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Golden Season: The Best places to enjoy Autumn colours near Melbourne & Geelong

Updated: 6 days ago

Beautiful Autumn colours at Forest Glade Gardens, Mount Macedon.

Above: Beautiful Autumn colours at Forest Glade Gardens, Mount Macedon.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… alongside Christmas of course, if you ask our family! After a very hot and dry end to Summer, the mercury has finally fallen, the leaves are turning brown, the grass is green once again and the nights are becoming both longer and much cosier. 😊🍂🍁


Autumn has well and truly arrived here in Victoria and with it, the promise of some delightfully lazy days on the couch, accompanied by the scent of warming treats baking in the oven and the reassuring comfort of our furry friends cuddled up by our side.


Whilst Autumn is a season when life gradually moves indoors, there’s also incredible beauty to be enjoyed in the great outdoors. Which is why this month we thought we’d share some of our favourite places to enjoy Autumn colours near Melbourne and Geelong. So rug up, keep a Sunday arvo free and enjoy the selection!


Best places for Autumn colours near Melbourne


  • Carlton Gardens, Melbourne

Address: 1-111 Carlton St, Carlton VIC 3053

Distance from Melbourne CBD: 1.3km (10-minute drive)

Why we like it: Right on the doorstep of Melbourne’s Central Business District with the truly grand Royal Exhibition Building at its heart, Carlton Gardens serves as a welcome retreat from the busy streets and tall buildings surrounding it. The walk up to the Royal Exhibition Building from Victoria Street is also framed by a stately row of Deciduous trees, making it an ideal place to savour those Autumn colours. 🍁


  • Dandenong Ranges

Address: Mount Dandenong VIC 3767

Distance from Melbourne CBD: 49km (56-minute drive)

Why we like it: A family favourite daytrip destination for Melburnians across generations, Dandenong Ranges offers a slice of laid back (temperate) rainforest life within easy reach of the big city. From Mount Dandenong Summit, Olinda Falls, to the quaint town of Sassafras and beyond, there’s something for everyone in the Dandenongs. For glorious Autumn colours, we highly recommend Alfred Nicholas Memorial Gardens and Cloudehill Garden and Nursery! 🍁


  • Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne

Address: Birdwood Avenue, Melbourne VIC 3004

Distance from Melbourne CBD: 3km (14-minute drive)

Why we like it: Victoria was once known as “the Garden State” and Melbourne’s stately Royal Botanic Gardens is a big reason why. Founded in 1846 as a gift to the Victorian public, today the gardens spread across 38 hectares and feature more than 8,500 species of plants from around the world. It’s truly a green oasis – where you can enjoy every season in full, especially the beautiful golden leaves of Autumn. Special mention to the northern Queen Victoria Gardens section that features a beautiful series of ponds under a row of grand Deciduous trees. 🍁


  • Williamstown

Address: Williamstown VIC 3016

Distance from Melbourne CBD: 13km (25-minute drive)

Why we like it: One of Melbourne’s hidden secrets (for those who haven’t yet visited), Williamstown is also one of its oldest neighborhoods – founded as the city’s original port in 1837. Its historic streets feature some truly grand European architecture, framed by beautiful leafy canopies awash with Autumn colours this time of year. We particularly recommend Commonwealth Reserve and Electra Street to get you started! 🍁


Best places for Autumn colours near Geelong


  • Ballarat, Avenue of Honour

Address: 1701-1703 Sturt Street, Alfredton VIC 3350

Distance from Geelong CBD: 93km (1 hour, 14-minute drive)

Why we like it: The longest memorial avenue in the Southern Hemisphere, Ballarat’s Avenue of Honour stretches 22km west of this historic gold mining city’s centre and features 3,912 trees – one planted for each local soldier who served in WWI. Come Autumn time, these trees turn beautiful shades of red, gold, yellow and brown. 🍁                                                 


  • Daylesford

Address: Daylesford VIC 3460

Distance from Geelong CBD: 101km (1 hour, 16-minute drive)

Why we like it: Nestled in the heart of Central Victoria’s renowned Spa Country, Daylesford is a lovely country town that really feels alive during Autumn! Only a one hour drive from each city, it’s one of our favourite places to enjoy Autumn colours near Melbourne and Geelong – especially at the Wombat Hill Botanic Gardens and Lake Daylesford. The lake is also a favourite spot for dog owners to soak up the crisp country air with their furry friends. 🍁


  • Kyneton Botanic Gardens

Address: Mollison Street, Kyneton VIC 3444

Distance from Geelong CBD: 126km (1 hour, 36-minute drive)

Why we like it: Another famous Gold Rush-era town, Kyneton has some delicious food and drink options to offer, quirky shops and beautiful tree-lined streets. For lush seasonal colours and a lovely picnic spot for your family and pets, we highly recommend Kyenton Botanic Gardens. 🍁


  • Mount Macedon

Address: Mount Macedon VIC 3441

Distance from Geelong CBD: 103km (1 hour, 24-minute drive)

Why we like it: One of the most popular Autumn destinations in Victoria and another town central to both Melbourne and Geelong, it’s hard to go past Mount Macedon. From its famous tree-lined Avenue of Honour to lush gardens awash with golden leaves, such as Viewfield Garden and Forest Glade Gardens – this is one place well worth a lazy Sunday drive! 🍁


Feel like a quiet day amongst the Autumn leaves? Contact our friendly team at Pets Country Club Lara on (03) 5282 1286 to book your VIP into our Doggy Day Care service.

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