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Published February 22nd 2015
It's always fun having friends over from interstate or overseas, but lets' say you only had 1 or 2 days to show them around (and for the sake of this article, let's say they have seen most of the CBD), where would you recommend around Melbourne that is your absolute must do?
To get the ball rolling here's a few of my suggestions (you may be able to bundle some up together and fit them in one day):
1. Fairy penguins and chocolates on a day trip to Phillip Island:
Many tourists worldwide love to visit Phillip Island with its beautiful beaches and of course the highlight is the funny little fairy penguins who waddle in at nightfall each evening with fat little bellies of fish. However, another decadent attraction whilst you are there is Panny's Amazing World of Chocolate Factory where you can take a tour and even make your own chocolate.
For a bit of fun, you can also visit A Maze'N Things Holiday Park, where you can play mind teasers over lunch or pay the entry fee and take a tour through the entire mind-twisting adventure.
2. Bathe in the healing hot waters As a bit of a spa junkie - yes, I have been known to travel overseas to destinations just because they have hot springs. A trip to the Peninsula Hot Springs would definitely be on my list.
A trip down the Mornington Peninsula is a great sight-seeing day in its own right; there's plenty of wineries, great restaurants and ocean views on the way down and to finish it off in a pleasant way, you could take the car on the ferry across to Queenscliff and come back via Geelong and the West Gate Bridge.
Delightful Hot Springs Bathing at Peninsula Hot Springs
3. Take a step back in time and head to Ballarat You can visit Sovereign Hill, where your visitors can see how life was lived back in the gold rush days, then head out to Creswick and take their own private Gold Tour with Creswick Gold Tours. You never know, you may even find more than the cost of your entire trip in gold.
A visit back through the nearby Daylesford and a dip in the Daylesford Mineral Baths, followed by a browse in the curio shops and high tea in Daylesford before the trip back to Melbourne. If you possibly had spare time here, for a spot of history and fun you could even join in a GPS Treasure Hunt at Lake Daylesford.
For the adults, I always love a visit to Herbal Lore Healing Liqueurs & Chocolates. The owners will virtually give you a reading on where you are in your life by the liquers you are attracted to. All the more reason for a little tipple.
Adults only indulgences at Herbal Lore
4. Head to the hills: When I am in Melbourne, a visit to Olinda and Sassafras is always on my "to do" list. It is a delightful little village filled with shops, art galleries and cafes. I love wandering through the shops and laneways here and in winter the fire is lit in the hidden laneways of Sassafras and everyone is welcome to help themselves to a free marshmallow to toast over the fire.
If you feel like being transported to the English bygone years, the iconic Miss Marples Tea House should suit and there are all manner of lovely cafes and restaurants to try. Whilst up this way, if your guests love gardens, they will love a visit to the Rhododendron Gardens or Cloudehill. (Rhododendron Gardens - The Georgian Rd, Olinda 3788. Phone: 03 - 9757 7300).
5. A winery trip through the Yarra Valley
This is another of my favourite days, although, as we often do it by motorbike when the weather is fine, we usually enjoy coffees rather than wine. Of course there is also the Great Ocean road trip, but the windy bends tend to make many of my jet lagged friends feel a little ill if all done in a day, so I would add this to a 2-3 day getaway.
Over to you: We would love to hear your suggestions.
Where do you love to get away to for the day? What's your favourite must see / must do with friends and tourists outside of the CBD?
Please write your comments and suggestions in the comments box at the top of this article to share with us. We are waiting to hear your suggestions.
old gippstown in moe is quirky and interesting - a collection of old gippsland buildings transported to this place for preservation. next to macdonalds wich you see from the highway as you approach moe - turn off to moe.
Feed the Rosella/s at the Kallista Kiosk (Dandenongs)
Take the binoculars,to Mt.Dandenong and explore theCBD,Harbour &Shipping.
Watch the Penguin Parade,on Phillip Island.
Visit the Eastern Beach & the Ford Museum,in Geelong.Explore the Bellarine-
I don't have a suggestion to provide. Instead I want to thank you for this article. I've now put Phillip Island top of my to do list as I didn't know about the other attractions besides the penguins that is on offer there. They sound wonderful and I can't wait to visit them for myself!
Mornington is wonderfully diverse town.. And I love it!
The creme de le creme are the amazing sunsets viewed from the port area. And often fresh fish can be bought from the boats. There is nothing better than a fresh mussel!
there are oodles of shops in the main street or tucked around corners. And a mid week market that has all sorts of wonderful things to buy. Of course I usually end up in the shops, too!
Feeling peckish? The broader area has several wineries where you can taste, eat and enjoy and perhaps catch amazing views of the sea. And of course the main street and environs has a plethora of cafes/restaurants to explore. My favourite is...DOC.
William Ricketts Sanctuary, in the Dandenongs, is somewhere totally different. A relaxing and intriguing place, it is one man's work over decades of clay sculptures set amongst the trees, reflecting on nature and mankind, in particular Aborigines. Bought by the Victorian Government in the 1960s for the public to enjoy.