Cosmopolitan Melbourne is not short of sights and attractions, but did you know it is also a terrific base for some impressive day trips? The Dandenong Ranges is an easy rental car trip and is a must-visit for your holiday in Melbourne. In order to explore this gorgeous location, rent a car with VroomVroomVroom and hit the road!
The Puffing Billy train ride is one of Australia’s most popular steam train rides. Now a major tourist attraction, Puffing Billy departs from Belgrave three to four times daily depending on conditions. Special events such as “Thomas The Tank Engine Day” and murder mystery themes are also available.
Visitors can explore the lakeside and enjoy a picnic in the park either before or after their ride on Puffing Billy. A great place for families and kids, Emerald Lake Park has BBQ facilities with plenty of picnic tables, a wading pool and playground facilities. Paddle boats are also available for hire.
The Dandenong Ranges offer a range of walking trails, with the shortest under 1 km, and the longest around 20 km (one-way). The most popular trail (and Melbourne’s most popular bushwalk) is the 1000 Steps Walk which is also known as the Kokoda Memorial Walk. Most of the tracks are dog and pram friendly, though note that the trails vary in difficulty from easy to strenuous.
A trip to the Dandenong Ranges is not complete without a visit to its three main villages — Mount Dandenong, Olinda and Sassafras — all located within 2 km of each other. Known for an atmosphere that will leave you feeling completely refreshed and revitalised, if you haven't visited any of the villages, they belong on your Dandenong Ranges bucket list.