Only 75 kilometres down the road from Melbourne, Geelong has many of its big-city cousin’s charms in miniature. Visitors can relax on its beautiful beaches, explore the historic buildings and shop in small indie boutiques. It’s also the perfect place to start from if you’re driving the famous Great Ocean Road.
Things to do in Geelong
Geelong is known for its beautiful waterfront and pier, which has a lovely traditional feel with an Art Deco promenade and a 19th-century carousel. The town’s industrial history has left it with several Victorian buildings, a Maritime Museum and a National Wool Museum, which hosts a scarf festival every winter.
Geelong is surrounded by numerous vineyards, so don’t miss the chance to take a tour of the estates. See the hand-picking and foot-stomping techniques still used in some of the traditional vineyards, sample the local boutique wines and take home a few bottles of your favourites. Perfect for a sunny day, many of the estates also offer food and live music.
For an authentic local experience, head to the most popular event in town, an Aussie-rules football game. Geelong’s residents are passionate supporters of their team, the Geelong Cats, and whether they win or lose you’re guaranteed plenty of excitement and a great atmosphere.
Getting around Geelong
Geelong is a 1.5-hour drive from Melbourne, the nearest city and most convenient place to fly into. Geelong also has its own smaller airport, about 20 minutes from the city centre. If you’re travelling from Melbourne, you can take the train to Geelong which takes less than 30 minutes. It’s possible to get around Geelong by bus, with more than a dozen routes found around the city centre.