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Phillip Island is a large island at the mouth of Western Port Bay, located less than two hours drive from Melbourne in Victoria. Because of its proximity to the state capital, it's a popular weekend tourist destination, especially during the summer months. The island is separated from the mainland by just a channel and is connected by a bridge. It is part of the Bass Coast Shire of Gippsland.

Phillip Island, Australia
Great Ocean Road, Australia
Phillip Island, Australia

Cowes is the main town on the island, and in addition there are other smaller towns such as Rhyll, Cape Woolamai, Ventnor (closest town to the Penguin Parade) and Newhaven. The principal source of income is tourism, and there are many cafes, restaurants etc. to cater to the appetites of the tourists.

Phillip Island, Australia
Great Ocean Road, Australia
Phillip Island, Australia

The island is steeped in motorsport history. Australia's first ever international Grand Prix was held in 1924 on the original circuit comprising the still existing roads on Phillip Island. The annual Australian Grand Prix, an official round of the World MotoGP plus a round of the World Superbike is currently held at the 1950s purpose built Motor Racing Circuit, and draws a massive contingent of motor sport fans every year.

Phillip Island, Australia
Great Ocean Road, Australia
Phillip Island, Australia

Penguin Parade: At sunset the little penguins walk up from the sea to their nests. This is Philip Islannd's biggest attraction and is unmissable. Adult $20.60, child $10.30, family $51.50. ("Penguins Plus" offeres better seats and includes a free hot drink. There is no doubt you're closer to the action but the additional $16 may no be worth it for everyone. In winter or with bad weather "Penguins Plus" may be reduced by 20% - it's definitely worth it then) Note All viewing areas are unprotected from rain and wind.

Phillip Island, Australia
Great Ocean Road, Australia
Phillip Island, Australia

The Nobbies and Seal Rocks: From the boardwalks here you can see penguins for free, as well as gull rookeries. You might even see a snake in the grass. The Seal Rocks are too far away to see much of the seals with the naked eye but you can look through the pay binoculars. If nothing else, there are fantastic the views of coastal scenery.

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