Best Beaches In & Near Melbourne

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Whilst Melbourne may not have quite the same cachet when it comes to beaches as fellow Ozzie beach cities Sydney and Perth it can still provide a good dose of sun, sea and surf. Situated on the sheltered shores of the wide bay of Port Phillip the city is home to a number of sandy beaches within a stone's throw of the city centre.

For those who know Melbourne there are two types of beach; bay beaches and ocean beaches. The latter are found beyond the city limits and beachgoers will be spoilt for choice on the stunning and often wild coastline of the Mornington Peninsula. And if it's waves you're looking for then head west towards Torquay, Australia's southern surf capital and home to Bells Beach.

  • 1. St Kilda Beach

    St Kilda Beach

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 0.5 hrs

    A popular getaway from central Melbourne for more than 100 years, St Kilda Beach has a thriving parkland foreshore called South Beach Reserve that's dotted with outdoor restaurant terraces. Additional options can be found at the end of its long pier, whose breakwater creates the harbour and provides a home for a colony of little penguins.

    Particularly busy on weekends and holidays, the promenade is well-used by walkers, rollerbladers, runners, and… read more »

  • 2. Williamstown Beach

    Williamstown Beach
    © DroneImagineNation

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 0.5 hrs

    Perhaps the best way of reaching genteel Williamstown Beach to appreciate its grandeur is by hiking along the Hobsons Bay Coastal Trail, although it's also possible to arrive via car or train. A broad, clean sweep of sand with views towards Port Phillip Bay, you won't be disappointed by the facilities, which include toilets, showers, sealed paths and several dining options.

    Tucked into areas of coastal reserve beside Williamstown botanic gardens,… read more »

  • 3. Brighton Beach

    Brighton Beach

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 0.5 hrs

    Known for its brightly-decorated beach boxes, Melbourne's Brighton Beach lies to the south of the Central Business District on the eastern shores of Port Phillip. Stretching for close to a kilometre in length, it has the form of two gentle concave arches, so that from the air it looks similar to a long bow.

    Widest at its northern end, it narrows as it reaches its one hundred year old beach boxes.… read more »

  • 4. Elwood Beach

    Elwood Beach
    © Julian Hacker

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 0.5 hrs

    Located on the eastern side of Port Phillip Bay to the south of central Melbourne, Elwood Beach is westward facing and known for its sunsets. At other times of day beachgoers are able to enjoy a flat expanse of golden yellow sand linking lawned areas with the warm, calm waters of the bay.

    Not limited to any specific group of beachgoers, Elwood Beach has broad appeal. Its 1300 metre length and… read more »

  • 5. Sorrento Back Beach

    Sorrento Back Beach

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 1 hr

    Sorrento Back Beach is named after the town of Sorrento approximately 1.5 kilometres away. A part of Mornington Peninsula National Park, it is a beach known for its swimming, surfing and rockpools.

    Swimmers should stay within the flagged area to avoid rip currents, an additional precaution to the lifeguards on duty during the easter and summer holidays as well as weekends between these dates.

    To explore its rockpools, you'll want to visit… read more »

  • 6. Portarlington


    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 1 hr

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  • 7. Sunnyside North Beach

    Sunnyside North Beach

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 1 hr

    Sunnyside North Beach is the only officially sanctioned nudist beach on the east side of Port Philip Bay, with a clothing-optional rule meaning you can cover up if you choose to.

    It is located between Manmangur Creek and Sunnyside Drive. The creek lies on its southernmost side and separates it from the narrow expanse of Bidwell Beach. On its northern side, Sunnyside Drive is the only access point by road, with… read more »

  • 8. Portsea

    Fee Plumley

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 1 hr

    read more »
  • 9. Sorrento Front Beach

    Sorrento Front Beach
    Alan Samuel

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 1 hr

    Situated between the Queenscliff ferry pier on one side and the Western Sister historic site on the other, Sorrento Front Beach runs in a ribbon of beige sand for close to 1.5 kilometres. Named to delineate it from the ocean beach on the opposite side of the Mornington Peninsula, it faces towards the northeast and across Port Phillip Bay.

    Sorrento Front Beach sits in a sheltered position located away from… read more »

  • 10. Rye Beach

    Rye Beach
    Long Zheng

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 1 hr

    read more »
  • 11. Bells Beach

    Bells Beach
    © Pansa Sunavee / 123RF

    Travel time from Melbourne: approx 1.5 hrs

    One of Australia's best known surf spots, the legendary Bell's Beach has been hosting top level surfing competitions for over 50 years. The right hand point break is flawless at almost any size of waves. The beach itself is just off the dramatic Great Ocean Road which takes in the sweeping panoramas of the Southern Ocean.

    read more »

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