Ways to make the most of a Wintery Long Weekend

With the arrival of winter and a long weekend around the corner here in Victoria, I’m thinking about how to make the most of it. Whilst the thought of basking on Lord Howe Island sounds dreamy, the reality isn’t quite as exotic.

Still, three days to relax, explore, discover, sleep in and indulge in our favourite pastime sounds pretty good, doesn’t it.

Whether you love your adventures wild and woolly or civilised, here are some ways to make the most of the coming Queen’s Birthday long weekend, regardless of the weather.

Wine & History collide

Shiraz anyone? The historic picturesque township of Heathcote, 1.5 hours from Melbourne, is the backdrop of Heathcoteonshow, three days of wine, music and festivities.

Over the Queen’s Birthday Long Weekend there’s a huge array of events including wine tastings, craft breweries, masterclasses, food and entertainment. 26 cellar doors will open throughout the region. We went last year and had a great time sampling the best of the area.

Head for the heart of the Victorian goldfields in Maldon for some winter wind-down. Towards the end of June this sleepy gold rush town comes alive for their annual Winter in Maldon.

There’s loads to enjoy as restaurants, shops and cafes celebrate Christmas in July. The steam train ride from Maldon to Castlemaine is always fun too!



Winter Weekends along the Great Ocean Road

The spectacular Great Ocean Road is reason enough to take off for a few days of coastal recharge. Be invigorated at Wye River and enjoy a pub meal overlooking the ocean, stay in the lighthouse at Aireys Inlet or base yourself at Port Campbell. Visit the Apostles, walk the Otway Fly and get lost in the rainforest at Maits Rest.

The historic seaside town of Port Fairy will be celebrating winter festivity all through the months of June and July with special activities planned each weekend.

A snippet from their website gives an idea of what to expect:
“This year, we’re enticing you outdoors. When you might most want to stay inside, we want to remind you about the land on which you live, the coastline you reside by and dip into. Go to nearby reserves, plant trees, understand marine life, see an old street in a new way, embrace the chances to connect with environment and understand how to better protect it. Bring cups and containers with you to our events, carry a spare bag for the artworks, records, produce or surprises you’ll buy. Our festival tries hard to look after this planet and we hope you will too.” 

Visit www.portfairywinterweekends for all the details

Riverside Relaxing

Some of our most relaxing weekends have been spent camped by a river. In winter with a campfire as company, no crowds or mozzies and warming stews it’s a chance to slow down and savour the relaxation, the stargazing and doing bugger all nothing.img_9818

There’s something mesmorising about gazing into flickering flames, especially with the sound of a river nearby.  Our favourites? Lake Fyans, Murrindindi, Molesworth, Majors Creek, Walwa, anywhere along the Jamieson and Fry’s Flat in the Howqua Hills area are all up there.

How’s the serenity!

Mornington Magic

There’s coastal scenery, food, wine, adventure and relaxation all rolled into one on the Mornington Peninsula. Just an hour from Melbourne, the peninsula is quiet in winter, yet there’s still a tantalising array of things to do here.  It’s one for the romantics with it’s many wineries, restaurants, massages and hot springs.

Did someone say hot springs? A massage?  Yes! I’m coming.

There are loads of places to stay for couples like the Flinders Hotel,  Arthur’s Views or Dream Views or for a winter camping break by the foreshore head for beautiful Point Leo. Nearby Bushrangers Bay walk offers some of the best coastal scenery and walking close to Melbourne.

Bonus for wine lovers over the long weekend is the Winter Wine weekend.  

Chill in the City

Be a tourist in your own city for a day or even a weekend. Leave the car behind and take the train in, hop on the free tram and enjoy Southbank chic. Check out an exhibition, visit Eureka Skydeck, indulge in High Tea at The Windsor or go window shopping.

Book an overnight stay or catch a concert. Recently we saw two brilliant artists, Nathan Cavileri and Shaun Kirk perform at The Toff in Town. Shaun is just about to begin his regional tour of Australia. There’s always someone playing, like Conrad Sewell at The Forum Theatre in Melbourne on Friday 7 June. Check here for all his touring dates.

The Mind Body Spirit Festival is on over the June long weekend at the Melbourne Convention Centre. It’s Australia’s largest health, well being and Spirituality event. Come and be inspired and feel part of something much bigger. The city can be a chilled out place.

 Image credit:  Mind Body Spirit Festival

Beach Bliss

A winter sunrise from our van at Yanakie

Fall asleep to the sound of crashing waves and wake to the sun kissing the shoreline. Winter by the beach holds its own magic. No festival needed. Book a beachfront cabin or site (off peak you won’t be battling the crowds) rug up and enjoy invigorating walks along deserted beaches.

It’s a sure fire way to blow away those cobwebs. Two of my favourite spots include Marengo Holiday Park and, just five minutes from the entrance to the Prom, at Yanakie.

Enjoy, wherever the weekend leads you. Wherever you are, whatever the weather, there’s always something new to discover and there’s always a way to be a tourist (and adventurer) in our own backyard.

Happy travels.

In love and light

“Winter means wild adventures, warm camp fires and thundering waterfalls”

89 thoughts on “Ways to make the most of a Wintery Long Weekend

    1. Technically the Queen’s bday isn’t even this month, it’s April, but I’m not going to argue with history. It’s a great excuse for a day off. 😊


  1. These all look wonderful! The Queen’s birthday is not a public holiday here in the UK, oddly enough. Technically I do get the day off as I am in a civil service job, but like many public sector organisations we save this day up to have a longer break at Christmas.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Beautiful post as always Miriam and I do love all these choices. Couldn’t you do one event
    a week so you get to enjoy it all?
    It is funny to hear winter coming when we are only 3 weeks from midsummer. 🤗


    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s right Miriam. Today is our first day of winter and you’re heading into summer. Funny isn’t it. I love your idea of doing one different thing every week. We do tend to vary up our weekends when we can, makes life interesting.
      Hope you have a wonderful one. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks Miriam for reminding me the long weekend is coming up. And, given we are on a return road trip from Brisbane, to remember winter is here. For me, if I were in Victoria I would choose a collision of wine and history, or maybe some Mornington Bliss. Given how cold it is down your way I will take a rain (or cold) check on camping by the river.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hi Miriam,

      I have been following your blog for the past 18 months, and this is my first comment.Thanks for the amazing and countless suggestions on what’s happening and how to make the most of our weekends..The weekends are definitely for recharging and enjoying life’s pleasures and you always seem to put your special spin on things.

      Love all you pics and amazing adventures.
      Happy weekend🌈🙏

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Zoey!!! It’s so good to see you here! Yes, there’s always plenty to see and experience in and around Melb, it’s just a matter of choosing what we love. Thanks so much for your comment and hope you’re well. Look forward to catching up with you again in the future. In the meantime, enjoy your weekend. 🙂💕


    2. Hi Estelle, yes somehow, wherever we end up, I think we’ll have a powered site so we can snuggle into our warm van at night! The days will sort themselves out. Safe and happy travels back from Brisbane.


  4. Hi Miriam we visited the Great Ocean Road during May for my husband’s birthday about 10 years ago. We took a cottage for the weekend and it was rainy and cold and just perfect for sitting by the fireplace with a good red. There are some beautiful places surrounding Melbourne and I enjoy you sharing them with us. Have a great weekend, I’m running in the Brisbane Half Marathon tomorrow and it is going to be a cool at 5am that is for sure!

    Liked by 3 people

  5. All of the choices sound great, Miriam. I haven’t visited the Apostles and love to go there. Your camping by the river or visit the beach is so relaxing. That’s right, you’re entering winter and we’re “welcoming” summer. I hope your winter won’t be too cold. Enjoy a little more sunshine for this weekend.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. All great ideas Miriam. We are very spoilt for choice here in Victoria when it comes to weekend escapes. I do love a winter getaway, though I will have to wait for the school holidays to do so.
    Enjoy your weekend lovely and stay warm. Xx

    Liked by 3 people

  7. I used to love getting away camping on the June long week-end. Now I’m retired we can avoid the busy week-ends. What a great idea though to post prior to a long weekend to remind people to look after themselves with the extra day. Winter camping isn’t my favourite, until I think of the camp fires and camp oven cooking.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks Chris. Must admit I tend to agree with you, camping isn’t quite as appealing in the cold months but when we have campfires, and tangy heaters inside the van, life is pretty good. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I feel a little guilty because where I live, we are just beginning to enjoy summer. But those are lovely ideas for enjoying winter even so, and I will remember them for six months from now. You’re right, there is good in each season and we just have to take the time to appreciate it’s gifts. The warmth will return soon enough! Thanks for this post, Miriam!

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Another beautiful adventure we share with you. As always beautiful words and photos. And humour, loved the dog late for the massage..lol..

    You know something funny, you in oz get the queens birth weekend off and us guts in UK don’t…lol…

    Lovely post as always

    Liked by 3 people

  10. As temperature over here will be above 37°C till next weekend, Great Ocean Road sounds right for me. Coastal breeze will be nice I’m sure.
    And if I can’t make it over there, then I better head out to my own local beach for some oceanic breeze 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Haha, indeed Hammad, that sounds like a good plan. As it turns out that’s probably where we’ll end up going next weekend. Stay cool over there in those hot temps. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Completely forgot it’s winter over there! We are finally enjoying the first few days of summer here, seeing the sunshine and 90s without the evening thunderstorms that, in May, seemed they would never end. And I’m okay with some wet and cold stuff normally, but it is such a pain with a new puppy! Enjoy these winter days with hot beverages and warm fires, my friend, I’ll be celebrating on this end of the world with cold beer in tanks and shorts!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Cold beer in shorts sounds much more appealing to me, I’ll be honest. I always was more of a summer girl but that’s okay. I’ll just crank up the heater. Great hearing from you Tom. Enjoy your summer days, the sunshine and playing with your new pup! That sounds fun, I’ll have to pop over soon and see what you’ve been up to. Cheers my friend 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Ah yes we are heading to Bendigo for the Heathcote on Show for this long weekend. Will keep in mind your tip about visiting Maldon too.

    Liked by 4 people

  13. Really like this write up of what you can do over a long weekend in Victoria, Miriam. You’ve covered pretty much all the places you can go, from the coast to camping to the city. I really like what you suggested to do in the city such as enjoying the Eureka Tower and Southbank – I live close to the city and there’s always something to do there. Hope you are enjoying the long weekend 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hi Mabel, thanks so much for your comment. Yes, you’re right and, as you’d know, there’s heaps of stuff on in the city, every day, every weekend. We’re actually in the Otways this weekend, far from the madding crowd and having a wonderful time. Hope you’re enjoying your long weekend too. 😊


  14. We’re in two very different worlds. The weather is changing drastically here with sunshine and rain. Your winter looks inviting because it would be a break from the heat. I loved the pictures of camping and the feet. Stay happy always. hugs!

    Liked by 2 people

        1. Hi Cheryl, yes I’m well thanks. Your trip sounds great. I hope you had a wonderful time. No doubt you’ve come back with lots of wonderful stories and pics. xx 😊

          Liked by 1 person

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