Famous animals and sacred spaces
210 km/130.5 miles, about 3 hours
Journey between two of Victoria's most loved tourist attractions - the Penguin Parade on Phillip Island and Wilsons Promontory National Park at the southernmost tip of mainland Australia.
You'll uncover much more than these two major sights as you wind your way through south Gippsland on this 200-kilometre drive. Detour along the Bunurong Coastal Drive for sweeping ocean views and unique rocky outcrops, wander along almost deserted rugged beaches, cast a line for a fish supper, or enjoy a counter meal in a typical country pub before you reach the breathtakingly spectacular Wilsons Prom.
Phillip Island to Inverloch
46.6 km/29 miles, about 45 minutes
Bid the little penguins farewell and depart the Penguin Parade and Phillip Island, stopping off in the pretty fishing village of San Remo on the Melbourne side of the bridge to the island. Time your stop-off to catch the 12pm daily pelican feeding at the San Remo pier.
From San Remo, take the B420 to the Anderson roundabout. Turn right onto the B460 and follow the road past Kilcunda and its tempting general store until you reach Wonthaggi. Pause for long enough in Wonthaggi to tour the State Coal Mine to discover life underground in the 1900s.
From Wonthaggi the route takes a scenic detour along the C435 to Cape Paterson and the start of the Bunurong Coastal Drive, a unique stretch of coastal road featuring sweeping ocean views and dramatic rocky outcrops. The road stretches 14 kilometres between Cape Paterson and Inverloch, your destination.
HighlightsNational parks & reservesState Coal MineThe State Coal Mine offers a journey back in time to discover what life working in a coal mine was like in the 1900s. Venture underground through the dark...CafesThe Coffee CollectiveThe Coffee Collective is a community-minded cafe offers fresh local produce and great coffee in a friendly, convivial atmosphere.The Coffee Collective...National parks & reservesBunurong Marine and Coastal ParkLocated about six kilometres south-west of Inverloch in South Gippsland, this proposed park covers 2100 hectares and about five kilometres of coastline...Wildlife, zoos & farmsPhillip Island Nature Parks Penguin ParadeSee Phillip Island's little penguins emerge from the sea, peek at life inside a burrow, and spot other Australian animals at this wildlife wonderland.Heritage buildingsKilcunda Trestle Railway BridgeA feature of the Bass Coast Rail Trail, the wooden trestle Kilcunda Bridge spans 91 metres across Bourne Creek, offering Bass Strait and beach views.
Tarwin Lower to Fish Creek
71.5 km/45 miles, about 1 hour
Hit the water at the coastal resort of Inverloch - having a swim, snorkel, paddle or rockpool ramble in Anderson Inlet, often described as the most popular estuary in Victoria. Sate an appetite at one of the many cafes and restaurants lining the town's main street.
You may even be able to indulge in a spot of 'Dinosaur Dreaming' in Inverloch, taking a look at Monash University and Museum Victoria's excavations of the rocky coastline of the Bunarong Marine Park. Dated at around 115-120 million years old, you can see evidence of the ancient rivers that once flowed in this area.
Head out of Inverloch on the C442 towards Tarwin Lower, a popular fishing township on the bank of the Tarwin River. Take a detour into Venus Bay (just 3 kilometres from Tarwin Lower) to explore the sweeping surf beaches and coastal walks.
From Tarwin Lower take the Tarwin Lower-Walkerville Road to Walkerville, home of the Cape Liptrap lighthouse and the historic limekilns, giant brick buttresses protruding from the cliffs over the beach at Walkerville. These are all that remain of Walkerville's booming quicklime industry of the 1890s.
From Walkerville take the Fish Creek-Walkerville Road to Fish Creek. You'll know you've arrived when you see the giant mullet sitting atop the Fishy Pub.
HighlightsNational parks & reservesCape Liptrap Coastal ParkStretching along the coast from the sand barrier of Point Smythe to the sheltered waters of Waratah Bay, Cape Liptrap Coastal Park has strikingly beautiful...Beaches & coastlinesAnderson InletVisit Anderson Inlet, a protected bay where the Tarwin River enters Bass Strait. Swim with the kids, cast a line or take a short walk to surf beaches.
Fish Creek to Wilsons Promontory
61 km / 38 miles, about 1 hour
Follow the C444 out of Fish Creek. Leave yourself plenty of time for detours to the beautiful hamlets of Sandy Point and Waratah Bay via the C445. The two coastal townships feature sweeping beaches with stunning views to Wilsons Promontory National Park, and are particularly popular during the warmer months.
Continue along the C444 until you reach Wilsons Promontory National Park. 'Wilsons Prom' as it is affectionately known, is the southernmost tip of mainland Australia and regularly attracts nature enthusiasts from around Australia and worldwide. There are over 30 established walks of varying duration and over 30 species of native mammals to be spotted. Secluded beaches, cool fern gullies and spectacular rock formations make the Prom perfect for walking, bird watching and, of course, exploring. Pitch a tent at one of the campsites, or rough it in style in a contemporary cabin to get the most out of your visit to the Prom.
Take a wildlife cruise on a custom-built amphibious vessel with Pennicott Wilderness Journeys to spot fur seals, unique birdlife, common and bottlenose dolphins and migrating whales (September to December and May to July).
HighlightsNational parks & reservesWilsons PromontoryWilsons Promontory National Park sits at the southernmost tip of the Australian mainland, offering visitors stunning scenery and wildlife.Tour operatorWilsons Promontory Cruises - Pennicott Wilderness JourneysDiscover the beautiful granite coastline and unique wilderness of Wilsons Promontory National Park on the 2.5 hour Wilsons Promontory Cruise.Travel in...Beaches & coastlinesSqueaky BeachTake a wander along the famous white sand of Squeaky Beach and have a dip in the turquoise waters of one of Wilsons Promontory's most iconic beaches.National parks & reservesShallow Inlet Marine and Coastal ParkNestled between Waratah Bay and the majestic peaks of Wilsons Promontory, the sheltered waters of Shallow Inlet provide a secluded and peaceful setting...