A stay at home Mum who doesn't stay at home much; too many exciting things to be discovering in this city...
Published September 4th 2012
All aboard for Mornington
So you wake up on a Sunday morning and wonder how you're going to keep the kids amused for the day. What to do, what to do? A trip to Mornington might not be the first thought that springs to mind when you have a gaggle of kids in tow, but there's plenty on offer to keep the little tackers occupied for a day.
Start your day with a ride on the Mornington Railway. Arrive at Moorooduc Station at 10.30am in time to catch the first train of the day at 11.00am. You can treat the kids to a sausage sizzle whilst they watch the train going on a test run, then board the train and select one of the private compartments in which to enjoy your short journey. The train stops at Tanti to pick up more passengers and terminates in Mornington, a short distance from the main street.
You can take the free shuttle bus to one of 5 different stops along the main street, park or pier and hop out whenever you want to. A good place to stop is Mornington Park at the end of Main Street which provides plenty of green space to run around and kick the footie. The littlies can also stretch their legs on the playground and pretend to be commanders of the high seas on the huge wooden ship.
There are plenty of barbeques in the park if you fancy packing the Eskie up with burgers and chops, or take a cold picnic and stroll down one of the the walkways to the beach (directly opposite the park). Don't forget to take buckets and spades as kids seem to have the ability to keep themselves busy on beaches for hours on end (while you relax in the sunshine). This beach is nice and flat so even toddlers are safe to splash in the shallows and be seen easily from the sand.
When you've exhausted your offspring sufficiently, head up the main street to Yummo, ice cream shop extraordinaire. This is the only ice creamery I've found in Victoria so far that does a 'baby cone' as well as a regular kids cone. The baby cones are a mere $1.70 and are the perfect size for pre-schoolers who might not need quite the sugar kick of an older child. There are tons of ice cream flavours to choose from and other delicious creations displayed on shelves, such as giant freckles in your favourite footie team colours.
If you've still time left, Mornington has some delightful toy shops to explore which are sure to be a hit with the kids. The Singing Whale is full of beautiful, wooden toys which I have to tear myself away from every time we pass it. They're not cheap, but they are of good quality and will last. Toyworld is bursting at the seams with all kinds of goodies and if the kids take their own pocket money along they're bound to find something cheap and cheerful to spend it on here. See-Saw is a new and second hand baby/kids shop which also hires baby equipment, worthy of a browse for both mum and the kids. All of these shops are located on Main Street and within a short distance of one another.
Yummo's baby cone is the perfect size for little hands and tummies
The last train back to Moorooduc leaves Mornington station at 3.30pm, getting you back by 4pm. Don't forget to get a timetable from the driver of the shuttle bus, which will tell you what time you need to catch the bus and from where, in order to be on time for the last train. If the shuttle bus is full by the time it reaches your stop, don't panic. The driver will come back for you and the train will wait until all passengers are on board.
Our three year old loved this adventure and was thoroughly exhausted by the time we collapsed on the train for the return journey. For $15 per adult and $8 per child (under 4s are free), which includes the shuttle bus to and from the main street, it's not going to break the bank and you can keep costs down by taking your own lunch and drinks for the day.