Guidebook There’s a natural wonderland on the city’s doorstep


There’s a natural wonderland on the city’s doorstep

“Melbourne is the starting point of fantastic day trips and getaways,” says Time Out.

An hour’s drive from the city is the Dandenong Ranges National Park -- 300 kilometres of walking tracks amid “forests of towering mountain ash and lush, damp fern gullies,” reports Explore Australia. A little further out is another park – “millions of years old, the wise, rock formations have seen it all and don't discriminate, calmly welcoming everyone from super fit rock climbers to interstate day trippers.”

The Great Ocean Road is Australia’s grand coastal route: “rugged scenery, some of Earth’s tallest trees, sea stacks of towering rock, and surfers,” says National Geographic. “But marsupial wildlife as pre-breakfast comic relief? Well played, Australia.”

And on the other side of the bay is the Mornington Peninsula. “Nothing is quite so carefully tucked out of sight as the Melburnians' weekend playground,” says Conde Nast Traveler. Just an hour south of the city: “delicious beaches and tree-lined vineyards.” With over 30 gorgeous coastal towns and hinterland villages, natural hot springs and luxe day spas, charming shopping strips and contemporary galleries, the peninsula is a place to “unwind with a facial, picnic in idyllic gardens, or sip on award-winning pinot noir,” says The Urban List.

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