Eat & Drink

The 10 Most Indulgent Destinations In Victoria

Because the cooler months are a perfect time for some well-earned soul nourishing.

For all the talk of the winter blues, the cooler months are actually a perfect time for some well-earned soul nourishing. Indeed, there are few better ways to combat the chill like a dose of good old-fashioned pampering.

Blessed with incredible natural landscapes and cosy locales, regional Victoria offers an array of indulgent winter escapes: from gourmandising to spa pampering, to luxurious accommodation lodgings, some of the best places for indulgence are found just outside the Melbourne buzz. We’ve got you covered with some of the most sought after regional spots for straight up decadence. Prepare to indulge.

#1 Lake House Spa, Daylesford

For decades, idyllic Daylesford has provided dutiful refuge for Melburnians craving accessible, nourishing weekend rejuvenations. Synonymous with holistic wellbeing, simply breathing the country air in Daylesford is remedy in itself.

Of course, a trip out here without a session at one of its countless boutique spa facilities would be sacrilege – overlooking tranquil Lake Daylesford, Lake House Spa remains one of the town’s most sought after.

Enjoy a range of luxurious treatments, from the Lake House’s Mineral Soak and Massage, to its Salus Indulgence package. For the works, write the whole weekend off and take a winter retreat – check into the Lake House’s stunning accommodation facility and dine in style at its award-winning in-house restaurant.

Lake House. 4 King Street, Daylesford, VIC 3640


#2 Balinese Retreat, Montrose

Forget that long haul jaunt to South East Asia – your taste of authentic Bali dwells amidst the lush Melburnian hinterland.

Nestled in forest, bamboo groves, lakes, waterfalls and tropical gardens, Montrose’s Balinese Retreat offers an exotic, transcendental and effortlessly accessible city getaway, replete with a menu of unique spa packages including traditional massage, chakra therapy, oriental hammam, and a bona fide roman bathhouse experience. Local decadence with an oriental touch.

14 Mountain Cres, Montrose VIC 3765, Australia


#3 Peninsula Hot Springs, Mornington Peninsula

hot springs

Photo: Supplied

The Mornington Peninsula has become one of the most sought after spots in Victoria in recent decades, and as well as its proximity to glorious beach and bay coastline, this is largely because places like Peninsula Hot Springs keep popping up.

Those who’ve dipped themselves into the Hot Springs’ 20 natural, thermal mineral pools understand how refreshingly medicinal and incredibly blissful you feel after a lazy hour here. Twenty years since opening, the Hot Springs continues to expand, now offering additional pampering options including massage treatments and dining packages.

Springs Lane, Fingal, 3939 Mornington Peninsula, VIC


#4 Onsen Retreat and Spa, Mt Hotham

For skiers, boarders and High Country dwellers, the icing on the cake for any powder-fuelled trip to Mt Hotham is a check-in at one of its on-site health spa.

As Australia’s first indoor-outdoor alpine spa retreat, Onsen Retreat and Spa lifts the alpine pleasure to beyond the clouds with its luxurious treatment packages, including skin care, massage, aromatherapy, and access to its Japanese-inspired outdoor hot spring and indoor heated pools. Surely one of the most relaxing (and highest) spa experiences in the state.

Big Muster Dr, Dinner Plain VIC 3898 


#5 Jackalope, Mornington Peninsula

Coined after the mythical animal of North American folklore (in the vein of the snipe and the bunyip), there’s little mystery about the praise being heaped on Mornington Peninsula’s newest and most impressive luxury accommodation facility.

Billed as an ‘escape from reality’, Jackalope Hotel comprises 46 designer dens set on a pristine vineyard acreage, an artistic collaboration with some of the country’s finest creative minds. Surreal slumber meets grade-A dining.

166 Balnarring Rd, Merricks North VIC 3926


#6 Campbell Point House, Bellarine Peninsula

You want luxury? Campbell Point House delivers. Set on the banks of Lake Connewarre on the Bellarine Peninsula’s Barwon River, Campbell Point is a lavish French chateau-style waterfront estate available exclusively for private hire.

Its six double bedrooms (with en-suites) can accommodate 12, while its excess lounges and formal ballrooms, private infinity pool, jetty and beach ought to satiate anyone’s royal urge. At just an hour’s drive from the Melbourne CBD, it’s also refreshingly close. In a word: deluxe.

Leopold, the Bellarine Peninsula, VIC 3224


#7 Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa, Hepburn Springs

As a resort town located on Australia’s largest concentration of mineral springs, Hepburn Springs remains one of the state’s most cherished regional getaways. Sister to Daylesford, Hepburn Springs lives and breathes holistic remedy.

Though you’re well and truly spoilt for your choice of luxury facility out here, the Mineral Spa, located in Peppers Mineral Springs Hotel, is a stand out experience, set in a refurbished 1930s European-style lodging house.

Alternatively, local icon Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa has been a stalwart since 1895, and provides a fabulous modern and historic spa experience. Ideally, head for both and relish in maximum goodness.

124 Main Rd, Hepburn Springs VIC 3461 & Mineral Springs Cres, Hepburn Springs VIC 3461


#8 Royal Mail Hotel, Grampians 

For others, transcendence is found not in the bubbling waters of a hot spring, but through the virtues of a fantastic meal. If the way to warming your heart is through the stomach, then consider a trip to the Grampians’ Royal Mail Hotel.

Though its status as one of Victoria’s most cherished gastronomic secrets is in the past, acclaimed local chef Dan Hunter’s debut fine dining foray remains one of the country’s (and world’s) most talked about hot spots, though he left in 2013, to be replaced by . Located in unassuming Dunkeld in a heritage hotel at the base of Mt Sturgeon, the Royal Mail Dining Room (now run by head chef Rob Wicken), offers one of the most innovative, artistic, and pure dining experiences in the world.

98 Parker St, Dunkeld VIC 3294


#9 Brae, Birregurra

If locking down the coveted Restaurant of the Year award in The Age Good Food Guide didn’t give Dan Hunter’s second regional hub Brae cause for hoots and hollers, then coming in 44 out of the world’s 50 best restaurants this year surely did.

The wunderkind behind the Royal Mail Dining Room did it again with Brae, showcasing his trademark upscale seasonal menu and fresh, locally sourced produce (not to mention sumptuous designer lodging for those keen to make a night of it). Decadent, earthy dining at its finest.

4285 Cape Otway Rd, Birregurra VIC 3242, Australia


#10 Circa 1936 Hotel, Corowa

We’re stretching the ‘regional Vic’ friendship with this one (Corowa is actually on the NSW side of the Murray), but given how fabulous Circa 1936 is, we feel it’s worth the stretch. Located in the art deco confines of the town’s old Rural Bank, Circa 1936 Hotel is a luxury hotel with a difference, offering a range of blissful day spa packages with its premium lodging suites. Just pretend you’re still in Victoria.

145 Sanger Street Corowa, NSW 2646

Whether through the stomach, immersed in minerals, in a bathhouse or in bed, it’s always refreshing to know that regional Victoria has your brand of decadence covered. Fight the chill, take some time off to smell the roses, and look after yourself like you know you should.

(Lead image: Hepburn Bathhouse/Facebook)