Just over an hour’s drive away from Melbourne is the beautiful Mornington Peninsula. With a coastline that stretches 190 kilometres long, the Mornington Peninsula offers some of the most incredible sights and scenery one could witness but that isn’t the only thing it is known for. The Mornington Peninsula is also home to spectacular wineries, delightful dining options, stretches of sandy, golden beaches, outdoor attractions activities as well as a lush dose of nature, leaving visitors spoilt for choice each time.
Whether it’s your first time visiting this stunning location or if you’re looking for something new to do during your next adventure, we’ve put together a guide to exploring and discovering the best that the Mornington Peninsula has to offer.
If you’re headed straight to Mornington, Main Street is the place to be. Spend the day strolling through a whole kilometre of tree-lined streets where you’ll discover over 370 retail outlets offering a boutique shopping experience. If your hands are full and you need a break, pick from one of the many cafes and pubs with inviting courtyards to enjoy a sip of espresso, cocktail or wine. After a day of retail therapy and gastronomic delights, enjoy an easy stroll to the end of the street where you’ll be met with the vastness of the breathtaking sea.
If you’re after a rejuvenating getaway, you can’t go wrong with a day at the Peninsula Hot Springs. This award-winning natural hot springs and day spa destination has over 70 globally inspired bathing and wellness experiences thoughtfully nestled in a lush landscape. From cave pools to private baths, a reflexology walk, Turkish hammam and hilltop pool with 360-degree views, the options for relaxation are endless. The space also includes a Bath House Amphitheatre with seven geothermal pools, an ice cave, two saunas, café and wellness centre plus a Spa Dreaming Centre with experiences including thermal mineral pools, Zen Chi massage, infrared sauna, tree pods and poolside lounges.
The Mornington Peninsula is home to a number of stellar wineries producing some of the region’s finest wines. We recommend spending the day at Pt. Leo Estate where you’ll be greeted by an exceptional experience that blends culture and culinary delights unlike any other. Offering three dining experiences that celebrate the best of Australian produce including two separate hatted restaurants, elegant wines for enthusiasts and novice alike, as well as Australia’s foremost privately-owned 16-acre Sculpture Park with over 60 Australian and international exhibits, Pt. Leo Estate takes the winery experience to a whole new level. For the wine lovers and oenophiles, there’s plenty more to please your palate including Red Hill Estate, Trofeo Estate, Crittenden Estate and Rahona Valley.
For those wanting to make the most out of the great outdoors, the Mornington Peninsula will not disappoint. Choose from strawberry-picking at the Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm, a day of fun at the Ashcombe Maze and Lavender Garden, art-filled exploration at the McClelland Sculpture Park and Gallery or try tree surfing at Enchanted Adventure, an adventure park and award-winning natural attraction nestled in the beautiful hinterland of Arthurs Seat. If you’re after something a bit more laidback, book yourself a ride at Arthurs Seat Eagle which flies over the state forest to the highest point of the Mornington Peninsula where you can bask in some of the best views of Victoria.
Ready to lace your hiking boots up and go on an outdoor adventure? The Mornington Peninsula National Park is a must-visit along with Point Nepean National Park. The latter offers expansive views of Port Phillip Bay, the Rip and the wild waters of Bass Strait. Walk or cycle the coastal trails as you take in the rugged coastline and natural beauty it has to offer. Other walks and trails in the area include the Two Bays Walking Track which takes you from Dromana to Cape Schanck across a 26-kilometre stretch.
Seeking out some sun, sand and sea where you can park yourself by the water with a picnic and a good read? Choose from the family-friendly Safety Beach, Dromana Beach with colourful bathing boxes, Gunnamatta Beach for the best surf breaks in the Mornington Peninsula or Rye Beach for its white sand and clear blue waters where you can snorkel, scuba and fish.
A stunning spot for a weekend getaway, day trip and holiday any time of year, the Mornington Peninsula has something for everyone and every time of adventure. The best way to explore this stunning location is to book a hire car and enjoy the freedom of exploration at your pace and on your schedule. With over 40 Thrifty locations across Victoria including the Melbourne Airport, Melbourne Downtown, South Melbourne, Preston and more, escaping to the Mornington Peninsula and beyond is a breeze.