Port Fairy is where the Princes Highway touches the ocean in Victoria. A nice spot to break the journey between Adelaide and Melbourne via the Princes Highway or coastal route, or a nice spot to relax on a holiday. Port Fairy is famous for its festivals, most notably the Port Fairy Folk Festival, Although accommodation can get very pricey at these times.
The climate in Port Fairy is generally the same as the rest of Victoria, and tends to be slightly colder than Melbourne.
Get in Edit
By car Edit
The easiest way to get into Port Fairy by car and is about a 30 km (19 mi) drive west of Warrnambool via the Princes Highway west and takes about a 20-minute drive from Warrnambool and 3.5 hours from Melbourne.
By bus Edit
Port Fairy is served by two buses, both coming from Warrnambool, one continues to Mount Gambier in South Australia - If you are coming from Melbourne, take a V/Line train to Warrnambool and switch to either:
- The 8 Bus, which departs from the BP Service Station on Princes Freeway (16min walk from Warrnambool Station, 5 buses per day)
- V/Line Coach to Mount Gambier, departs from just outside the railway station, 4 buses per day
By bike Edit
If you like cycling, you can try cycling the whole Port Fairy-Warrnambool Rail Trail by either driving or taking the train to Warrnambool, then cycling along the trail the rest of the way - the trail is along the alignment of a now disused railway between Port Fairy and Warrnambool. Takes 2-3 hours depending on fitness level.
Get around Edit
Port Fairy is not very large, and therefore most of the town can be easily traversed by foot. The route 8 bus comes from Warrnambool and has many stops around the town, although frequency is very poor at only 5 buses per day, so this cannot be used as a viable transit option.
- 1 Port Fairy Museum and Archives, 30 Gipps St, ☏ . Varies by season. Local history museum in an old courthouse built in 1859.
- 2 Port Fairy Lighthouse, Griffiths Island (on Port Fairy Coastal Reserve). Historic lighthouse.
- 3 Southcombe Beach. Nice beach, clean and great for dogs.
- 4 The Crags, 241 Crags Road (10 km from the town centre, only accessible by car). Popular scenic spot, great place to watch a sunset.
- 5 Port Fairy Library, ☏ . Well-stocked library for a small town.
- 6 Port Fairy Football & Netball Club, 111 Griffiths Street. 24/7. Amateur AFL and Netball competitions.
- 7 Battery Hill, 1 Battery Lane. Well preserved large cannons from WW2.
- Go to the annual Sausage Dog race. The Dachshund Dash is an annual event in early June.
- 1 Port Fairy Community House, 5 Railway Place, ☏ . Tu–F 10AM–3PM. Many events and activities throughout the year. See website for details.
- 2 Folk Festival, 37 Campbell Street, ☏ . Annually in March, on the Victorian Labour Day long weekend. Music festival. First running in 1977, the Port Fairy Folk Festival attracts visitors around the country and even world.
- 3 Southern Coast Charters, Gipps Street, ☏ . Daily 9AM-8PM. Offers boat charters to Lady Julia Percy & King Islands, as well as fishing charters. From $100.
- 4 Lady Julia Percy Island (Deen Maar Island) (Southern Coast Charters (see above)). This island, 22 km away from Port Fairy, stands as the singular offshore volcano in Australia. Its formation dates back around seven million years when intense underwater eruptions occurred during the separation of Australia from Antarctica. Notably, the basalt found on the island predates the lava flows on the mainland by several million years. It also has cultural significance to the area's indigenous people, the Gundjitjmara people, as it is believed to be the place where the creator Bunjil the eagle, left this world. $100 per person.
- 5 Port Fairy Golf Club, Woodbine Road, ☏ . M-F 7AM-6PM, Sa Su 8AM-5:30PM. Relaxing golf course right by the sea. $59 18 holes, $35 9 holes.
- 1 The Passage, 39 Bank Street, ☏ . Daily 10AM-5PM. Locally run clothing and souvenir store.
- 2 The Paper Store, 50A Sackville Street, ☏ . W-Sa 9:30AM-4:30PM, Su 10AM-3PM. Store offers notebooks, cards, pens, and gift wraps with a focus on local and Australian suppliers.
- 3 Daktari Surf & Dive, 33 Bank Street, ☏ . Sa Su 10AM-3PM. Surfboards for purchase or hire, as well as surfing lessons available.
- 1 Yellow House Cafe & Thai Restaurant, 19 Bank St, ☏ . M-Sa 11AM-11PM, Su 3-11PM. General Thai cuisine, and you can get most things available at any Australian Thai restaurant.
- 2 The Wharf Port Fairy, 29 Gipps Street. Very good fish and chips, and seafood.
- 3 Le Crêpe Man of Belfast, 43 Sackville St. W-Sa 8:30AM–2PM, Su 9AM–2PM. As the name of the place suggests, this place sells crepes.
- 4 Port Fairy Confectionary, 53 Sackville St. Daily 10AM-4PM. Old-style sweet shop.
- 5 Cobbs Bakery, 25 Bank Street, ☏ . Daily 7AM-5:30PM. Local bakery with lots of different baked goods including desserts.
- 6 Lemongrass Thai, 55 Bank Street, ☏ . Very tasty thai restaurant, popular with locals.
- 7 Rebecca's Cafe, 70/72 Sackville Street, ☏ . Daily 6:30AM-6PM. Local cafe with great coffee, cakes and desserts.
- 1 The Sentinel, 20 Bank Street, ☏ . Restaurant & bar, with great cocktails.
- 1 Port Fairy YHA, 8 Cox Street. Hostel in one of the oldest buildings in town. Rooms from $40, beds from $23.
- 2 Central Motel Port Fairy (centre of town off the main street), ☏ . In a quiet landscaped garden.
- 3 Hearns Beachside Villas, 13-17 Thistle Pl. Amazing villas, very clean and right next to the beach for a great price. $354.
- 4 Aloha Beachfront, 107 Beach Street, ☏ . Great accommodation right on the beach. From $328.
- 5 BIG4 Port Fairy, 115 Princes Hwy, ☏ . Holiday park with a pool.
- 6 Ocean Ridge Retreat, 5 Thistle Place, ☏ . Historic cottages with spa and pool.
There is wifi available at the Library.
Go next Edit
Portland - The oldest permanent settlement in Victoria, with hundreds of 18th century buildings
Warrnambool - Large town known for its great beaches