Next up on our ‘Holiday Here This Year Summer Road Trip’ series is Victoria. With stunning coastlines, natural landscapes and plenty of wildlife, you’ll be itching to get away.
We have selected two of our favourite trips in Victoria which will keep you occupied for a week, or a weekend. There really has never been a better time to explore your own backyard.
Stop 1 – Phillip Island
Located just 141 kilometres from Melbourne is Phillip Island, and the first destination of your weeklong road trip. Known as one of Victoria’s best tourist attractions, you are sure to be captivated by the natural beauty with stunning coastlines, walking tracks and unique animals. As there is so much to see, you may want to set up camp for a couple nights.
Upon your arrival, we recommend stretching your legs and exploring the land on a coastal bush walk. We love the George Bass Coastal Walk and The Pinnacles at Cape Woolamai for some breathtaking views – they’re well worth the trek. For an easier option and if it’s low tide, kick off your shoes and enjoy the Forrest Caves walk.
If you’re feeling famished, sit down for a meal at a waterfront restaurant, pub, winery or brewery – whatever tickles your fancy!
Next, spend your afternoon and the next day taking up all the opportunities for excitement and adventure. Have a shot at surfing at Cape Woolamai then join Pioneer Kayaking for a guided sea kayak tour. For some inland activities, have some fun at the Phillip Island Go Karts circuit then get lost for a couple hours at the Maze ’N Things Theme Park.
Keep an eye out for the incredible wildlife as there are many koalas, native birds and possums that call this paradise home. During your stay, you may also like to book a seal watching tour at the Seal Rocks, 2kms off the coast. Plus, no visit Phillip Island is complete without experiencing the enchanting Penguin Parade. The famous little penguins arrive at sunset every night of the year, but be sure to book your tickets as this is a very popular attraction.
Stop 2 – Wilson’s Prom
Your next venture will take you 159 kms down to Wilsons Promontory National Park. This 50,000 hectare reserve, fondly known as ‘The Prom’, is Victoria’s largest coastal wilderness area. So, make sure you’ve packed your walking shoes because there’s some amazing hikes and day walks you won’t want to miss.
The Mount Oberon Summit will leave you in awe at the panoramic views of ocean and land. This 2-hour hike is suitable for most ages and fitness levels; however, it does have some steep sections with rough surfaces. For an easy rainforest adventure, check out the Lilly Pilly Gully Circuit Walk.
The Wilson’s Prom Marine National Park is also Victoria’s largest Marine Protected Area. For an unforgettable snorkelling or diving experience, this is the place to be. Alternatively, you may also enjoy a swim at Norman Beach or a wander down Fairy Cove. The Prom is also a wildlife wonderland – home to many native animals such as kangaroos, wombats and emus so keep an eye out to not miss them!
Stop 3 – Lakes Entrance
Travel along the coast for 298 kms to reach Lakes Entrance. Along the way, you may fancy a pit stop in Port Albert for some fish and chips on the beach.
Lakes Entrance features Australia’s largest inland network of waterways as it is situated on the edge where the Gippsland Lakes meet the Bass Strait ocean. Here you can relax on the pristine Ninety Mile Beach, go kayaking or even hire a paddleboat. The Gippsland Lakes Discovery Cycling Trail is also nearby for a biking escapade through the Colquhoun State Forest.
Stop 4 – Mallacoota
Next up is another 201 km drive along the coast to reach the quiet East Gippsland village, Mallacoota. Surrounded by the Croajingolong National Park, you will have the opportunity to explore diverse landscapes; white sandy beaches, granite peaks and heathland.
Betka Beach and Quarry Beach are both popular locations to either relax on the sand or enjoy the pristine waters. Reserve a lake cruise aboard the M.V. Loch-Ard (built in the early 1900s) for a relaxing sight-seeing experience. During your stay, you may also like to book a short boat ride to Gabo Island, a 154-hectare Island located just off the coast. Here you will be met with magnificent views and an incredible history –you can even tour Victoria’s only operating island lighthouse.
Embark on a hike through the Croajingolong wilderness via the Genoa Peak Walk or take the Thurra River Dune Walk to experience the incredible sand dunes.
Stop 5 – Bright
The next stretch will take you down the coast then along the Great Alpine Road for 411 kms to reach Bright. Pull in for a break at Orbost and Omeo to experience two interesting towns with some beautiful history.
Surrounded by mountains and national parks nearby the Ovens River, there’s a never-ending list of things to discover in Bright. With so many walking tracks to choose from you’re spoiled for choice – explore Mount Buffalo along the Gorge Heritage Walk or the Cathedral Track. We love the Eurobin Falls up Mount Buffalo which is the perfect spot for a picnic and a cool dip. For some additional tracks in and around Bright, the Apex Lookout Walk and the Canyon Trail are both popular options.
If you want to embark on an adventure or experience the land a different way, consider activities such as kayaking, abseiling, horse riding or even paragliding. Bright also features some amazing golf courses, fishing opportunities and family friendly parks and playgrounds. Bustling with energy, Bright often holds many events and markets throughout the year so double check the calendar to know what’s on. After a day or two of action-packed fun, kick back and relax at camp while admiring the ‘bright’ atmosphere.
Stop 6 – Melbourne
It is time to head home. Take your time and enjoy the countryside – we recommend stopping in Glenrowan where you can visit Ned Kelly’s Last Stand at the tourist centre. To wrap up your road tripping experience, take a 20 km detour and savour lunch at Mitchelton Winery before continuing home.