Breathe in the sea air along Warrnambool’s foreshore promenade and marvel at the city’s beautiful location, nestled into the rising contour of Victoria’s south-west coast. Look out across at the green dairy country that contrasts with the deep blue of the Southern Ocean.
The only city on the rugged Shipwreck Coast, Warrnambool has had a long and colourful history linked with the sea. Much of this history is on show at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum. Original buildings, a lighthouse and recreated port complete with ships provide a fascinating insight into the city’s nineteenth century life.
Get close to native wildlife and explore the geological history of the region at nearby Tower Hill. Located in an extinct volcano crater, Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve is a haven for native flora and fauna. Join Indigenous guides on a tour through the reserve to see kangaroos, emus and koalas and learn about the local Aboriginal culture.
Warrnambool is known as Victoria’s southern right whale nursery. The giants of the sea return each year to Logan’s Beach between May and October. Make your way to the viewing platform to see them just 100 metres off the shore.
Its location on the wide sweep of Lady Bay gives Warrnambool marvellous beaches that heave with beach goers over summer. Explore coastal reserves and walking tracks with secluded beaches and rocky points, penguin colonies, and some good places for fishing and bird watching.
The city has a thriving arts and events scene, excellent restaurants serving the best and freshest local produce, and a relaxed cafe scene, most evident at the bottom end of Liebig Street.
Popular local events include the Fun 4 Kids Festival, which celebrates imagination and creative spirit, and Warrnambool May Racing Carnival, country racing at its best.
Warrnambool is approximately 265 kilometres west of Melbourne, or just over three hours by car along the Princes Highway. The scenic journey along the Great Ocean Road takes around five hours.