The Go Beyond Melbourne Touring Route, connects the Yarra Valley and the Dandenong Ranges, Phillip Island, the Mornington Peninsula, Geelong and the Bellarine.
Start off in the stunning Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges; just an hour's drive east from Melbourne, it's hailed as the birthplace of Victoria's wine industry.
More than 80 wineries live in the Yarra Valley, surrounded by superb restaurants, produce farms and boutique shops. Take the time to meet passionate food and wine producers and experience Australian wildlife at the Healesville Sanctuary.
If you want to continue your adventure, take a hot air balloon flight in the morning, or ride on the famous Puffing Billy Steam Railway. Enjoy the hidden delights of the Dandenong Ranges, venturing through its scenic winding roads and renowned gardens.
Another option in Melbourne's backyard is Phillip Island - a perfect place to visit if you're a nature lover. The wildlife island provides some of the best natural experiences in Victoria, with close encounters with seals, koalas, penguins and a vast variety of birdlife. At dusk, settle down to watch the Penguin Parade as the animals venture from the surf to head home to their burrows on the shore.
Take in the stunning surf beaches and coastlines, with a number of restaurants and cafés to settle at for a bite to eat. You can also check out the famous Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit - home to the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix.
For other spectacular bay and beach options within a stone's throw of Melbourne, consider the Mornington Peninsula. It's a cruisy hour's drive from the city and home to endless bay and ocean surf beaches, some of Australia's top golf courses and more than 50 vineyard cellar doors.
Explore the galleries, spas and cafés in breezy seaside villages, cool off with a day at the beach, pick strawberries, solve maze gardens or escape to the hinterland for gourmet delights at boutique wineries.
Finally, pop along to Geelong and the Bellarine region. Kick up your heels in Geelong's waterfront precinct, explore tranquil seaside villages and meet local makers and growers along the Bellarine Taste Trail. It's home to a burgeoning foodie scene, complete with craft breweries, local wineries and a countryside peppered with farm gates, producers and provedores. Stroll down Geelong's stunning waterfront or cool off at surf beaches, explore historic buildings and famous links golf courses, or get close to nature on an eco-adventure tour.
This article was created for Visit Victoria. There are three unique self-drive touring routes to explore: Go Beyond Melbourne, The Sydney Melbourne Heritage Drive, and the Great Southern Touring Route.