Header image courtesy of Matthew Smith (via Unsplash)
Australia is known for having some of the best beaches in the world, and has no doubt one of the biggest beaching (yes, it’s a thing) and surfing cultures in the world. What’s amazing about visiting Aussie is that their summer is our winter! Therefore, anytime you’re dying for some sun and blue waters between December to February, just head down to Melbourne where you can find some of the best beaches just a short drive (or walk!) right from the city centre. Here's a list of the best sandy strips to go sunny side up.
If you’re looking for a lowkey and underrated beach, then Dromana beach is ideal. This beach is an hour's drive south of Melbourne’s city centre, and is worth the cruise if you’ve got a car. You can also take the train from Flinders Street Railway station heading to Frankston, then switch to bus 788 (to Portsea) and alight at Dromana Hub SC. This beach is beautiful because it’s quite empty—most visitors aren’t aware of it yet, so you might have the beach all to yourself. The water is super clean and crystal clear, so definitely take a dip as well.
Brighton Beach is a Melbourne classic because of its colourful bathing huts lined up along the beach. Their colour blocking combinations will definitely have you snapping photos! During the summer months, it can get rather crowded and busy. This beach is a 25-minute car ride south from Melbourne and a 35-minute train ride from Flinders street railway station, with trains departing every 15 minutes.
You don’t need to go all the way to Europe in order to find a nude beach, as there are quite a few right here in Melbourne. One such option is Sunnyside North Beach, a one hour's drive from the city. It’s a small and intimate beach just to the right of the Mornington Country Golf club. This is the ideal place for one to feel comfortable and liberated in their own bodies just outside the city. Being nude is optional, but if you’re trying to avoid any unwanted tan lines, then this is the place for you to do so comfortably!
If you’re looking for something a little more rural, then Sorrento Ocean Beach is as far away as you can get! Right on the other side of Port Phillip Bay facing Melbourne is this stunning beach with soft white sand and a rocky coastline that faces out towards the bass strait—the sliver of ocean between Tasmania and Australia. One will be able to spot super cool rock formations at low tide rock pools form at this peninsula beach, and stop by the oceanfront café, All Smiles Sorrento Ocean Beach café.
For any dog lovers out there missing their pets back home, don’t you worry, there are plenty of dog beaches for you to visit! You’ll be able to lounge in the sun while also enjoying the company of some local pups at Port Melbourne Dog beach, accessible via a 30-minute walk from the city centre—extremely convenient for those staying downtown.
St Kilda beach is one of the more popular beaches in the city of Melbourne, studded with waterfront bars and restaurants. There’s also plenty to see, with walkers, joggers, windsurfers, and rollerbladers all sharing and enjoying the beach right alongside you. When you’re there you should also check out the Iconic St Kilda pier for a stroll during sunset—the views are to die for. If you’re lucky, you may even spot penguins after dusk, diving into the water from the pier.