The Queenscliff to Sorrento ferry (and vice versa) is a Melbourne institution. Traditionally a quick way to get across the bay, the ferry is also a day out in it’s own right. SeaRoad Ferries now offer a whole host of fun experiences that can be enjoyed on either the Queenscliff Ferry or Sorrento Ferry depending on what best suits you.
We live a little closer to Queenscliff, so opted to depart from Queenscliff and head across to Sorrento for a day of fun at the Enchanted Adventure garden. The package allows for 2 adults, 2 children and a return journey on the ferry, which was perfect for us. There are also packages to the Peninsula Hot Springs, Mornington Peninsula Brewery, a high tea and Boat House Resort too.
Preparing to ride the Queenscliff to Sorrento ferry
The Queenscliff Ferry terminal on the Bellerine Peninsula. It is around an hour and twenty minutes drive from Melbourne. Just head towards Geelong and follow the signs. You’ll need to be at the terminal 15 – 20 minutes before departure, with the ferries departing on the hour.
WIth this in mind, take the 9 or 10am ferry at the latest to make the most of the day. There’s excellent coffee at Cafe Roro at the Queenscliff Ferry terminal. Enjoy a coffee as you watch the ferry come in. By all means leave your car and have a wander. Ensure you don’t go too far as once the ferry has docked, it’s a precision process getting the cars to alight. It’ll be your time to board before you know it!
Boarding the Queenscliff Ferry
The sight of the ferry’s sea doors opening is quite impressive. It’s a smooth ride over the sea bridge and you’ll be safely parked in the ferry.
Once you’re on make sure to grab anything you need and head upstairs. There’s a lift to the main deck especially for those with prams or wheelchairs.
Riding the Queenscliff to Sorrento Ferry
The ferry features a lounge, bench style seating and a number of outdoor decks, including a rooftop deck. The roof top deck features park bench style seating and open spaces to find the best vantage point. Light snacks and meals are available from the on board cafe. We enjoyed yo-yo biscuits, chips and sandwiches. Beer, wine and soft drink are also also available.
What to do onboard the ferry
SeaRoad Ferries take around 40 minutes to cross from Queenscliff to Sorrento. There’s plenty of time to explore and enjoy a snack on this Melbourne ferry experience.
Smooth water in the bay allows you to comfortably walk around and explore. Wide windows offer great views from the enclosed decks. The Queenscliff to Sorrento sails alongside the coastline so you’ll enjoy beautiful coastal views. In addition you can watch boats make their way through Bass Straight.
The back deck features coin operated binoculars to get a closeup view. The railings are waist height, so children can walk around and play safely on the outdoor decks.
Arriving in Sorrento
Things to do on the Mornington Peninsula: The Enchanted Adventure Garden
There’s A LOT to of things to do on the Mornington Peninsula. Namely it has beautiful beaches, wonderful eateries and many attractions to select from. One of the best options for families is the Enchanted Adventure Garden at Arthur’s Seat. The garden is just 25 minutes from the ferry terminal.
First we explored the Japanese Hedge maze. We got well and truly lost on our quest to find all of the buddha statues. Next we moved to the turf maze. Elliot enjoyed crawling around the brick path. The middle of this maze features a pond with a loch ness monster inside.
Lastly there is the Children’s Maze. This maze features games in its chambers such as snakes and ladders, as well as panda chairs and a little African hut. There are so many stops to have a play and take a photo.
More than mazes
The Arthur’s seat maze, isn’t just mazes. The site features a large lake and boardwalk. There is tubing down the hill, a pram friendly canopy walk, a bush adventure scramble and lots of beautiful sculptures to enjoy in the gardens.
The Enchanted Adventure Garden is most suited to those with children kindergarten age and above. Most of the activities require children to be able to walk, balance, climb and in the case of the tube slide – hold on! For those with littlies, you can take it in turn to enjoy a tube slide yourself before having a picnic on the grass or in the manicured gardens.
For a little extra, you can organise to go tree surfing with varying courses available for children all the way through to daredevils! If you’re not going to go tree surfing, make sure that you hang out by the tyre balancing course and watch as the surfers scream across the sky on the giant flying fox!
There is a cafe on site, however the food is quite simple. We recommend that you pack a picnic, or some snacks and head back to Sorrento for a bite before getting back onto the Queenscliff ferry.
Queenscliff to Sorrento: In reverse!
During the summer months the Queenscliff Ferry runs into the early evening, so there are plenty of opportunities to spend some time at the beach or exploring the Mornington Peninsula too. Since the ferry is popular in the warmer months, it is wise to book your fare in advance.
With a little one, mid afternoon was the perfect time for us to return home. Port Phillip Ferries are a great way to see both the Bellarine Peninsula and Mornington Peninsula in one day. This Melbourne Ferry uniquely allows you to enjoy the coast, bay and hills all in one day trip.
It’s an easy drive at both ends, but when planning this trip in particular, be aware that it is a long day. There’s quite a lot of driving involved to get to the ferry and then get to the Arthur’s Seat Maze, so make sure that you leave early, have a rest during the day and allow extra time to get home too.
Other Sea Road Ferry experiences
Furthermore, Searoad Ferries offer a range of experiences for foot passengers such as high tea and lunch followed by a return cruise. If you are short on time, or prefer less driving than one of these options may better suit you instead.