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Travel & Holiday Tips Victoria Australia
 
 
 

General

Victoria is Australia in miniature: the state crams snow-capped mountain country, searing deserts, wineries, rainforests and the country's largest inland waterway into its pint-sized borders. Affectionately referred to as the 'Garden State', Victoria ripples with rolling hills and meandering valleys; the mountains offer some of the best winter sports in the country. The Great Ocean Road is considered one of the best scenic drives in Australia, with startling rock formations, such as the Twelve Apostles lone sentinels off the coast.

Melbourne, the state capital, is Australia's cultural capital with lots of galleries and museums, sporting events and festivals, and a wonderful gastronomic scene that includes flavours and fusion from around the globe.

Places of Interest

Melbourne

Melbourne is a highly cosmopolitan city of over three million people with sizeable Italian and Greek minorities. Located in Carlton Gardens on the northern edge of the city centre, the ultramodern Melbourne Museum is Australia’s largest museum. Its features include a living Forest Gallery, Aboriginal Centre, Children’s Museum and IMAX Theatre. The chilling Old Melbourne Gaol has Ned Kelly’s armour on display. The National Gallery of Victoria: St Kilda Road houses Australia’s greatest collection of international fine art. The NGV: Australian Art is one of the attractions of Federation Square, a city block devoted to culture. Rialto Towers Observation Deck offers panoramic views of the city and surrounds. Other places to visit include the Royal Botanical Gardens, Parliament House, the Melbourne Cricket Ground and the vibrant beach-side esplanade in St Kilda with its vibrant café culture. Also recommended are a trip to the races, a ride in one of Melbourne’s trams, a river cruise down the Yarra River, or a visit to the huge Melbourne Zoo, with its intricately recreated animal habitats.

Outside Melbourne

35 km (22 miles) from the State capital are the Dandenong Ranges, which provide excellent views of the city over the peaks from the Summit Lookout. At Mount Dandenong itself is the sanctuary named after William Ricketts, one of the early champions of Aboriginal rights. His haunting carvings of Aboriginal faces still stare out over the forested landscape and are part of the Galeena Beek Aboriginal Culture Centre. Victoria was also the home of the outlaw Ned Kelly, often regarded as a national hero in Australia, and was the scene of the eventful days of bush-ranging during the gold rush of the 1850s and 1860s. Sovereign Hill, 120 km (75 miles) northwest of Melbourne, is an old gold-rush town from this period, now restored to its original condition. Other towns of this era are Ballarat and Bendigo, respectively 115 km (71 miles) and 150 km (93 miles) from Melbourne. Nostalgia is also available in the shape of ‘Puffing Billy’, a train of bright red carriages which runs along from Belgrave to Gembrook through the Dandenong Ranges. In the east of the State is Gippsland Lakes, a lush fertile region dotted with lakes and parkland. The west is drier, with huge sheep-grazing lands. Towards the centre are the Grampian Mountains, famous for wild flowers, birdlife and offering some of the world’s finest rock climbing. Victoria is also home to Brambuk, a cultural centre exhibiting the arts, crafts and historical records of the Western Aboriginal people.

National Parks & Nature Reserves

Phillip Island Nature Reserve, 140 km (87.5 miles) from Melbourne, is famous for its rich wildlife, particularly birds, koalas, fairy penguins (which can be seen marching up the beach in the evenings), and fur seals (large colonies of which can be observed at the Seal Rocks Sea Life Centre). Another famous wildlife sanctuary is in the Wilson’s Promontory National Park, southeast of Melbourne on the southernmost tip of the Australian mainland. The Port Campbell National Park, southwest of Melbourne, contains some of the most beautiful, and dangerous coastlines in Victoria. It is here that the awesome rock formations, The Twelve Apostles, can be seen from the stunning Great Ocean Road.

 

 
 

 



 


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