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Top 3 Melbourne Day Trips

Home > Melbourne > Day Trips | Lists | Travel
Published February 8th 2017
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Melbourne might be known as the cosmopolitan capital of Australia. It's unique fashion sense and style, hipster cafes and clothing rule the roost. But it's also a gateway to some of Australia's most scenic and varied landscapes, just a short drive from it's CBD.

For tourists on limited time and budget (or locals looking to explore their backyard), we've picked out three of the region's most accessible day trips.

The Dandenong Ranges and Yarra Valley

Thanks to its close proximity to Melbourne, the Dandenong Ranges, and Yarra Valley are popular destinations amongst cyclists, motorcyclists and four-wheeled vehicles alike. Hike the 1000 Steps, or explore the hidden delights of the Dandenong Ranges: scenic and winding roads connect the townships of Sassafras and Olinda, abundant with art and craft studios, souvenir stores and tea rooms. Continue on to Sky High for views from the top of the Dandenong Ranges back over the city of Melbourne, but be prepared to pay a small entry fee for the privilege.

Stop off at the Coldstream Brewery for a pint of the Yarra Valley's finest, meet Koalas and Kangaroos at Healesville Sanctuary, or take your time exploring the surrounding wineries of the famous Yarra Valley wine region. Continue along the Black Spur to Marysville for breathtaking views of native fern and Mountain Ash forest.

Length of trip: Day
Best time to visit: Check ahead before you leave and be wary of the current climatic conditions. Snow, ice and frost can form on the roads in cooler conditions.

Daylesford and the Macedon Ranges

The historic villages of Daylesford and Hepburn Springs are a short day trip away from Melbourne. But to indulge in all the region has to offer, a weekend stay of 2-3 days is recommended. The region abounds with wineries, markets and a thriving local arts community. Take a walk along one of the hiking trails at either Mount Macedon or Hanging Rock. Explore the mountains, valleys and rock formations formed through the ancient volcanoes and lava flows that once ruled this region.

Length: A day trip is sufficient, but to see it all allow at least an overnight stay (2-3 days).
Time to visit: Spring, summer or autumn. This is a cool climate region so be sure to come prepared, even in summer, especially if you plan to visit Mount Macedon.

The Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road is one of Australia's, if not the world's most scenic coastal drives. It's close enough to Melbourne to be explored in a day and long enough to turn into a long weekend, or even a week long, getaway into the wild winding and rugged coastline, pristine beaches and vibrant local communities along the surf coast. At the far end of The Great Ocean Road is the must see 12 Apostles, towering over the ocean, and at the end closest to Melbourne is the famous Bells Beach, home to the world's longest-running surfing competition.

See Visit The Great Ocean Road for more details.

For those who like to take their time, stop and stay in the beachside towns of Torquay, Lorne and the others dotted along the Great Ocean Road route. The route is also in close proximity to the Grampians National Park for those who seeks a mountain change after spending their time by the sea.

Length: 1-5 days depending on how far you wish to travel, and how long you wish to stay.
Time to visit: Summer (if you feel like a swim).

If you have a valid driver's license but you're feeling nervous about driving on the left-hand side of the road, there's no need to feel intimidated about hiring a car. The patient instructors at the No Yelling Driving School offer extended lessons for tourists looking for a quick, cheap and easy grounding in the Australian road rules.

But that's not all Melbourne has to offer. If you're looking to venture further afield, and have the time for a weekend or even a longer stay away, there's Gippsland (home of Wilson's Promontory), High Country and even more to see and do in Victoria.
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Nice article and congrats on the award.
by RC (score: 3|1221) 1313 days ago
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