1. Wine Tasting in Yarra Valley
As one of Victoria’s premier wine regions, mention the Yarra Valley to a local and you’ll hear a daydreamy sigh as they envisage the emerald glow of the valleys and the straw-gold glow of the wine.
A visit to the Yarra Valley makes for an ideal day trip from Melbourne. It’s 50km east of Melbourne, an easy hour’s drive from the CBD that roughly echoes the route of the Yarra River. While the landscape of undulating hills and eucalyptus forests is a major draw card for visitors to the area, not to mention the day spas, gourmet produce and the romantic getaway factor, it’s the wine scene that lures them most.
The Yarra Valley is a cool climate region but because the landscape includes high peaks and valley floors, it’s able to produce a number of varieties. There are 90 vineyards in the Yarra Valley, and around 35 wineries including big-hitters such as Rochford, Yering Station and Domaine Chandon.
2. Great Ocean Road – Shipwrecks and Cliff Tops
Discover the breath-taking scenery of the Great Ocean Road on Victoria’s spectacular west coast. The Great Ocean Road has beautiful beaches, National Parks and pristine marine sanctuaries. Travel through Otway Rainforest, see the famous12 Apostles rock formations and during a stop at Loch Ard Gorge, ask a local to share the intriguing story of Victoria’s most tragic shipwreck that gave the gorge its name.
3. Daylesford – Decadent Spa Town
Ready to relax, rejuvenate and indulge? That’s what Daylesford is all about. An easy 90-minute drive from Melbourne (or a train and bus from central Melbourne via the historical gold mining town of Ballarat), Daylesford is a picturesque town perfect for taking time out and soaking up Australia’s natural environment.
With world-class natural spa treatments, a relaxing lake, walking tracks and fresh air galore, you’ll literally feel the stress drift away. Once you’re relaxed, it’s time to enjoy the amazing fresh produce and famous regional wines. Visit one of the town’s famous restaurants – The Lake House is regarded as one of the great fine dining experiences in Australia – or shop locally and prepare your own picnic by the lake.
You’ll find plenty of B&Bs and beautiful hotels to stay in, or you can rent a fully-furnished house if you’re staying more than a few days. And, really, once you’ve spent your first day in Daylesford, why would you ever want to leave?
4. Hit the Ski Slopes
It may not be Aspen or the Swiss Alps, but the winter skiing out of Melbourne offers locals and visitors a great experience out of town and in the great Australian outdoors.
Take a full-day, winter-time Mt Buller Ski Tour to feel the buzz and excitement of Melbourne’s most accessible ski resort, complete with ski lessons for beginners. Mt Buller’s ski slopes and alpine village are a winter wonderland between June and early October, and Buller is the closest ski resort to an international airport in Australia.
With all the features and amenities you’d expect from an international-class ski resort, Mt Buller makes for a wonderful day trip, and is also a perfect destination for a few days of dedicated skiing (and, of course, apres-ski!).
- Viator Travel Team