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Escape to The Bay
Short Escape

Great DrivesThis circular drive takes you to the seaside resorts, beaches, and inlets that flank vast Port Phillip Bay’s 265 km of coastline. En route you’ll discover just why this region is known as Melbourne’s holiday playground.

Head southwest from Melbourne to Werribee, where Werribee Park Mansion and the acclaimed Werribee Zoo are both worth a visit. Beyond here Geelong, Victoria’s second largest settlement, is an attractive waterfront city that features delightful botanic gardens, the Geelong Art Gallery, Maritime Museum and the National Wool Museum, where the fascinating story of Australia’s wool industry is revealed.

Geelong is the gateway to the Bellarine Peninsula - of which the undoubted highlight is the long-established resort of Queenscliff. There are many grand Victorian buildings here, you can visit Fort Queenscliff Museum and the Maritime Museum, and Swan Bay is great for fishing and boating. And don’t miss a steam train ride on the historic Bellarine Peninsula Railway!

From Queenscliff, a vehicle/passenger ferry departs regularly for the short trip across the bay’s entrance to the Mornington Peninsula. You’ll land at the seaside resort of Sorrento, from where you can take a drive to nearby Portsea, the area’s most exclusive resort town.

The Nepean Highway then leads to the attractive bayside resorts of Rye and Rosebud, and a detour to dramatic Cape Schank on the peninsula’s southern side. Also in this area are Flinders, a quiet beach resort at the entrance to Western Port, and the Mornington Peninsula National Park, encompassing 45 km of wave-pounded coastline. From Dromana take the chairlift to 302m-high Arthurs Seat - the views from the top are sensational!

Before heading back to Melbourne, call in at Frankston, the peninsula’s bustling commercial centre where there are good beaches, pleasant parks and an art gallery.

Where to Stay

Time required: 2-3 days are recommended


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