Victoria has become our second home over the last few years, with us having moved here in 2019. Since then we’ve been exploring lots of the state in our spare time, from the Central Melbourne Laneways to far-flung corners of the High Country.
In this post, I share the best places to visit in Victoria. These are our favourite spots from across the state, ones that we’ve enjoyed and will live long in the memory.
To make it easy to navigate I’ve split down the post into different areas of Victoria, making it easy for you to find information about the area you’re planning to visit.
I regularly come back and update this post, to receive updates about Victoria sign up for the free guide below:
Best Places to Visit in Victoria – Area Map
There was a recent Q&A on Instagram that asked people to describe Melbourne in two or less words.
- Caffeine heaven
- Cultural capital
- Hipster heaven
- Completely irresistible
- Lockdown legends (we endured one of the world’s longest lockdowns during Covid in 2020)
Quite a list!
One of the unusual elements of Melbourne is the lack of world-famous landmarks. Yes, we have the MCG and Flinders Street Station, but these don’t really stack up to the Sydney Opera House, Eiffel Tower and Big Ben when picked out of a line-up.
What makes Melbourne so liveable though is a multitude of other things.
The coastal location, independent coffee shops (Starbucks had to pull out of here as their sales were so poor), narrow laneways, expansive parks and love of sport to name a few.
The food especially has stood out for us, driven by big populations of Italian, Southeast Asian, Greek and Lebanese who’ve established communities within the city and driven the quality of everything from coffee to souvlaki to a level not experienced anywhere outside their home countries (and at times actually better, with Melbourne coffee voted the best in the world).
If you’re visiting Melbourne and the suburbs, some of the posts below should help you to get started:
- 25 Bonza Things To Do in Melbourne
Yes, I know it’s a corny title, but you’ve got to try and stand out as a writer somehow! What you need to know though is that this is my central point for everything Melbourne. Whenever we visit somewhere exciting in the city I add it to this article (so it is probably more than 25 by now) so stop by if you’re looking for inspiration of where to visit in the city.
- Where to Stay in Melbourne CBD: 5 Places for Inspiration
Having lived in Melbourne, it’s not often I have to stay here (other than the occasional meeting) so I asked some of my travel blogger colleagues who’ve visited the city as tourists to put together their favourite places to stay. You can also check out 8 Best Hotels with Balconies in Melbourne if you’re looking for a great view.
- 21 of My Favourite Photo Spots in Melbourne
If you’re a photographer, this is the post for you. A round-up of my favourite places to get photos in the city.
- Are There Snakes in Melbourne?
Best to check now before you arrive! You might just be surprised how many of these little fellas make it into the city.
- What is Melbourne Known For?
Learn more about the city with this little travel guide wrapped up with some cool facts.
- Things To Do in Williamstown: 25 Ideas (From a Local)
Williamstown sits across the bay from Melbourne CBD and offers beautiful views of the city. It also happens to be my hometown and somewhere I am very proud to live. Less than 20 minutes by train from the CBD it is well worth a visit.
This section covers areas within an hour or so of Melbourne, though some are cut out such as Geelong and the Mornington Peninsula and others are further out, so it is far from an exact science!
Day-tripping or taking a weekend out of the city opens up so many wonderful parts of the state. I’m always amazed at just how quickly Melbourne disappears and the country begins.
- 6 Things To Do in Healesville: Wine, Wildlife & Tranquility
Healesville is one of the best day-trips from Melbourne. Famous for the Healesville Sanctuary, which is packed full of indigenous wildlife, but with something from everyone – from wine tours to a chocolate factory (ok maybe this is all just for me!)
- Black Spur Drive
Not far from Healesville, this 27km drive is one of the best in Victoria, through trees of record-breaking heights and an undergrowth straight from Jurassic Park.
Great Ocean Road and Geelong
- 10 Fun Things to Do at Serendip Sanctuary
Serendip Sanctuary is just outside Geelong and a useful stop-off location on the way to the Great Ocean Road. There are picnic facilities here and some great walking trails and wilidlife.
- 18 Eclectic Things To Do in Port Fairy (& The Local Area)
We headed to Port Fairy to visit one of two UNESCO Heritage Sites in Victoria, Budj Bim. We ended up finding much much more in this quaint little seaside town.
Goldfields and Grampians
To the west of Melbourne you’ll find the Goldfields and Grampians.
The Victorian Goldfields region is associated with the 1850s gold-rush that took hold of the area. People came from across the globe with hopes of finding a fortune and the area is littered with old mineshaft and mullock heaps.
The Grampians National Park is a little older, having been settled by the aboriginal population as much as 50,000 years ago and known in the Jarnwadjali language as Gariweld.
- 12 1/2 Wondrous Things To Do (+ See) in the Grampians
A comprehensive guide to the best things to do and see in the Grampians, from 35,000-year-old rock art to crazy golf. The Grampians are probably our favourite weekend getaway from Melbourne.
- Grampians Itinerary: Your Must-Have Guide [With Maps]
This guide focuses on how to pack the best parts of the Grampians into a long weekend, with a day-by-day itinerary.
The Murray River Area
The Murray River is the very northern part of Victoria, before it crosses into New South Wales. Famous for paddle boat steamers, there is a lot to discover up here.
- 20+ Things To Do in Mildura (Ranked 1st to Last)
We spent a wonderful week in Mildura, here’s our first-hand guide of what to do.
Mornington Peninsula, Phillip Island and Wilsons Promontory
The Mornington Peninsula is so close to Melbourne and with a great variety of beaches, wineries and historic locations there is loads to do here.
- Mornington Peninsula Itinerary: What To Do/Where To Stay
My complete guide to the Mornington Peninsula.
- Moonlit Sanctuary – Our Honest Review
Moonlit Sanctuary is a fantastic place to head for a day trip from Melbourne, packed with Aussie wildlife.
We haven’t been lucky enough to get to Gippsland yet, but we’ll be there soon and will update this section when we return.
Victorian High Country
The Victorian High Country is like nothing else the state has to offer. Blanketed in snow in the winter and rigged in summer it reminds me of the great alpine countries of Europe, with its mountainside switchbacks and quaint rural towns.
- Victorian High Country Itinerary and Trip Planning Guide
We spent a week in the Victorian High Country and covered off most of the popular destinations. From stunning mountain ranges to traditional Victorian towns, the High Country is a fantastic part of the State.
- 30 Interesting and Unusual Facts About Victoria
Learn more about the state of Victoria. Did you know it was the only place on earth to host a fifth Beetle? Or that the term ‘Call Girl’ originated here? I cover some eclectic ground in this post!
- By Travel Writers: The Very Best Beaches in Victoria
A list of the 14 best beaches in Victoria – from world-class surfing to penguins – Victoria has beaches that suit everyone. I get assistance from 14 great travel writers to share their favourite beaches in the state.
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