Guide to Phillip Island

Phillip Island is renowned for its wide range of attractions, including natural wildlife, exciting motorsports and delicious local cuisine, attracting many visitors. Join the Phillip Island Tour and immerse yourself in the beach lifestyle with unspoilt sandy shores, distinctive fauna and unforgettable views.

Phillip Island

The essential facts


  • Phillip Island is off Australia's southern coast, approximately two hours from Melbourne.
  • The landscape offers stunning coastal views and dense forest areas, creating a natural paradise.
  • The most popular tourist attraction in the area is Penguin Parade, known for being the home of the Little Penguins, the smallest penguin species in the world.
  • The first farm in Victoria was established here, introducing the country's nineteenth-century farming techniques.
  • Phillip Island in Victoria was declared the first National Surfing Reserve, offering numerous coastal locations for surfing.
  • It is possible to take a day trip or weekend getaway from Melbourne to this destination.


Exploring the history of Phillip Island

The Indigenous People of Phillip Island

The Aboriginal Bunurong tribe were the original inhabitants of Phillip Island, using it as a hunting ground during the muttonbird season.

Phillip Island's European Discovery

The island was discovered by George Bass in 1798 and initially named Western Port. It was later renamed Phillip Island after Governor Arthur Phillip, the first Governor of New South Wales.

Europeans settled on Phillip Island in 1868, using it for sheep herding and seal hunting. The settlement faced challenges like drought and failing crops, causing many settlers to leave. Some stayed and planted Chicory, a symbol of hope for the island.

Phillip Island features a unique landscape.

Phillip Island has a beautiful agricultural landscape with farms and bushland. The seaside area is famous for surfing and is known for reliable surf conditions. The island also has a mild climate, offering a refreshing break from the heat of mainland Australia. The weather is more similar to northern New Zealand, making it a great destination during the summer months.

 Attractions and activities on Phillip Island

Woolamai Surf Beach

Woolamai Beach is known for its big waves, strong currents, and stunning ocean views. The beach is patrolled regularly, making it safe for families and those unfamiliar with the tides. Popular activities include swimming and surfing, but you can also enjoy a leisurely walk along the soft sands. For a higher vantage point, you can hike up to Cape Woolamai lookout, the tallest point on Phillip Island, for a breathtaking view of the area.

Cowes Main Beach

Cowes Main Beach on Phillip Island is famous for its calm waters and soft sand. It is the largest north-facing beach in Victoria, providing ample room for locals and visitors. The beach is conveniently located near various dining and drinking options, just a short walk from the town area.


Cowes is the central hub of Phillip Island, with a lively seaside holiday atmosphere. It offers nature and town amenities, including picnic spots, beaches, accommodations, cafés, and restaurants. Visitors can also enjoy shopping at various vintage and surf stores. Being only 10 minutes away from major attractions, Cowes is the top town to stay in on Phillip Island.

The Nobbies

The Nobbies is a coastal area on Phillip Island known for its wildlife, including Australian fur seals. It also features seaside boardwalks, lookouts, and the Nobbies Visitor Centre.

Nobbies Centre

The Nobbies Centre on Phillip Island provides visitors with scenic views and educational exhibits about the island's history and wildlife. The centre features informational displays, technological presentations, and interactive demonstrations, all with panoramic views of the lush greenery and sapphire waters surrounding the island.

San Remo

San Remo is a seaside town with a lively atmosphere near Phillip Island's gateway bridge. It is known for its fishing opportunities, dining options, and Australia's largest shark fishing fleet. The town's main attraction is its large marina, where visitors can fish, take a fishing charter, or visit the nearby penguin colony. Dining at one of the many restaurants in San Remo offers a memorable seafood experience, while the local fish and chip shop also serves excellent fish dishes.

Seal Rocks

Located two kilometres offshore from the centre of Nobbies, the largest colony of Australian fur seals resides on seaside rocks. This area provides an ideal environment for the seals to hunt, swim, and rest around the clock. Visitors can observe these fascinating creatures basking in the sun from the nearby lookout point.

Penguin Parade

Phillip Island's Penguin Parade is a beloved attraction in Victoria, featuring the world's smallest penguin species. During the day, these penguins dive into the ocean's depths to fish. They return to Summerland Beach to nest as the sun sets. Since the 1920s, this event, initially organized by the local community, has drawn visitors. The addition of viewing platforms and nesting zones has evolved into a premier eco-tourism destination. Various viewing options are available for guests to observe the penguins march up the beach, accompanied by facilities such as a restaurant, a shop, and an information booth.

Koala Conservation Centre

The Koala Conservation Centre invites guests for an intimate glimpse into koala environments. Elevated boardwalks meander through native bushland, offering a vantage point to observe koalas in their natural setting. The site also hosts wallabies, echidnas, and various bird species, spanning over six hectares of Victoria's bushland. An educational centre is available, enriching visitors' understanding of koalas.

Churchill Island

Occupying 50 hectares within the Western Port of Phillip Island, Churchill Island is steeped in history and beauty, dotted with charming cottages and well-kept gardens. It is recognized for housing Victoria's earliest European garden, filled with majestic trees and vibrant floral arrangements. The island is a haven for freely wandering local farm animals, including cows, horses, and poultry. Visitors can engage in activities such as sheep shearing and cow milking.

Phillip Island Tour

Maru Wildlife Park

Maru Wildlife Park is a great place to see Victoria's animals up close. The family-owned park offers hands-on animal interactions and daily activities. Visitors can enjoy presentations with the animals and relax at the Mini-Golf Adventure course after exploring.

The Grand Prix Circuit

Phillip Island is not just known for its wildlife but also its Moto Grand Prix Circuit. The circuit was established in 1956 and was once a top racing venue worldwide. Although it has lost some prestige, it still hosts significant races like the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix. Visitors can explore the circuit's information centre, which features historical artefacts and records. Activities like go-karting, hot laps, and Guided Circuit Tours are available year-round. Whether or not you're a racing enthusiast, the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit is a must-visit attraction.

The Phillip Island Chocolate Factory

The Chocolate Factory on Phillip Island is a must-visit for chocolate lovers. Visitors can learn about the chocolate-making process through workshops and exhibits. There are also opportunities to create your chocolates. Don't forget to visit the Don't for a selection of chocolate bars and enjoy a hot chocolate at the cafe.