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We woke up this morning and tip toed outside. To my surprise, kangaroos were grazing just outside our cottage. It was a wonderful sight. After admiring the beautiful animals for a while, we went back to sleep and got up at 8.30. We had breakfast lasting for approximately one hour. It was the first time in 25 years that we had breakfast for one hour. Our dream of experiencing nature in its purest form had come true here. And it’s not just about nature, but here we experienced the purity of the human soul too. When we checked out of the hotel, we didn't find anyone at the reception and on calling the concerned people, we were asked to leave the cottage keys on our table in the cottage and check out with the doors left open. It was satisfying to know that there are still places in the world where no locks are required. It was surely one of the most fulfilling days on our Aussie holiday!

Our guest, Mr. Shah's email straight from the Grampians was a wonderful insight into this beautiful area of the state of Victoria in Australia. If you are taking a holiday to refresh and re-energise your mind, body and soul then get off the beaten track on your next Australian holiday and head to the Grampians near Melbourne.

The rugged mountain ranges of the Grampians National Park are renowned for their unspoilt natural beauty and feature picturesque waterfalls, ancient Aboriginal rock art, colourful wild flowers and abundant native wildlife, as well as plenty of opportunities for outdoor pursuits. A visit to the Grampians rewards you with some of Victoria's most stunning landscapes, along with fascinating history, sublime food and wine and buzzing regional centres.

The best way to discover the region would be to hit the road with a vehicle of your choice on your self-drive holiday. You could reach the Grampians from Melbourne via Sovereign Hill and Ballarat, where you can pan for real gold and experience the charm of a bygone gold mining era or take one of the most scenic coastal drives in the world as you travel on the Great Ocean Road against the backdrop of the 12 Apostles, iconic surf breaks and waterfalls. Admire the stunning coastline on the Great Ocean Walk and enjoy fine dining, local winemakers and fresh produce. You can stop off at Port Campbell and handfeed the friendly kangaroos, wallabies and deer and take a helicopter ride for an unforgettable aerial view of the 12 Apostles. The Great Ocean Road is lined with interesting places to stop by, quaint cafes and lots of places, where you can take a halt and get into the water. On your self-drive holiday you can just stop by as you please and discover your piece of paradise!

While on the Great Ocean Road, discover the best of Australia's rainforests and admire the giant fern trees. A visit to the Otway Fly Treetop Adventures gives you a unique opportunity to view the forest from a bird's eye view through its two unique eco-adventure experiences, the famous Tree Top walk and Zip Line tour. Walk on the longest and tallest elevated walk of its kind in the world. For the thrill seeker Zip lining is the perfect adrenaline fuelled activity where you can Zip cross the treetops in this unique forest experience.

Melbourne and the surrounding region of Victoria offers you a wide range of experiences to suit your liking. If you are on a romantic sojourn then head to Mornington Peninsula. It will dazzle you with its charming coastal villages and colourful coastal bathing boxes along the beach. After a day at the beach, visit the Ashcombe Maze and Lavender Gardens, which is Australia's most famous and oldest maze. While in Mornington Peninsula, make sure you visit the Peninsula hot springs.  Here you can soak in the naturally heated mineral waters of the hot springs. Indulge in a relaxing couple spa or share a bottle of bubbly as you soak in the beautiful views from a wonderful winery like the Red Hill Estate.

After discovering the many charms of this wonderful state make sure you stop by in Melbourne, the gateway of Victoria State and possibly Australia's most stylish and cosmopolitan capital. With a mix of beautiful architecture, excellent restaurants, wonderful shops and attractions such as the penguins in Phillip Island and an out of box experience with "The Edge" at Eureka Skydeck 88, you would be longing for more. Visit Melbourne once and you would want to go back for sure.

June 10, 2014

Author

Sunila Patil
Sunila Patil

Sunila Patil, the founder and Chief Product Officer at Veena World, holds a master's degree in physiotherapy. She proudly served as India's first and only Aussie Specialist Ambassador, bringing her extensive expertise to the realm of travel. With a remarkable journey, she has explored all seven continents, including Antarctica, spanning over 80 countries. Here's sharing the best moments from her extensive travels. Through her insightful writing, she gives readers a fascinating look into her experiences.

More Blogs by Sunila Patil

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