This guide to the most spectacular natural wonders of Victoria, Australia is brought to you by a family of 3 from Ipoh, Malaysia; Christine Koh (45), Koh Huan Yu (52), and Alaric Koh (22). As Alaric is completing his university education in London, the close-knit family loves going on road trips around Asia Pacific whenever they can
When exploring the spectacular beauty that is Australia, the natural wonders of the state of Victoria remain one of the destinations that cannot be missed. Get ready to embark on a breathtaking trip through picturesque landscapes and awe-inspiring sights of this southeast state.
Tip: The best time to visit Victoria is during the spring. Wildflowers that bloom can be spotted blanketing the landscapes in various stunning colours, while rivers and lakes swell from the melting alpine regions.
Now that we’ve sold you on the beauty that is Victoria, here are 9 places we recommend you stop by, and how you can best visit all of them on your road trip.
Getting to the pools involve a rocky but scenic path through shallow waters. Photo from @bradenegan via Instagram.
We’re starting off with a secret swimming spot in the little quaint town of Briagolong. A teal-coloured billabong, the Blue Pool is only a couple of hours drive from the city centre of Melbourne.
With an arsenal of fun stuff, you will find rope swings, cliff jumping spots, day walks and creeks to explore – making the perfect fun day out with the family.
The pool starts off shallow but quickly gets deep as you wade in further, so keep an eye on young children if you’re travelling with family. To get a good shot of the gorge, go deeper into the far end of the waterhole and you’ll be able to get a good view of the natural structure.
Once you’re done with cliff diving and have a good amount of time left, explore some of the walks nearby or stroll down the Peregrine Lookout Trail, named after the Peregrine Falcons that nest there between September to December.
Phillip Island is perfect for discovering and learning about new wildlife, offering family fun for everyone. Photo from Shutterstock.
A popular day-trip location from Melbourne, Phillip Island is well known for its pristine white beaches, family-friendly fun and iconic wildlife. The island is most famed for its Summerland Beach, where every day at sunset, people gather to watch little penguins come ashore in groups.
Watch as the penguins of Phillip Island waddle ashore adorably every night. . Photo from @gene_zrnckl via Instagram.
Most breathtakingly beautiful of all are the natural rock formations that are The Pinnacles and The Nobbies. Multi-coloured and vibrant, the formations offer a view like no other. Also, if you’re lucky, you might be able to spot the native Australian fur seals that call the area home.
Enjoy the views out over the Nobbies rock formations and beyond to Seal Rocks, home of Australia’s largest fur seal colony. Photo from Shutterstock.
The spectacular Mackenzie Falls is one of the largest and most stunning waterfalls in Victoria that flows year-round in the Grampians National Park. Photo from Shutterstock.
The biggest waterfall in Grampians National Park, Mackenzie Falls measures 30 metres into a gorge and flows all year round. If you look closely, you will be able to spot a rainbow mist in the sunshine.
Access to the waterfalls’ viewing platform at the Bluff is easy for everyone and is well accessible for wheelchair-bound individuals.
Lake Wartook serves as a water catchment area and is the source of water for Mackenzie Falls. Photo from Shutterstock.
A lesser-known fact of the waterfalls - the water manages to flow all-year-round and is resilient despite droughts and other disasters due to its water source, Lake Wartook. The lake supplies drinking water to the town nearby and is held up by a dam to ensure supply.
Grampians National Park
The Grampians National Park is well known for its mountains, lakes, wildlife, waterfalls and magnificent lookout points. Photo from @keesmoth via Instagram.
The Grampians National Park is famous for its lookout points that offer unparalleled and unobstructed views of the Victoria Mountain Range. With a range of activities like bushwalking, abseiling, kayaking and more, the park is perfect for families, with activities suitable for young and old members.
Don’t be surprised when you cross paths with a kangaroo (or two!). The Grampians is well known for being home to an abundance of wild kangaroos, wallabies and other native animals. Photo from Shutterstock.
For lovers of wildlife, you’ll be glad to hear that the Grampians National Park is home to an abundance of kangaroos, wallabies and other native animals. As you hike along the many trails in the Grampians, you will definitely spot the different animals in their natural habitat.
Head to the lookout points in the Grampians National Park and treat your eyes, and camera lens, to stunning views. Photo from @domi.gajewska via Instagram.
If you wish to feed and interact with the animals, feel free to head to the Halls Gap Zoo, where you can hand-feed kangaroos and even see some fluffy koalas. From the zoo, you will be able to spot Grampians National Park.
London Bridge (or London Arch)
Named after the famous Bridge in the UK, this London Bridge used to be connected by an arch to the mainland. Photo from @kikkoj87 via Instagram.
No, we’re not talking about the similarly named bridge across the UK’s Thames River. This London Bridge, renamed London Arch, was named due to the collapse of its natural bridge formation.
Once upon a time, tourists could walk across and survey the ocean from the tip of the formation, however, the formation now leaves a chunk of land isolated in the ocean.
Stand upon the viewing areas and marvel at the wave-sculpted rock formation that stands mysteriously alone in the sea. Photo from Shutterstock.
Despite not being able to walk across the structure, there are multiple viewing areas to observe the wave-sculpted beauty of the limestone formation. A sight to behold in itself, this is a place not to be missed.
Great Otway National Park
Located in the Great Otway National Park, the Hopetoun Falls plummet 30 metres into the Aire River. Photo from @keli.dreams via Instagram.
Another famous national park in Victoria, the Great Otway National Park is home to many grand waterfalls, scenic boardwalks through the rainforest, and the famed 1848 Cape Otway Lightstation.
Victoria’s oldest working lighthouse, the Cape Otway Lighthouse is a vantage point for land-based whale watching. Photo from @revuelta via Instagram.
The park features rugged coastlines, sandy beaches, rock platforms and beautiful spring wildflowers. Choose to experience the natural environment on a mountain bike, and travel on the formed roads and tracks.
The twelve limestone pillars were once connected to the mainland cliffs and were eroded through time by waves and wind. Photo from Shutterstock.
Of course, no trip to Victoria would be complete without visiting the world-famous Twelve Apostles. A collection of limestone stacks off the shore of Port Campbell National Park, the proximity of the structures have made the site an international tourist attraction.
Admire the 12 Apostles from the viewing platform and spot little penguins roaming the shore. Photo from Shutterstock.
Stroll down the viewing platform, and complete your experience by checking out the interactive displays along the boardwalk. If you’ve stashed away a significant budget for your trip, consider hopping aboard a helicopter flight to admire the spectacular coastal scenery from a bird’s eye view.
Loch Ard Gorge
The Loch Ard Gorge is named after a ship that washed ashore named the Loch Ard. Photo from Shutterstock.
A three-minute short drive from the famed twelve apostles, the Lord Ard Gorge is named after a ship called Loch Ard that washed ashore on a journey from England to Melbourne. Fifty-two people were lost from the shipwreck, and only two teenagers survived the tragedy, safely washed into the safe gorge on the coast.
Previously, the gorge used to feature a natural bridge that linked the two formations standing in the sea. However, it collapsed in 2009. Photo from Shutterstock.
Walk along the trails of the Loch Ard Gorge and observe the offshore stacks, blowholes and the beautiful formations such as the Razorback and Island arch.
Tip: From September to May, visit the site at dusk to catch the colony of short-tailed shearwaters make their nighty return to their home on Muttonbird Island.
Where to Stay
Choosing where to stay when exploring Victoria, Australia can be difficult. The best sights are located far and apart from one another, and it’s hard to choose between living in the city, or by nature.
What we recommend is switching it up now and then. Set up base in a convenient location in Melbourne, and get to your places of interests by car.
Bellbrae Country Club (#3958)
Located just 10 minutes from Torquay, at the beginning of Great Ocean Road, this peaceful country resort offers tranquility in the hills. The resort is perfect for families with its heated indoor pool, sauna and spa, BBQ, tennis, bike track, trampolines and massage.
Kyneton Bushland Resort (#0830)
Set on the outskirts Kyneton, this resort offers private villas nestled in a unique bush setting. For a romantic getaway, Kyneton Bushland Resort is your choice of lodging.
Lakeside Country Club (#1172)
While the Lakeside Country Club is located slightly further from the city centre, 210 kilometres north of Melbourne, the country club offers a plethora of facilities that makes sure you never want to leave. With BMX bike tracks, game room, tennis courts, spa and sauna complex and outdoor swimming pool, this place is great for you and your loved ones.
Nepean Country Club & Day Spa (#1169)
Situated in the heart of the scenic Mornington Peninsula in beautiful landscaped gardens, the Nepean Country Club is one of Victoria's premier holiday spots. The resort boasts many on-site amenities including tennis, a games room, indoor/outdoor pool, a spa, and a children's playground. Best of all, they offer horseback riding for a different experience.
Sunraysia Resort (#1179)
A 6-hour drive from Melbourne airport, or a 4-and-a-half hour drive from Adelaide, the Sunraysia Resort is the perfect place to take the family for a relaxed and memorable holiday. Choose from a range of activities like tennis or lounging by the pool, or even bond over a game of mini golf or table tennis.