Around 25 kilometres north of Mansfield on the Midland Highway is Lake Nillahcootie which is a man made lake built in 1968 on the Broken River and used for irrigation. Visitors to the lake enjoy attractive picnic grounds, BBQs and a boat ramp, making the lake suitable for fishing, swimming and boating activities.
Lake Eildon and its surrounding national park lies close to Mansfield, with numerous access points. About 20 kilometres west of town is Brankeet Inlet near Bonnie Doon. Alternatively, there are several small communities situated on the shores of the lake to the south, including Howes Creek and Goughs Bay. Following the road to Woods Point southwards passes beside the lake front communities of Macs Cove and Howqua, then onto the small picturesque town of Jamieson, located at the south-eastern corner of Lake Eildon.