With long valleys, dirt country and bushland around every corner… it’s no wonder Victoria is known as a bit of an adventurer’s oasis. From Alpine mountain biking and camping under the stars to kayaking through open waters, there are endless thrills to keep you coming back again and again.
So whether you’re Victorian born and bred or are planning an upcoming trip, we’ve rounded up our top five must-try experiences… and we promise you won’t be disappointed!
Pull up a seat at Phillip Island
Picture this – native wildlife, crystal clear waters, rugged coastlines with cliff-top walking trails… and only two-hours from Melbourne! Unfold a camp seat at the famous penguin parade, and watch hundreds of little penguins come out of the sea and waddle up the hill to their burrows. While you’re there make sure you get your hands on some local cheese and antipasto from the Phillip Island Winery and set up your chair seaside for the perfect afternoon sunset.
Mountain bike 'The Dirty Dozen'
If you’re a bit more of an adrenaline junkie and have always pictured yourself on the seat of a mountain bike, then this one’s for you. Whether you’re hitting single tracks in Bright or you’d prefer the parks around Mt. Beauty, there’s an Alpine trail for every experience level. Using a small and light daypack that’s durable will allow you to carry items you need during and after your bike trip.
Kayak Gippsland Lakes
Made up of three lakes, the Gippsland Lakes area is Australia’s biggest enclosed waterway fed by seven freshwater rivers making it a paddler’s playground. If you’re new to kayaking, then Victoria Lagoon is the perfect spot to give it a try for the first time as the waters are quite calm. For more extreme conditions, cruise out to Entrance Bay to test your open ocean skills. There are a range of bush sites that are only reachable by watercraft, which makes it easy to turn your day into a real paddling expedition – and if you’re lucky, you might even spot a dolphin or two.
Hike Croajingalong National Park
The Wilderness Coast Walk is one of Australia’s premier multi-day coastal tracks. It hugs the north-east coastline of Victoria and ventures into NSW. If you’d prefer to stick to the Victorian side, your finishing point is the coastal village of Mallacoota, where you can swim, fish or paddle. The hike itself is magical but definitely make sure you use a trekking pole to steady yourself as it can get quite uneven. The walk is graded at intermediate to advance, with self-sufficient hiking experience a must. Be prepared to get your boots wet with some tidal crossings (and often full of sand), but we promise you, the breathtaking views of the coastal cliffs and roaring Pacific Ocean are worth it!
Climb Mount Arapiles
If you like to climb mountains, aim high. The underrated Arapiles are revered amongst climbers all over the world. Home to over 2,000 climbing routes, its Victoria’s climbing mecca. The Arapiles is known for one of the hardest climbs in the world – The Punks in the Gym – which is a wall of sheer orange sandstone. While these routes are certainly iconic, what makes the Arapiles unique is the quality of its easier routes. All treks are composed of significant and beautiful formations offering versatility for every climber. Camping at Mount Arapiles is also a must, but just make sure you opt for a tent or swag that is lightweight, has a small footprint and an easy to set up pole design for efficiency.