With lovely bays, waterfront restaurants, wall-to-wall wineries, lively local markets and amazing art galleries, the beautiful Mornington Peninsula has always been Melburnians favourite getaway spot. And with the new freeway, the trip going from Melbourne is just over an hour.

 

Below, we’ve listed our top things to do when heading on down south to the peninsula. 

 

1. Ride a Gondola

 

Arthur Seat Eagle

 

Board the Arthur Seat Eagle or a gondola and fly over the state forest to the highest point on the peninsula, where the views will take your breath away. You will be torn between looking at the spectacular vista across the bay to the city or down the bay, and spotting the wildlife, as you soar high above the trees. 

 

2. Discover a Slice of French Riviera

 

The Pillars at St Martha

 

Discover a little slice of the French Riviera down under at the Pillars, Mt Martha. It is considered as one of the best places to go cliff jumping.

  

3. Climb a Lighthouse

 

Cape Schanck Lighthouse

 

Get the opportunity to climb the stone stairs to the lamp room of the beautiful and historic Cape Schanck Lighthouse which provides panoramic views of the ocean. One can even spot whales through the waters during the migration season.

 

4. Relax on a Hot Spring

 

Peninsula Hot Springs

 

Unwind in thermal pools scattered amongst an Australian bush setting. The Peninsula Hot Springs offers a truly tranquil experience with its 20 bathing experiences including a cave pool, Turkish steam bath, reflexology walk, mineral showers, hilltop pool and more.

 

5. Take a Tour at the Old Fort Nepean

 

Point Nepean

 

Go and learn about Australia’s diverse history at the old Fort Nepean. You’ll be amazed at the tunnels, bunkers, cannon and infrastructure left in place from the turn of the last century are beautifully maintained and curated with lots of audio visual prompts to recreate Australia at war.  

 

6. Ride an Old Steam Railway

 

Mornington Railway

 

Take the old steam Mornington Railway that chugs between Moorooduc and Mornington. It’s a lovely way to remember a bygone era.

 

7. Eat, Drink and Be Merry

 

Food and Wine

 

The Peninsula's love affair with wine, fresh produce, seafood and bountiful food on the table becomes evident as you drive through the region. It’s all here- casual cafés, chic restaurants, award-winning restaurants with decks and terraces overlooking vineyards or kitchen gardens, winery restaurants and fine dining both in our coastal villages and our hinterland hamlets. 

 

8. Swim with the Dolphins

 

Marine Adventures

 

Mornington Peninsula boasts two unique bays, Port Phillip and Western Port, which offer hundreds of exciting sites to explore and fascinating marine life to see. In the summer months, swim with fur seals and dolphins in the Peninsula’s perfect waters. You can also meet cheeky Australian fur seals, or snorkel with delicate weedy sea dragons.

  

9. Play Golf

 

Flinders Golf Club

 

Play a round on a magnificent cliff top golf course. The peninsula is Australia’s number one golf destination with 15 clubs and 20 outstanding courses. It boasts spectacular coastal views, excellent on-course accommodation and great packages. 

 

10. Visit Local Markets

 

Red Hill Market

 

You’ll find weekend markets, mid-week markets, markets with a focus on food or crafts, markets with entertainment, breakfast and brunch.  You can buy organic vegetables and fruit, sourdough breads, mussels, grass-fed meats, cheese, wine, free-range eggs, pasta, jams, olive oils and more. 

 

11. Go Fishing, Surfing, Stand Up Paddle Boarding and Sailing

 

SUP

 

Glide quietly and safely along the top of the shallow waters of Port Phillip or Western Port as you stand up paddle board. You can also learn to surf or perhaps just watch the pros catch the waves. 

 

12. Picnic at a Sculpture Park

 

McClleland Sculpture Park

 

Go on a picnic by the lake on rugs under the shady trees at the stunning McClelland Sculpture Park and Garden. Hiding amongst 16 acres of ti-tree forests, bracken paths, heathlands, landscapes gardens and lakes are more than 100 permanent sculptures of Australian and International significance.

 

13. Go on Shopping

 

Shopping

 

Browse fashion boutiques, art galleries, gourmet food emporiums and designer homeware stores in seaside and hinterland villages. You’ll find high street shopping or shopping complexes, and intriguing little shops, boutiques, galleries and local produce stores. 

 

14. Lantern-lit Tours in a Wildlife Sanctuary

 

Moonlit Sanctuary

  

Cuddle up to koalas, feed kangaroos and wallabies, meet endangered species in a beautiful bushland setting at Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park. Evening visitors can enjoy an award-winning, magical, personally guided tour by lantern light, meeting endangered species and other bush creatures.

 

15. Tree Surfing at The Enchanted Adventure Garden

 

Enhanted Adventure Garden

 

Set within 20 gardens, this eco-adventure park offers hours of fun for the whole family. Stroll through three hedged mazes, skid down the tube slides, creep through the 3D Spooky Maze, wander through the sculpture garden and tread through the canopy walk.

 

16. Visit the Sorrento - Portsea Artist's Trail

 

Sorrento-Portsea Artists Trail

 

Experience Sorrento and Portsea the way the towns' talented painters have and see why the Mornington Peninsula has played muse to so many artists. The fascinating and lovely walk takes you past beachfront estates with stunning cliff top views.