Mornington Peninsula’s Most Instagrammable locations

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The captivating scenery of Victoria's Mornington Peninsula offers a variety of Insta-worthy sights, from secluded beaches and limpid rock pools to majestic cliffs and surging waves. As well as wineries and historic buildings in beautifully landscaped gardens.

They are all just over an hour's drive from Melbourne and easily accessible by many walks and trails with ample lookouts.

Use Cape Schanck lighthouse at the tip of the peninsula as your guiding beacon and you'll stumble across a veritable photo album of stunning images to point your lens at.

Thanks to the softer light and wider spectrum of colours, autumn photography is endlessly evocative, while winds and clouds offer atmospheric effects.

Look for glimpses of sunlight between dark clouds, stormy waters, waves crashing on beaches and of course the russet shades of seasonal leaves along coastal walkways and plentiful vineyards.

Here are some of our favourite destinations.

CAPE SCHANCK LIGHTHOUSE

Rugged coast and breathtaking scenery

At the southernmost tip of the Mornington Peninsula is Cape Schanck, where the stormy ocean waters of the Bass Strait on the east contrast with the calmer waters of Western Port on the other side.

At the tip of the cape is the gleaming white lighthouse built in 1859. And beyond that is the prominent Pulpit Rock where huge waves smash into its base, known as the Devil's Desk.

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The subtle shades of the stormy waters and the ochre hues of the cliffs deliver magnificent images either on their own or paired with the lighthouse. A combination of cloud formations in the foreground and clearer skies in the distance will enliven your lighthouse pics.

For close-up shots, head for the opalescent rock pools. The textures and fine tracery of the weather-beaten rocks next to the shallow crystal-clear waters and luminous pebbles make for captivating images.

 

BUSHRANGERS BAY WALK

Brooding cliffs and craggy headlands

Stride along the coastal clifftop walk to Bushrangers Bay and you'll be greeted by looming basalt cliffs, surging seas and rocky headlands set against the tempestuous waters of the Bass Strait. On windy days, you may prefer the more sheltered track along the valley of Main Creek thanks to its stands of Banksia and coastal tea-trees.

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The long sand beaches and dark, rugged headlands pounded by southern swells are places of raw beauty and unspoilt scenery. Look out for kangaroos and wallabies lazing in the sun.

FINGAL BEACH

Idyllic cove and tea-tree tunnels

A relaxing and peaceful walk through an enchanting tea-tree tunnel will lead you to a near-deserted and pretty beach.

The trail takes you out on to a viewing platform high above the beach, which gives an excellent perspective of the cliff faces and constantly shifting sands.

It's best to visit Fingal Beach at low tide so you can explore the rock pools and reef.


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Great photo opportunities are to be had in the light created by a shifting kaleidoscope of green vegetation and golden sands mingling with the greys and blues of the sea and sky.

The pristine beach is a treasure trove of driftwood, sea shells, seaweed, rocks and other natural materials. 

WINERIES AND VINEYARDS

Colourful foliage and an art deco window

Whether traditionally rustic or sleek and modern, there are few things more Instagrammable than an Australian cellar door. Traditional ones such as Hickinbotham of Dromana feature salvaged architectural artifacts while Paringa Estate has a sleek façade reminiscent of groundbreaking modern architect Le Corbusier.

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The most photographed window in the Peninsula is the circular stained-glass window in the Paringa Estate Winery's restaurant, wreathed with vine leaves, that looks out over the old shiraz vineyard.

And Hickinbotham of Dromana has a slate fire-surround rescued from an original beach house, wrought ironwork from the old Melbourne Steamship building, while the cellar door bar is the counter from an old bank.

BEACH BOXES

Brightly painted shacks right on the beach

Iconic to the local beachscape, many of these vividly hued bathing boxes are culturally and historically significant to the Peninsula. The beaches of Mills and Mount Martha boast the safest hazard rating of 3 and there's plenty of free parking, picnic tables, kiosks and more. 

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The beach boxes are painted in bold primary colours with a scattering of pastels. If you're lucky enough to have access to one, its doorway will perfectly frame your photos of the beach.

THE BRIARS

Historic homestead and cute critters

The Briars is one of the region's oldest properties, first settled in 1840 by retired army officer Captain James Reid. Owned by the National Trust it features a wildlife sanctuary that's home to koalas, wallabies and emus. There are also walking trails, cafes, a nursery, astronomy centre and wetlands.

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It's a prime example of early colonial architecture, more adorable furry animals than you can shake a stick at, and even ancient farm machinery for fans of the rustic look.

This article has been produced in association with the new RACV Cape Schanck Resort, Mornington Peninsula. 

Located at the southern edge of the Mornington Peninsula, the new RACV Cape Schanck Resort is unlike anything you've ever seen.

In this rare and raw location, you'll experience one of the most special corners of Victoria. A rugged wilderness formed by the elements, and a beautiful new resort shaped by the landscape around it.

Take some time out at the RACV Cape Schanck Resort and experience the refreshing effect of a place truly shaped by nature. You'll be different after your days at the Cape.

The new RACV Cape Schanck Resort is now available to book for stays from August 1, 2018.

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