Home to numerous scenic sights, Mornington Peninsula is a popular local tourist attraction. Aside from its wineries, the region offers visitors with soothing hot springs, beautiful beaches, picturesque gardens and mazes, breathtaking ocean and coastal views, and a quaint main street. It only takes an hour of scenic drive southeast of Melbourne to reach the place.
So, here’s a list of some must-visit places and attractions of Mornington Peninsula:
- Arthur’s Seat. It is the peninsula’s highest viewpoint where you can have the amazing views of mazes and ornamental gardens, and ocean and beaches. From the lookout, you can also view the glass towers of Melbourne as well as the peninsulas of Mornington and Bellarine. At Arthur’s Seat State Park are the themed gardens of the Enchanted Maze Garden.
- Cape Schanck Lighthouse. Built from limestone in 1859, Cape Schanck Lighthouse stands 21 meters tall on the southern tip of Mornington Peninsula. You can have short walks and guided tour of this 19th-century lighthouse. From the lighthouse’s balcony, you can have stunning views of the peninsula’s coastal areas and the Bass Strait.
- Fort Nepean. Built in 1882, Fort Nepean used to be a defence facility on Point Nepean that was in service until the end of the Second World War. It was built to protect the narrow entrance to Port Phillip Bay. At this old fortress, you can explore the tunnels and the historic cemetery. Also, you can have a walk at the nearby Cheviot Beach.
- The Bathing Boxes of Mornington Peninsula. These colorful bathing boxes are reminiscent of a Victorian past. Used to be safeguards of morality, today the historic boxes are a backdrop to the beaches of Port Phillip Bay and are a tourist attraction in their own right. The iconic bathing boxes symbolize summer at the peninsula.
- Olivers Hill Lookout. Olivers Hill provides the best views of the bay and of the city. The beautiful and calming scenery create a conducive place for walking and running or to simply enjoy the views over Frankston. You can also view the fireworks over Melbourne on special occasions. At the foot of the hill is a theme park where kids can play and have fun.
- Ashcombe Maze & Lavender Gardens. Get lost and find your way out of the labyrinth at the oldest and most popular hedge maze in Australia. The Lavender Labyrinth is planted to over 3000 lavender plants that flower all year round bringing delights to the senses. The hedge maze is a maze of more than a thousand trimmed and perfectly sculpted cypress trees.
- Main Street Mornington. A visit to Main Street Mornington offers you a unique experience. It opens you to a lovely place dotted with boutiques and shops, restaurants and cafes, and bars and pubs. A great place to shop and enjoy watching a moving world over a glass of great wine.
- McClelland Sculpture Park & Gallery. Established in 1971, McClelland Sculpture Park & Gallery is set in a 16-hectare of bush and landscaped gardens. The sculpture park received thousands of visitors every year, and the gallery showcased the artworks on paper, paintings, photographs, and sculptures by Australian artists.
- Peninsula Hot Springs. Calm your body and mind in the soothing steam, aroma, and sound of a hot running mineral waters flowing from the deep into the pools and baths. Relax and get yourself a traditional massage, and feel the unique sensation that lets you forget all the pressures and the stress of city life.
- The Cellar Door of T’Gallant. Located on Mornington-Flinders Road, Main Ridge, T’Gallant pioneered the production of Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio in Australia. Visit their cellar door and sample a few glasses of one of the region’s best wines. You can also try their Roman-style pizza paired with a selection of elegant wines.
- Wineries of Red Hill. Your visit to Mornington Peninsula would not be complete if you omit the wines and the wineries from the itinerary. The peninsula is Victoria’s second largest wine region next only to Yarra Valley. Red Hill, along Mornington-Flinders Road, is home to a number of wineries and vineyards. Swirl a glass or two from the cellar doors of Red Hill Estate, Montalto, Peninsula Galleries, Polperro Winery, Mont Rouge Estate, or Main Ridge Estate.