Short break in Victoria, Australia?
August 20, 2013 1:30 AM   Subscribe

Husband and I need a holiday. Problem is, we won't have much money because we've just bought a house, which came with a lot of bills. Suggestions for weekends away for the next few weeks or short breaks in September school holidays, leaving from Melbourne, Victoria, that cost less than $180/night? Complication-- I'm 19 weeks pregnant.

We will have school holidays in September (both teachers) which can sometimes help with finding cheaper deals (compared to weekends). I am pregnant so anything wine-focused or physically demanding is out. We have previously enjoyed Lindenwarrah at Millawa and the Yarra Valley, but both are really wine/cheese/antipasto-y holidays--not so good for me atm. Open to interstate but wouldn't want to spend more than $200 return in total on pretty limited there. I'd love something nature-focused. Any good suggestions for Bright area, perhaps? Or other options we haven't considered?
posted by jojobobo to Society & Culture (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Have you been down Sandy Point/Wilson's Prom way? It's really beautiful, September is a great time to go, and there is a wide range of accomodations there. Lotsa people do Sorrento/Rye, but I rate the prom far far higher; more nature, less blatant weekend tourist shit. There many walks that aren't too demanding and the scenery is very nice.
posted by smoke at 1:49 AM on August 20, 2013

I am in the accommodation business but not in Victoria. Have you looked on the booking sites and A lot of the little personally run places advertise there.

If you like Bright, look in Harrietville as well. Alternatively, heading in the other direction, Castlemaine is a great little town to visit, as is nearby Chewton, Maldon or the spa town of Daylsford. Castlemaine has a great old cinema with sofas and pizzas - the best way to watch a movie.

Do you want something modern? Old antique style? Do you want breakfast included, close to restaurants, or do you want to get right away from it all and be totally self contained? How far do you want to drive or spend time travelling? If you give a few more details I will have a look for you.
posted by Kerasia at 3:44 AM on August 20, 2013

Seconding castlemaine there's cute bed n breakfasts out there and the first Sunday of each month is farmers markets in town, each Saturday has the markets on the hill plus some good gigs at the royal theatre. Daylesfords also great, loads of cool spots to explore there and in Hepburn including the lavender farm grounds in shepherds flat.

Also past Lorne is very beautiful around the otways, Cumberland river has camping grounds with cabins available for a cheap getaway, beautiful walking tracks inland & along the coast plus great seafood available from Lorne jetty.
posted by Under the Sea at 3:51 AM on August 20, 2013

My husband and I spent an amazing long weekend in Warnambool. Make a trip out of it, spend a day driving down the Great Ocean Road then spend 2 days there and back?
posted by third word on a random page at 4:50 AM on August 20, 2013 [1 favorite]

You could always fly to Tassie if the school holidays haven't put the prices up too much. More nature than you can poke a stick at a and it feels like you're having a 'proper' holiday because you're technically overseas. Otherwise seconding the Otway's - there is some amazing forest and bush landscapes to enjoy and you should be able to find accom under $180 if you stay away from the bigger towns like Lorne and Apollo Bay. I've had the best luck finding cheaper, more interesting places by going to (or calling) the info centres rather than relying on places that advertise heavily on the main online portals. Have a great time!
posted by birch effect at 5:31 AM on August 20, 2013

I don't know anything about Australia, but I do have a recommendation. Why not check into a local resort? There won't be too much money or time spent on travel, and you can enjoy the ammenities of the resort. Swimming, beaches, etc.

Or do a "stay-cation". Just go out to nice dinners, have a spa day, do an activity you wouldn't normally do. Go to movies, or live music, or street fairs.

If you do a "stay-cation" perhaps you can hire a house-cleaner to do your chores so that it's one less thing for you to do.

Sometimes it's not going to a different place that's restful, but doing different things in the same place.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 8:12 AM on August 20, 2013

Phillip Island penguins?

There are other wildlife attractions on the island too.
posted by trialex at 4:30 PM on August 20, 2013

Best answer: In February we stayed at a place called Gatekeeper's Cottage in Bright and could not praise them more highly. It was $170 a night, which is towards the upper end of your price range, but that included a full cooked breakfast (where you even got to specify whether you wanted your fried eggs runny or hard!) as well as a fridge stocked with soft drinks and some alcohol, a box of choccies on the bed, home-baked cookies or muffins every night, and a really comfy bed. They were really friendly and welcoming hosts, too.

On the same holiday (it was a round-Victoria roadtrip) we also enjoyed:

- Hall's Gap - the more strenuous walks probably not suitable for a pregnant lady, but there are lookouts you can drive to, and lots of time to sit around and check out the animals.
- Warrnambool and Port Fairy - make a wee drive down the Great Ocean Road! Lots of lookout places, and there's a great maritime museum at Warrnambool
- Echuca (cruise along the river a bit...)

MeMail me if you want suggestions for places to stay at Hall's Gap or Port Fairy.
posted by andraste at 11:50 PM on August 20, 2013

Response by poster: Probably too late but in case anyone comes back- I know Victoria very well (lived here 31 years) so I'm looking for specific accommodation possibilities that people have personally tried or have some personal experience of. I am familiar with stayz etc. should have been clearer- thanks anyway.
posted by jojobobo at 2:11 PM on August 22, 2013

Hmm, I had a baby five months ago, and recently my husband and I have been doing day-trips in the car (which may or may not suit you while pregnant).

Some ideas:

- We found Bon Accord in Sale to be *amazing*. Sale itself isn't that interesting, but there's some nice drives around there. We got the smallest room (which was cosy and suited us fine) for $120 per night, and the owner was so lovely - he even carried the baby around so I could eat our home-cooked breakfast, showing her the chooks and all!

- Wilson's Prom is gorgeous. We went there when I was about 40 weeks pregnant and did a 3 or 4km return walk at Tidal River. Beautiful views, and we even saw a wombat browsing about a foot away! Don't have accomodation thoughts, though

- We went down to Venus Bay, which was awesome at sunset, but we only stayed in their caravan park. I'm pretty sure there are cottages down there, which I'd recommend if they're in your budget because it's a lovely area to stay at this time of year.

- This sounds really silly, but Carter Cottages in Werribee are gorgeous. My husband's ex lives there and we had to stay there overnight (we're from Ringwood) and thought it would be pretty awful, but it's nice for a night away if you don't mind staying in that area.
posted by aletheianink at 10:30 PM on September 27, 2013

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