The Grampians is one of Victoria’s most popular natural attractions. Located north-west of Melbourne, it encompasses a huge national park which surrounds a series of mountain ranges. Visitors can explore many walking tracks including the Grampians Peak Trail, enjoy panoramic views from lookouts, and visit several lakes and waterfalls. It is a great place to encounter Australian wildlife, native wildflowers and discover historic Aboriginal sites.
At the heart of The Grampians is the tourist village of Halls Gap. Visitors will find shopping facilities, restaurants and a large concentration of accommodation options including caravan parks, holiday units, cottages and motels.
The distance, in a direct straight line, from Melbourne to Halls Gap is about 230 kilometres. There are a number of ways to get to The Grampians from Melbourne.
The journey from Melbourne’s CBD to Halls Gap is just over 250 kilometres.
Head west along the West Gate Freeway (M1), across the West Gate Bridge, and take the Western Ring Road (M80) exit which is about 6 kilometres after the bridge. After travelling on the Western Ring Road for 4 kilometres, take the Western Freeway (M8) exit. Keep following this freeway which will skirt around Bacchus Marsh and the city of Ballarat. The Western Freeway will become the Western Highway (A8), and the first town you will pass through the centre of will be Beaufort. Drive a further 44 kilometres until you reach the larger town of Ararat. Turn off the highway and onto Ararat – Halls Gap Road (C222), following this road to a T-junction just on the northern outskirts of Halls Gap. Turn left into Grampians Road (C216) and after a few short minutes, you will arrive within the centre of Halls Gap.
The entire journey will usually take around 2 hours and 45 minutes if you drive continuously. However it is recommended that you do not drive for more than 2 hours straight without taking a break.
By public transport
Getting to Halls Gap from Melbourne using public transport requires the use of both train and bus services, however there are a couple of main options. Which one you choose may depend on how the timetables fit in with your personal travel plans.
Option 1 – one train journey and two bus journeys
Catch a V/Line train from Melbourne’s Southern Cross Station to Ballarat Station. This will take about 90 minutes, however some peak express services will complete the journey in a quicker time.
Once in Ballarat, switch to a V/Line bus which goes to Ararat and Stawell. This section of the journey will take about 90 minutes.
From Stawell, catch the Halls Gap bus which will have you arrive in the Halls Gap town centre within about 35 minutes.
See the V/Line timetable which covers this entire travel option.
Option 2 – one train journey and one bus journey
Catch a V/Line train from Melbourne’s Southern Cross Station to Ararat Station. This will take between 2 hours and 10 minutes and 2 hours and 30 minutes depending on the time of day. See the timetable for the train to Ararat.
Once you arrive in Ararat, catch the Warrnambool bus and get off 50 minutes later at Halls Gap. See the timetable for the bus to Halls Gap.
Join a tour
Take the easy option when heading to The Grampians and join one of the several guided day tours that depart from Melbourne. You won’t have to worry about how to get there or finding your way around when you arrive. You will also have an experienced guide that will be able to transport you directly to the many attractions of The Grampians, with some interesting stops along the way.
Day tours of The Grampians can include guided walks to waterfalls, lakes and scenic lookouts. Experience close encounters with native wildlife, discover a rich variety of plant life and learn about the history and Aboriginal culture of the area.
Coming from Melbourne Airport?
If you are coming to Melbourne by air, see our guide to transport between Melbourne Airport and the city centre. Once in Melbourne’s city centre, choose from the above options to get to The Grampians.