Port Fairy was our first stop in Victoria as part of our trip across the Great Ocean Road region.
I had heard from several people that it had been their favourite place to visit on the road, and now I know why. It’s such a glorious little town and it quickly became our favourite too.
Nestled by the seaside, this town is full of character and has a rich history. Buildings and cottages, some from as long as 1844, still remain in the town today. We stayed in Port Fairy for two nights, and crammed in as much as we possibly could.
Here’s how we spent our time:
We were lucky to have a great choice of quality food on offer in Port Fairy. These were winners for us:
If you like a typical Melbourne brunch, then you need to pop into Bank Street + Co. Top notch coffee, delicious sweets and really good brekky food. We loved their smashed sweet potato and avo and their eggs benny- that hollandaise was so tasty!
If you like high tea, scones with jam and cream, frittatas and ploughmans platters, then pop this on your list. Time and Tide is nestled on the beach, with huge glass windows to take in the view. We shared a platter filled with local produce and a serving of scones- if you are a scone fan you need to try these, they are so light and fluffy. High Tea is on weekends and bookings are recommended
This boutique winery is in Killarney – about 10 minutes between Port Fairy and Warrnambool. Here you can taste their range of biodynamic wines, as well as dabble in a few craft beers or a latte if you feel so inclined. If you’re feeling snacky they also have a food menu, but we stuck to the liquid stuff. Top pick for us were their award winning Riesling and Shiraz.
This place came recommended from a best friend’s mum, TripAdviser and almost every blog I read about Port Fairy- and it lived up to the hype. Coffin Sally sells pizza, and my god they make a mean pizza. The setting is rustic and casual, but oozes so much charm- its hard to put it into words, but its not just somewhere to eat for dinner, its more of an experience. We tried four different pizzas and couldn’t fault any, and also dabbled in a few beers. If you are a craft beer fan you should come here for the beer list alone.
The Farmers Wife
This cafe is hidden town a pathway just off the main drag of town and offers inside and outside seating, perfect for when the sun is out to play. We loved their coffee and fresh juices, as well as their rather massive breakfasts. I had their buckwheat pancakes with natural peanut butter and fresh berries- they were super filling and very tasty!
Conlans Wine Bar
If you are looking for fine dining, somewhere to have a glass of vino or a spritz, or are looking for a bottle to take home then this is the place for you. We nestled into a couch here and had a few glasses of red and it was lovely. We also wished we stayed for dinner- the food coming out of the kitchen looked divine.
With so many gorgeous buildings around the town, it was fair to say that my camera was well and truly in my hand at all times. One of our first stops after settling in was to the Tourist Information Centre, where we got ourselves a map of the town, as well as a map of all the historic buildings in the area. The staff here were lovely and ere more than happy to point out some of the towns highlights.
Some of our favourite places to visit include:
Port Fairy Marina
We took a few strolls down to the marina in the late afternoon and it was glorious. The decking goes along the waters edge so you can get up close to all the boats, as well as spy on all the fancy houses on the water front (and take a few sneaky photographs).
The Crags Lookout
Just outside of town, but worth the drive. The Crags takes in some of the most incredible coastline, giving the 12 Apostles a run for their money.
Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve
About 15 minutes out of town, Tower Hill is a wildlife and nature lovers dream come true. There’s no entry fees and it is one of the biggest and beautiful reserves I’ve ever visited. We were greeted by wild wallaby’s, emus, koalas and even three snakes (the snakes were terrifying but all was okay). There’s plenty of bush walking to be had, so make sure you wear your closed in shoes and bring a camera for all the animals you’ll be spotting.
Tip: If you want to spend more time at Tower Hill, you can stay at Harmony at Tower Hill or Tower Hill House
Griffiths Island and Griffiths Island Lighthouse
The walk around Griffiths Island took us about a hour and was worth every minute. There were two options for the walk- we took the trail that took us around the whole island, including on the beach, but there is a shorter and easier option for those that would like it. The lighthouse itself was very photogenic, and a snap in front of it is obligatory.
Nothing makes me happier than a little bit of vitamin sea, and Port Fairy definitely gave me that.
We didn’t get in the water because it was rather chilly, but we still spent plenty of time seaside. Some of our favourite beaches included Pea Soup (close to our Airbnb, rock pools and great to explore), The Main Beach (perfect for swimming and patrolled on occasions) and The Passage (where you’ll find surfers). The whole coast of Port Fairy is charming and there’s plenty of places to dip your toes in.
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Great Ocean Road Regional Tourism acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the Great Ocean Road region the Wadawurrung, Eastern Maar & Gunditjmara. We pay our respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging. We recognise and respect their unique cultural heritage and the connection to their traditional lands. We commit to building genuine and lasting partnerships that recognise, embrace and support the spirit of reconciliation, working towards self-determination, equity of outcomes and an equal voice for Australia’s first people.