5 Great Day Hikes Around Melbourne Paddy June 30, 2020 Activities, Bushwalk & Camp There’s no better way to reset than with a day out of the city. Fortunately, Melbourne is surrounded by fantastic day walks, from child-friendly wanders to rugged scrambles. Here are five of our favourite day hikes – all within a 2 hour drive from Melbourne. Sherbrooke Forest Loop, Dandenong Length: 12km circuit Duration: 4 hours Grade: Moderate Best Season: All year Great For: Bird watching, lush forest From Melbourne: 1 hour drive or take the train to Belgrave station Eastern Sherbrooke Forest Loop, Dandenong Ranges. Photograph: The Bushwalking Blog The Dandenong Ranges are the closest mountain range to Melbourne, and they offer a number of walking tracks through beautiful ash forest. The Sherbrooke Forest Loop is lush with ferns, fungi, wildflowers, and waterfalls and is also the home of the superb lyrebird and parrots of all descriptions. The loop is accessible from Belgrave, a small town complete with cosy cafes and pubs, making it a perfect place to unwind after your hike. The Dandenongs do get cold, so bring one more layer than you think you’ll need. Werribee Gorge Circuit Walk Length: 8km circuit Duration: 3 hours Grade: Moderate-hard Best Season: Summer, spring, autumn Great for: Native flora and fauna, swimming in summer Start/finish: Meikles Point Picnic Area From Melbourne: 1 hour drive Werribee Gorge Circuit Walk. Photograph: All Trails Descending into the rugged gorge and out again, this invigorating circuit offers some of the best native landscape close to Melbourne. Steep in parts and with plenty of rock hopping, this circuit offers a range of different terrains for hikers with a bit of experience. Summer affords the opportunity to swim and relax by the water, but the sun is unrelenting so remember to bring a good hat before heading out. Along with native plants, you’ve got good chances of spotting rock wallabies and – if you’re very lucky – the ever-shy platypus. The river does flood after rains, so avoid the hike at these times. The Coastal Walk, Mornington Peninsula Length: Up to 30km each way Duration: From a short walk to all-day Grade: Easy-moderate Best Season: Summer Great for: Ocean views, swimming Start/finish: Cape Schank, Point Nepean From Melbourne: 1.5 hour drive The Coastal Walk, Mornington Peninsula, Victoria. Photograph- Trail Hiking Australia. The Mornington Coastal Walk is definitely a bit of a choose your own adventure walk, which is what makes it so much fun. It runs along 30 km of magnificent shoreline from Cape Schank to Point Nepean. If you’re travelling in two cars, a car shuffle is the best way to take in as much of this walk as possible. Otherwise, it’s best to start at Cape Schank and walk until lunch before turning back. The terrain is gentle and mostly flat, leaving you energy for a swim or to explore around the rockpools and rugged sea cliffs. This walk is lovely in Summer as the sea breeze keeps things comfortable even on hot days. If you’re going in Winter be sure to bring a shell jacket to protect you from the wind. The men’s and women’s Patagonia Torrentshell Jacket is a great, inexpensive option. Inner-Yarra Urban Hike Length: 16km one-way Duration: 4 hours Grade: Easy, pram-accessible Best Season: All year Great For: Families, mid-hike cafe hopping. Start/finish: Federation Square, Fairfield Boathouse From Melbourne: In Melbourne, public transport is available the whole way along Abbotsford Convent, Inter-Yarra Urban Hike, Melbourne. Photograph – Walking Maps. You don’t even need to leave Melbourne to enjoy this leafy day walk. Winding along the Yarra and Merri Creek, this urban hike takes you through some of Melbourne’s greenest suburbs. Passing by charming Art Deco flats in South Yarra, through the bohemian haven of Abbotsford Convent and the Collingwood Children’s Farm, past the Dight’s Falls kayakers, and ending at the Fairfield Boathouse. You can even hire a rowboat at the end here if you finish the hike early enough. This is one walk where you might want to forego the packed lunch as you’ll never be more than a five minute detour from some of Melbourne’s best cafes. Cathedral Ranges Southern Circuit Length: 11km circuit Duration: 4 hours Grade: Advanced Best Season: Summer, spring, autumn Great For: Invigorating scrambling, ridge views Start/finish: Cooks Mill Campground From Melbourne: 2 hour drive Mt. Sugar Loaf, Southern Circuit, Cathedral Ranges. Photograph: Michael Murnane. While not ideal for inexperienced hikers or those afraid of heights, this is quite possibly Victoria’s best day hike for those who love a scramble. Grippy shoes are important and approach shoes like the men’s or women’s Scarpa Crux Air are fantastic. Following the red arrows, a short uphill walk takes you to the cliff line. A squeeze through Wells Cave and 200 vertical metres of slabby scramble brings you to the ridge and 360-degree views over the ranges. From here, hikers continue along the razorback for a couple of kilometres before dropping down into the Farmyard clearing for lunch and peaceful downhill forest walking before looping back around to the start. Frequently immersed in mountain mist, Cathedral Ranges gets very cold and wet year round. Bring layers and rainwear even if the forecast looks good. Healesville is on the way and is full of great cafes and bars. Definitely the place to stop on the way back! From mountains to coast, Melbourne is surrounded by fantastic places to hike. Whatever you’re looking for in a day walk, whether it’s a sunny stroll with the kids or an epic scrambling journey, you can find it just a short drive from Melbourne. For more ideas of great day hikes, have a look at our range of maps and guidebooks or drop into store where our knowledgeable staff will be more than happy to share their personal favourites. Let us know what your favourite hikes in and around Melbourne are in the comments below. And don’t forget to tag us in your Instagram adventure posts! #ExperienceIsEverything | #PaddyPallin Leave a Reply Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email.