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Things to Do in Mornington Peninsula

From the olive groves and vine-covered hills of the hinterlands to the gold-sand beaches along the coast of Port Phillip bay, the Mornington Peninsula is Melbourne’s natural playground. Less than two hours from the city, it offers wine tasting, hiking, wildlife reserves, and spectacular ocean views. 

The Basics
Most visitors opt to explore on a day tour from Melbourne or take in the views en route to Phillip Island. A full-day Mornington Peninsula tour gives you plenty of time to take in the highlights, such as the view from Arthurs Seat, Point Nepean and Mornington national parks, and the beach town of Sorrento. Food and wine tours are also popular, and Main Ridge, Merricks, and Red Hill are the top wine-tasting destinations, famous for their pinot noir and shiraz. 

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Temperatures can reach 77°F (25°C) during the summer months (December–February), so sun protection is a must. 
  • If hiking or picnicking during the summer months, be aware of the bushfire risk and adhere to the fire ban and other recommended precautions. 
  • There is no public transport to the hinterland areas, so you will need your own car or to visit as part of a tour. 
  • Be sure to book tours, hotels, and activities in advance during the summer months, as they can book up quickly. 

How to Get There
The Mornington Peninsula is located along the south coast of Victoria around an hour’s drive from Melbourne. The easiest way to get around is with your own transport or by joining a guided tour, but train and bus service runs from Melbourne to coastal towns including Frankston, Mornington, and Portsea. 

When to Get There
Summer (December–February) is the most popular time to visit the Mornington Peninsula, but the winter months (June–August) can also get busy. The quietest time to visit is during spring and autumn, when the milder temperatures can be ideal for hiking and outdoor activities, and tours and accommodation are often cheaper. 

Family Fun on the Mornington Peninsula
See koalas and kangaroos at the Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park, go dolphin watching along the coast, or take a ride on the Mornington Railway steam train. Other fun activities to enjoy as a family include berry picking at the Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm, chocolate and ice cream tasting at Mornington Peninsula Chocolates, and navigating the mazes at the Enchanted Adventure Garden. 
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Arthurs Seat Eagle
16 Tours and Activities

A ride on the Arthurs Seat Eagle gondola whisks visitors to the 1,030-foot (314-meter) summit of Arthurs Seat—the highest point in the Mornington Peninsula. Spectacular views are guaranteed both during the climb and from the hilltop viewpoint, from which you can see Port Philips Bay and Melbourne on a clear day.

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Point Nepean National Park
5 Tours and Activities

One of Victoria’s most significant landscapes, Point Nepean National Park spans more than 1,000 acres (560 hectares) on the pristine Mornington Peninsula. Visitors can immerse themselves in the coastal views and native grasslands while exploring the rich history of the park. What began as indigenous land became one of the earliest European settlements in Victoria during 1845, then a quarantine station before the site turned into a military center. In addition to its rich culture, the park is host to a world of marine life, including emerald-colored sea shrubs and invertebrates.

Discover Victorian landmarks, such as the park’s highest point, Cheviot Hill, overlooking the jetty where Prime Minister Harold Holt disappeared in 1967. History buffs can visit Fort Nepean for panoramic views and explore military fortifications used in both World Wars. Numerous hiking trails and beach walks of varied length start in the park. To get the most out of your trip, visit the park’s information center for a self-guided walk brochure or audio tour equipment.

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Enchanted Adventure Garden
2 Tours and Activities

Dive into nature’s wonderland! The Enchanted Adventure Garden, situated on the Mornington Peninsula at scenic Arthurs Seat, offers 22 acres of outdoor thrills and adventures. Seasonal gardens bursting with vibrant colors set the backdrop for activities, as travelers can cruise through the treetops with a canopy walk, get lost in the hedge maze, or zipline through the greenery.

Adventure-seekers will love tree surfing and tube sliding. Other options include getting lost among the hedge topiary sculptures, wandering through the bushland obstacles and relaxing with a picnic at the onsite café and take it all in.

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