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AUSTRALIA

Holidays to Regional Victoria

Get inspiration

Victoria beyond Melbourne

Go on holiday in regional Victoria and you’ll get to know the Australian state beyond its capital, Melbourne. You can drive the Great Ocean Road, watch penguins parade on beaches, explore wine trails that stretch for miles, and unwind in natural mineral springs.

Victoria is the smallest of Australia’s mainland states and the most southerly. Its coastline is dotted with beaches and pretty islands, lapped by the Indian Ocean. And, further inland, you’ll find rainforests, rolling hills, grand mountains and spectacular rock formations. But any holiday to Victoria inevitably begins in Melbourne. It’s easy to see why the state capital has earned its stellar lifestyle reputation. Don’t miss rooftop bars and the quaint laneways they overlook. Have a day by the sea at vintage St. Kilda and browse markets in Fitzroy. If you want great museums, the National Gallery of Victoria is Australia’s oldest art gallery. And, when you want serious coffee, the hip South Yarra neighbourhood is a must-visit.  

But there’s plenty to see in regional Victoria. Head north of the city to wine country – in the Yarra Valley, you can tour the vineyards and try delicious cool-climate wines. Or, go for a wander the wild forests of Dandenong Ranges. Animal lovers should spend a day on Phillip Island where, if you wait until duck, you’ll see the famous ‘penguin parade’ on Summer Beach. To discover the wildest wildlife, though, take a tour through the rainforests of enormous Gippsland, just east of Melbourne. 

No other state has more natural mineral springs than Victoria and the best are found in the delightful Daylesford Macedon Ranges. For waterfalls and majestic mountains make for the Grampians, three hours’ west of Melbourne. And if you head south of the city you’ll come to the Great Ocean Road. A road trip legend which stretches for 400 kilometres, this amazing route takes in coastal features like the Twelve Apostle sea stacks and the dramatic Loch Ard Gorge, plus wineries, heritage villages, animal sanctuaries, Aboriginal art and Cape Otway Lighthouse – the oldest and most southerly in Australia. 

Things to do

Experiences

Activities

Best time to go

Things to do

Victoria is compact yet manages to pack in a lot, and there are some things you definitely shouldn’t miss. Once you’ve had your fill of Melbourne, take a tram to the seaside at St. Kilda and try Northcote for first-class food trucks. Then head to Mornington Peninsula for bushwalks and local markets. For immersion in vintage Victoria, visit the recreated 19th-century goldrush town of Sovereign Hill, and admire the magnificent goldrush mansions at Ballarat.

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Spend a spa-day – or two – in Daylesford Macedon Ranges, soaking in the soothing thermal water, and then tour the area’s heritage towns. Balance wine tasting in the Grampians with a visit to Brambuk Cultural Centre to learn about Victoria’s Aboriginal history. And, if you crave a simple day by the ocean, go for a stroll on Fairhaven near Anglesea – the longest beach on the Great Ocean Road. Or for longer still, find Ninety Mile Beach in Gippsland. 

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Best experiences

As experiences in Victoria go, driving the Great Ocean Road is hard to beat. Depending on the length of your holiday, you could travel all 400 kilometres, or just do part of the route. Even on the shortest drive, you’ll find natural wonders and spectacular coastal views. On the way, you can explore the rainforest in Great Otway National Park, and go koala-spotting around the blue gum trees at Kennet River. Don’t miss wild Wongarra Bay or the beautiful Hopetoun Falls. And, if you reach the iconic Twelve Apostles, make sure you walk down the Gibson Steps to see the sea stacks at their finest. 

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Show Less

Yarra Valley is another must. After you’ve done the wine trails, tour Dame Nellie Melba’s wonderful house and gardens. And then ride a vintage steam train through immense Dandenongs’ forest near Belgrave. Or, if you want to gain insight into Aboriginal culture, head to the Grampians and follow the Silo Art Trail.   

Show More
Show Less

Best activities

Iconic surf brands Billabong and Quiksilver were born in Victoria. Melbourne hosts the Australian Tennis Open each year. And Phillip Island has an international Grand Prix Circuit. So if you want activities, Victoria certainly delivers. 

Up in the air, you can float over the Yarra Valley in a hot air balloon or catch a helicopter to view the Twelve Apostles. Torquay’s one of the state’s famous surf towns, but beaches all along the coast come good on water sports. Swap driving for hiking and do part of the Great Ocean Walk. You can even ride horses along the shore in Port Phillip Bay. 

Show More
Show Less

When you want to get up-close to wildlife, visit Great Otway National Park for incredible guided night walks through Melba Gully, where you’ll see shimmering glow worms. Or head to Wilsons Promontory and catch a cruise to see some of Victoria’s dramatic coastline, as well as colonies of sea lion and pods of dolphins.  

Show More
Show Less

Best time to visit

Victoria's climate is as diverse as the state itself. It ranges from hot and semi-arid in the northwest, to cooler, fresher weather along the coast. Like the UK, Victoria has four seasons, and the weather here is far less extreme than other Australian states. The varied seasons means the best time to travel depends on what you want to see and do.

The summer months of December, January and February see temperatures hover in the early-twenties – so you can soak up some sun, but still explore in comfort. Spring and autumn are cooler, with day temperatures between 13 and 17 oC. And it’s best to avoid May and October, as these are the wettest months.

Show More
Show Less

Alternatively, you could go to Victoria in winter. Between June and August, temperatures hover around 10oC, with the odd frosty night. While you won’t get a tan at this time of year, it’s the perfect time to see Victoria without the crowds. Winter is also peak time for whale migration along Victoria’s coastline, so you’re likely to spot humpbacks and orcas.

Show More
Show Less

Things to do

Things to do

Victoria is compact yet manages to pack in a lot, and there are some things you definitely shouldn’t miss. Once you’ve had your fill of Melbourne, take a tram to the seaside at St. Kilda and try Northcote for first-class food trucks. Then head to Mornington Peninsula for bushwalks and local markets. For immersion in vintage Victoria, visit the recreated 19th-century goldrush town of Sovereign Hill, and admire the magnificent goldrush mansions at Ballarat.

Show More
Show Less

Spend a spa-day – or two – in Daylesford Macedon Ranges, soaking in the soothing thermal water, and then tour the area’s heritage towns. Balance wine tasting in the Grampians with a visit to Brambuk Cultural Centre to learn about Victoria’s Aboriginal history. And, if you crave a simple day by the ocean, go for a stroll on Fairhaven near Anglesea – the longest beach on the Great Ocean Road. Or for longer still, find Ninety Mile Beach in Gippsland. 

Show More
Show Less

Experiences

Best experiences

As experiences in Victoria go, driving the Great Ocean Road is hard to beat. Depending on the length of your holiday, you could travel all 400 kilometres, or just do part of the route. Even on the shortest drive, you’ll find natural wonders and spectacular coastal views. On the way, you can explore the rainforest in Great Otway National Park, and go koala-spotting around the blue gum trees at Kennet River. Don’t miss wild Wongarra Bay or the beautiful Hopetoun Falls. And, if you reach the iconic Twelve Apostles, make sure you walk down the Gibson Steps to see the sea stacks at their finest. 

Show More
Show Less

Yarra Valley is another must. After you’ve done the wine trails, tour Dame Nellie Melba’s wonderful house and gardens. And then ride a vintage steam train through immense Dandenongs’ forest near Belgrave. Or, if you want to gain insight into Aboriginal culture, head to the Grampians and follow the Silo Art Trail.   

Show More
Show Less

Activities

Best activities

Iconic surf brands Billabong and Quiksilver were born in Victoria. Melbourne hosts the Australian Tennis Open each year. And Phillip Island has an international Grand Prix Circuit. So if you want activities, Victoria certainly delivers. 

Up in the air, you can float over the Yarra Valley in a hot air balloon or catch a helicopter to view the Twelve Apostles. Torquay’s one of the state’s famous surf towns, but beaches all along the coast come good on water sports. Swap driving for hiking and do part of the Great Ocean Walk. You can even ride horses along the shore in Port Phillip Bay. 

Show More
Show Less

When you want to get up-close to wildlife, visit Great Otway National Park for incredible guided night walks through Melba Gully, where you’ll see shimmering glow worms. Or head to Wilsons Promontory and catch a cruise to see some of Victoria’s dramatic coastline, as well as colonies of sea lion and pods of dolphins.  

Show More
Show Less

Best time to go

Best time to visit

Victoria's climate is as diverse as the state itself. It ranges from hot and semi-arid in the northwest, to cooler, fresher weather along the coast. Like the UK, Victoria has four seasons, and the weather here is far less extreme than other Australian states. The varied seasons means the best time to travel depends on what you want to see and do.

The summer months of December, January and February see temperatures hover in the early-twenties – so you can soak up some sun, but still explore in comfort. Spring and autumn are cooler, with day temperatures between 13 and 17 oC. And it’s best to avoid May and October, as these are the wettest months.

Show More
Show Less

Alternatively, you could go to Victoria in winter. Between June and August, temperatures hover around 10oC, with the odd frosty night. While you won’t get a tan at this time of year, it’s the perfect time to see Victoria without the crowds. Winter is also peak time for whale migration along Victoria’s coastline, so you’re likely to spot humpbacks and orcas.

Show More
Show Less

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