Popular Things to Do in Geelong
Food and Drink in Geelong
The Geelong Boat House, serving fish and chips on a restored barge, is located to the right, as you exit the port. Baveras Brasserie shares the water views and is also open for lunch daily from noon.
There is a cafe and another place to eat on Fishermen's Pier at the far end of the Steampacket Gardens, at Eastern Beach.
Take a 16-minute walk from the waterfront to IGNI, which was a finalist for Best Restaurant of the Year in 2020. The charcoal grill-based menu uses local, seasonal ingredients and is available in a five- or eight-course degustation. A short taxi ride will put you at Tulip in Geelong West, which was awarded a hat by the Good Food Guide 2020. The share plate menu focuses on local and sustainable.
Beaches in Geelong
Not all beaches are patrolled or have flags, so do watch out for 'rips' (strong currents) when there is a big swell. If bushwalking, be alert for snakes and wear a hat and use sunscreen when outdoors.
Best for a Half-Day Visit: Eastern Beach has an Art Deco-style sea bathing complex with a swimming pool and shallow pool for children. The surrounding parkland has playground and picnic facilities.
Best for Active Types: Thirteenth Beach is a surf beach that is popular all-year round. It is patrolled by lifesavers during summer.
Best for Families: Queenscliff has safe, sandy bayside beaches backed by a wide, tree-lined foreshore. There are plenty of picnic and play facilities in this historic resort town.
Don't Miss in Geelong
Ride The Geelong Carousel: The restored hand-carved Armitage-Herschell steam-driven carousel was built in 1892 and is one of only 200 still in operation around the world. Find it next to Steampacket Gardens. (1 Eastern Beach Road; 03 5224 1547; open Monday to Friday, 11 am to 4.30 pm; Saturday to Sunday, 10.30 am to 5 pm.)
Geelong Waterfront Train: This hop-on hop-off train starts at the carousel and takes you to the Eastern Beach pools. It takes about 20 minutes, and the trains leave every half hour, or every quarter-hour when it is busy.
Barwon Heads Gold Club: Ranked No. 8 among Australia's top 100 public access courses, this club also has a challenging par-3 course. (Golf Links Road, Barwon Heads; 03 5255 6255.)
National Wool Museum: The first woollen mills opened in Geelong in 1868. This museum tells the story of the wool industry from the First Fleet in 1788 when the first sheep arrived. (26 Moorabool Street; 03 5272 4701; open 9.30 am to 5 pm)
Geelong Gallery: You'll find a strong collection of 19th to 21st century Australian and European paintings at Geelong Gallery, which is one of Australia's oldest and leading regional art galleries (55 Little Malop Street; 03 5229 3645; open daily 10 am to 5 pm)
For additional information, there is a Visitor Information Centre on Moorabool Street. (Freecall within Australia: 1800-755-611, 03 352 831 735; Open daily 9 am to 5 pm)