48 Hours in Melbourne, Australia
Years ago, when going to Australia was a far away dream, I thought Sydney was going to be my favorite city to explore. But, when you make a long trip you want to make sure you don’t miss anything so I researched everything about Australia I could find. The more I researched, the more I realized Melbourne was one city we absolutely could not miss! After spending a couple of days in Sydney, we flew to Melbourne. We arrived right around noon, snagged a rental car and drove out to Phillip Island.
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Phillip Island has so many attractions for animal lovers. You can find farms, conservation centers, animal parks and sanctuaries! Whether it’s your dream to see koalas, kangaroos, penguins or seals, you can see all of them on Phillip Island! Depending on how much time you have, I would absolutely recommend the Koala Conservation Center, Phillip Island Wildlife Park and of course, the Penguin Parade.
The penguin parade occurs every night at sunset on the shores of Phillip Island. Dozens of penguins come out of the ocean and make their way up the beach and into their burrows. It’s an amazing sight to see and it has become such a popular destination that they’ve built grandstands for proper viewing. There are a ton of different ticket and tour options, so take a look at my tips and tricks article on how to get the most out of this once in a lifetime experience! Checking out everything this island had to offer quickly filled up our first day in Melbourne!
Most people recommend driving the Great Ocean Road out to the Apostles. If you have the time for that, it’s an amazing drive with gorgeous views! City-discovery.com offers quite a few tours to the Apostles as well as Phillip Island. You’ll want to stop a lot to take tons of pictures. It takes about 3-4 hours to drive out to them making for a 6-8 hour round trip. You can also take a day trip by tour bus. With only 48 hours, we didn’t have a ton of time so we splurged on a helicopter tour and made it to the Apostles and back in 2 hours.
The flight was incredible! Our pilot was welcoming and friendly, the views were gorgeous and the apostles were breathtaking. We got to zip over the coastline and got some pretty awesome photos from the sky. Currently, there are four apostles and the ocean waves continue to erode the stone around the base until eventually they fall over into the ocean. Our pilot told us in just a few decades there probably won’t be any left.
After landing, our pilot gave us some recommendations for a great lunch and told us where to find some great beaches. We spent the afternoon driving around the beaches and exploring the boardwalks of these great little beach towns. If you find yourself on the west side of Melbourne, stop in Barwon Heads for a great lunch and explore Raffs Beach! You won’t regret it!