Feel a million miles away from city life as you dive into the waters of the peninsula's countless sandy bay inlets and wild surf beaches.
Walk beyond the sandbars into gently lapping waves on the string of golden Port Phillip Bay beaches. These shores link Melbourne and Frankston, the inlets around Mount Eliza and Mount Martha, and on to the expanse from Safety Beach to Dromana, Rosebud, Rye, Sorrento and Portsea.
Set up your sun shelter early in the morning alongside other holidaying families. Cool off in the water, play a bit of beach cricket or take a snorkel around the piers. Enjoy a lunchtime barbeque and then walk it off on a long stroll down the beach.
Wild ocean escapes
Chase the waves and collect driftwood on wintery walks against the backdrop of rocky, sea-battered basalt headlands between Cape Schanck and Point Nepean, epitomising the rugged nature of this famous coastline.
Get your board and tackle the surf crashing in from Bass Strait, ranked as one of the world's most dangerous stretches of water. Test your surf skills at the Gunnamatta, Portsea, Sorrento and Rye back beaches.
Many peninsula beaches are patrolled during peak holiday times, though some surf beaches are not suitable for swimming. Check safety signs and beware of strong rips and reefs.
Port Phillip Bay beaches
Long, wide bay beaches ideal for swimming, snorkelling, diving, sailboarding and yachting, featuring boat launching facilities and foreshore reserves. Lifesavers patrol in summer.
Small bay beaches can be found between Mount Eliza and Mornington including Daveys, Canadian and Half Moon bays, Ranelagh and Sunnyside beaches.
Safe swimming beaches located around the harbour and nearby areas include Mills, Scout, Shire Hall, Mothers, Royal and Fishermans beaches. Yacht and boat facilities are available, plus foreshore reserves, picnic and barbecue facilities, a boardwalk and lookouts around Schnapper Point. Mills Beach patrolled in summer.
A series of safe, sandy bay beaches with yacht and boating facilities, foreshore reserves with picnic and barbecue facilities, and a coastal walking path. Patrolled in summer.
Popular camping area and beach stretching from Safety Beach to Anthonys Nose, featuring reserves with picnic shelters, barbecues and playgrounds. Patrolled weekends in summer.
A popular family swimming beach on the bay, protected by offshore sandbars. Shaded foreshore reserves have picnic, barbecue and play facilities. Patrolled weekends in summer.
Wide, sandy bay beach with a large foreshore reserve and jetty. Picnic and barbecue facilities, extensive boat launching, washing and parking facilities and a cycling and walking track.