Victoria, located in the southeastern part of Australia, is a captivating region that seamlessly merges the old-world charm with the buzz of modern life. It offers a diverse range of experiences, from the vibrant streets of Melbourne, known for its street art and culinary scene, to the scenic wonders of the Great Ocean Road, with its iconic Twelve Apostles and lush rainforests. Victoria’s beauty also extends to the peaceful Yarra Valley, where vineyards and gourmet food invite relaxation and indulgence.
This blog is your ticket to exploring some of Victoria’s finest destinations. It will introduce you to the remarkable variations between the urban life of Melbourne and the natural wonders of the Great Ocean Road, showing that Victoria truly has something to capture the heart of every traveller. So, embark on this virtual journey and discover the captivating blend of history, culture, and nature that makes Victoria, Australia, an enchanting place to explore.
Victoria’s Hidden Gems: Unmissable Destinations in Victoria
1: Exploring Melbourne: Australia’s Cultural Gem
Melbourne, the capital city of Victoria, is like a shining jewel in the heart of Australia, known for its unique and diverse character. It’s the second-largest city in the country and sits gracefully beside the Yarra River, making it a hub of culture, history, and modern living. Melbourne’s story goes back to the gold rush of 1851 when it experienced a huge population boom. During this time of newfound wealth, the city saw the construction of massive, majestic buildings that still define its skyline today.
Best Things To See And Do In Melbourne:
- Queen Victoria Market: Queen Victoria Market stands as a vibrant and time-honoured marketplace in the heart of Melbourne. People visit here from all over to explore its grand offerings, from fresh produce and clothing to exquisite jewellery and unique Australian souvenirs. With a history that spans more than a century, this market is an exceptional spot for immersing yourself in the sights, aromas, and flavours that define Melbourne’s rich cultural tapestry. Don’t miss the opportunity to experience the city’s unique charm and savour its delectable cuisine at this essential destination.
- AFL Game Or MCG Tour: Witness the heart-pounding excitement of Australian Rules Football with an AFL game at the legendary Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), where passionate fans create an electric atmosphere. Alternatively, delve into the MCG’s storied past and iconic moments on a guided tour, gaining a deeper appreciation for its role in shaping Australian sports culture.
- Theatre District: In Melbourne’s vibrant Theatre District, the stage comes alive with captivating performances, offering a delightful blend of drama, music, and the arts. This cultural enclave showcases a wide range of talents, from world-class productions to intimate showcases, making it a must-visit for those seeking a dose of creativity and entertainment in the heart of the city.
- Yarra River Cruise: A Yarra River cruise offers a serene and refreshing escape from the bustling streets of Melbourne. As you drift along the gentle currents, you will be treated to breathtaking vistas of the city’s iconic skyline and its charming riverside neighbourhoods. This leisurely experience provides a unique angle to appreciate Melbourne’s blend of urban sophistication and natural beauty, making it a must-do for both tourists and locals looking to unwind and savour the city’s picturesque charm.
- Laneways and Street Art: In Melbourne’s enchanting laneways, you will embark on a visual journey through a dynamic world of street art and graffiti. These narrow passages, bursting with colour and creativity, serve as open-air galleries that celebrate Melbourne’s artistic spirit. Whether you are an art enthusiast or simply seeking a unique urban adventure, the laneways promise a feast for the eyes and a glimpse into the city’s vibrant cultural scene.
- Shopping Extravaganza: Indulge in a shopping extravaganza at Melbourne’s Bourke Street Mall and Chapel Street. These bustling shopping districts offer a diverse range of fashion boutiques and retail outlets, ensuring every shopaholic’s heart’s content. From trendy brands to unique finds, these streets are a shopaholic’s paradise.
- Royal Botanic Garden: Discover peace and natural beauty at the Royal Botanic Garden in Melbourne. This lush oasis is the perfect spot for strolls and picnics, offering a tranquil escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. Immerse yourself in the lush greenery and vibrant floral displays for a rejuvenating experience.
- Old Melbourne Gaol: Explore the captivating history of the Old Melbourne Gaol, a museum that unveils the city’s convict past. Walk through the chilling corridors where infamous criminals were once held, and gain insight into the harsh realities of Melbourne’s early penal system. This historical site offers a unique and thought-provoking journey into the city’s dark past.
- Hot Air Balloon Ride: Soar high above the city with an exhilarating hot air balloon ride, granting you breathtaking views of Melbourne’s skyline and its picturesque surroundings. Drift gently through the skies for a one-of-a-kind perspective, capturing unforgettable memories as you witness the city’s beauty from above.
- Eureka Skydeck: Elevate your Melbourne experience by visiting the Eureka Skydeck, where you will be treated to awe-inspiring scenic views of the cityscape. This iconic observation deck offers an unmatched vantage point, making it an essential destination for cityscape enthusiasts who want to see Melbourne’s beauty from the skies.
Exploring Melbourne is like stepping into a time machine that combines history, culture, and fun. It’s a city that knows how to mix its old treasures with a modern, bustling lifestyle. That’s why it’s one of the top places to visit in Victoria, appealing to all kinds of travellers, whether you are into history, food, art, or sports.
Best Stay Options In Melbourne:
- Crown Promenade Melbourne: Crown Promenade offers a stylish and contemporary stay with easy access to the Crown Entertainment Complex, making it a popular choice for those seeking a blend of entertainment and relaxation.
- Rydges Melbourne: Rydges Melbourne provides a central location, comfortable rooms, and warm hospitality, making it an excellent choice for travellers looking to explore the city’s vibrant culture and attractions.
- The Hotel Windsor: As a historic icon, The Hotel Windsor offers timeless elegance and a glimpse into Melbourne’s past, making it a top pick for those who appreciate classic luxury.
- Crown Metropol Melbourne: Crown Metropol is a modern and sophisticated hotel with a rooftop infinity pool, catering to guests seeking a lavish and contemporary urban escape.
- The Langham: The Langham is synonymous with luxury and refinement, providing a serene riverside retreat for travellers looking for an opulent experience in Melbourne.
2: Discovering The Beauty Of Grampians National Park
Grampians National Park, situated in western Victoria, is a nature lover’s paradise known for its stunning natural landscapes, extensive hiking trails, and vibrant wildlife. One of the park’s top attractions is the awe-inspiring Mackenzie Falls, nestled in a deep valley. You can reach the base of these powerful falls by taking a moderately steep 2 km trail from the car park, and they flow magnificently throughout the year.
For those seeking the ultimate hiking adventure, the Pinnacle Lookout is a must-visit. A 2 km trail leads to a viewpoint that offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the entire park, leaving you in awe of the natural beauty. If you prefer a more accessible yet equally spectacular view, make sure to check out “The Balconies” and “Boroka Lookout.” These viewpoints provide a chance to soak in the park’s natural splendour without the need for a long hike. Whether you are captivated by waterfalls, love hiking, or simply want to be mesmerised by stunning vistas, Grampians National Park promises an unforgettable experience in Victoria’s untamed wilderness.
Best Things To Do In Grampians National Park:
- Mackenzie Falls: Experience the breathtaking power of Mackenzie Falls, a natural wonder that amazes you with its year-round splendour and presents a powerful reminder of nature’s beauty.
- Hike Through the National Park: Take a journey over the wide range of spectacular hiking routes, which have been carefully planned to suit hikers of all skill levels, guaranteeing that everyone can discover and interact with the park’s natural treasures.
- The Pinnacle Lookout: Trek to The Pinnacle Lookout, where a breathtaking panoramic view awaits, promising to leave you breathless as you take in the awe-inspiring grandeur of the entire park below.
- The Balconies Lookout: Experience a stunning view without the need for an extensive hike at “The Balconies” lookout, allowing you to witness the park’s natural beauty with ease and convenience.
- Boroka Lookout: Make your way to “Boroka Lookout” for equally breathtaking vistas, capturing the park’s stunning natural beauty and providing a memorable and accessible viewing experience.
Best Stay Options Near Grampians National Park:
- NRMA Halls Gap Holiday Park: Situated at the centre of Halls Gap, NRMA Holiday Park has a range of lodging options, including powered sites and cabins, making it an ideal starting point for exploring Grampians National Park.
- Grampians Pioneer Cottages: These charming cottages offer a cosy and rustic retreat, allowing guests to unwind in peaceful surroundings while still being close to the park’s natural wonders.
- Pomonal Estate: Pomonal Estate provides a unique vineyard stay with comfortable accommodations and the chance to sample local wines, creating a delightful blend of relaxation and exploration.
- Grampians Chalets: Nestled in the foothills of the Grampians, Grampians Chalets offer self-contained chalets with picturesque views, making it a perfect choice for those seeking a peaceful escape.
- Marwood Luxury Villas: For a touch of luxury near the national park, Marwood Luxury Villas provides a high-end stay experience with modern amenities and easy access to the park’s attractions.
3: Scenic Adventure On The Great Ocean Road
The Great Ocean Road in Victoria is a cherished destination that draws visitors from near and far. It’s renowned for its stunning coastal drives, world-famous surf beaches, and an array of natural wonders that set it apart from anywhere else in Australia. Stretching along 243 kilometres of coastline from the charming town of Torquay to the picturesque Warrnambool, this iconic road trip offers a unique adventure. It takes you on a journey that winds through lush rainforests and then back to the enchanting ocean, where some of Victoria’s most beautiful beaches await.
The Great Ocean Road is more than just a drive; it’s a captivating experience that reveals the raw beauty of nature. Along this iconic route, you will witness the meeting of towering cliffs and the powerful Southern Ocean, discover hidden waterfalls within lush rainforests, and feel the pull of world-class surf beaches. It’s a place where you can admire the phenomenal Twelve Apostles, witness the excitement of the Rip Curl Pro Surf Competition at Bells Beach, or simply savour the scenic drive that promises to create lasting memories. This adventure captures the essence of Victoria’s coastal charm and offers an escape to a world of breathtaking landscapes and unforgettable moments.
Best Things To Do On The Great Ocean Road:
- Twelve Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge & London Bridge In Port Campbell National Park: Explore the dramatic rock formations of the Twelve Apostles, the captivating Loch Ard Gorge, and the intriguing London Bridge, all within the stunning Port Campbell National Park.
- Split Point Lighthouse In Aireys Inlet: Climb to the top of Split Point Lighthouse in Aireys Inlet for breathtaking panoramic views of the coastline and a unique maritime experience.
- Teddy’s Lookout In Lorne: Enjoy awe-inspiring ocean views from the scenic Teddy’s Lookout in Lorne, a perfect spot for a leisurely hike and taking in the coastal beauty.
- Bells Beach In Torquay: Visit the iconic Bells Beach in Torquay, a world-renowned surf spot where you can watch or even ride the waves.
- Kennett River Koala Walk: Walk through the eucalyptus forests and spot koalas in their natural habitat during the Kennett River Koala Walk.
- Cape Otway Lighthouse: Discover the historic Cape Otway Lighthouse, where you can learn about maritime history and savour captivating vistas of the Southern Ocean.
- Great Otway National Park: Immerse yourself in the pristine wilderness of the Great Otway National Park, famous for its lush rainforests, hidden waterfalls, and diverse wildlife.
- Rip Curl Pro Surf Competition At Bells Beach: Witness the world’s top surfers compete at the renowned Rip Curl Pro Surf Competition held at Bells Beach, an annual event that draws surf enthusiasts from around the globe.
Best Stay Options Near The Great Ocean Road:
- Great Ocean Road Resort: With a prime location in Anglesea, the Great Ocean Road Resort offers comfortable accommodations and is an excellent choice for those looking to explore the stunning coastal attractions.
- RACV Torquay Resort: Overlooking the ocean, RACV Torquay Resort is a luxurious option offering a golf course, spa, and impeccable service, making it ideal for travellers seeking an upscale coastal retreat.
- Wyndham Resort Torquay: Wyndham Resort provides a mix of modern apartments and resort facilities, making it a family-friendly option with easy access to Torquay’s beaches and attractions.
- Cumberland Lorne Resort: Cumberland Lorne Resort, situated on the Lorne waterfront, offers spacious apartments with breathtaking ocean views, making it a top pick for those seeking a seaside escape.
- Mantra Lorne: Nestled in the heart of Lorne, Mantra Lorne offers a range of accommodations with resort amenities, catering to travellers looking for a comfortable stay near the Great Ocean Road.
4: Phillip Island: A Wildlife Paradise
Nestled along the southern coast of Victoria, Phillip Island stands as a well-known and beloved destination. It’s the perfect escape from the bustling city of Melbourne, located just about 140 kilometres from the heart of Melbourne itself. Whether you are a first-time visitor or a seasoned city dweller, Phillip Island offers a classic day trip or a peaceful getaway within the embrace of Victoria’s natural beauty. While guided tours are an option, the best way to experience the island is by driving yourself, giving you the freedom to explore at your own pace. Phillip Island is renowned for its colony of Little Penguins, one of the few such colonies in the world.
The highlight of a visit is the penguin parade, a mesmerising spectacle where these tiny penguins return from the sea to their burrows as the sun sets. Before heading to South Point Lookout, take a leisurely walk on the Nobbies Center boardwalk, where you can enjoy stunning coastal views, spot seagulls and fur seals, and maybe even come across wild kangaroos hopping gracefully along the cliffs. Don’t forget to visit Cowes, the main town on Phillip Island, where you can enjoy a delicious meal or a scoop of ice cream while taking in the peaceful and natural beauty of this wildlife paradise.
Best Things To Do On Phillip Island:
- Penguin Parade Experience: Don’t miss the enchanting Penguin Parade where Little Penguins return to their homes at sunset, creating a heartwarming wildlife spectacle that’s truly unforgettable.
- Visit The Koala Conservation Centre: Immerse yourself in the peaceful world of koalas, observing these iconic Australian animals up close and learning about the efforts to protect them and their natural habitat.
- Southpoint Lookout: Take in the awe-inspiring views of Phillip Island’s rugged coastline and the stunning Nobbies area from the Southpoint Lookout, making it an ideal spot for nature lovers and photography enthusiasts.
- Take A Kayaking Tour Around Rhyll Inlet Or Cape Woolamai: Explore the island’s pristine waters and dramatic coastlines on a kayaking adventure, allowing you to paddle through the serene Rhyll Inlet or admire the majestic cliffs of Cape Woolamai.
- Visit A Maze N Things: For family-friendly fun and mind-bending optical illusions, A Maze N Things offers a variety of mazes, puzzles, and entertaining experiences suitable for visitors of all ages.
- Go Jet Boating: Get your heart racing with a thrilling jet boat ride around the island’s coastal waters, featuring high-speed spins, splashes, and plenty of excitement for those seeking an adventure.
- Take A Scenic Helicopter Ride: Fly above Phillip Island’s picturesque landscapes on a scenic helicopter tour, offering a unique and memorable perspective, with a bird’s-eye view of the island’s natural beauty and wildlife.
Best Stay Options In Phillip Island:
- Ramada Resort By Wyndham Phillip Island: Offering a range of accommodations from rooms to villas, Ramada Resort provides a convenient stay with various on-site facilities and easy access to Phillip Island’s attractions.
- Silverwater Resort: Located in San Remo, Silverwater Resort boasts modern apartments and resort amenities, making it an ideal choice for those looking for a mix of comfort and leisure.
- Glen Isla House: Glen Isla House is a historic and charming guesthouse, offering a tranquil retreat for travellers who appreciate a unique and elegant stay.
- NRMA Phillip Island Beachfront Holiday Park: Situated right by the beach, this holiday park offers a variety of accommodations, making it a great option for those seeking a classic seaside getaway.
- BIG4 Ingenia Holidays Phillip Island: This holiday park provides family-friendly accommodations and facilities, making it perfect for those looking for a fun and relaxing stay on Phillip Island.
5: Bendigo: A Glimpse Into Victoria’s Gold Rush History
Bendigo is Victoria’s fourth-largest city and offers a fascinating journey into the state’s gold rush heritage. It was once a thriving goldfield that ranked second in all of Australia. Just a convenient two-hour drive from Melbourne or easily accessible by train, Bendigo emerged as a bustling hub during the Victorian gold rush. To step back in time and understand its rich history, a tour of the Central Deborah Gold Mine is a must. Yet, Bendigo is not just about the past; it’s also a vibrant centre for arts and culture, home to one of Australia’s top regional art galleries. While you are here, don’t miss the renowned Bendigo Pottery, which showcases both history and craftsmanship.
And when it’s time to satisfy your taste buds, Bendigo boasts a variety of cafes and restaurants, making it a haven for food enthusiasts. For an elegant dining experience, Masons of Bendigo serves up a superb chef’s menu, while El Gordo offers a more relaxed atmosphere with an enticing tapas menu and a mouthwatering breakfast spread. Surrounded by scenic wineries and vineyards, Bendigo is a paradise for wine lovers. To truly appreciate this city, plan for a 2-3 day visit to explore its main attractions, or extend your stay to relish nearby walking trails and savour the delectable food and wine experiences it has to offer.
Best Things To Do In Bendigo:
- Central Deborah Gold Mine Tour: Uncover the gold rush history of Bendigo on a Central Deborah Gold Mine tour, offering a descent into an actual gold mine to relive the city’s glittering past.
- Bendigo Vintage Talking Tram Tour: Embark on a Bendigo Vintage Talking Tram tour, guided by entertaining conductors who share stories of a bygone era, offering an informative and nostalgic journey through the city’s heritage.
- Take A Winery Tour: Explore the picturesque wineries and vineyards surrounding Bendigo, where you can enjoy the region’s finest wines while taking in scenic views and experiencing the local viticulture.
- Visit Golden Dragon Museum: Immerse yourself in Bendigo’s multicultural heritage by exploring the Golden Dragon Museum, a treasure trove of artefacts, costumes, and historical insights into the city’s rich Chinese history.
Best Stay Options In Bendigo:
- All Seasons Resort Hotel: The All Seasons Resort Hotel in Bendigo is a practical option for both pleasure and business travellers because of its cosy accommodations and wide range of amenities.
- Mercure Bendigo Schaller: With its artistic and modern design, Mercure Bendigo Schaller provides a unique and comfortable stay, attracting those with an appreciation for art and culture.
- Quest Bendigo Central: Quest Bendigo Central offers contemporary serviced apartments, making it an excellent option for those seeking a self-contained stay in the heart of Bendigo.
- BIG4 Tasman Holiday Parks: Located on the outskirts of Bendigo, BIG4 Tasman Holiday Parks offers a range of accommodations and family-friendly facilities, making it a perfect choice for a relaxed family vacation.
- The Hotel Shamrock: As a historic icon in Bendigo, The Hotel Shamrock combines classic charm with modern amenities, offering a touch of heritage and elegance for a memorable stay.
6: Mornington Peninsula: A Coastal Retreat
If you are planning a coastal getaway in Victoria, the Mornington Peninsula should be at the top of your list. It’s perfect for a day trip from Melbourne or a serene retreat. This place has something for everyone, from beautiful sandy beaches and dramatic lighthouses perched on cliffs to soothing hot springs. There are plenty of things to do in this place. For stunning scenery and memorable hikes, head to Point Nepean National Park or visit the iconic Cape Schanck lighthouse. If you are looking for family-friendly fun, take a ride on the Arthur’s Seat Eagle cable cars for panoramic views.
And if romance is in the air or you simply want to treat yourself, the wineries on the Mornington Peninsula offer delightful wine-tasting experiences. To unwind completely, don’t miss the renowned Peninsula Hot Springs, where natural thermal spa waters meet breathtaking vistas. If you decide to stay overnight, Sorrento is a charming coastal spot with plenty of accommodations and restaurants to choose from. And for those peaceful moments by the beach, don’t forget to walk along the Sorrento boardwalk to the Bay of Islands viewpoint and Diamond Bay, where the sunset over the Sorrento pier is pure magic.
Best Things To Do In The Mornington Peninsula:
- Cape Schanck Lighthouse: Discover the iconic Cape Schanck Lighthouse, precariously perched on rugged cliffs, offering sweeping coastal views and a glimpse into maritime history.
- Sorrento Boardwalk Stroll: Take a leisurely walk along the Sorrento boardwalk, leading you to the scenic Bay of Islands viewpoint and Diamond Bay, providing breathtaking coastal vistas and the perfect setting for enjoying sunsets.
- Hiking In Point Nepean National Park: Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Point Nepean National Park as you embark on picturesque hikes, unveiling historical landmarks, diverse landscapes, and captivating ocean panoramas.
- Peninsula Hot Springs Retreat: Indulge in relaxation at the Peninsula Hot Springs, a world-renowned thermal spa that offers revitalising mineral baths and serene settings with awe-inspiring views.
- Arthurs Seat Eagle Cable Car Ride: Glide above the landscape aboard the Arthurs Seat Eagle cable car, providing a bird’s-eye view of Mornington Peninsula’s beauty and a family-friendly aerial adventure.
- Sorrento Dolphin & Seal Tour: Embark on an exhilarating marine journey with a dolphin and seal tour departing from Sorrento, where you can witness these playful and amiable creatures in their natural habitat.
Best Stay Options Near the Mornington Peninsula:
- The Royal Hotel Mornington & Walter’s Dining Hall: Combining old-world charm and modern comfort, The Royal Hotel in Mornington offers a historic stay with the convenience of Walter’s Dining Hall, making it a delightful choice for travellers.
- Mornington Hotel: The Mornington Hotel provides a cosy and budget-friendly option for those looking to explore the Mornington Peninsula without breaking the bank.
- Jackalope Hotel Mornington Peninsula: Recognised for its cutting-edge architecture and luxurious amenities, Jackalope Hotel provides a trendy and luxurious stay, making it a great choice for visitors looking for an extraordinary experience.
- Lancemore Lindenderry Red Hill: Set amidst the picturesque Red Hill wine region, Lancemore Lindenderry is a boutique hotel that offers a serene and elegant retreat, perfect for wine enthusiasts and relaxation seekers.
- Lakeside Villas At Crittenden Estate: Lakeside Villas offer self-contained accommodations surrounded by vineyards, making it an ideal choice for a peaceful and romantic escape near Mornington Peninsula’s wineries and beaches.
7: Relaxing Getaway In Daylesford
Daylesford, located just 1.5 hours from Melbourne in Victoria, attracts people with a wide range of attractions. Most visitors, however, are drawn to the area for its spa and wellness retreats, which are spotted throughout the region. These retreats are famous for their rich mineral thermal waters, which include indoor pools and saunas, creating the perfect environment for a quick weekend escape that leaves you feeling relaxed in no time. But if you decide to extend your stay to a week, Daylesford has plenty to keep you entertained.
You can explore fascinating shops, enjoy meals at cosy cafes, discover hidden treasures at Sunday markets, find calmness in the Wombat Hill Botanic Gardens, and take a scenic ride on the Daylesford Spa Country Railway, offering a nostalgic journey through the picturesque countryside. Daylesford is an ideal destination for relaxation, with a wide range of ways to unwind and rejuvenate. Whether you are seeking a short break or a longer retreat, this tranquil destination in Victoria has all the elements to calm your spirit and renew your energy. Daylesford welcomes you to a place where time seems to slow down, and the gentle charm of this captivating destination promises to create lasting memories of relaxation and peace.
Best Things To Do In Daylesford:
- Relax At The Hot Springs And Day Spas: Relax and refresh in the soothing mineral-rich waters of Daylesford’s famous hot springs, or treat yourself to luxurious spa treatments for the ultimate pampering session.
- Take A Ride On The Daylesford Spa Country Railway: Take an enjoyable trip through the gorgeous countryside on the Daylesford Spa Country Railway, where you can soak in the natural beauty of the area and enjoy scenic rides.
- Find Serenity At Wombat Hill Botanical Gardens: Discover calmness within the peaceful surroundings of Wombat Hill Botanical Gardens. Stroll through its well-maintained paths, have a relaxing picnic, and admire the diverse array of plants and trees.
- Explore The Sunday Market: Delve into a treasure trove of unique handmade crafts and hidden gems at the lively Sunday Market. It’s the perfect place to browse various stalls and meet local artisans.
- Visit The Convent Daylesford: Immerse yourself in art and culture at The Convent Daylesford, a historic building transformed into a hub for galleries, shops, and a cosy cafe. It offers delightful surroundings to explore and enjoy.
- Have A Picnic At Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm: Indulge in a leisurely picnic amongst the fragrant lavender fields at Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm. Relax and relish the serene atmosphere of this charming destination.
Best Stay Options In Daylesford:
- The Royal Daylesford Hotel: The Royal Daylesford Hotel combines historic charm with modern comforts, offering a cosy and central stay in Daylesford.
- Lake House: Lake House is an acclaimed luxury retreat known for its award-winning cuisine and serene lakeside setting, making it a top choice for those seeking an indulgent escape.
- Peppers Mineral Springs Hotel Hepburn: Nestled in Hepburn Springs, Peppers Mineral Springs Hotel offers a tranquil stay with mineral spa experiences, attracting guests looking for relaxation and rejuvenation.
- Hotel Bellinzona: Hotel Bellinzona is a beautiful heritage property offering a blend of old-world elegance and modern amenities, creating a refined and timeless stay.
- The Grande Hotel: With its central location and comfortable accommodations, The Grande Hotel in Hepburn Springs is a great option for travellers exploring Daylesford’s attractions and natural springs.
8: High Country Adventures: Victoria’s Alpine Playground
Victoria’s High Country, situated in the northeastern part of the state, is a captivating gem filled with natural beauty and a rich history. This region boasts Victoria’s highest peaks, serene lakes, winter snow resorts, vineyards, and a heritage marked by gold discoveries, cattle ranching, and legendary bushrangers. From snowy wonderlands to charming towns surrounded by waterfalls, hidden pools, clear rivers, and picturesque drives, there’s a world of exploration in the High Country. Whether you visit in the warmth of summer or the chill of winter, you will find both seasons to be equally enchanting and brimming with unique experiences.
Among the must-visit towns in this region are the delightful Bright, the lakeside retreat of Eildon, the picturesque Myrtleford, and the charming Harrietville. Year-round, the High Country is a paradise for those in search of adventure, natural wonders, and a touch of history. Whether you are carving down the slopes in winter or basking in the summer sun, this region offers a plethora of outdoor activities and stunning landscapes. So, pack your bags and set off on a journey to this alpine wonderland, where Victoria’s High Country reveals its hidden treasures, guaranteeing each visit to be a one-of-a-kind and unforgettable experience.
Best Things To Do In High Country:
- Alpine National Park Exploration: Delve into the wonders of the Alpine National Park, offering opportunities for hiking, skiing, and other outdoor adventures amongst stunning natural beauty.
- Wine Tasting Delight: Indulge in the region’s wineries and vineyards, relishing the flavours of local wines while enjoying the beautiful surroundings.
- Historic Towns Discovery: Immerse yourself in the charm and history of the region by visiting quaint towns like Bright, Myrtleford, and Beechworth, each with its distinct character and attractions.
- Outdoor Thrills: Get your adrenaline pumping with outdoor activities such as bushwalking, mountain biking, and fishing in the pristine natural landscapes.
- Scenic Drives: Take leisurely drives along the Great Alpine Road or the King Valley Prosecco Road, treating yourself to breathtaking views at every turn.
Best Stay Options Near High Country:
- Lancemore Milawa: Located in the Milawa wine region, Lancemore Milawa offers a peaceful and vineyard-inspired stay, making it a perfect choice for wine enthusiasts and those seeking a relaxing getaway.
- The Sebel Pinnacle Valley Resort: Set in the heart of the High Country, The Sebel Pinnacle Valley Resort provides spacious self-contained apartments and resort facilities, making it an ideal base for those exploring the region’s natural beauty.
- Elk At Falls: Elk At Falls offers modern and cosy accommodations, providing a comfortable and convenient stay for travellers looking to experience the Falls Creek ski resort.
- Frueauf Village: Frueauf Village in the picturesque Hotham Alpine Resort provides ski-in, and ski-out accommodations and a range of self-contained apartments, catering to those seeking a ski-centric retreat.
- Altezza 1570: Offering boutique accommodations, Altezza 1570 stands as a mountain sanctuary in the High Country, ideal for those in search of a serene and luxurious mountain escape.
9: Seaside Charms Of St Kilda
St Kilda, one of Victoria’s top destinations, offers a wide array of experiences for travellers. It’s a place where you can chill on the beach, enjoy a vibrant nightlife, explore famous markets, and savour some of the finest food. St Kilda is known for its cultural diversity, with an array of Greek and Jewish bakeries and famous vegetarian restaurants. If you have a sweet tooth, you will love the delightful cake shops on Acland Street. The suburb is also home to an exceptional food scene, making it a haven for culinary enthusiasts.
Beyond its culinary delights, St Kilda is a shopper’s paradise, featuring boutique stores and vintage treasures. The area’s botanic gardens are charming as well, offering a peaceful environment for enjoying the local cuisine or delicious cakes. For added excitement, don’t miss Luna Park, an amusement park that was first opened in 1912. Inside the park, there is the Scenic Railway (one of the world’s oldest roller coasters) which offers breathtaking views of Port Phillip Bay. The best part is that you can enter Luna Park for free, paying only for the rides. St. Kilda is a place where you will find a world of fun and exploration waiting for you.
Best Things To Do In St Kilda:
- Luna Park: Step into a world of timeless entertainment and thrills at Luna Park, where visitors of all ages can enjoy exhilarating rides, carnival games, and the world’s oldest continuously operating roller coaster.
- Stroll along St Kilda Pier: Take a leisurely walk along the iconic St Kilda Pier, which offers breathtaking coastal views, and stay to witness the captivating penguin parade at dusk, a truly unique wildlife spectacle.
- Swim at St Kilda Beach: Dive into the crystal-clear waters of St Kilda Beach, a sun-drenched paradise perfect for a refreshing swim and relaxation on the sandy shores.
- Water Sports Paradise: For water sports enthusiasts, St Kilda provides a playground of activities, from windsurfing to kiteboarding, ensuring an exciting aquatic experience.
- St Kilda KIIS Eye Ferris Wheel: Soar to new heights aboard the KIIS Eye Ferris Wheel on St Kilda’s waterfront, where you can soak in breathtaking panoramic vistas of Melbourne and its stunning surroundings.
- Enjoy a Performance at the Palais Theatre: Immerse yourself in world-class entertainment at the historic Palais Theatre, known for hosting outstanding shows and concerts within its magnificent architectural setting.
- Dine at the Many Restaurants, Bars, and Cafes: Indulge in the diverse culinary offerings of St Kilda, where you will find a wide range of dining choices, from cosy cafes to trendy bars and restaurants catering to every palate.
- Shop at the Esplanade Market: Explore the Esplanade Market, a hidden gem filled with one-of-a-kind handcrafted items, art, and collectables, all set against the backdrop of the sea, making it a must-visit for shopping enthusiasts.
Best Stay Options In St Kilda:
- Quest St Kilda Bayside: Quest St Kilda Bayside provides a range of serviced apartments, offering a comfortable stay with the convenience of self-contained accommodations near St Kilda’s vibrant beachfront.
- Adara St Kilda: Adara St Kilda offers modern and well-appointed apartments, making it a great choice for travellers looking for contemporary comfort and easy access to St Kilda’s attractions.
- Pullman Melbourne Albert Park: Located by Albert Park Lake, Pullman Melbourne Albert Park offers a luxurious stay with picturesque views and upscale amenities, attracting those who seek a refined and tranquil experience.
- Saint Kilda Beach Hotel: As a beachfront hotel, Saint Kilda Beach Hotel offers a beachy and relaxed stay for those looking to enjoy the sunrise, surf, and vibrant atmosphere of St Kilda.
- Selina St Kilda: Selina St Kilda provides a stylish and vibrant atmosphere, perfect for young travellers and those looking for a lively and social experience in the heart of St Kilda.
10: Yarra Valley: A Journey Through Vineyards And Scenic Beauty
Discover the Yarra Valley, Victoria’s famous wine region—a must-visit for wine enthusiasts who appreciate award-winning wineries. Yet, there’s more to this place than wine! Nestled in the Yarra Ranges and Dandenong Ranges regions, it’s also a place of awe-inspiring landscapes, diverse wildlife, and stunning hiking trails. The best part? It’s less than an hour’s drive from Melbourne, making it a prime choice for a weekend getaway. Whether you are indulging in delectable delights at a local chocolate factory or embarking on a wine-tasting odyssey, the Yarra Valley in Victoria is a place you won’t want to miss.
For an immersive experience, consider a hop-on, hop-off bus ticket that grants access to various wineries, distilleries, the chocolate factory, and other intriguing stops throughout the day. The Yarra Valley beats the ordinary wine-tasting adventure. This region offers a delightful blend of vineyards and breathtaking landscapes, inviting you to savour the best breakfast. Whether you are a wine lover, a nature lover, or someone in search of a weekend retreat filled with sensory delights, the Yarra Valley beckons with its stunning vineyards and picturesque scenery.
Best Things To Do In The Yarra Valley:
- Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery: Satisfy your sweet tooth at the Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery, where you can enjoy a variety of chocolates and handcrafted ice creams as you admire the magnificent surroundings of the valley.
- Healesville Sanctuary: Immerse yourself in Australia’s diverse wildlife at Healesville Sanctuary, a renowned conservation hub. Here, you can get close to native animals and gain insights into their natural habitats and conservation initiatives.
- Explore The Region’s Wineries: Embark on a delightful wine-tasting adventure in the Yarra Valley. With numerous award-winning wineries to choose from, you can enjoy a variety of premium wines while soaking in the picturesque vineyard settings.
- Pick Your Own Fruit At A Local Farm: Experience the joy of fruit picking at local farms, where you can harvest ripe, seasonal fruits and relish the farm-to-table experience with your loved ones.
- Hot Air Balloon Ride For Spectacular Views: Drift high above the Yarra Valley in a hot air balloon and marvel at breathtaking panoramic vistas of rolling vineyards, lush landscapes, and the meandering Yarra River, creating a truly memorable adventure.
- Puffing Billy Train Ride: Step back in time to the golden era of rail travel with a journey on the iconic Puffing Billy steam train. Wind your way through the region’s scenic forests and hills, all while taking in the beauty of the Yarra Valley from a one-of-a-kind perspective.
Best Stay Options In Yarra Valley:
- Yarra Gables: Yarra Gables offers a charming bed and breakfast experience in the heart of the Yarra Valley, making it an inviting choice for those seeking a cosy and intimate stay.
- Yering Gorge Cottages: Nestled within the Yering Gorge, these cottages provide a tranquil and self-contained retreat with stunning views, ideal for nature lovers and those wanting a peaceful escape.
- Balgownie Estate Yarra Valley: Balgownie Estate is a winery and spa retreat, offering an indulgent stay amidst vineyards, making it a top pick for wine enthusiasts and relaxation seekers.
- Yarra Valley Lodge: Located in the heart of the Yarra Valley, Yarra Valley Lodge offers a comfortable and family-friendly stay with easy access to the region’s wineries and attractions.
- RACV Healesville Country Club & Resort: Set in the picturesque countryside, this resort offers a range of accommodations and leisure facilities, making it an ideal choice for those looking for a relaxing and well-rounded Yarra Valley experience.
11: Murray-Sunset National Park: Where Nature Takes The Spotlight
Murray-Sunset National Park is a one-of-a-kind gem in Victoria, offering an extraordinary experience for those seeking something new. The park is most famous for its Pink Lakes, which are a natural wonder that must be seen in person to be fully appreciated. These lakes live up to their name by displaying stunning shades of pink, creating a surreal and breathtaking sight. To witness the Pink Lakes at their most vibrant with a rich fuchsia shade, it’s best to plan your visit in late summer, ensuring you get to see this incredible display of nature’s artistry.
Amongst the captivating landscape of Murray-Sunset National Park, it is a paradise for adventurers and nature lovers. Beyond the Pink Lakes, the park is a haven for diverse plant and animal life, offering a chance to spot native creatures like kangaroos and emus. Whether you are passionate about nature, photography, or simply looking for a place that stands out from the usual, Murray-Sunset National Park is a unique destination in Victoria that guarantees to amaze and inspire visitors throughout the year.
Best Things To Do In Murray-Sunset National Park:
- Experience Stunning Sunsets: The Murray-Sunset National Park is famous for its mesmerising sunsets. Enjoy the vast outback scenery painted with shades of red and gold as the sun sets on the horizon.
- Starry Night Delight: With minimal light interference, this park offers excellent stargazing opportunities. Admire the brilliant night skies and constellations in this remote location.
- Paradise For Birdwatchers: Bird enthusiasts will be thrilled by the wide variety of bird species found in the park. Keep your eyes peeled for emus, mallee fowl, and majestic wedge-tailed eagles soaring above.
- Scenic Road Trips: Discover the park’s diverse landscapes with picturesque drives along unpaved roads. Journey from salt lakes to rolling sand dunes, capturing the essence of the Australian outback.
- Photographer’s Dream: Whether you are a professional or just a nature lover, the ever-changing scenery of Murray-Sunset, including the iconic Pink Lakes, offers numerous opportunities for photography.
- Wildlife Encounters: Keep your eyes open for local animals like red kangaroos and wallabies. The park is home to a wealth of unique wildlife, making it an ideal destination for nature enthusiasts and wildlife photographers.
Best Stay Options Near Murray-Sunset National Park:
- Red Cliffs Colonial Motor Lodge: The Red Cliffs Colonial Motor Lodge provides a comfortable stay with easy access to Murray-Sunset National Park, making it an excellent choice for those exploring the park’s natural beauty.
- Wentworth Central Motor Inn: Located in Wentworth, this motor inn offers a convenient and budget-friendly stay for travellers looking to discover the Murray-Sunset National Park and the surrounding area.
- Darling Junction Motor Inn Wentworth: Darling Junction Motor Inn offers comfortable accommodations in Wentworth, providing a relaxed and family-friendly stay for visitors interested in exploring the park’s attractions.
- Econo Lodge Mildura: Econo Lodge in Mildura is a practical choice for those looking for affordable accommodations with easy access to both Murray-Sunset National Park and the city of Mildura.
- Mildura Motor Inn: Mildura Motor Inn offers a cosy and central stay, making it a suitable option for travellers planning to explore Murray-Sunset National Park and the charming city of Mildura.
12: Ballarat’s Historical Treasures And Modern Charms
Ballarat holds a unique place in Victoria’s history. As the largest inland city in the state and third-largest overall, Ballarat is steeped in the legacy of the Australian Gold Rush. Its streets are adorned with museums, galleries, monuments, and picturesque parks, all paying homage to this pivotal chapter in Australia’s past. A fantastic starting point for your exploration of Ballarat’s rich history is Sovereign Hill, an immersive living history museum. Here, you can try your hand at gold panning and even learn the art of candle making.
The city also offers a wide range of attractions suitable for various interests. Explore the enchanting Kryal Castle, a mediaeval-themed adventure park where knights and dragons come to life, or visit the Ballarat Wildlife Park and Bird World, a haven for native and exotic wildlife. Additionally, Ballarat boasts numerous museums that provide insight into its multifaceted heritage. Whether you are a history buff, a family in search of engaging activities, or someone who appreciates the blend of history and modern charm, Ballarat caters to all tastes. It’s a city that beautifully weaves its golden past with the vibrant tapestry of the present, offering an enriching and enjoyable experience for all.
Best Things To Do In Ballarat:
- Sovereign Hill: Step back in time to the 1850s Australian gold rush era with a visit to Sovereign Hill, an immersive open-air museum. Pan for gold, witness blacksmiths in action, and explore a meticulously recreated historic town.
- Ballarat Wildlife Park: Enjoy an up-close encounter with a diverse range of native and exotic animals, including koalas, kangaroos, and giant tortoises. Ballarat Wildlife Park is a fantastic destination for families.
- Ballarat Bird World: Bird enthusiasts will delight in Ballarat Bird World, where they can observe and engage with a colourful array of exotic birds from various corners of the globe.
- Kryal Castle: Immerse yourself in the world of mediaeval fantasy at Kryal Castle, Australia’s unique mediaeval-themed adventure park. Encounter knights, dragons, and all the enchanting elements of a bygone era.
- Lake Wendouree: Whether you prefer a stroll or a peaceful lakeside picnic, Lake Wendouree offers a beautiful setting. This artificial lake is encircled by walking and cycling trails, making it an ideal location for outdoor activities and relaxation.
- Ballarat Tramway Museum: Uncover the fascinating history of trams in Ballarat at the Ballarat Tramway Museum. Ride on heritage trams and learn about their essential role in the city’s development.
Best Stay Options In Ballarat:
- Craig’s Royal Hotel: With a rich history, Craig’s Royal Hotel offers a classic and luxurious stay in Ballarat, appealing to those who appreciate heritage and elegance.
- Kryal Castle: For a unique and mediaeval-themed experience, Kryal Castle provides on-site accommodations within its historical theme park, making it an exciting choice for families and adventure-seekers.
- RACV Goldfields Resort: RACV Goldfields Resort offers a comfortable and family-friendly stay in a serene setting, making it an excellent option for travellers looking for relaxation and convenience.
- The Provincial Hotel: The Provincial Hotel in Ballarat combines modern comforts with a touch of old-world charm, attracting visitors who enjoy the blend of history and contemporary style.
- The Western Hotel: The Western Hotel offers a budget-friendly and central stay in Ballarat, making it a practical choice for travellers exploring the city’s attractions.
Victoria is a remarkable realm of diverse and charming destinations. From the vibrant city life of Melbourne to the calmness of Grampians National Park and the stunning coastlines along the Great Ocean Road, Victoria caters to all types of travellers. Whether you seek historical exploration in Ballarat, relaxation in the Daylesford spa country, or the serenity of Murray-Sunset National Park, Victoria provides a wide range of experiences. With its blend of urban charm and natural splendour, Victoria is a top choice for those seeking memorable adventures. History buffs, nature enthusiasts, thrill-seekers, and culture lovers will all find something extraordinary in Victoria. This Australian state celebrates diversity, making it a captivating and rewarding place to explore and enjoy.