Mornington Peninsula lies south of Melbourne, Australia forming the eastern side of Port Phillip Bay. To south side of the peninsula is Western Port Bay and Philip Island.
The Peninsula is at its very best and busiest during the summer months but don't disregard the winter months altogether either.
Walking the beaches that line Bass Straight in the cold grey months of winter, and being witness to the drama of the oceans fury is an experience you wont soon forget. Just bring a jacket!
That said, spending a warm summers evening with some fish and chips on the foreshore watching the sun set with some friends is a great way to enjoy life.
Mornington - The largest of the towns on the Mornington Peninsula, with one long main street leading down to the beach and pier. Mornington is a beachside town that is rapidly growing in response to the growing population around it and on the Peninsula, but don't shy away from it, it still has a wonderful atmosphere and good transport links (buses) out to the rest of the Peninsula.
Rosebud- The small coastal village of Rosebud is located between Dromana and Rye, and back up on to Arthur's seat. With great family beaches that stay shallow for 60 feet (20 meter). Has one of the biggest camp grounds located on the beaches foreshore.
Dromana- The small coastal village of Dromana sits in a valley between Arthur's Seat and Mount Martha and with a beautiful beach with brightly painted boat sheds lining the shore, it's a pretty spot to spend a few days.
Red Hill- With green rolling hills, amazing wineries, fresh produce and a popular community market this is rural Australia at its best.
Sorrento- Sorrento is lucky to boast two very different yet equally interesting beaches. The Sorrento Ocean Beach is spectacular and dangerous while the bay beach is both calm and relaxing. Take your pick! Sorrento was also the site of Victoria's first official settlement in 1803.
Portsea- Glitzy, ritzy Portsea at the tip of the Peninsula is resident to some very expensive holiday homes and the iconic Portsea Pub that sits literally right on the foreshore. From watching the sunset over a beer on the Pub terrace to catching some waves at Portsea backbeach, you wont be bored!
Frankston - is a heading direction to the Mornington Peninsula.
Suburban Trains leave from Melbourne to Frankston regularly, taking approximately one hour to Frankston (where they terminate). . Tickets can be purchased at train stations.
A train line operates from Frankston to Stony Point.
From Frankston Buses run to Portsea, the most western settlement on the Peninsula – 90 minutes and Mount Martha, Flinders and Hastings. Pay driver when boarding or use a pre-purchased ticket.
Timetables - see Peninsula Bus Lines and Portsea Passenger Services routes at bottom of page
- Bus 781 Frankston - Mount Martha via Mt Eliza, Mornington 
- Bus 782 Frankston - Flinders via Coolart Road, Hastings 
- Bus 783 - Frankston - Hastings via Coolart Road 
- Bus 782/783 combined - Frankston - Coolart Rd - Hastings/Flinders 
- Bus 788 Frankston - Portsea via Dromana, Rosebud, Sorrento 
Car/passenger ferries cross the mouth of Port Phillip Bay between Sorrento and Queenscliff on the Bellarine Peninsula. They depart each terminal on the hour every hour 7AM-6PM every day. From 26 Dec. until end of daylight saving there are also 7PM sailings.
5-15 years $6
Under 5 years $1
Foot Passenger’s Bicycle $2, Tandem $3
Passengers with Vehicle
5-15 years $2
Under 5 years $1
Vary with season – car up to 5.5m between $38 and $45.
There is also a passenger ferry that crosses Western Port Bay to Stony Point from French Island and Phillip Island.
Your own transport is handy for getting around the Mornington Peninsula as public transport and taxi services are limited beyond the centre of major towns.
There is only one major road down the peninsula, so you won't get lost.
- Mornington Peninsula Visitor Information Centre, 359B Point Nepean Highway, Dromana. Open 7 days 10am to 4pm, closed Christmas Day, Good Friday and ANZAC Day
- Frankston Visitor Information Centre, Pier Promenade, Frankston Waterfront, ☎ 1300 322 842, . 7 days, 9AM-5PM. Make your first stop the Frankston Visitor Information Centre, for all of your travel needs... edit
- Arthur’s Seat Summit, inland from Dromana. Road goes to the 305m summit from where there are great views.
- Arthur’s Seat Scenic Chairlift, Arthur’s Seat Rd, Dromana. Also goes to and from the summit. Currently closed (Feb 08).
- Mornington Peninsula National Park runs from Pt Nepean to Cape Schanck.
- Point Nepean features an old fort and quarantine station. Entry fees apply.
- Coppins Track walk, Sorrento Ocean Beach.
- Cape Schanck walks including Bushrangers Bay Track which is a great place to see Kangaroos, 2 hours, 6km.
- Cape Schanck Lighthouse and Museum.
- Two Bays Walking Track is a 26km track running between Dromana and Cape Schank. From Dromana it runs through Arthurs Seat State Park, then the Greens Bush and Bushrangers Bay sections of Mornington Peninsula National Park.
- Moorooduc Quarry Flora & Fauna Park features a large lake surrounded by towering cliffs and is located near Moorooduc Railway Station.
- Mornington Railway is a heritage railway running steam and diesel trains most Sundays between Moorooduc and Mornington.
- Coolart Wetland and Homestead  is a great place to see Ibis and other waterbirds, the grounds also feature an historic homestead and gardens and an annual jazz festival.
- The Briars 
- Bush Rangers Bay. A picturesque bay about a 20 minute hike from the car park with a good chance of seeing kangaroos along the way. edit
- Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park Open daily between 10AM and 5PM for encounters with Australian animals.Koala cuddling available at 12.15 and 3.00pm daily. Feature is the guided evening walks, as most Australian mammals are nocturnal. Evening tours must be booked. Located at Pearcedale at the top of the Mornington Peninsula. Ph. 5978-7935.
- Play Tennis [www.rosebudtennisclub.com.au]
- Boat hire / fishing
- Swimming and Surfing. The inward side of the peninsula is lined with sandy beaches, sheltered by the bay and providing a safe, if somewhat polluted, bathing spot for families with small children. The ocean side of the peninsula is also beach-lined, and these are popular with surfers.
- Peninsula Hot Springs, Springs Lane, Fingal 3941, ☎ 61 3 5950 8777, . Open 7 days a week 9AM - 9PM. For the first time in Victoria you can now bathe in the naturally healing waters of mineral rich thermal pools, up to 50ºC in temperature. These beautifully landscaped natural hot springs continue the tradition of the historic and famous spa centres of Europe, Asia, the Americas and New Zealand. (Please note: Children under 5 not currently admitted, pending construction of a family pool). $30 per adult (peak). edit
- Shop, Almost French, Boundary Road Shops, Dromana. Serving the fashionable homes of the Peninsula!
- Markets (this is a rough guide and may not be entirely accurate).
- Balnarring Racecourse Market – 3rd Saturday of the month from November to April. 8am - 1pm Coolart Rd. Balnarring. Enquiries Ph 03 5983 2590
- Bittern Market - every Sunday
- Boneo Community Market - Third Saturday of every month. Boneo Road (cnr. Limestone Rd), Boneo. Oct-Mar 8am-12noon Apr-Sept 9am-1pm. Ph: 03 5988 6253
- Coolstores Market - First Sunday of the month
- Dromana Drive-In Market - Every Sunday. Nepean Highway, Dromana.
- Frankston Market - every Sunday
- Hastings Street Market - Every Thursday
- Mornington Race Course - Second Sunday of the month, all year, 9am - 2pm
- Mornington Main Street Market – Every Wednesday of the year
- Oak Hill Gallery - Fourth Sunday of the month. 100 Tyabb Road, Mornington.
- Red Hill Market – First Saturday of the month. Sept - May. 8am-1pm
- Rosebud Market – 2nd Saturday of the month. Cnr. Point Nepean and Jetty Road, Rosebud.
- Sorrento Market - Fourth Saturday of the month. Sorrento Foreshore, Sorrento.
- Tootgarook Market - Fourth Saturday of the month. Tootgarook PS, Carmichael Street, Tootgarook
- Special Events
- Mornington Cup Mornington Racing Club, Racecourse Road, Mornington
- Western Port Festival Hastings Foreshore
- Balnarring Picnic Races Emu Plains Racecourse, Coolart Rd, Balnarring
- Colour In The Sky Kite Festival Rosebud Foreshore, Jetty Road, Rosebud
- Peninsula VineHop Festival various locations across the Mornington Peninsula
- Tonic Squash and Gym, 50 Collins Road Dromana, ☎ 03 5987 1766, . Family friendly gym with squash courts. A nice little bonus is the great coffee served. edit
- Red Door Mornington, 787 Esplanade, Mornington (opposite of Mornington Park), ☎ 5975 2055. Th-Su 12pm-late. Tasty dumplings are served in this charming restaurant next to the beach. edit
- Fork to Fork, 105 Latrobe Parade, Dromana, ☎ +61 3 5984-7318, . Heronswood's Fork to Fork café strives wherever possible to use fruit and vegetables which are in season, regional and organic. Many of our vegetables are heirloom varieties from the Heronswood garden that you may well have never seen or tasted before, purple carrots or green and yellow tomatoes all dripping with freshness and flavor. By using local growers and producers we support the local economy, using fewer food miles and promoting environmentally sustainable agriculture. edit
- Red Hill Cheese, 81 William Road (off Arthur's Seat Rd), Red Hill, Victoria 3937., ☎ +61 3 5989-2035, . 12 noon to 5PM weekends and public holidays. A seasonal range of specialist cheese is made using fresh organic cow milk and free-range goat milk, each from a single herd. Red Hill cheeses use vegetarian rennet, and are free from genetically modified organisms, artificial stabilisers and preservatives. Please note: there are no facilities for groups of more than 10 people. Luncheon platter $25. edit
- The Grove Cafe and Takeaway, 77A Miles Gr , Seaford VIC 3198, Australia (off Wells Road, behind Page Brothers Caravans), ☎ 03 9782 3222, . Mon-Fri 7am-8:30pm, Weekends & Public holidays 5pm-8:30pm. Delivering Comfort Food and the best coffee in the area to Frankston and surrounding suburbs 7 days a week, this is ideal for those who want a bite to eat without hassles. Taking phone and online orders, with an ATM and Free WIFI for onsite visitors, while also selling phone recharges and tobacco, this Cafe has the lot. Check out the website for more details (-38.113575,145.134931) edit
There are many popular wineries of varying styles along the Mornington Peninsula. T'Gallant of 1385 Mornington Flinders Rd, Main Ridge is a good example of a funky place to eat and drink on a summer afternoon, often with live music.
Portsea Pub is a popular place to drink in the Point Nepean part of the Peninsula.
- Hilltonia Homestead (Mornington Peninsula accommodation), 282 Browns Road - Rye, ☎ +61 3 5985 2654 ([email protected]), . checkin: 2pm; checkout: 11am. Luxury secluded self-cater cottages and B&B suites set on 30 acres with inground pool and tennis court. Current March 2011: Off peak $190 to Peak $330 per night. edit
- Lindenderry at Red Hill, 142 Arthur's Road - Red Hill, ☎ +61 3 5989-2933, . country house hotel based on 30 acres of gardens and vineyards. edit
- Admiral Motor Inn, 799 Nepean Highway - Rosebud, ☎ +61 3 5986-8933, . edit
- Sorrento Beach House, 3 Miranda St, Sorrento (788 bus from Frankston Station to Sorrento, Stop 18), ☎ +61 3 5984 4323. checkin: Reception hours 8-10AM, 5-10PM. Not actually on the beach. edit
- Amberlee 4 Star Family Holidays, 306 Jetty Road Rosebud, ☎ 1800 818 587, . Budget and deluxe cabins. From $75 per couple, off peak. edit
- Dromana Holiday and Lifestyle Village, 131 Nepean Highway, Dromana., . 2 night minimum stay. From $100 per couple (high season). edit
- Hastings Caravan Park, 249 High Street, Hastings, ☎ +61 3 5979-2700, . $120 per double (deluxe villa). edit
- Kanasta Caravan Park, 9 Sinclair Ave (P.O.Box 515) Rye Vic 3941, ☎ +61 3 5985-2638, . Ensuite cabin accommodation. From $110 per couple (high season). edit
- Kangerong Holiday Park, 105 Point Nepean Road, Dromana, 3936, ☎ +61 3 5987-2080, . Cabin style accommodation. Winter midweek special from $240 for 2 people. edit
- Langdon's of Red Hill, 52-54 Arthur's Seat Road (Corner Mechanics Road) Red Hill South, ☎ +61 3 5989-2965, . Bed and breakfast. $185 per double. edit
- Moody's Motel, 2867 Pt Nepean Road BLAIRGOWRIE VIC 3942, ☎ (03) 59 888 463, . Very much a budget motel - inspect the sheets upon checking in. From $80 per double ($110 on Fridays and Saturdays). edit
- Peninsula Holiday Park, 10 Ponderosa Place, Dromana, Victoria 3936, ☎ +61 3 5987-2095, . Cabin accommodation. Deluxe ensuite cabin from $115 per couple (peak season). edit
- cbreeze, 8 Permien Street Dromana, ☎ 1300 300 377, . Dromana accommodation. Self contained accommodation close to Dromana Beach edit
- Cape Schanck Lighthouse (Cape Schanck Lightstation), 420 Cape Schanck Road, Cape Schanck VIC 3939, ☎ 03 59886184, . Cape Schanck Lighthouse is a working lightstation at the tip of Mornington Peninsula protecting the ships coming and going from Melbourne in Bass Strait. Accommodation at the Lighthouse includes 3 self-contained cottages and a motel style suite. Accommodation was once used by lighthouse keepers, visiting inspectors and staff. Cape Schanck Lighthouse was built in the 1850's and remains a heritage listed building. (-38.4922899936,144.8866599798) edit
- Highrising Bed and Breakfast, 24 Wanda Close, Portsea, ☎ 0401032179, . checkin: 2.00; checkout: 10.00. Boutique bed and breakfast in Portsea. Quality breakfast, views, privacy and quiet. Suitable for adults. Beautiful natural garden. Close to pristine bay and iconic ocean. from $200. edit
- Arthurs Views, 10 Nestle Court, ☎ (03) 5981 8400, . Right at the heart of the Mornington Peninsula this luxury B&B has stunning views out across the bay and is central to most of the best that the peninsula has to offer. edit
The Mornington Peninsula provides easy access to both the calm waters of Port Phillip Bay and the surf beaches of Bass Strait. The bay side is dotted with family friendly sandy beaches from Frankston in the north down to Sorrento on the southern tip of the Peninsula with foreshore camp grounds open in summer at the more popular Sorrento, Blairgowrie, Rosebud and Rye beaches.
The ocean beaches (or "back" beaches) such as Gunnamatta, Portsea Surf Beach, Sorrento Back Beach, and St Andrews Beach provide big waves to attract surfers and the more intrepid. The ocean beaches can be dangerous and only for strong, competent swimmers. All swimmers should swim between the flags at patrolled surf beaches in the summer months. Bridgewater Bay in Blairgowrie features rock pools exposed at low tide which are safe for swimming.
The ocean beaches have single large waves on rare occasions. Standing on the rocks above the shoreline is not safe; people do get swept off on occasion.
- Queenscliff is a short ferry ride from Sorrento and offers car and passenger services. Dolphins can often be seen during this journey.
- Frankston - The largest city close to the Peninsula with rail links to Melbourne and Stony Point.
- Stony Point has passenger ferry services to French Island and Phillip Island. There is also a ferry connection between the two islands. Stony Point is easily accessible by diesel train from Frankston.
- Mornington Peninsula Tourism and Visitor Information Centre, 359B Point Nepean Rd, Dromana, ☎ +61 3 5987 3078 ([email protected], fax: +61 3 5987 3726), . edit