10 of the Best Road Trips to Take in Victoria

great ocean road victoria road trip

Australia is made for road trips, right? With our vast land that has something different around every corner, there is something for everyone that is reachable just by driving.

We’ve put together 10 totally different Victorian road trips to suit whichever mood you’re in, but just be sure to visit one of Battery World’s Victorian stores — from Mildura to Pakenham and many places in between — to ensure your car’s battery is good to go. You can get yourself a battery health check, and even get a new one fitted and have your old one recycled.

Buckle up and get ready for an adventure.

Robert Blackburn / Visit Victoria

Black Spur Drive 

The Black Spur is the 20km drive between Healesville and Narbethong, and although it doesn’t take long to do, you’ll want to set a half-day aside to absorb the beauty. You’ll be surrounded by mountain ash forest and fern gullies. These trees are among the highest flowering plants on Earth, and are so tightly wound together that the sun barely squeezes through the cracks. It’s cool, it’s calm, it’s totally absorbing.

The stretch of road itself doesn’t have many places to pull in and admire your surroundings, so make sure you keep going to Marysville, loop back via the Acheron Way to Mount Donna Buang (a sealed ut narrow road), or go back to Healesville and up into the Toolangi State Forest. Both have absolutely incredible views. Marysville is particularly emotive, having regrown since the devastation of Black Saturday.

Roberto Seba / Visit Victoria

Lang Lang to Wilson’s Prom

This drive from Lang Lang to Wilson’s Prom is the prettiest section of the national highway in Victoria. It’s a whole journey. Starting off with rolling hills dotted with dairy cattle, to Koonwarra Store for some local food and wine or Trulli Woodfire Pizzeria in Meeniyan. Then, you can stop off to explore the beautiful towns of Korumburra and Leongatha, followed by Fish Creek and Yanakie as the hills slowly dissolve into coastal scrub.

At every turn, you’ll begin anticipating the peaks of Wilsons’s Prom, followed by the startling blue coastline; one of the most beautiful areas of the southern ocean. You actually feel like you’re somewhere else entirely, the vistas transport you to a dream-like state. If you’re feeling adventurous or you’d like to extend your drive to a few days, the campsites down at Wilson’s Prom are seriously stunning, with countless secret beaches and coves to explore.

Robert Blackburn / Visit Victoria

Great Alpine Road

This drive is 310km between Wangaratta and Bairnsdale, and usually takes around 2 – 4 days. Most people know the Great Alpine Road to travel to ski resorts at Mount Hotham and Falls Creek. But at its most beautiful in Autumn, it’s the ultimate multiple-day road trip, packed full of variety in flavours, climates and views. The drive starts with a steady climb, with the Tambo River constantly providing bubbling views to your right.

From Omeo to Bright, or Bright to Omeo, prepare yourself for some pristine snow-capped mountains, and beautiful Autumn foliage in Bright, that you simply must stop to explore. If you have time, indulge in a side trip to Mount Buffalo with its wondrous rock formations, trails and panoramic views and be sure to stop at Kosciuszko Lookout. The drive winds up with classic Australian eucalyptus country. Be mindful of motion sickness, as this drive is packed full of sharp twists and turns. Pack some natural ginger tablets and you’re set. Don’t miss Milawa, the gourmet capital of the north-east, for its wine, cheese, honey and mustards.

Great Ocean Road

This is a great two-day trip to showcase Victoria to interstate visitors, or if you want to get more in touch with where you live. The Great Ocean Road is so popular, and shouldn’t be overlooked. The journey itself is the destination. On one side, you have the spectacular south coast and on the other, you go through cliffs, round a promontory and into the havens of Lorne and Apollo Bay.

There are countless places to stop off. Beaches such as Wye River, Skenes Creek or Princetown all own their own piece of history and unique charm, and then there’s Port Campbell with its rock formations and gorgeous coves. Off the main road, you’ll find hidden treasures like the waterfalls at Beauchamp, Triplet and Hopetoun Falls. With beautiful produce, views and some serious history all around you, it can be overwhelming. We recommend that you take a few days to really enjoy it, and stop off for some cute stays or step up a few campsites along the way. We’d also recommend the undeniable cheese variety at Apostle Whey.

Adrian Brown / Visit Victoria

Yarra Valley in a day

Less than an hour’s drive from Melbourne, you can sample Australia’s best pinot noir and sparkling wines in the Yarra Valley, a picturesque, world-renowned wine region. There are over 70 wineries in the region, with most offering wine tastings and boutique cellar doors. If you’re lucky, you’ll be served by the wine maker and get a cheeky free wine appreciation lesson. Cellar doors we love are the Mac Forbes’s Graceburn Wine Room, Giant Steps, Domain Chandon and Dominique Portet.

With only a five-minute drive between each winery, your senses will constantly be indulged with beautiful vineyard views and all the grape juice. There are plenty of places to stop for lunch, with major wineries hosting some of Victoria’s best restaurants, as well as many cheese platters and local produce in the form of street-side stalls and local farms.

Turton’s Track

A 2.5-hour drive from Melbourne, you might stumble one Turton’s Track accidentally when you’ve – inevitably – found yourselves lost driving out of the Otways. Turton’s Track is a sealed and winding road that runs through between Beech Forest and Tanybryn. Turton’s is a classic Otways track—with tonnes of shady fern glades, giant messmate and beech trees all over the place.

Technically it’s the last part of the rainforest loop, which runs out of Apollo Bay. If you’re keen to do a longer loop, head straight through the Otways and switch back on the c155 out of Lavers Hill, which will take you onto Beech Forest. Whichever route you choose, make sure you save time to go and check out the famous California Redwoods.

Emily Godfrey / Visit Victoria

Dandenongs Day Trip

The Dandenong Ranges and surrounding suburbs are at their most glorious in Autumn, with the orange leaves falling and the not-too-cool but extremely fresh air. This drive goes from Melbourne to Olinda, covering 95 kilometres and takes about 2 hours. As you follow the winding road out of the city, you’ll start to feel the chaos melt away as your surroundings are replaced with thick, tall forests and the cool fern gullies of the Dandenong Ranges. Explore the towering forests of mountain ash trees in Sherbrooke Forest, and visit the area’s most famous sites, according to the season.

The huge ancient trees of the Alfred Nicholas Gardens look like a painting in their Autumn colours, perfect for this time of year, while the George Tindale Gardens are at their best in Summer. You can discover the partially-hidden clay sculptures of Aboriginal figures among rocks and ferns at William Ricketts Sanctuary, stop for a spot of antique shopping and a cup of famous Devonshire tea, and climb on board Australia’s oldest steam train, Puffing Billy.

Visit Victoria

Geelong and the Bellarine

This is a one-day round trip, from Melbourne to Geelong, Geelong to Queenscliff, Queenscliff to Point Lonsdale, and Point Lonsdale to Barwon Heads. Expect beaches, wine, excellent restaurants, lots of wildlife, art galleries and vintage markets. It’s difficult to wrap up all the activities that can be found among this drive into just a day, so it’s totally up to you and what kind of road trip you’re after. In the first leg of the drive, you have options such as Werribee Zoo, a fancy trip to The Mansion at Werribee Park, a hike or picnic at Brisbane Ranges National Park, a vintage market at North Geelong and many cute waterfront cafes at Corio Bay.

Then, you drive into wine country towards Queenscliff, with excellent cellar doors at both Scotchmans Hill and Bellarine Estate, and a beautiful bay view at Jack Rabbit Vineyard. When you reach Point Lonsdale, you’ll be overlooking The Rip—the notorious entrance to Port Phillip Bay, and you can watch the boats come in from the Rip View Lookout. Finally, you can settle in for a meal in At The Heads restaurant, go fishing, play golf or just wander along the kilometres of beautiful beach to round off your trip.

Robert Blackburn / Visit Victoria

Bendigo to Mildura

A 400km drive, we’d recommend clearing two days to have the true Outback Australia experience in full. This one’s for the drivers that truly just love to drive. The Mallee is wide, flat and open, and along the Calder, you’ll find uniqueness in the people and produce in each community. Inglewood has a eucalyptus museum, Wedderburn’s old general store is a true step back in time, and whether it’s daylight or a starry night, Lake Tyrrell is beautifully reflective and serene.

This drive is a true appreciation of our country’s vastness and is a truly unique part of Victoria. Be sure to stop in Ouyen; the home of the vanilla slice and The Bakehouse near the bridge in Bridgewater, for the best jelly slice in the state.

Robyn Lea / Visit Victoria

Melbourne to Red Hill

Melbourne to Red Hill is an hour’s drive and another delicious road trip experience. This is European-esque coastal wine vibe that we all need right now. If you’re into berry picking, wine tastings, hikes up Arthur’s Seat, beaches for days, breweries and science forest-covered switchboards, then this drive is for you.

Things to see: Endeavour Fern Gulley, Arthur’s Seat Lookout, Peninsula Galleries, Ashcombe Maze Places to drink and eat: Red Gum BBQTucks, Johnny Ripe, Jetty Rd Brewery, Polperro Wines, Red Hill Bakery and Montalto Vineyard.

With over 100 Battery World stores across Australia, there’s bound to be one near you. Check out your local Battery World store today.

This article originally appeared on Thrillist.

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