Phillip Island Nature Park, Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia
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South east touring route

Day 2: Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges to Phillip Island
140 km/87 miles, about 1.5 hours

A tranquil hot air balloon ride over the Yarra Valley at dawn followed by a sublime breakfast of sparkling wine and gourmet local produce at a winery is an unforgettable way to leave the region. It also ensures you'll be on the road early for the drive to Phillip Island, about an hour-and-a-half by car from the Yarra Valley, or longer if you weave your way through the lush Dandenong Ranges.

Pass through the verdant realm of fern glades, towering trees and eclectic and artistic villages, admiring the seasonal displays in the Dandenong Ranges' many public and private gardens. Take a ride back in time aboard Puffing Billy, Australia's much-loved historic steam train, to and from Gembrook.

Get back on the road for your chance to meet all creatures great and small on Phillip Island, a wildlife wonderland with quiet sandy beaches and swathes of Australian bushland.

Jump aboard a wildlife cruise out to the Seal Rocks fur seal colony and greet the inquisitive creatures as they approach the boat or zoom in on the seals using the state-of-the-art cameras at Nobbies marine centre. Alternatively, fly in a helicopter over the majestic coastal scenery and get a bird's eye view of the famed Phillip Island Grand Prix racing circuit.

Laze a while on Cowes Beach before a seaside meal of fresh seafood at Harry's On the Esplanade. Eat early and eat fast; you don't want to miss a moment of the dusk penguin parade.

Talk about a grand finale. Phillip Island is home to over 26,000 little penguins that swim up to 100 kilometres out to sea each day. The sight of the little creatures emerging from the water and waddling to their burrows as the sun sets is a great Victorian experience. The Penguin Parade Visitor Centre gives greater insight into these island icons.

Find a comfortable place to rest your head before the next leg of your journey. Accommodation options range from unique to boutique, like Ramada Resort with its sprawling grounds, Quest's self-contained apartments, and The Waves apartments' beachfront location.


Dandenong Ranges National Park

Dandenong Ranges National Park

Protecting the tall forests of the Dandenongs, the Dandenong Ranges National Park is well known for its spectacular Mountain Ash trees and lush fern...

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Puffing Billy crosses the Trestle Bridge

Puffing Billy Steam Railway

All aboard for a ride on Australia's oldest steam railway, through thick forests and lush fern gullies, or travel first class for olden-times romance.

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Penguin Parade

Phillip Island Nature Parks

See Phillip Island's little penguins emerge from the sea, peek at life inside a burrow, and spot other Australian animals at this wildlife wonderland.

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Seal Watching Cruise - Wildlife Coast Cruises

Seal Watching Cruise

Wildlife Coast Cruises

Get up close and personal with a bevy of playful, inquisitive seals in their natural environment on this popular Phillip Island boat cruise.

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Scenic flight over Cape Woolamai, Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia

Scenic flights

Strap yourself in and explore the spectacular coastline, picturesque towns and myriad attractions of Victoria's Phillip Island on a helicopter tour.

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The Nobbies, Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia

The Nobbies

Take in a myriad of stunning sights and curious creatures at The Nobbies, a magnificent headland on the south-western tip of Phillip Island.

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