SUMMER-SEASON DAYDREAMS OPEN NOW

Good news. Great outdoors. Plan a getaway that’s actually ‘away’, by dreaming beyond the ring of steel, Melbournians. To help, check out  our favourite Victorian camp spots, now in reach from November 9.

1. Sealers Cove Hike-in Campsite, Wilson’s Promontory National Park 

We love Wilson’s Prom! It's brimming with campers every summer, but the beautiful Sealers Cove offers some peace and quiet – if you're up for the walk. The ten-kilometre hike in has some of our favourite views, and the descent into the campsite by the beach is stunning. The ground includes toilet facilities, but be sure to bring your own drinking water. The cost is $13.60 per person, per night, and the maximum stay is two nights, just enough time to get some welcome respite. Permits are required, which you can get from the Tidal River Visitor Centre or online at Parks Victoria.

2. Aire River, Great Otway National Park 

Aire River is definitely one of our favourites. There are campsites on both the east and west banks of the river, with lots of open space for larger groups. There are more toilets, picnic tables, fireplaces and hot plates than most campgrounds you'll find. Take a short stroll to the beach, go for a kayak, have a fish and end the day with dinner round the campfire. Perfect. The cost is $14.50 per person, per night.

3. Sheepyard Flat, Howqua Hills

When the hills are calling, head to Sheepyard Flat. It's a stunning camping spot in the open woodland next to the Howqua River, just outside of Mansfield. The campsite is surrounded by a dreamy forest and the soothing scents of Peppermint and Manna Gum. There’s nearby swimming holes (we'll be there... cold water and all), and a historic walk that begins at the campground, with an abundance of longer walks nearby if your legs are keen. The site offers waterless toilets, non-drinking water and best of all, dogs are allowed on leashes... ruff! Bring your own firewood for a campfire to go along with your camp jokes. Oh and guess what, camping is free! Get in early to secure your patch of paradise.

4. Jimmy Creek Campground, Grampians National Park

The Grampians is always a big yes from us. Located near Halls Gap, The Grampians is a series of five sandstone ridges that stretch across a vast expanse of national park, forming some mighty fine peaks and valleys as far as the eye can see. If you're looking for your five billion star hotel (camp site), we'd be heading to Jimmy Creek Campground. Two reasons why: First of all, Jimmy Creek sounds cool, and secondly, it has 10 campsites near the creek! Hot tip, look out for the Aboriginal artwork on the rock shelter walls around town. For more information call the National Park and Cultural Centre on (03) 5361 4000.

5. Johanna Beach, Great Otway National Park

Ah Johanna Beach on a fine summers day... Is there anything better? We think not. It's a wonderful choice for camping, but for an added bonus of nature goodness, it’s worth considering the hike-in only section. Built for walkers undertaking the stunning Great Ocean Walk (add that to ya bucket list), there are only eight tent sites at the hike-in campground, so you better book ahead! The site is situated on top of a ridge, with some of the most incredible views of the Southern coastline you'll find. Amenities are scarce, so preparation is important (remember that one kids). The cost is $29.80 per person, per night.