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Roughly an hours drive to the southeast of Melbourne lies the Mornington Peninsula. A sleepy region that’s a far cry from the bustling city and an escape to this area will not disappoint. From beaches to golf courses, wineries to hot springs, the Mornington Peninsula needs to be high on your list of places to visit in Victoria.
There are over 200 vineyards on the Peninsula, the rich fertile soil of the area, plus the unique microclimate allow for a wide range of grapes to be grown. The vast majority of these wineries offer on the spot tastings at their cellar door. Simply drive in and taste to your hearts content. You’d be wise to have a driver who isn’t into wine! Many of the top restaurants also have a separate cellar door for this purpose as well.
Mornington Peninsula is most famous for the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir varieties as these grapes grow best in its coldish climate. For more information on specific wineries on the Mornington Peninsula read our post on some of the best.
Sorrento Beach – Bayside on the Mornington Peninsula
The beaches along the Mornington Peninsula are pristine and offer a range of conditions depending on your preference. The beaches on the Port Phillip Bay side are calm and ideal if you have children or are keen for a relaxing swim but the beaches on the ocean side can have pounding surf and are more suited for experienced surf swimming. Several of these beaches are patrolled by life guards. Check out Dromana beach if you’re after a relaxing soak and Portsea Back Beach if you want to be pounded by waves. At most of the beaches there are BBQ facilities and opportunities to rent all types of water sports craft.
3rd green at Moonah Links – Photo by Moonah Links
The Mornington Peninsula is a golfer’s paradise. An hour’s drive from Melbourne will put you on The Dunes, which features the same style of rolling course found on the world famous courses of Scotland. Better than Scotland though is the fact that the links are always dry and the base is sandy. You can also choose to visit and play at some of the other great public golf courses on the Peninsula such as, Moonah Links, Portsea Golf Club, Sorrento Golf Club or if you’re on a budget try the Rosebud Public Course.
Many of these courses are situated right on the water so there are spectacular views no matter where you play and they feature the same dry, sandy conditions that makes golf on the Mornington Peninsula your first choice for teeing off.
The hot springs are a naturally occurring phenomenon that have drawn people for 100s of years to relax, detox and renew their bodies. The Peninsula Hot Springs has grown to offer you several different ways of enjoying your visit. You can drive down to enjoy a day spa and use the bathhouse, or you can book a longer stay in the Dream Spa. The Dream Spa is a wonderful way to spend your vacation. There are different themed rooms that all work to promote tranquility and relaxation. You can choose from an a la carte menu of spa services and relax in the steamy waters. The open bath house is also a good way to socialise and enjoy the company of friends.
For more information on the Peninsula Hot Springs visit their website
There are many opportunities for adventure on the Mornington Peninsula and there is something that will appeal to everyone you’re visiting with. Horse riding is a popular activity and there are some exciting options. You can meander along a beachside trail, or even take a horseback tour of some of the local vineyards.
If you are looking for something to get the adrenaline pumping then try tree surfing or some of the other challenges at the Enchanted Adventure Garden. Over on Port Phillip Bay you will find all the water sports and water adventure tours that you can dream of. You can rent kayaks, get on a sailboat, take a fishing charter, go parasailing or even swim with dolphins. Whatever you fancy, there is something exciting to do on the Mornington Peninsula.