Head to The Bellarine where you’ll find beaches, activities and history.
Right in the middle of The Bellarine, Wallington is a choice spot for families with some major attractions. From water and theme parks at Adventure Park to mini golf, horse riding and a giant maze. Huge waterslides, splash parks, rides and games are the order of the day at Adventure Park – Victoria’s biggest water theme park.
Our tip – arrive early for a good spot to base your towels and esky or book a cabana. For mini golfers, Bellarine Adventure Golf has two big, fun courses (including waterfalls and gravity-defying suction holes).
The holiday town of Barwon Heads is located on the southern coast of the Bellarine Peninsula and separated by the Barwon River from its twin coastal town of Ocean Grove. Barwon Heads is a popular seaside community, offering a diverse variety of coastal attractions from the shallow and sandy shoreline of the Barwon River to the windswept surf beaches which front Bass Strait along 13th Beach Road.
The Bluff Lookout, at Point Flinders, is situated on a rocky outcrop and a network of surrounding walking tracks provides views over the town centre, along the Barwon River and in all directions across Bass Strait. Just north of Barwon Heads is the expansive waterway of Lake Connewarre and surrounding wetlands which make an ideal spot for fishing and bird watching. Where the Barwon River enters Bass Strait, it creates a wide diversity of places for animals and plants to live. There’s also a interpretive heritage centre (the Lobster Pot) on Jetty Road which is open for visitors at certain times of the year. Nearby, Jirrahlinga Koala & Wildlife Sanctuary is an educational sanctuary and renowned for its work in dealing with sick, injured and orphaned koalas,birds, mammals and sea life.
Across the river from Barwon Heads, Ocean Grove offers a wide selection of coastal attractions including the surf beaches which front Bass Strait and several walking tracks that offer good views along the beach. Much of Ocean Grove is spread over the undulating hills and valleys which characterise this section of the Bellarine Peninsula, giving good views down to the ocean and of the surroundings. Blue Waters Lake and the Begola Wetlands are two major inland water attractions at the bottom of the town’s valleys, featuring walking tracks and a collection of birdlife.
The Bellarine Rail Trail – commencing in suburban Geelong South, this walking and cycling track heads east to Drysdale where it then follows the Bellarine Peninsula Tourist Railway all the way to Queenscliff, passing through farmland, native vegetation and along the edge of Swan Bay Geelong Botanic Gardens.
Queenscliff has been a travel destination of choice for more than a century. The quaint town of Queenscliff can be explored on foot or by bike and is a great day trip. The kids will learn by stealth – they’re having so much fun they don’t realize it’s educational! The Marine Discovery Centre on the way into town has touch tanks and provides insight into the aquatic life unique to the area. Search the rockpools or go for a snorkel in the marine park nearby. The town is steeped in history and a stroll in the main street will show off spectacular old hotels with towers and intricate workmanship.
Get a hands – on history lesson with the Bellarine Railway, operating out of Queenscliff station. Vintage steam trains operate all year, and several times a year they become Thomas the Tank Engine or a Santa train. Fun for trainspotters big and small.
Visit the museum, check out the fort and admire the black lighthouse (Why is it black? Ask!).
At the eastern end of the harbour is a car and passenger ferry service which operates between Queenscliff and Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsula, providing an alternative to the road route via Melbourne. You can even take a dedicated dolphin cruise from here. Nearby at Point Lonsdale, which overlooks the entrance to the bay, is a gorgeous white lighthouse that has been used in countless Australian television shows and movies.