Streetscape, Tourism Victoria

Population 3892

Queenscliff is a charming seaside town on the Bellarine Peninsula. It began life as a resort for wealthy Victorians in the 1800s, as testified by lavish buildings such as the Queenscliff Hotel, with its ornate lattice work and plush interiors. The town's wide main street is lined with cafes and restaurants, plus an array of art galleries, and the nearby beaches become a playground for holiday-makers during summer. A ferry runs between Queenscliff and Sorrento, a resort town across Port Phillip Bay.

Visitor Information

55 Hesse St; (03) 5258 4843 or 1300 884 843


Nearby national parks

  • Brisbane Ranges National Park

    In Brisbane Ranges National Park low mountains are dissected by rugged gorges and hidden gullies with basalt grasslands and woodlands. An...more

  • Kinglake National Park

    Surrounding the township of Kinglake, this bush retreat close to Melbourne offers views of the Yarra Valley, the city skyline and Port...more

  • Yarra Ranges National Park

    Lofty mountain ash bathed in mist, rare and endangered plants and animals, snow in winter and pristine pockets of bushland make Yarra Ranges...more

Nearby towns

  • Sorrento

    Just inside Port Phillip Heads on the Mornington Peninsula, in 1803 Sorrento was the site of Victoria's first European settlement. The town...more

  • Ocean Grove

    Ocean Grove is a popular summer-holiday destination near the mouth of the Barwon River. The beaches around the town offer great surfing and...more

  • Drysdale

    Drysdale, situated on the Bellarine Peninsula, is primarily a service centre for the local farming community. The town is close to the...more

In Town

Maritime Museum The museum explores the town's long association with ships and the sea through a collection of maritime memorabilia. It features a re-created fisherman's cottage, a diving-technology display and an array of navigational equipment. Weeroona Pde; (03) 5258 3440.

Marine Discovery Centre This is a great family destination where visitors can learn all about the local marine life. It has a number of aquariums and touch-tanks. The centre also runs various tours, including boat cruises off Port Phillip and 'rockpool rambles'. Adjacent to the Maritime Museum, Weeroona Pde; (03) 5258 3344.

The Blues Train An incredibly popular attraction that provides a unique dining and entertainment experience on board a steam train. Round trips provide 4 carriages, each with a different blues musician. Guests can change carriages at stops on the journey and purchase drinks from the mobile bar at each station platform. Operates Sat nights Oct–May. Departs from and returns to Queenscliff Railway Station; bookings at Ticketek on 132 849, or contact visitor centre for more information.

Fort Queenscliff: built during the Crimean War, it includes the unique 'Black Lighthouse'. Tours of the fort run most days; details from visitor centre.

Historical Museum: open 2–4pm Mon–Sun; Hesse St.

Bellarine Peninsula Railway: beautifully restored steam trains run between Queenscliff and Drysdale. Engines are on display around the station. Trains run Sun, public holidays and other times during school holidays; Symonds St.

Bellarine Rail Trail: 32.5 km track that extends from South Geelong to Queenscliff; on reaching Drysdale it runs along the Bellarine Peninsula Railway and ends in the town.


Pt Lonsdale This peaceful holiday town offers gorgeous beaches suitable for either surfing or swimming. A lookout from the cliff-top provides a great view of the treacherous entrance to Port Phillip known as 'The Rip'. A market is held here on the 2nd Sunday of each month. 6 km SW.

Lake Victoria: an important waterbird habitat; 7 km SW via Pt Lonsdale.

Harold Holt Marine Reserve: incorporates Mud Island and coastal reserves. Guided boat tours can be arranged from the Marine Discovery Centre.

Fishing spots near town

Queenscliff 1 km

Queenscliff harbour has a solid reputation for mullet, silver trevally and salmon. In some years, large runs of couta can be enjoyed in the harbour, and garfish are a common late-autumn visitor. On the debit side, the... Find out more

Lonsdale Bight 4 km

With lots of weed, waters affected by current and a high level of exposure when a southerly comes in, Lonsdale Bight is one the most productive all-round fishing areas in Port Phillip. The bight goes from Shortland Bluff... Find out more

Portsea to Point Nepean 4 km

The annual salmon migration into the bay is part of a chain of fish migrations including snapper and baitfish species such as sandy sprats and pilchards, as well as krill. For the salmon, it isn’t so much the need... Find out more

Swan Bay 5 km

Swan Bay is a small offshoot of Port Phillip Bay. The southern extremity is marked by the Queenscliff marina, the northern extremity by Edwards Point. A large portion of the bay is designated a marine park and off-limits... Find out more

St Leonards 12 km

One of the most vivid memories for me was the sight of Tilley lanterns glowing along the front of the old ramshackle pier at St Leonards during spring. During the 1970s, from October through November, this sight was... Find out more

Barwon River Estuary 14 km

The Barwon River estuary enters Bass Strait about 10 km west of Port Phillip Heads and it divides the holiday towns of Barwon Heads  and Ocean Grove. This estuary  is one of the most productive  waterways... Find out more

Indented Head 14 km

A major difference between Indented Head and most other areas of Port Phillip Bay is that it has small inshore reefs mixed with grass beds. Boats dominate the fishing scene and a dual boat ramp with mooring jetty is... Find out more

Clifton Springs 16 km

Clifton Springs is a sheltered harbour with a double boat ramp, mooring jetty and toilets. The facility is well signposted. To get there, take the Portarlington road out of Geelong and turn left at Jetty Road just before... Find out more

Portarlington 17 km

Land-based anglers are well catered for at Portarlington. The main pier runs north–south, and at the end there is a breakwater that runs west–east. Salmon often run along here in good numbers. Mullet, garfish... Find out more

Curlewis Bank 21 km

Curlewis Bank is well regarded for King George whiting during late summer and autumn. However, this vast bank of sand, seagrass and spoil ground also produces snapper, snook, squid and flathead. It is popular with soft... Find out more

Eco-friendly activities around town

Swim with dolphins, Sorrento 11 km

In the warmer six months of the year, the eco-accredited Moonraker Charters will help you get in the water, swimming alongside Australian fur-seals and bottlenose dolphins. Of course, swimming is not compulsory on the... Find out more

Golf courses around town

Portsea Golf Club 7 km

Portsea Golf Club has long been regarded one of the best-kept secrets on the Mornington Peninsula. Although it is a private club, the public is welcome at most times to experience this visually striking layout across... Find out more

Barwon Heads Golf Club 15 km

From the moment you pull up at the car park in front of the Barwon Heads clubhouse, it is as if you have travelled back in time to a more genteel era. The old-world charm is present not only in the architecture of the... Find out more

Thirteenth Beach Golf Links (Creek Course) 18 km

Sir Nick Faldo won six major titles, playing himself into winning positions on the back of strong shot-making, a trait that is highly prized on the courses he now designs. The Creek course at Thirteenth Beach, created... Find out more

Thirteenth Beach Golf Links (Beach Course) 18 km

After all the accolades Tony Cashmore received for his design work at The Dunes, on the Mornington Peninsula, he must have felt some pressure to produce an equally fine layout when it came time for his next project:... Find out more

The Dunes Golf Links 21 km

If you are looking for true links golf in the tradition of the great courses of Scotland and Ireland, you can satisfy your desires here. The Dunes has become one of the most popular courses on the golf-rich Mornington... Find out more

Moonah Links (Open course) 23 km

When Australian golf’s governing body decided in 1998 to shift its operations to a custom-built facility on some Mornington Peninsula farmland, many golfers reckoned it an ambitious move. But the Australian Golf... Find out more

Moonah Links (Legends Course) 23 km

The Legends course might have been the second course built at Australian golf’s new home, but it was so well received by golfers that today it is regarded as the better of the two. The course officially opened... Find out more

St Andrews Beach 24 km

When it comes to quality golf courses and how to design them, American Tom Doak is a learned man. His second and most recent Australian creation – St Andrews Beach, on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula... Find out more

The Sands, Torquay 28 km

Sands by name . . . Sands by nature. It doesn’t take long to figure out the overwhelming feature of a round at Torquay. Standing on the 1st tee of this Stuart Applebydesigned layout, a blanket of white is... Find out more

The National Golf Club (Ocean Course) 28 km

Nearly a decade after the celebrated opening of Robert Trent Jones Jnr’s Old course, the club’s board discovered that the adjoining property was to be put up for sale. It could be seen from the highest... Find out more

Cafes & restaurants around town

Athelstane House

This lovely old 1860 former guesthouse has been restored and given a modern fit-out to suit the contemporary fare served in its restaurant. Both the menu and wine list focus on quality local produce – the wine list... Find out more

Vue Grand Hotel

Located in the heart of Queenscliff, the Vue Grand is an award-winning and beautifully restored boutique hotel. Dining is taken to a grand scale in the impressive dining room, where soaring ceilings adorned with... Find out more

Nearby breweries

Red Hill Brewery 34 km

Becoming hop farmers wasn’t part of their business plan when David and Karen Golding first applied to develop a microbrewery and cafe from their Mornington Peninsula property. Ultimately, though, they were advised... Find out more

Campsites around town

Victoria Park caravan and camping area 1 km

Victoria Park is on Hesse St, near Queenscliff’s main street with its quaint cafes and shops, and is almost as close to the dramatic entrance to Port Phillip Bay. Its campsites are arrayed opposite the town’s... Find out more

Queenscliff Recreation Reserve camping area 1 km

This foreshore reserve has lots of shady sites and plenty of wide open spaces for playing games. Go for a wander through the streets of the historic township or watch enormous tankers and cargo ships navigate the Rip,... Find out more

Royal Park camping area 4 km

Point Lonsdale is joined to Queenscliff by a narrow isthmus and shares the same ocean-wide view. It’s here you’ll find snug Royal Park. Stroll the promenade behind the seawall down to the point itself, or... Find out more

St Leonards Foreshore caravan and camping area 11 km

You can camp in two parks on the foreshore at St Leonards, off The Esplanade. This is a useful base from which to explore the other lovely towns of the Bellarine Peninsula, or you can just sit and stare across placid... Find out more

Sorrento Foreshore camping area 11 km

There are plenty of campsites to choose from here alongside the bay. If you’re lucky you’ll catch sight of the bottle-nosed dolphins that sometimes frequent the area. You can also catch a ferry from Sorrento... Find out more

Riverview Family Caravan Park 13 km

The beach here at Ocean Grove is a lovely stretch of sand that’s very popular with holidaymakers when the summer sun is shining. Equally popular is the nearby nature reserve, where there is over 140 ha of native... Find out more

Barwon Heads Caravan Park 15 km

The campsites here are sprinkled alongside the Barwon River, right where the watercourse flows out into Bass Strait. Aside from the picturesque views, the park offers safe freshwater swimming, quick access to a surf... Find out more

Batman Park camping area 15 km

This park is situated off The Esplanade within the tiny town of Indented Head, which occupies a small wedge of land on the western shore of Port Phillip Bay. It’s one of 3 camping options in Indented Head: the... Find out more

Taylors Reserve camping area 15 km

Several dozen campsites are congregated at Taylors Reserve, off The Esplanade in Indented Head. Like the 2 other campgrounds in the bayside township, Batman Park and Anderson Reserve, this place is popular with... Find out more

Anderson Reserve camping area 16 km

Anderson Reserve is one of 3 foreshore camping options at Indented Head on the Bellarine Peninsula, the others being Batman Park and Taylors Reserve. John Batman, Melbourne’s founder, set up camp at Indented Head... Find out more

Caravan parks around town

BIG4 Beacon Resort 3 km

This award-winning establishment has all the trimmings you would expect of a park of this quality, including an indoor heated swimming pool and tennis courts. It is just a short walk to the beach. Bookings are required... Find out more

Riverview Family Caravan Park 13 km

This is a large holiday park with a long frontage to the Barwon River. It is popular with families during summer. Bookings are required at Christmas, Easter and long weekends, with a minimum-length stay period during... Find out more

Barwon Heads Caravan Park 15 km

This is a large park fronting the wide picturesque estuary of the Barwon River close to the river mouth. It is a popular summer beachside park and just a short walk from the town centre. Waterfront sites are available at... Find out more

Bellarine Bayside Holiday Parks - Portarlington 17 km

This beachfront park with a large number of powered sites is a very popular summerholiday park on a safe, bayside beach, with loads of appeal for families. The park has extensive facilities and is just 1.25 km from the... Find out more

Geelong Surfcoast Highway Holiday Park 29 km

This park between Geelong and Torquay has been rejuvenated as a tourist park and importantly for those who travel with pets is one of the very few parks in the region that takes pets. It is easily accessible from the... Find out more

Barwon River Tourist Park 29 km

On the south side of the Barwon River about 2 km from the centre of Geelong, this place has good facilities and is easily accessible. There are nicely shaded sites and it is just a short walk to the shopping centre. A... Find out more

Riverglen Holiday Park 30 km

This is a large, owner-operated park with good facilities and is located just 2 km from the centre of Geelong. Bookings are required at Christmas, Easter and long weekends, with a minimum-stay period at Easter and long... Find out more

Geelong Riverview Tourist Park 30 km

This is a great park on the south side of the Barwon River, just 2 km from the centre of Geelong. Bookings are required at Christmas, Easter and long weekends.... Find out more

Torquay Holiday Park 31 km

The park is located on the highway about 400 metres from the centre of town. It is a very good quality park and facilities include tennis courts, putting greens and private bathrooms with spas. Bookings are required in... Find out more

BIG4 Frankston Holiday Park 43 km

This is a good quality park in the far outer south-eastern suburbs of Melbourne. It is a great base for those exploring the Mornington Peninsula or those connecting with the Sorrento to Queenscliff ferry. Bookings are... Find out more

Hotels, motels & B&Bs around town

Athelstane House

This ‘small hotel by the sea’ is Queenscliff’s oldest operating guesthouse – dating from 1860. However, extensive renovations have recently brought it right up to date, with all mod cons and then... Find out more


Memories of Marnie Riddell’s stewed stone fruit and berries followed by her baked scrambled eggs wrapped in smoked salmon and served on a muffin linger long after you have departed her beautiful historic... Find out more

Queenscliff Hotel

With its lavish interiors and intricate latticework, The Queenscliff Hotel harks back to a time when this seaside town was a resort for wealthy 19th-century Victorians. Built in 1887 in red brick, with enclosed tower,... Find out more

Vue Grand Hotel

Located in the heart of Queenscliff, the Vue Grand is a multi-award-winning and beautifully restored boutique hotel. The hotel is grand indeed, built in 1881 to replace a wooden hotel on the site. Originally a... Find out more

Rest areas around town

Torquay park area 30 km

At Torquay

Overlooking the beach on the esplanade.

Anglesea Park Area 44 km

West side of town

Large area adjacent to the road on the west side of town. Good facilities.

What's on around town

Market: with crafts and second-hand goods; Princes Park, Gellibrand St; last Sun each month except winter.

Queenscliff Music Festival: major event attracting local and international music acts; Nov.

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