We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
102 posts
17 reviews
Save Topic
3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

First time to Melbourne in September. Unfortunately, we only have three days in the area. Should we stay and explore the city? Or rent a car and drive the great ocean road (stay over one night along the way)?

I have read that the great ocean road is a must see, but with such limited time, should we just enjoy Melbourne city?

I appreciate any advice.

Cheers, RockyMountain2

Melbourne
Destination Expert
for Melbourne
Level Contributor
5,674 posts
56 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

Where else are you visiting in Australia? Melbourne is a great city, but it's just another city. Whilst the GOR is quite unique. Why don't you spend 2 days visiting the GOR and 1 day exploring Melbourne?

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
30 posts
35 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

I agree, melbourne is a beautiful city, but the GOR is a unique beautiful part of the coastline so unless you have something specific in melbourne you'd like to see then I'd suggest that as the better option.

Gungahlin, Australia
Destination Expert
for Canberra
Level Contributor
15,525 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

>>I have read that the great ocean road is a must see, but with such limited time, should we just enjoy Melbourne city?<<

. . or see a bit of Melbourne (it's a great city) and take a day tour of the GOR (it's a very long day but the experienced tour operators make sure you see the main highlights and there are a couple of minibus tours that get good feedback on TA). If you don't have a personal preference for either city or nature then that's the way to get a brief taste of both.

It would help to know where else you are visiting in Australia? And a more precise explanation of '3 days', arriving around lunchtime rather than on the first morning flight or flying out first thing in the morning on Day 4 rather than leaving on Day 3 can make some difference.

Sydney/Melbourne
Level Contributor
18,129 posts
73 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

Another vote for 1 day in Melbourne and 2 on the GOR.

Melbourne is a great city to live in but there's not really that much to 'see' - not like Sydney with the Harbour, the Opera House, the beaches etc. Melbourne comes into it's own for things 'to do' - theater, restaurants, cafes, galleries and so on.

You could really get around the city area quite easily in a day.

If you do decide on a day trip to the GOR, as Mac suggests, then I would still suggest that the day saved is spent out of the city - perhaps Philip Island, Healesville Sanctuary or the Yarra Valley wine region.

Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
102 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

Wow, great response. Thanks so much for your help. To answer some of your questions. We are flying into SYD (from Vancouver), staying in SYD for a few days, flying to MEL (arrive mid morning-ish), staying in Melbourne 3 days. Then flying up to Cairns and driving on the Port Douglas for 6 days. Then back to SYD for another 2 days before flying back to Vancouver.

Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
102 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

Sorry one more thing, we have some friends that live in Casterton, Victoria. Would be great to see them, but if its out of the way, maybe another time. Any thoughts on a drive to Casterton? It not essential to do, but if its a great drive (and the chance to see friend) maybe? Thanks for your help.

Cheers.

Sydney/Melbourne
Level Contributor
18,129 posts
73 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

It's 4 hour drive to Casterton from Melbourne. Not really feasible in a day. For a couple of days, perhaps. The Grampians are nearby which is a great area - especially if you are into a bit of abseiling or rock climbing.

Gungahlin, Australia
Destination Expert
for Canberra
Level Contributor
15,525 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

>>flying to MEL (arrive mid morning-ish), staying in Melbourne 3 days.<<

Sorry, is that like 2½ days or 3½ days? And what are your interests/priorities? I mean you've described the GOR as a 'must see' but you have not actually said that it is YOUR priority?

Melbourne
Destination Expert
for Melbourne
Level Contributor
5,674 posts
56 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

I would leave Casterton for another trip. It's over 700 Kms round trip. Maybe if you were going to Adelaide, then that would fit in.

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Business Travel, New South Wales
Level Contributor
30,446 posts
1,572 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: 3 Days in Melbourne - Stay in the City or GOR??

As mentioned you have a few options.

A) Stay in the city & do a day tour to the Great Ocean Road.

B) Stay Lorne or Port Campbell (GOR) 2 days / 1 day for exploring Melbourne.

My preference would be to have a city hotel & use it as a base to explore the GOR so you don't have to move around. Plus Melbourne is a fabulous city to explore with many wonderful restaurants.

viator.com/Melbourne-attractions/…