Much like the popular girls at school, Portsea and Sorrento are beautiful – and they know it. Yet it’s the modest friend from the other side of the Bay, Point Lonsdale, who really impresses.
Located at the tip of the Bellarine Peninsula just 90 minutes from Melbourne, Point Lonsdale or ‘Lonny’ as the locals affectionately call it, marks the entrance to Port Phillip. The headland is dominated by the Point Lonsdale Lighthouse, which mans the narrow entrance to Port Phillip Bay. Known as ‘The Rip’, it’s one of the most treacherous entrances to any bay in the world.
Built in 1902, the iconic lighthouse is one of the few remaining that is staffed 24 hours a day. Soaring above the ocean and surrounding dunes, the lighthouse stands tall in its stark white grandeur. Historic tours of the lighthouse are available for those with a penchant for shipwrecks and haunting tales of lighthouse keepers past.
At the foot of the lighthouse is the Point Lonsdale Pier, which was built in the 1890s to assist in the retrieval of shipwrecked passengers entering through the Rip.
The surrounding back beaches will summon you to take a stroll along their pristine shores. Since she’s shyer than the other girls, Lonny is not swarming with crowds. So even on a hot summer’s day, you’ll feel relaxed on her beaches – with enough space to breathe in the calming ocean air.
Point Lonsdale is renowned for some of the best swell in Victoria. Former surfing champion turned board shaper, Mark Phipps, offers private and group lessons for beginners through to experienced surfers at Lonny’s front and back beaches. Mark has been running Point Lonsdale School of Surfing for over 10 years. A true local, Mark’s great-grandfather “Garlick” was one of Lonny’s revered lighthouse keepers.
Before you head back into town for a well-deserved feed, make sure you keep an eye out for the tiny hooded plovers pottering along the shoreline. Point Lonsdale is one of the few remaining nesting sites of these endangered birds.
When it comes to eateries, Lonsdale doesn’t disappoint. Grow Naturally Café has a bohemian ambience and boasts an organic menu to suit. Big breakfasts, gluten free treats and scrumptious smoothies will satisfy a post-surf appetite. The Green Breaky Smoothie comprising kale, rocket, banana, LSA, chia seeds, granola and coconut water is a popular favourite.
You can’t go past Couta’s Fish & Chip Shop for well-salted, classic fish and chips on the beach. For keen shoppers, Wildpurl stocks a range of designer clothing labels, as well as boutique homewares. Lonsdale is also home to one of the largest markets on the Bellarine Peninsula. The Point Lonsdale Markets are open every second Sunday of the month and feature a huge selection of local food produce and handmade goods.
The Point Lonsdale Bowls Club offers barefoot bowling during summer for those who enjoy bowling on state-of-the-art greens (over a pot, of course).
Lonsdale Views is the luxury choice of accommodation if you’re planning a weekend stay in Lonny. This 4.5 star bed and breakfast is set on over 200 acres of land and boasts a 360-degree view of the ocean and surrounding land.
Grow Naturally Café
59 Point Lonsdale Road, Point Lonsdale VIC 3255
(03) 5258 2508
Couta’s Fish & Chip Shop
77 Point Lonsdale Road, Point Lonsdale
(03) 5258 4146
67 Point Lonsdale Road, Point Lonsdale
(03) 5258 5349
Lonsdale Tomato Farm
49 Yarram Creek Lane, Point Lonsdale
(03) 5258 2665