Melbourne day trips
Escape the city and take a day trip from Melbourne into nature. Discover picturesque views, long and short walks, cycling or simply a place for a cuppa after leisurely strolls through the wilderness. Pack a scrumptious picnic for a shady rest after enjoying the sights and sounds.
Close enough to the city to be a spur of the moment decision, these parks are all less than two hours’ drive from Melbourne.
Catch a train and a bus to Point Nepean National Park. When you arrive, hire an e-bike or use the shuttle service to the rugged coastal landscape and incredible views. For a walk with some of the best coastal scenery near Melbourne, follow the Bushrangers Bay track from the eastern carpark at Cape Schnack in Mornington Peninsula National Park. For thrill-seekers, the large network of mountain bike trails in Arthurs Seat State Park awaits.
More day trip ideas in the Mornington Peninsula:
- Explore the rocky platforms of Mushroom Reef Marine Sanctuary.
- Join a dive at Portsea Hole in Port Phillip Heads Marine National Park.
- Surf the ocean beaches of Mornington Peninsula National Park.
Daylesford and Macedon Ranges
Explore the summit of Macedon Regional Park. After viewing the Mount Macedon War Memorial Cross, enjoy a meal at the Top of the Range tea rooms. Around the popular towns of Daylesford and Hepburn Springs you'll find Hepburn Regional Park. Take a walk and find natural mineral springs and relics of the gold mining era. Stop in at Trentham Falls, one of the longest single drop waters in Victoria.
More day trip ideas in Daylesford and Macedon Ranges:
- Have a picnic among the huge conifers and deciduous trees at Mt Franklin Reserve.
- Tour Andersons Mill on the first Sunday of the month from 12 pm to 4 pm.
- Catch a glimpse of a lone pine tree on the granite peak of Mount Beckworth Scenic Reserve.
In Dandenong Ranges National Park cascading waterfalls, challenging hikes and towering trees are waiting to be explored. Alfred Nicholas Memorial Gardens are is perfect for walking the dog, a picnic by the water or just admiring the extensive water features. Hire an audio tour in William Ricketts Sanctuary and bring the park’s 92 sculptures to life.
More day trip ideas in the Dandenong Ranges:
- View the changing colours of the seasons at Dandenong Ranges Botanic Gardens.
- Take a peaceful stroll along the walking tracks of RJ Hamer Arboretum.
- Explore more Gardens of the Dandenongs - Pirianda Gardens or George Tindale Memorial Gardens.
Take a trip back in time to the Victorian Goldrush at Castlemaine Diggings Heritage Park. Explore abandoned mines and settlements among shady Box-Ironbark woodlands. Greater Bendigo National Park and Bendigo Regional Park surround the city of Bendigo. The parks are great for bushwalking, horse riding, nature observation, cycling and picnicking. See one of the country’s most well-preserved historic villages at Maldon Historic Area.
More day trip ideas in the Goldfields:
- Enjoy a picnic and a swim at St Georges Lake Picnic Area in Creswick Regional Park.
- Enjoy panoramic views from Mount Alexander Regional Park.
- Visit Ballarat’s newest park – Woowoorarung Regional Park.
Looking to venture a little further? Check out our ideas for long drives.
Day trips from Melbourne
Here are more suggestions to fill a day with either relaxing drives or brisk exercise. Visitors should take water, leave plenty of time for their leisurely drive and check the weather forecast before leaving.