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Guide to Melbourne Outdoors

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Melbourne is famous for its cafes, restaurants and bars, yet only a stone's throw away from the city you can experience the many faces of the Australian outdoors. Wild coastlines, civilized wineries, rolling hills, and even friendly penguins are all within an easy day's drive. And if you just want a quick and easy outdoor fix, the city itself has a few gems right on the doorstep of your hotel too.

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Nature Lover
  • Foodie
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker
  • Beach Goer
  • Thrifty Traveller
  • Like a Local

9 Places

3 City Tips

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Map

9 Places

Phillip Island Nature Parks - Penguin Parade

Nature & Wildlife Areas

Yarra Valley

Destinations

Mornington Peninsula National Park

Beaches, Gardens, National Parks, Parks

Great Ocean Road

Dandenong Ranges

Mountains, National Parks

Yarra River

Bodies of Water

St. Kilda Beach

Beaches

Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

Gardens, Parks

Studley Park Boathouse

Parks, Points of Interest & Landmarks

Milan S's City Tips

  • A five dollar cooler bag from the supermarket filled with a bag of ice is the perfect makeshift car fridge to keep water and picnic items cold on a day trip.
  • Hire a car or a motorbike. Nothing like the freedom of your own wheels!
  • Hat, sunscreen, sunglasses and bottled water are the essentials not to be forgotten.
  • Phillip Island Nature Parks - Penguin Parade
    Nature & Wildlife Areas
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    Who could resist the thought of cute little penguins shuffling up the beach at sunset? This is exactly what you'll get at Philip Island Nature Park. Here, celebrity Penguins strut their stuff on Summerland Beach, while fur seals play around the famous Nobbies rock formation.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Beach Goer
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • You can also watch Koalas munching on eucalyptus leaves at the nearby Koala Conservation Centre.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 6 things to do in Summerlands
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • A truly wonderful experience 18/12/2018
    • Like playing Where's Wally in the dark 18/12/2018
    • Phillip Island Nature Parks - Penguin Parade
    Address:
    1019 Ventnor Rd
    Summerlannds Estate
    Summerlands, Phillip Island, Victoria 3922
    Australia
    Phone:
    +61 3 5951 2800
    Other:
  • Yarra Valley
    Destinations
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    Seriously good wine and food are tucked away in these little green rolling hills. You don't have to be a wine expert to pick up some nice bottles from the cellar door here, plus for some reason wine always tastes better when you get it directly from the vineyard!

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Make up a picnic hamper with local cheeses, olives and sour dough bread and have yourself an alfresco rustic feast!
    • For the greatest flexibility, hire a car and visit various wineries at your own pace. Otherwise, look into booking a group or private day tour; check online for reviews.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    • Yarra Valley
  • Mornington Peninsula National Park
    Beaches, Gardens, National Parks, Parks
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    After indulging in a cheese and wine tour, walk it off along the rugged windswept cliffs of this National Park. The peninsular is only an hour's drive away from Melbourne, and there are vineyards, olive groves and quaint seaside villages to explore.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Beach Goer
    • Hidden Gems
    • History Buff
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Soak up the minerals at the Peninsular Hot Springs after a stint of bushwalking or cellar door wine tasting.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #32 of 310 things to do in Mornington Peninsula
    • Great park 11/10/2018
    • Lovely national park 13/09/2018
    • Mornington Peninsula National Park
    Address:
    Point Nepean Road
    Victoria
    Australia
    Phone:
    +61 1800 804 009
    Other:
  • Great Ocean Road
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    One of Australia's greatest drives, the Great Ocean Road hugs the coastline, winding its way to the charming Apollo Bay after passing the iconic surfing mecca of Bells Beach. From there, you can continue, crossing through the temperate rainforest of the Otway Ranges, finally emerging onto a breathtaking plateau where the limestone outcrops of The Twelve Apostles bear the fury of the Indian Ocean. The views will blow you away - literally!

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Beach Goer
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Loch Ard Gorge is sheltered and a great place to stop for a swim.
    • Look out for penguins on the small beaches at the base of the cliffs at the Twelve Apostles.
    • The Cape Otway lighthouse is Australia's oldest working lighthouse and well worth a small diversion.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    • Great Ocean Road
  • Dandenong Ranges
    Mountains, National Parks
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    Situated just 35kms from the city, this is the easiest and closest green escape from Melbourne. Here, lush vegetation, cute villages, handicrafts, fairs, easy bushwalks, gourmet restaurants and traditional pubs are all on offer to soothe away the city blues.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • History Buff
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Puffing Billy Steam Railway is literally a hoot! Catch it from Belgrave Village. They also host Jazz and Blues nights on the train.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 24 things to do in Dandenong
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Beautiful mountains and lookout. 01/12/2018
    • So pretty! 22/11/2018
    • Dandenong Ranges
    Phone:
    +61 3 9758 7522
    Other:
  • Yarra River
    Bodies of Water
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    Going on a river cruise is an easy way to get a unique view of parts of the city that are otherwise difficult or time consuming to access. Whether you go downstream to the port or upstream through leafy parks, you will be enchanted by the view.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • History Buff
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The port town of Williamstown is a great destination, and a cruise here takes in long scenic stretches of the Yarra along the way.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #33 of 461 things to do in Melbourne
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Great part of the city 18/12/2018
    • Nice rest while touring the Yarra River 18/12/2018
    • Yarra River
    Address:
    Southbank Promenade
    Melbourne, Victoria 3000
    Australia
    Phone:
    +61 1300 365 975
    Other:
  • St. Kilda Beach
    Beaches
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    The St. Kilda foreshore and promenade along Port Phillip Bay are a great place to walk, jog or cycle. You can go swimming in the sea baths, windsurfing in the bay, and even try sneaking up on the little penguins that sometimes reside by the breakwater.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Beach Goer
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Hire a blue city bike-share bicycle and ride back into town, dropping it off at one of the many stations in the CBD.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #3 of 31 things to do in St Kilda
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Too cold to swim, but a beautiful site! 18/12/2018
    • Not too bad 15/12/2018
    • St. Kilda Beach
    Address:
    Jacka Boulevard
    West St Kilda
    St Kilda, Port Phillip, Victoria 3182
    Australia
  • Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
    Gardens, Parks
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    A fresh air oasis in the heart of the city, it is only a skip across the river to the south bank of the Yarra, where the Royal Botanic Gardens provide a great place for a picnic and a free guided tour.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Try the Aboriginal Heritage Walk led by indigenous guides who will take you on an ancestral journey of the Gardens.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 461 things to do in Melbourne
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Haven of peace and a festival for the senses 17/12/2018
    • Lose Yourself Among the Trees 17/12/2018
    • Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
    Address:
    Birdwood Ave
    South Yarra
    Melbourne, Victoria 3004
    Australia
    Phone:
    +61 3 9252 2300
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
    Other:
  • Studley Park Boathouse
    Parks, Points of Interest & Landmarks
    See more photos
    Milan S Says:

    Australia's oldest operating boathouse, this historic spot in Studley Park lets you hire your own rowboat, canoe or kayak and paddle about the Yarra. Situated right on the riverbank, find a table in the lovely outdoor seating area at the cafe and restaurant and enjoy watching the ducks and geese roaming along the riverbanks.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • For boat hire, children must be accompanied by an adult and photo ID is required.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 13 things to do in Kew
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Love it 11/12/2018
    • Yachts luncheon 09/12/2018
    • Studley Park Boathouse
    Address:
    1 Boathouse Rd
    Kew, Boroondara, Victoria 3101
    Australia
    Phone:
    +61 3 9853 1828
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
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