Go green in the Dandenong Ranges, a verdant realm of fern glades, towering trees and eclectic villages less than an hour from Melbourne.
See the seasons in the villages of the ranges as they burst with vibrant colour in spring and are softened by mist and dustings of snow in winter. Absorb the creative vibe of shops and galleries in Olinda, Belgrave and Sassafras. Gaze down at the city's twinkling panorama of fairy lights from SkyHigh atop Mount Dandenong.
Stay in an elegant guesthouse dating from a century ago when the Dandenong Ranges was Melbourne's favourite retreat, or choose from more contemporary accommodation that combines old world affectations with modern luxury, space and style.
Glimpse the shiny flanks of the Puffing Billy steam engine from your hilltop cottage or sun-kissed garden as it chuffs along its narrow-gauge track. Jump aboard and dangle your feet out of the open-sided carriages, or opt for first-class travel.
Get reacquainted with the elements in the vast national parks and gardens, from the blooms of the National Rhododendron Gardens to the whispering forests in the Dandenong Ranges National Park.
Meander through lush gullies and misty mountain ash to magical places like Sherbrooke Forest, Doongalla Homestead and One Tree Hill. Be guided in quiet contemplation by mystical sculptures hidden among ferns in the William Ricketts Sanctuary. Conquer the Thousand Steps and the fascinating Kokoda Walk.
To reach the Dandenong Ranges, travel along the Eastern Freeway and continue onto Eastlink tollway to Burwood Highway and onto Upper Ferntree Gully. Alternatively, travel through Montrose to the Mount Dandenong Tourist Road through Kalorama and Mount Dandenong to Olinda.