GEELONG – THE AUSTRALIAN TRAVELLER GUIDE
While many people often bypass Geelong on the road to or from Melbourne, this vibrant regional city offers much more than a truck stop. With natural wonders, a colorful history, toasty pubs and a growing art culture, be sure to spend some time here during your next Victorian adventure.
WHERE TO STAY
During your southern stop-over, The Four Points by Sheraton is said to be the fanciest digs in town. Modern and stylish, it comes with all the creature comforts you’d expect – room service, restaurant and bar, gym, heated swimming pool, wheelchair accessibility and more. Prices generally start from about $150. For alternatives that are a bit easier on the pocket; Rose Garden Motel has been particularly well reviewed, as has Comfort Inn Bay City and is centrally located.
WHAT TO DO
Upon arrival, your first port of call should be the Geelong Waterfront on Corio Bay – a hub of restaurants and bars, regular events and entertainment, along with walking paths and great views. To take full advantage of the scenery, the bay can be viewed from organised jet boat rides or cruises, and even from the air in seaplanes or helicopters. But if you feel more comfortable on land, motorcycle tours are also available.
For a more cultured getaway, visit Geelong’s Arts Precinct near Little Malop and James Street and wander upon galleries, museums and cultural facilities. From large institutions like the Geelong Performing Arts Centre and the Geelong Gallery, to more intimate spaces such as the Metropolis Gallery.
To gain an insight into the colourful history of the area, follow the trail of over 100 colourful bollards that represent a fascinating and fun chronicle of the city’s rollicking past. The trail starts along the foreshore from Rippleside Parkand and ends in the Botanic Gardens.
The Old Geelong Gaol is also worth a peak and offers a grim reminder of the Victorian era. To really immerse yourself in the history, “Dare to be Scared Tours” with Australian Ghost Adventures run at night on the first Saturday of each month.
WHEN TO TRAVEL
While Geelong is a beautiful holiday destination for any time of year, spring is the best time for mild weather – avoiding summer heat waves or the wind and rain of winter.
Located an easy one hour drive from Melbourne, Geelong is easily accessed by car. Alternatively, V/Line trains run regularly between the two destinations.
In a bold attempt to remain ascarbon neutral as possible – while still having one heck of a fun, family, fly-and-drive holiday – Mandy Blake has taken on a virtual emission impossible. AT traces her carbon footprints to seeif she makes even the tiniest misstep . . . Staff manning the counter at the Maroochydore Virgin Blue counter for the 11am to Adelaide didn’t bat an eyelid when I tried to check in two suitcases, a pram – and 670kg of carbon gas. I expected a lecture and a $5176 excess baggage bill at the very least. But nothing, nada,...
Stepping out of the shadows cast by its cooler big sister Melbourne, Geelong is becoming a destination unto itself, thanks to cheap flights, a winning AFL team and a fast-developing waterfront, writes Justin Wastnage. On the Waterfront A decade ago Victoria’s second city watched the growing sophistication of Newcastle at the end of the reign of King Coal and mapped out its own post-industrial future. Like its New South Welsh counterpart, much of the transformation is taking place on the waterfront. A mineral salts bathhouse is planned and new apartment blocks, hotels and restaurants are springing up along Eastern Beach...
Find an idyllic summer weekender along Victoria's Great Ocean Road. "The best weekend away is made up of the following ingredients; A ’67 Austin Healey, warm weather and the surf in Lorne. After 6pm on a Friday, close the computer then fold back the roof on the Austin. Navigate the city traffic with other commuters in envy of the convertible, destination evident by the surfboard strapped in. Finally over the bridge and into Geelong before the sweeping curves of the Great Ocean Road begin. The smell of the surf beckons as you wing your way into Lorne, with flocks of...
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