Lakes Entrance

Fishing boats, Ken Stepnell / Explore Australia Publishing

Population 5545

Lakes Entrance is a lovely holiday town situated at the eastern end of the Gippsland Lakes, an inland network of waterways covering more than 400 square kilometres. The artificially created 'entrance' of the town's name allows the Tasman Sea and the lakes to meet, creating a safe harbour that is home to one of the largest fishing fleets in Australia. While many of the attractions in Lakes Entrance are based around the water, there is also opportunity for foodies to indulge themselves with a variety of cafes and restaurants lining The Esplanade, plus sales of fresh fish and local wines.

Visitor Information

4 Marine Pde; (03) 5155 1966 or 1800 637 060

Nearby national parks

  • The Lakes National Park

    The Lakes National Park in Gippsland is a birdwatcher’s paradise, a tranquil retreat edged by the blue waters of Victoria and Reeve...more

  • Mitchell River National Park

    Stunning river scenery, thickets of temperate rainforest, idyllic fern gullies and tracts of rugged countryside are the background to a wide...more

  • Croajingolong National Park

    Croajingolong National Park sweeps along the far south-east corner of Victoria for 100 kilometres. This is one of the state’s largest...more

Nearby towns

  • Paynesville

    Paynesville is a popular tourist resort close to the rural city of Bairnsdale, on the McMillan Straits. The town is set on the Gippsland...more

  • Bairnsdale

    An attractive rural centre situated on the Mitchell River Flats and considered to be the western gateway to the lakes and wilderness region...more

  • Buchan

    Situated in East Gippsland, Buchan is primarily an agricultural town renowned for offering some of the best caving in Victoria. Although the...more

In Town

Griffiths Seashell Museum: 125 The Esplanade; (03) 5155 1538.


Gippsland Lakes Five rivers end their journey to the sea here, forming a vast expanse of water tucked in behind Ninety Mile Beach. The lakes are a true playground for anyone with an interest in water activities, especially fishing and boating. Explore the lakes on a sightseeing cruise, including one to Wyanga Park Winery, or on the ever-popular houseboats that can be hired over summer. Contact visitor centre for details. At the centre, the Lakes National Park offers birdwatching, walking, swimming and camping. Access is via boat from Paynesville or road and foot from Loch Sport.

Jemmys Point: great views of the region; 1 km W.

Lake Bunga: nature trail along foreshore; 3 km E.

Lake Tyers: sheltered waters ideal for fishing, swimming and boating. Cruises depart from Fishermans Landing in town. Lake is 6–23 km NE, depending on access point. Lake Tyers Forest Park is great for bushwalking, wildlife-spotting, picnicking and camping; 20 km NE.

Nyerimilang Heritage Park: 1920s homestead, with original farm buildings and the wonderfully maintained East Gippsland Botanic Gardens. Rose Pruning Day, with demonstrations, is held in July; 10 km NW.

Swan Reach: Rosewood Pottery; Malcolm Cameron Studio Gallery, open weekends; 14 km NW.

Metung: a scenic town on Lake King with boat hire, cruises and a marina regatta each Jan. Chainsaw Sculpture Gallery has chainsaw sculpture and a display of Annemieke Mein's embroidery art; 15 km W.

Nicholson River Winery: 22 km NW.

East Gippsland Carriage Co: restored horse-drawn carriages, and tours; 30 km E.

Bataluk Cultural Trail: driving tour taking in Aboriginal cultural sites in the East Gippsland region; self-guide brochure available from visitor centre.

Fishing spots near town

Lakes Entrance 5 km

Lakes Entrance is an ideal base for anglers wanting to fish the region. Facilities are excellent and it is within easy reach of places like the Tambo River and Lake Tyers. The township is situated along Cunninghame Arm. ... Find out more

Lake Tyers 10 km

Lake Tyers is a few minutes’ drive north-east of Lake Entrance on the Princes Highway. It is one of the most picturesque of the Gippsland Lakes, being surrounded by forest. Covering an area of about 16 sq km, Lake... Find out more

Tambo River 14 km

The Tambo River is renowned for the quality of its bream fishing. From the mouth of the river at Lake King upstream past Johnsonville and Swan Reach, anglers can access long stretches of sheltered water above and below... Find out more

Metung 14 km

Metung, on the western shore of Bancroft Bay, is a major centre for the cruise-boat industry. Whether you own one or want to hire a live- aboard boat for a few days, Metung is a prime spot. Surprisingly, for a town so... Find out more

Nicholson River 23 km

The Nicholson is the shortest of the three waterways in the Bairnsdale area and is more affected by thawing snow than rainfall. The stretch near the railway bridge can be productive. A scenic waterway, it has limited... Find out more

Mitchell River 28 km

The estuary section of the Mitchell River begins at the rock barrier, about 5 km upstream from Bairnsdale. Bream are caught all the way through to where the silt jetties enter Lake King. The jetties look like two long... Find out more

Ninety Mile Beach 32 km

In autumn, large schools of salmon, along with gummy sharks and mulloway, hit Victoria’s beaches. Snapper can still be caught, along with increasing numbers of yelloweye mullet. One of the most popular beaches in... Find out more

Lake Victoria 35 km

This lake joins Lake King at the popular boating and fishing town Paynesville, opposite Raymond Island. The piers on both sides of McMillan Strait here are popular with anglers, especially lure fishers who have found the... Find out more

Marlo 47 km

In the annals of Australian folklore, the Snowy River is one of the icons. Anglers know that most of the action is in the lower reaches downstream from Orbost to Marlo where the river flows to the sea. Marlo is reached... Find out more

Bemm River 89 km

Bemm River is located on Sydenham Inlet Road about halfway between Orbost and Cann River. In estuary terms, this waterway is a superstar, regarded by many as Victoria’s best bream and estuary perch fishery. It may... Find out more

Eco-friendly activities around town

Mitchell River National Park 61 km

Although only 11 900 hectares in size, this rugged national park contains some of the best forest country in Gippsland. Great for experienced rafters, kayakers and canoeists, it also has some superb bushwalks. With a... Find out more

Bushwalking Alpine National Park 94 km

Covering a vast 6460 square kilometres, this is Victoria’s largest national park and cradles the state’s highest mountains and dramatic alpine scenery, as well as the major downhill skiing resorts. The park... Find out more

Cafes & restaurants around town

The Boathouse Restaurant

Part of the Bellevue on the Lakes hotel complex, this stand-alone restaurant specialises in local seafood and has been voted one of the top ten seafood restaurants in Victoria. The contemporary restaurant has linen-clad... Find out more

Ferryman’s Seafood Cafe

Walk over the gangplank to this floating restaurant for some of the freshest seafood around. Built on the pontoon base of a former Raymond Island car ferry, this seafood eatery has three sunny decks, including one that... Find out more


Take a seat on the balcony of this first-floor restaurant overlooking the vast waters of the lakes and the trawlers that dock there after a day’s fishing. Locals come for the warm bruschetta of smoky red peppers,... Find out more

The Metung Galley

A culinary highlight in often sleepy Metung, this lively cafe serves good coffee, a flexible menu and a good wine list that locals really appreciate. Kick-start the day with the Galley breakfast choice of Turkish bread... Find out more

Campsites around town

Waters Edge Holiday Park

This high-standard camping and caravan park is located in the centre of Lakes Entrance, the holiday town sited behind the magnificent sweep of sand known as Ninety Mile Beach. It’s opposite an arm of the Gippsland... Find out more

Colquhoun camping area (bush camping) 8 km

While enjoying the dispersed bush camping available around the forest, campers can familiarise themselves with forest bats, tree goannas, lyrebirds and koalas. The Forest Discovery Drive takes you past such historical... Find out more

Glasshouse camping area 12 km

Glasshouse is one of several camping spots east of Nowa Nowa Arm. It’s on Glasshouse Beach at the southern end of Lake Tyers Rd and has no facilities to speak of – perfect for those who want to play castaway... Find out more

Bunga Arm (boat-based camping) 13 km

Bunga Arm, in the road-free western part of Gippsland Lakes Coastal Park, is a spit of sand that has built up between the ocean and Lake Victoria. There are 7 designated camping areas, each with a dozen campsites and... Find out more

Trident Arm camping area 14 km

You’ll find this tranquil spot at the end of Trident Arm Track, off Lake Tyers Rd. As with the park’s other campsites, it’s east of Nowa Nowa Arm – the area to the west of the arm has several... Find out more

Bush camping 15 km

Bush camping permitted on the east side of Nowa Nowa Arm away from established picnic areas and at least 50 m from the lake. Contact ranger for details.... Find out more

Camerons Arm camping area 17 km

This is the northernmost camping area in the park, the closest to Nowa Nowa – take Lake Tyers Rd off the Princes Hwy east of the township, then turn west on Camerons Arm No. 1 Track. Canoeists can roam up and down... Find out more

Pettmans Beach camping area 18 km

This beach is at the end of Pettman Rd, which runs off Lake Tyers Rd. This is the only camping area in Lake Tyers Forest Park that has toilets. Coupled with the fact that it’s beside the ocean, this means that... Find out more

Emu Bight camping area 33 km

On Sperm Whale Head, Emu Bight is the only place to camp in the Lakes park. It’s 5 km east of Loch Sport, beside Lake Victoria and accessed from Lake Victoria Track; campsites must be booked in advance through... Find out more

Woods Point camping area 39 km

This idyllic campground is beautifully positioned on the shores of the Snowy River. Water-based activities include canoeing and rafting, while throwing in a line may reward anglers with Australian bass. There are also... Find out more

Caravan parks around town

Waters Edge Holiday Park

This good quality park is suitable for a few days in Lakes Entrance. It is on the Princes Highway, across the road from the water, and not too far from the centre of town. Bookings are required in peak periods and a... Find out more

Koonwarra Beach Resort 1 km

Easily accessible on the Princes Highway, at the eastern end of Lakes Entrance, this park is just a short distance from the town centre. It is ideal for a short stay or a family holiday in this popular destination.... Find out more

Eastern Beach Tourist Park 2 km

Just off the Princes Highway and easily accessible, this is a large spacious park where you can walk to town along the waters edge, Great for a family holiday. We like it. Bookings are required in peak periods and a... Find out more

Lakes Entrance Tourist Park 3 km

This owner-operated park is on the eastern edge of town and very convenient for a stopover. It has good facilities and caters for most needs. We stay here. Bookings are required in peak periods and a minimum-length stay... Find out more

Lake Tyers Camp and Caravan Park 8 km

This beachfront park is owned and operated by the Uniting Church. It is a great family park, ideal for a beachside holiday. The park operates in conjunction with a school camp and the consumption of alcohol is permitted... Find out more

Lake King Waterfront Caravan Park 27 km

With absolute lake frontage, this neat park has its own jetties and boat ramp and there are waterfront van sites available. This is good value. Bookings are required in peak periods and a minimum-length stay applies to... Find out more

Bairnsdale Holiday Park 31 km

There are many caravan parks in Bairnsdale but this is one of the few with a large number of tourist sites. Located on the Princes Highway, it is well suited to a family holiday or just a couple of nights. Bookings are... Find out more

Mitchell Gardens Holiday Park 32 km

This park is at the river end of the main street (Princes Highway), just 500 metres from the centre of town. With beautifully maintained surrounds, the park is located on the banks of the Mitchell River. Bookings are... Find out more

Orbost Caravan Park 44 km

The centre of town is only a short 500-metre walk from this park, which is situated off the main highway. It has large shady trees, good basic facilities and is conveniently located for an overnight stop; it is around a... Find out more

90 Mile Beach Holiday Retreat 50 km

This camping park on a private farming property is just a stroll away, over the sand dunes, from the fabulous Ninety Mile Beach. The owner-operated park is reached via some 5 km of unsealed access road but the journey is... Find out more

Hotels, motels & B&Bs around town

Goldsmith’s in the Forest

Enjoy the sights and smells of one of the last remaining pockets of warm temperate rainforest in Victoria with a stay at this four-room private retreat. Located on 24 hectares of covenanted natural forest, guests are... Find out more

The Lakes Apartments

This architect-designed accommodation complex comprises 15 contemporary apartments in the heart of Lakes Entrance. These one-, two- and three-bedroom self-contained apartments are individually designed and adjoining... Find out more

Waverley House Cottages

Located in private landscaped native gardens with ocean views, this relatively new property offers accommodation in six secluded one- and two-bedroom cottages. Shaded by established gum trees, each cottage is spacious,... Find out more

5 Knots

Built on the old boating slipway in nearby Metung, if this stunning new accommodation complex was any closer to the water, guests would have to wear wetsuits. It comprises eight one-, two- and three-bedroom luxury... Find out more

Eco-friendly places to stay around town

Jacarri Eco-Cottage, Goongerah 86 km

This rustic little cottage in East Gippsland sleeps four, and has solar power and a dry composting toilet. It has been built with sustainable timbers and uses a water wheel to fill the water tank. Organic fruit,... Find out more

Rest areas around town

Lakes Entrance park area 2 km

At Lakes Entrance

Overlooking the river near the information centre.

Log Crossing rest area 8 km

T/O 26km E of Bairnsdale (L) or 9km W of Lakes Entrance (R)

Secluded in the forest 2.5km (unsealed) north of the highway. 

Burnt Bridge rest area 8 km

10km NE of Lakes Entrance (R) or 49km SW of Orbost (L)

Secluded in the forest just off the highway.

Nicholson park area 23 km

At Nicholson

Overlooking the river on the east side of town.

Newmerella park area 41 km

At Newmerella

Adjacent to the highway in the middle of town.

Tambo River rest area 55 km

49km S of Omeo (L) or 72km N of Bairnsdale (R)

Adjacent to the highway among a few trees.

Murrungower rest area 59 km

16km E of Orbost (L) or 59km W of Cann River (R)

Secluded forest setting just off the highway. 

Providence Ponds rest area 64 km

17km E of Stratford (R) or 35km W of Bairnsdale (L)

Just off the highway among a few trees.

Doctors Flat rest area 67 km

33km S of Omeo (L) or 88km N of Bairnsdale (R)

Just off the highway among a few trees.

Bellbird Creek rest area 77 km

39km E of Orbost (R) or 36km W of Cann River (L)

Adjacent to the highway near the hotel.

Bemm River rest area 83 km

45km E of Orbost (R) or 30km W of Cann River (L)

Secluded in forest just off the highway.

Lookout rest area 93 km

102km SE of Bright (L) or 7km NW of Omeo (R)

Just off the road at the lookout.

Oriental Claims park area 93 km

107km SE of Bright (L) or 2km NW of Omeo (R)

At a historical site beside a creek 500m off the highway.

What's on around town

Markets: Lakes Entrance Primary School, Myer St; 3rd Sat each month.

Arts Festival: Forest Tech Living Resource Centre; Mar long weekend.

Lakes Motor Fest: biannual; Apr.

New Year's Eve Entertainment and Fireworks: Dec.

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