Kate and I had set a day aside for a trip down the Mornington Peninsula, a long stretch of land on the East side of Port Phillip’s Bay, that is famous for its wineries, and hot springs.
We drove off at 10 in the morning, heading south on the new highway, to have a first coffee at Merricks’ General Wine Store to map out the day, and then a first, and very informative wine tasting at Stoniers‘.
I learned that the local climate is cool, perfect for a Pinot for example, but they also cultivate Shiraz, one of my favorites, but it has a lighter quality here.
On to Paringa Estate, a beautiful winery wiht an amazing view over the slopes and hills of the vineyards, where I bought a bottle of their Estate Viognier…
After that and about 12 different wines in two hours, we needed a healthy and hearty lunch, which we found at the Red Hill Estate Eatery. A yummy, perfect pizza, and a glass of wine, of course!!!
One final stop at Montalto Vineyard & Olive Grove, where we sampled some wine and bought a bottle for a stroll through the vineyard, decorated with some modern art.
Enough wine, after all, how much can you drink (and drive) and on we went to Cape Schank, a lighthouse with a beautiful view over the coastline and the Southern Ocean.
It was built in 1859 and was the second lighthouse in Victoria, and sits on the southernmost tip of the Mornington Peninsula.
There was not much time left to walk over to the lighthouse or down to the beach, so on we went to the second part of the day: soaking in a spa.
Our destination was the Peninsula Hot Springs Spa, a quiet (it was Monday) resort in the middle of the peninsula, with some twenty hot pools, varying between 36 and 43 degrees, sauna and hamam.
The best pool though is the one on the hill top that offers breathtaking views over the peninsula, its hills, wineries, and golf courses.
We stayed there for a few hours, hopping from pool to pool and then made our way back to Melbourne, some 90 kilometers north. It was the perfect day trip.
I regret a bit not having a car to do more trips around Melbourne, around Port Philip’s Bay or along the coast, up the Yarra again or to Daylesford, a lovely town northeast of Melbourne,
I’ll keep that for the next trip – possibly a road trip through Australia with my sister. you have to have goals, right?
Here is a map of the wineries on the peninsula.