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Top 15 Things To Do in Port Fairy, VIC Australia (with local Hidden Gems)

25/07/2023
9 mins read
Port Fairy
Source: Visit Victoria

Port Fairy is a charming coastal town located in Victoria, Australia, about 28 kilometers west of Warrnambool and 290 kilometers west of Melbourne. Nestled along the picturesque Moyne River, this historic fishing village boasts a rich heritage, beautiful beaches, and a vibrant arts scene. As the last destination on Victoria’s famed Shipwreck Coast, Port Fairy is an idyllic getaway for nature lovers, outdoor enthusiasts, and those seeking a serene escape from the city.

Join us as we unveil the hidden gems and share the top things to do in Port Fairy, a captivating destination that promises unforgettable adventures. Immerse yourself in the town’s natural wonders, delve into its cultural treasures, and embark on a remarkable journey through the captivating world of Port Fairy.

Things To Do In Port Fairy, VIC

1. Griffiths Island Circuit

Griffiths Island Circuit is a must-visit for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. This easy hike takes you around the picturesque Griffiths Island, offering stunning views of the coastline and the chance to spot local wildlife, such as wallabies and a variety of bird species. The trail is well-maintained and suitable for all fitness levels, making it an ideal activity for families and solo travelers alike. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture the breathtaking scenery and the memories you’ll create on this beautiful island.

Griffitts Island
Source: Great Ocean Road Tourism
  • Best time of the year: Spring and autumn, when the weather is mild and the island is teeming with wildlife.
  • Address: Griffiths Island, Port Fairy, VIC 3284
  • Distance from town: Located within walking distance from Port Fairy town center.

2. Port Fairy to Warrnambool Rail Trail

The Port Fairy to Warrnambool Rail Trail is a fantastic way to explore the region’s natural beauty and immerse yourself in the local landscape. This 37-kilometer trail is perfect for cycling or walking and connects the charming towns of Port Fairy and Warrnambool. As you traverse the trail, you’ll pass through lush farmland, wetlands, and coastal areas, offering a diverse range of scenery and wildlife spotting opportunities. The trail is well-signposted and suitable for all ages and abilities, making it a great day out for the whole family.

  • Best time of the year: Spring and autumn, when the weather is comfortable for outdoor activities.
  • Starting point: Regent St, Port Fairy, VIC 3284
  • Distance from town: The trail starts in Port Fairy town center.

3. Griffiths Island Lighthouse

A visit to the historic Griffiths Island Lighthouse is a must when exploring Port Fairy. Built in 1859, this iconic lighthouse stands tall on the island’s eastern tip and offers incredible views of the surrounding coastline. The lighthouse is accessible via a short walk from the Griffiths Island Circuit, making it an easy addition to your island adventure. Take a moment to appreciate the history and craftsmanship of this beautiful structure while soaking in the panoramic views of the ocean.

Lighthouse
Source: Visit Victoria
  • Best time of the year: Spring and autumn, when the weather is mild and the island is teeming with wildlife.
  • Address: Griffiths Island, Port Fairy, VIC 3284
  • Distance from town: Located within walking distance from Port Fairy town center.

4. Moyne River

The picturesque Moyne River is the perfect spot to unwind and enjoy the serene beauty of Port Fairy. Stroll along the riverbanks, taking in the charming historic buildings and lush greenery that line the water’s edge. For a more leisurely experience, enjoy a riverside BBQ or try your hand at fishing in the calm waters. The Moyne River is also home to a variety of bird species, making it an ideal location for birdwatching enthusiasts.

Moyne River
Source: Visit Victoria
  • Address: Gipps St, Port Fairy, VIC 3284
  • Distance from town: The river runs through Port Fairy town center.

5. Tower Hill State Game Reserve

Just a short 14 km drive from Port Fairy, Tower Hill State Game Reserve is a haven for wildlife and nature lovers. This unique reserve is nestled inside an extinct volcano and offers a range of walking tracks that cater to all fitness levels. As you explore the reserve, keep an eye out for the abundant wildlife, including kangaroos, koalas, and emus. The reserve also features a visitor center, where you can learn more about the area’s history and the local flora and fauna.

  • Best time of the year: Spring and autumn, when the weather is mild and the reserve is teeming with wildlife.
  • Address: Princes Highway, Tower Hill, VIC 3283
  • Distance from town: Approximately 14 km from Port Fairy.

6. Suffoir Winery, Brewery, Cidery, and Distillery

Located just 30 minutes from Port Fairy, Suffoir Winery, Brewery, Cidery, and Distillery is a family-owned boutique establishment that offers a delightful range of beverages for all tastes. Sample their estate-grown Pinot Noir, indulge in The Three Alpacas beer range, or savor their handcrafted gins. The friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere make this the perfect destination for a leisurely afternoon of tasting and discovery. Don’t forget to take home a bottle or two as a souvenir of your visit to this charming establishment.

  • Opening Hours: Open Thursday to Monday, 11 am to 5 pm.
  • Address: 144 Mount Eccles Rd, Macarthur, VIC 3286
  • Distance from town: Approximately 30 minutes’ drive from Port Fairy.

7. Coastal Trails

Port Fairy and its surrounding areas boast a variety of stunning coastal trails that are perfect for exploring on foot. The Mahogany Ship Walk is a popular choice, taking you along the coast and through the dunes, offering breathtaking views of the ocean and the chance to spot the elusive shipwreck. Pea Soup and South Beach are also fantastic options for beach lovers, with their pristine sands and crystal-clear waters. For a more secluded experience, head to Killarney Beach, where you can enjoy the tranquility of the unspoiled coastline.

  • Best time of the year: Spring and autumn, when the weather is comfortable for outdoor activities.
  • Starting point: Various locations in and around Port Fairy.
  • Distance from town: The trails are located in and around Port Fairy town center.

8. Surfing Lessons

Port Fairy’s beautiful beaches provide the perfect setting for learning to surf. Whether you’re a complete beginner or looking to improve your skills, there are surfing lessons available to suit all abilities.

surfing
Source: Great Ocean Road Tourism

Expert instructors will guide you through the basics of surfing, ensuring you have a fun and safe experience in the water. As you ride the waves and feel the exhilaration of surfing, you’ll create unforgettable memories of your time in Port Fairy.

Source: Visit Victoria
  • Best time of the year: Summer, when the weather is warm and the water is inviting.
  • Location: Various beaches in Port Fairy.
  • Distance from town: Beaches are located within a short drive or walk from Port Fairy town center.

9. Martins Point Adventure Playground

Families visiting Port Fairy will love the Martins Point Adventure Playground, a fantastic outdoor space designed for children of all ages. The playground features a variety of equipment, including swings, slides, and climbing structures, ensuring hours of fun for the little ones. With plenty of shaded areas and picnic tables, it’s also a great spot for a family picnic. The picturesque location overlooking the Moyne River adds to the charm of this delightful playground.

  • Address: Martins Point, Port Fairy, VIC 3284
  • Distance from town: Located within walking distance from Port Fairy town center.

10. Go Surf & SUP School

If you’re looking to try something new and exciting during your visit to Port Fairy, consider taking a lesson at the Go Surf & SUP School. This popular school offers lessons in both surfing and stand-up paddleboarding, catering to all skill levels. With experienced instructors and a focus on safety, you’ll be riding the waves or gliding across the water in no time. It’s a fantastic way to enjoy the beautiful coastal scenery while learning a new skill.

  • Location: Various beaches in Port Fairy.
  • Distance from town: Beaches are located within a short drive or walk from Port Fairy town center.

11. Port Fairy Golf Club

Golf enthusiasts will be delighted by the Port Fairy Golf Club, an 18-hole natural links course that boasts stunning ocean views. The course is well-maintained and offers a challenging yet enjoyable experience for golfers of all skill levels. After your round, relax in the clubhouse and enjoy a meal or drink while taking in the breathtaking scenery. The friendly staff and welcoming atmosphere make this golf club a must-visit during your stay in Port Fairy.

Golf Club
Source: Visit Victoria
  • Address: Woodbine Rd, Port Fairy, VIC 3284
  • Distance from town: Approximately 5 km from Port Fairy town center.

12. Port Fairy Folk Festival

If you’re visiting Port Fairy in March, don’t miss the annual Port Fairy Folk Festival. This vibrant music festival showcases a diverse lineup of local and international artists, spanning a range of genres, including folk, blues, and roots music. The festival also features workshops, street performers, and a bustling market, ensuring there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere and discover new music at this beloved event.

  • Best time of the year: The festival takes place annually in March.
  • Address: Railway Pl, Port Fairy, VIC 3284
  • Distance from town: Located within walking distance from Port Fairy town center.

13. Historic Walking Trails

Step back in time and explore Port Fairy’s rich history by following one of the self-guided walking trails. The Maritime & Shipwreck Heritage Walk takes you along the picturesque coastline, where you’ll learn about the region’s maritime history and discover the stories of shipwrecks that lie beneath the waves. The Historical Buildings Heritage Walk guides you through the charming streets of Port Fairy, showcasing the town’s well-preserved 19th-century architecture and offering fascinating insights into its past.

  • Starting point: Various locations in Port Fairy.
  • Distance from town: The trails are located in and around Port Fairy town center.

14. Port Fairy Beaches

Unwind and soak up the sun at one of Port Fairy’s beautiful beaches. East Beach is a popular choice, with its golden sands, gentle waves, and lifeguard patrols during the summer months.

beach
Source: Visit Victoria

South Beach, also known as Pea Soup, offers a more sheltered swimming spot, with its calm waters and picturesque rock pools. Whichever beach you choose, you’re sure to enjoy the pristine beauty and relaxing atmosphere of Port Fairy’s stunning coastline.

Port Fairy
Source: Visit Victoria
  • Best time of the year: Summer, when the weather is warm and the water is inviting.
  • Location: Various beaches in Port Fairy.
  • Distance from town: Beaches are located within a short drive or walk from Port Fairy town center.

Towns Nearby Port Fairy, VIC

Here are some nearby towns and suburbs around Port Fairy, VIC, along with their highlights, attractions, distance from Port Fairy, and reasons why they are worth visiting:

  1. Warrnambool, VIC (28 km from Port Fairy): Known for its beautiful beaches, such as Logan’s Beach, where you can spot southern right whales during their migration season. Warrnambool also offers the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village, a maritime museum and heritage attraction.
  2. Koroit, VIC (19 km from Port Fairy): A charming town with a rich Irish heritage, Koroit is home to the beautiful Tower Hill State Game Reserve, where you can spot wildlife and enjoy walking trails.
  3. Portland, VIC (72 km from Port Fairy): A coastal town with a rich maritime history, Portland offers attractions such as the Portland Cable Tram, Cape Nelson Lighthouse, and the Portland Botanical Gardens.
  4. Port Campbell, VIC (104 km from Port Fairy): Located along the Great Ocean Road, Port Campbell is the gateway to the famous Twelve Apostles limestone formations and the stunning Loch Ard Gorge.
  5. Hamilton, VIC (109 km from Port Fairy): Known for its beautiful gardens and parks, such as the Hamilton Botanic Gardens, Hamilton is also home to the Sir Reginald Ansett Transport Museum, showcasing the history of Ansett Airways.
  6. Peterborough, VIC (88 km from Port Fairy): A small coastal town along the Great Ocean Road, Peterborough offers beautiful beaches, scenic lookouts, and close proximity to the Bay of Islands Coastal Park.

These nearby towns and suburbs offer a variety of attractions and highlights, making them worth a visit during your stay in Port Fairy, VIC Australia.

Getting To Port Fairy, VIC

To get to Port Fairy, VIC from common destinations or origins as a local tourist, you have several options for both public transport and driving.

From Melbourne CBD:

  • By train and bus: Take the V/Line train from Southern Cross Station towards Warrnambool. Get off at Warrnambool Station and transfer to the V/Line bus towards Portland. Alight at Port Fairy. The total journey takes approximately 4 hours and 30 minutes.
  • By car: Drive west on the M1 (Princes Highway) towards Geelong. Continue on the A1 (Princes Highway) towards Warrnambool. Turn left onto the B100 (Great Ocean Road) and follow the signs to Port Fairy. The drive takes approximately 3 hours and 30 minutes, depending on traffic.

From Warrnambool:

  • By bus: Take the V/Line bus towards Portland from Warrnambool Station. Alight at Port Fairy. The journey takes approximately 30 minutes.
  • By car: Drive west on the B100 (Great Ocean Road) towards Port Fairy. The drive takes approximately 25 minutes or 28 km.

From Portland:

  • By bus: Take the V/Line bus towards Warrnambool from Portland Station. Alight at Port Fairy. The journey takes approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes.
  • By car: Drive east on the B100 (Great Ocean Road) towards Port Fairy. The drive takes approximately 1 hour or 72 km.

For public transport options from other nearby towns, use the Public Transport Victoria (PTV) website (https://www.ptv.vic.gov.au) or app to plan your journey, as it provides detailed information on train and bus routes, schedules, and ticketing.

Hafiz Kashif

Kashif, our associate writer at HumbleTrail, brings stories from across the globe to our readers. Originating from Pakistan, his journey has taken him through the vibrant cityscape of Dubai and now to the diverse and cultural melting pot of Melbourne, Australia.

His writing is a reflection of his own journey - rich in diverse experiences and filled with the excitement of discovering new places. Melbourne, with its unique blend of cultures and bustling energy, has captured Kashif's heart, a sentiment that deeply resonates in his work.

Kashif's articles for HumbleTrail are more than just travel logs; they are narratives that weave together the beauty of diverse cultures and the thrill of exploration, inviting readers to see the world through his eyes.

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