From the beautiful stretches of sea in Ocean Grove to the Penguin Parades of Phillip Island, here are four gorgeous spots in regional Victoria for you to purchase a property in.
Regional Victoria simply refers to all areas of the state of Victoria outside of Melbourne. Melbourne is a fantastic cosmopolitan city to buy a property in, but it might not be quite what you are after. So, we come to regional Victoria. A fabulous destination full of incredible wildlife and an expansive coastline. It may be that you are moving to Australia for a total change in life. Perhaps you’d like for your children to grow up swimming and surfing in the sun. Alternatively, you might be looking to retire to somewhere magnificent and rural. Or you might be moving to be closer to family that already live there. Today, I’ve selected four wonderful destinations in regional Victoria for you to visualise owning a home in.
Back in the 1800s, American missionaries sought to make a settlement on the Australian coast, and they called it Ocean Grove. All that truly stuck was the name, today, the coastal town worships sunshine, swimming, and surfing.
It is an extremely family friendly spot, well-facilitated and protected by lifeguards, with surfing lessons offered to the youngest and oldest beachgoers.
Just an hour and a half away from Melbourne by car, Ocean Grove is the second largest town on the Bellarine Peninsula. Geelong, the largest town, is just a twenty-minute drive away. This is worth bearing in mind as it may well be that you find more options for employment in Geelong but prefer the lifestyle of Ocean Grove.
Ocean Grove is best known for its main beach, a two-kilometre-long golden stretch of sand, situated in the middle of the coastline that runs between Point Lonsdale and the mouth of Barwon River. It is an extremely family friendly spot, well-facilitated and protected by lifeguards, with surfing lessons offered to the youngest and oldest beachgoers.
Additionally, if you’re drawn to moving to Australia not just for brighter beach days but also because you want to get stuck into the glorious nature there, there’s Ocean Grove Nature Conservation Reserve. It is popular spot for walkers, birdwatchers, and photographers alike. It is the largest patch of non-coastal indigenous vegetation left on the Ballerina Peninsula and is a respite for seven threatened species.
Overall, if you are looking to move somewhere where your family can have fun and active days outside, but also want to be away from the demands of a big city, Ocean Grove might just be for you.
Houses in Australia tend to be bigger and more spread out than over here. They’re less narrow and do less sprawling up and up towards the heavens to accommodate growing numbers of people. Unless you are in a central city, you are most likely looking at purchasing a multi-bedroom house than an apartment. So, the starting price for a three-bedroom plus house in Ocean Grove is $600,000.
…the Anglesea Heathlands, which contains around a quarter of Victoria’s plant species.
Anglesea is a small town located on the Great Ocean Road, a 150-mile stretch that connects the south-east coast of Australia. The nearest city, Torquay, is located just ten minutes away. It is approximately an hour and a half away from Melbourne. Like Ocean Grove, Anglesea offers a lifestyle centred around outdoor activities. At 400m long, Anglesea Beach is one of the greatest places for learning how to surf. Watch out though, the waves can be intense – I have a distinct memory of being only a little way in the water when I was completely toppled over by a wave, my bemused Australian grandmother watching on.
Originally, Anglesea was named Swampy Creek after its river, which links up sixteen hectares of parkland with the ocean. Although there haven’t been any sightings of ogres in the swamp, it is full of fauna and flora. It connects to the Anglesea Heathlands, which contains around a quarter of Victoria’s plant species. Aside from being visually interesting, Anglesea River serves as a social hub for picnickers and walkers. During the holiday season, people flock down from Melbourne into the campsite. Additionally, if you like physically active days out, you can hire a canoe or a paddleboat or even an aqua bike.
Into golf? Okay, but how about golf surrounded by kangaroos? Anglesea Golf Club is a renowned golf club (it also frequently praised for its friendliness) and it is also the home of a colony of the eastern grey kangaroos.
A three-bedroom house in Anglesea costs upwards of a million.
Wellington, Gippsland is located in the eastern part of Victoria. The journey is around three hours from Melbourne. Wellington covers an area of 10,817 square metres and has a population of 44,770. It includes the towns of Heyfield, Maffra, Rosedale, Sale, as well as smaller towns – for example, my grandmother lives in a town of less than 200 people.
Every day, you hear the stir of Australia’s animals, such as the Kookaburra’s call, with a chorus of insects replying from the ground.
What makes Wellington truly a stand-out location is its wildlife. The area offers rugged high country, lakes and rivers, and one of the longest beaches in Victoria. My grandparents chose to retire there from Melbourne about ten years ago. It is an extremely stunning and peaceful area. It isn’t necessarily quiet. Every day, you hear the stir of Australia’s animals, such as the Kookaburra’s call, with a chorus of insects replying from the ground. But these sounds are so unlike the bustle of a city.
Visually, Wellington is such a treat. Just from a rocking chair on my grandparents’ veranda, I got to witness so many beautiful animals. My favourite is the Rosella, a bright and colourful bird. On a walk along a dusty track, if you peer through the trees, you can see kangaroos, undisturbed. The landscape is quite green. Although, the trees do have a parched, skinny look, and you can always feel a crunch underfoot.
If you are hoping to truly immerse yourself in rural Australia, then it’s worth looking into the smaller towns in Wellington. You will find a small supermarket, a community swimming pool, a couple of shops, and a very welcoming pub. Lakes are also worth visiting for a dip, a picnic, or a read in the sunshine. If you have a lot of land, then it can be a lot to tend to, so you’ve got to be up for the physical challenge. But if you don’t want to be too disconnected, then the larger towns might be preferable. In Maffra, for example, you can find a larger supermarket, more choice in restaurants, banks, and shops.
For a three-bedroom plus home in Wellington, the starting price is around €400,000.
The island describes itself as “101km2 of amazing”.
Phillip Island lies off the southeast of Australia. It is approximately two hours’ drive from Melbourne. The island describes itself as “101km2 of amazing”. A popular holiday spot for city-dwellers, the island is famous for its Penguin Parade. It is home to the largest Little Penguin colony in the world, and the Penguin Parade is a chance to see these special creatures waddle from the ocean to their burrows. But little penguins shouldn’t steal all the spotlight, you can also see fur seals!
Aside from its tremendous wildlife, Phillip Island has gorgeous beaches, such as Red Rocks Beach, known for its – you can guess – eye-catching red rocks. It also has a whole host of chic cafes, bars, and restaurants for you to spend time in. Much of Phillip Island’s resources are geared towards holidaymakers, but that just means that living here, you get to be on an eternal holiday.
For a family home on Phillip Island, you are looking at purchasing a property of at least €600,000.