A few miles south of the vibrant city of Melbourne lies the Mornington Peninsula, a favourite beachside destination of Victoria residents and more far-travelled visitors. In the picturesque seaside town of Blairgowrie, holidaymakers will find a superb choice of holiday accommodation from which to enjoy all the delights this wonderful region has to offer. Blairgowrie is a picture perfect spot, just 63 miles south of Melbourne, with beaches, perfect for swimming and surfing, overlooked by spectacular cliffs.
One of the most popular holiday and weekend break destinations for Melbourne residents, Mornington Peninsula is known to them simply as “the Peninsula”, a region packed with beaches and so popular with water sports enthusiasts, but also blessed with amazing natural assets.
The charming town of Blairgowrie is situated between the larger seaside towns of Sorrento and Rye on Port Philip Bay on the southern fringes of the Peninsula, and its fine selection of holiday rentals and self-contained accommodation make it an easy choice when deciding where to stay on the Peninsula. While Blairgowrie enjoys a calm and sheltered position, the bay itself is a treacherous stretch of water, known locally as “the Rip” and over the years it has caused many shipwrecks. Its waters may be turbulent and dangerous to humankind but it is much more dolphin friendly and, in fact, the bay is a nursery for bottlenose dolphins and a major breeding ground for these marvellous creatures.
However, the overwhelming view of the southern Peninsula is one of a tranquil, stunningly beautiful coastline that is reminiscent of the Mediterranean. Visitors to Blairgowrie will be spoiled for choice when it comes to water-based activities with the sandy beaches perfect for swimming, surfing and sunbathing. The Blairgowrie Yacht Squadron, fronting Port Philip Bay, is bustling with boating and yachting activities with visitors very welcome to participate.
The cliffs that tower over Blairgowrie’s beaches offer marvellous walking opportunities and outstanding views across this most scenic of bays, while the dunes along the coastline are part of the Mornington Peninsula National Park whose boundaries cover most of the southern tip.
Mornington’s resemblance to the Mediterranean doesn’t stop at its rugged coastline. This area is also a thriving winemaking region with award-winning vineyards producing some very distinctive wines. Take a tour of one of the 50 wineries (or more if you like!) and sample the local output for yourself, and if what you try takes your fancy, make sure you take a bottle or two back to your holiday accommodation.
Food produced locally is also renowned for its quality – look for the Mornington Peninsula Gourmet brand on sale at food stores. And the excellent food extends to the marvellous range of restaurants and cafes in every town.
The climate on the Mornington Peninsula is a distinctively maritime one with the ocean making land temperatures that bit cooler than, for example, those in Melbourne just a few miles north. That cooler climate has helped make the region’s wines so distinctive and sought-after. Spring and summer are the best seasons in which to visit to take advantage of the wonderful outdoor activities with average summer temperatures of 25°C. In the cooler months expect average temperatures of around 16°C. The best advice for visitors is to cover up well with sunscreen in the hotter months before leaving your holiday rentals but remember you’ll need a jacket when it gets colder.
Visitors from the UK heading for the Mornington Peninsula will fly into Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport – airlines such as BA, Qantas, Etihad and Emirates all offer flights from London Heathrow all year round. Blairgowrie is just over an hour’s drive from Melbourne and if you choose to rent a car, you’ll enjoy a scenic journey on the way to your self-contained accommodation, where you’ve chosen from holiday apartments, holiday houses or holiday villas. The area is well served with public transport, too – train leave Melbourne regularly throughout the day for Frankston where local buses connect you to your destination. Or you can jump on an airport bus that goes direct to Frankston. The Peninsula’s close proximity to Melbourne means your holiday will begin as soon as you step off the plane.