Moody, magical, bohemian and hipster are some of the many words that attempt to describe Australia’s unique cultural capital, Melbourne. The city is buzzing with activity and bursting with amazing experiences to entice the curious traveler. With its hip rooftop bars, gourmet restaurants, live music concerts, amazing street art, world class shopping and active sports scene, Melbourne is a city of many delights. If you’re looking for a quiet getaway on weekends, then there many day trips from Melbourne which offer a range of fulfilling experiences to add to your travel palette. We bring to you some exciting and easy day trips from Melbourne for a perfect relaxing break from the electic city.
These 10 places near Melbourne make for the perfect hot spots to chill along with your loved ones. Take a look at what experiences await you there and how can they add more magic to your holiday!
1. Yarra Valley
What can be more fascinating than being transported from the city to a stunning bucolic landscape in a matter of just an hour? Undoubtedly one of the best day trips from Melbourne by car, Yarra valley will take your breath away with its rolling vineyards and beautiful countryside. Wine lovers are sure to have the time of their lives sampling some of the finest wines in the world at the many wineries in the area. You can opt for a full day guided trip or explore the region on your own at leisure.
Distance from Melbourne: 90 K
Recommended places & activities: Moet & Chandon’s house, TarraWarra Estate cellar door, Yering Station winery, Yarra Valley Chocolaterie and Ice Creamery. Take a sunrise hot-air balloon tour over the breathtakingly beautiful valley followed by a gourmet breakfast with wine.
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2. Phillip Island
Counted amongst the top 3 day trips from Melbourne, Phillip Island is a great destination for animal lovers as it is home to koalas, wallabies, seals and penguins. Hear your kids squeal in delight as you watch one of the most spectacular shows in the world with hundreds of penguins sashaying along the Summerland Beach. It is a delight to follow them on boardwalks as they find their way home in the sands. Other exciting activities include a cool dip in the sea, kayaking, aqua-biking, paintball and fur-seal spotting. When visiting with kids, don’t miss getting up close and personal with the adorable koalas at the Koala Conservation Centre.
Distance from Melbourne: 142 Km
3. Great Ocean Road
Counted amongst the top road trips in the world, the drive along Great Ocean Road is one of those epic day trips from Melbourne that will be etched in your minds forever. The scenic route takes you through stunning ocean vistas with dramatic cliffs, lush rainforests and a rendezvous with amazing native Australian birds and animals. Starting from Torquay, the four-hour drive culminates at the famous Twelve Apostles standing tall amidst the roaring ocean.
Distance from Melbourne: 104 Km
Must-visit spots: Apollo Bay (for gorgeous views), Kennett River (cockatoos, parrots and koalas), Great Otway National Park (rainforests and the historic lighthouse) and Loch Ard Gorge.
4. The Dandenongs
Renowned for its lush gardens and dense forests, this is one of the easiest day trips from Melbourne by public transport and must not be missed by nature lovers. You can begin exploring this beautiful green area by visiting the spectacular National rhododendron gardens blooming with flowers and cherries. A walk through the fern-filled gullies of Sherbrooke forest nourishes the mind, body and soul with its tranquillity and beauty, punctuated only by the sound of kookaburras and cockatoos. Adventure lovers must hike through the Dandenong Ranges to be rewarded with breathtaking views & cascading waterfalls amidst dense forests.
Distance from Melbourne: 35 Km
Recommended activities: Hike up Mt. Dandenong for spectacular views of Melbourne. Children will love the ride on Puffing Billy, a 100-yer-old steam engine.
One of the most popular day trips from Melbourne, this one makes for a great relaxing escape just a 90-minute ride away from the city. The Hepburn Springs are the biggest draw, offering a rejuvenating dip in the hot water springs and relaxing massage treatments at the many luxury spas around. Daylesford is a charming town with beautiful architecture, colourful markets, fascinating art galleries, and quirky stores. You can also embark on a heritage train ride or visit the interesting museum about the life of native Dja Dja Wurrung people.
Distance from Melbourne: 138 Km
Must-visit places: Convent Gallery, Mill Markets, Hepburn Bathhouse and Spa
This mining boomtown just 2 hours away from the city features amongst the most fun day trips from Melbourne, Australia, for the sheer variety of experiences it offers. The subterranean tours through the historic Central Deborah Gold Mine are a thrilling and exhilarating experience with different levels of adventure involved. You could explore the areas Chinese heritage at the Golden Dragon Museum, indulge in an interesting pot-making workshop at Bendigo Pottery or simply stroll along the lovely Rosalind Park. The best way to explore Bendigo’s attractions is by hopping onto the talking trams that take you on a fun tour through the city with an informative audio guide.
Distance from Melbourne: 156 Km
Must-visit places: Bendigo Art Gallery, Bendigo Tramways, Alexandra Fountain, Sacred heart Cathedral.
7. Mornington Peninsula
A trip to Mornington Peninsula is sure to be one of the most fulfilling day trips from Melbourne for families, with its wide range of activities and attractions. The kids will have a whale of a time at the Enchanted Adventure Garden with its unique hedge maze and also strawberry picking in the region. You can choose from a plethora of interesting activities like wine sampling at the many wineries, soaking in at the Peninsula Hot springs or unwinding at the spa resorts. To add to the pull of this beautiful destination, there are pretty beaches with water sports like sailing and scuba diving as well golf courses and horseback riding opportunities.
Distance from Melbourne: 76 Km
Must-visit places: Red Hill Estate (for the wines), Point Nepean National Park, Port Phillip Bay (for the views as well as dolphin and seal swims).
This small seaside resort town on the Bellarine Peninsula is big on the experiences it offers to those looking for fulfilling day trips from Melbourne. The town oozes Victorian era charm and is a delight to explore with its quaint marketplaces, lovely streets, art galleries, craft stores and chic restaurants serving delicious seafood. You can unwind at the beautiful beachside resorts or indulge in boating, deep-sea diving, and snorkeling for some water adventure. A ride in the historical Bellarine Railway heritage steam engine trains is a delightful experience and so is a ferry trip to Sorrento.
Distance from Melbourne: 102 Km
Must-visit places: Fort Queenscliff, Queenscliff Maritime Museum, Marine Discovery Centre, Hesse Street lookout.
One of the top choices for day trips from Melbourne in winter, the historic town of Ballarat takes you back to the gold rush area through its live museum and other attractions. The town offers lots of fun activities all year round and comes alive during the Ballarat Winter Festival which is a melange of food and wine events, performances, ghost tours and the superb art festival at Sovereign Hill. The living museum allows you to embark on an exciting journey by replicating a gold rush town with mines, streets, and shops from that era. This interesting town makes for one of the most convenient day trips from Melbourne by train.
Distance from Melbourne: 116 Km
Must-visit places: Sovereign Hill and Gold Museum, Ballarat Wildlife Park, Ballarat Botanical Gardens, Lake Wendouree
10. Wilson’s Promontory National Park
Amongst the most loved day trips from Melbourne, Wilson’s Promontory or The Prom ushers you into a world of soft-sand beaches, soaring mountains, dramatic cliffs, lush foliage, and abundant wildlife. Nature lovers, adventure enthusiasts, and photographers would love to explore the wilderness and scenic hiking trails in the area. Visit the picture perfect Squeaky Beach for its soft white sand and turquoise waters or walk along the many trails to enjoy the spectacular scenery all around. A hike up Mt Oberon rewards you with breathtaking views of the roaring ocean while the Tidal River offers the perfect spot to cool off, swim or paddle in the water and the sandy stretch.
Distance from Melbourne: 225 Km
Must-visit spots: Whisky Bay and Picnic Bay lookout spots, Norman beach.
With so many exciting day trips from Melbourne, it’s definitely a great idea to keep some spare days in your itinerary for exploring the many secrets of Victoria close to the charming metropolis. So, don’t think much and book your next trip to Australia with TravelTriangle for a one of its kind experience!
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