Just an hour from Melbourne, Mornington is a cosmopolitan seaside village with sidewalk cafes, colourful bathing boxes and a renowned regional gallery.
To get a sense of Mornington’s place in Victorian history, take a stroll around Main Street to learn about the former Schnapper Point fishing village. See Victoria’s oldest courthouse and adjoining lock-up, and embark on a steam train ride on the Mornington Railway. Beleura, an Italianate mansion, has preserved life as it was in the late nineteenth century.
Browse a variety of boutiques and gift shops on your way around and stop for refreshments in one of the many cafes or restaurants. Set aside a few hours to sit with friends and enjoy the waterside location at The Rocks Restaurant, with a chilled bottle of local pinot gris and a meal of succulent fresh seafood.
The eye-catching red bluffs along the coastline offer panoramic views of yachts bobbing in the Port Phillip Bay harbour and the iconic colourful bathing boxes lining the beach. Nearby Morning Star Estate also boasts soaring views of the Melbourne skyline.
The Mornington Peninsula has had an enduring influence on Australian art and a visit to the Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery reveals a veritable who’s who of Australian artists and their interpretations of this part of the coastline. See works by Sir William Dobell, Sir Russell Drysdale, Sydney Nolan and Margaret Preston, or catch a touring international exhibition.
Mornington’s famous Racecourse Market is held monthly, while the International Cool Climate Wine Show warms up the winter with a week of wine events in May and June.
Mornington is about 70 kilometres from Melbourne, or less than an hour by car along the M1 and the Eastlink tollways.