- An area of outstanding natural beauty, with hiking trails, spectacular view points, waterfalls and an abundance of native wildlife
- One of Australia's most scenic coastal drives, marvel at attractions such as Twelve Apostles and Bay of Islands
- Visit the Nobbies, home to a large colony of Australian fur seals and Summerland Beach where Little penguins come ashore at sunset
- Enjoy wine tastings, breathtaking scenery and gourmet dining in one of the world's premier wine growing regions
- Accommodation Throughout
- Car Hire
- International Flights
Start your 11-night Victoria fly-drive holiday in the cosmopolitan city of Melbourne, where glass skyscrapers sit next to beautiful examples of Victorian architecture.
This splendid self-drive takes you on a journey through Victoria’s diverse landscapes, discovering its Victorian and Gold Rush History, spectacular mountain drives, dramatic seascapes, native flora and fauna and premier wine regions. Step back in time in Ballarrat, where fine examples of Victorian architecture remain.
Visit Sovereign Hill where costumed actors re-enact life in the gold rush era in an open-air museum. Hike mountain trails and cross gushing rivers, and take in the fields of wild flowers bursting with colour in Grampians National Park. Follow Victoria’s famed Great Ocean Road, hugging the coastline, offering dramatic seascapes at each turn, where the crashing waves have carved spectacular rock formations out at sea; such as the Twelve Apostles and London Bridge.
Cross to the Mornington Peninsula and visit Australia’s largest fur seal colony at The Nobbies on Phillip Island. Wait patiently at Summerfield Beach while the sun sets and you will witness Phillip Island’s ‘Little Penguins’ returning to their burrows after a day of feeding at sea.
Complete your Victoria self-drive holiday with some self-indulgence in the Yarra Valley, Victoria’s premier wine region. Tour vineyards and enjoy wine and cheese tastings, and visit the Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery.
Arrive in Melbourne and collect your rental car from the airport for your short drive to your city centre hotel. The remainder of the day is at your leisure to explore the city. Melbourne’s Royal Exhibition Building is a true landmark, where daily tours are available at 14:00hrs. Melbourne Museum is across from the Royal Exhibition Building and showcases indigenous cultures, and Australian social and natural history.
Melbourne is easily explored on foot or by tram, a major form of public transport in the city that started in 1885. The picturesque Yarra River winds its way through the city past the Crown Promenade Casino complex, Melbourne’s towering skyscrapers and through the beautiful Royal Botanic Gardens. In the evening head to one of the vibrant neighbourhoods or enjoy dinner on the Colonial Tramcar Restaurant.
Depart Melbourne this morning and head west to Ballarat. Ballarat was transformed when gold was discovered in the 1850’s during the Victorian Gold Rush. The city is steeped in history with well-preserved Victorian era heritage. The main attraction is Sovereign Hill, an open-air living museum depicting Ballarat’s goldrush history with costumed characters, mine tours and gold panning experiences. The evening show ‘Blood on the Southern Cross’ is a must see.
Hotel – Craig’s Royal Hotel
Today continue east towards the foothills of the Grampians, taking in the panorama of plains, mountains and the vineyards of Ararat along the way. Grampians National Park is known for its wildlife, sandstone mountains and spring wildflowers. Attractions include hiking and biking trails, towering waterfalls such as MacKenzie Falls and ancient Aboriginal rock art. You will spend two nights in DULC (Down Under Log Cabins) in Halls Gap.
Hotel – DULC Cabins
There is so much to explore in the Grampians, whether by car, on foot or bike. Stop at a farmer’s market and create your own picnic to enjoy by a riverbank or on a mountain top taking in the panoramic vistas. Join a wine tour or walk part of the Grampians Peaks Trail, the views of Fyans Valley and Halls Gap from the Pinnacle lookout are outstanding.
Hotel – DULC Cabins
Take the scenic drive south to the beautiful fishing village of Port Fairy, at the end of Victoria’s famed Shipwreck Coast. Look out for native wildlife such as wallabies, kangaroos and emus along the way. Port Fairy’s wide streets are lined with great Norfolk pines and nineteenth century cottages, while at the busy port and wharf you can take a cruise out to sea to Lady Julia Percy Island’s seal colony.
Hotel – Drift House
Peruse Port Fairy’s array of boutiques, art galleries and antique shops, and enjoy wandering around its pretty streets with several examples of 1800’s architecture. Back on the road, head west along the Shipwreck Coast to Victoria’s famed Great Ocean Road. The crashing Southern Ocean waves have, over time, carved dramatic rock formations offshore, including the broken arch of London Bridge and the massive stone stacks of the Twelve Apostles.
The Great Ocean Road hugs the coast offering spectacular coastal vistas along your drive, passing through Lorne, an idyllic setting with a horseshoe-shaped bay backed by rolling hills. Continue through Anglesea to Bells Beach, claiming to be one of the best surfing beaches in the world. At Queenscliff board the ferry across the Victory Bight to Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsula. The ferry operates every hour and takes 40 minutes.
Hotel – Portsea Village Resort
Your destination today is Phillip Island, a natural habitat to native Australian wildlife; you may be lucky enough to see kangaroos, wallabies and sleepy koalas in the wild. Head to Seal Rocks where you will find a colony of Australian Fur Seals and as the sun sets ‘Little Penguins’ descend on to Summerfield Beach, and race back to their burrows after a day at sea, much to the amusement of spectators.
Hotel – Holmwood Guesthouse
A leisurely drive north takes you to Victoria’s premier wine region, Melbourne’s Yarra Valley. Drive via the Dandenong Ranges, stopping at Belgrave Station to catch the Puffing Billy Steam Train for a scenic rail journey through forests, fern gullies and the magnificent Dandenong Ranges.
Hotel – Yarra Valley Lodge
A full day to explore the Yarra Valley, visiting the award-winning vineyards, craft beer and cider breweries. The area is criss-crossed by a network of walking and cycling trails, and the Warburton Rail Trail follows a disused railway line and offers glorious vistas of the Yarra Ranges National Park. Renowned for its delicious food, here you can feast on everything from casual farm to table fare, to full eight-course degustation lunches.
Hotel – Yarra Valley Lodge
1/21 - uk to melbourne
2/21 - arrive melbourne
3/21 - Rooftop bar, QT Melbourne
4/21 - Accessible bedroom, QT Melbourne
5/21 - Lobby lounge at Hotel Lindrum – McGallery by Sofitel
6/21 - Deluxe room at Hotel Lindrum – McGallery by Sofitel
7/21 - melbourne
8/21 - melbourne to ballarat
9/21 - ballarat to halls gap
10/21 - grampians national park
11/21 - halls gap to port fairy
12/21 - port fairy to apollo bay
13/21 - Loft downstairs area at Captains at the Bay
14/21 - Cottage at Captains at the Bay
15/21 - Loft living room at Captains at the Bay
16/21 - Cottage Bathroom at Captains at the Bay
17/21 - apollo bay to portsea
18/21 - portsea to phillip island
19/21 - phillip island to yarra valley
20/21 - yarra valley
21/21 - yarra valley to uk
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