Set just 320 kilometres east of Melbourne and between the towns of Bairnsdale and Orbost, Lakes Entrance is an established holiday destination that has been seeing a steady flow of visitors for over 100 years. The town has a small population of permanent residents - just over 5,200 - and has a mild climate that attracts holiday makers throughout the year. Because Lakes Entrance boasts quick access to the salty waters of Bass Straight and the largest network of inland waterways in all of Australia, there is much to do out on the water. Visitors who prefer to stay inland have a bountiful menu of options, as well. Many of the holiday accommodations in Lakes Entrance are self-contained holiday homes that make it easy for guests to come and go as needed; however, beautiful apartments with convenient amenities are found closer to the town's center.
Test Your Sea Legs
One way to explore the waterways without getting wet is to charter a boat for the day. Enjoy a tour of the Lakes Entrance area by taking a cruise through the ocean and inland lakes. Cruises vary in length, and the captains know the waterways like the backs of their hands, which means it is easy for them to direct you to hotspots for viewing seals, dolphins and other marine life. For a different type of aquatic tour, try an Eco-Tour. These informative trips take you through the many lakes of the town and provide a wealth of information about the local flora and fauna. Ready for an adventure? Book a fishing charter, and head out into the open water. The staff on these boats direct you to the best honey holes and even help you clean your catches at the end of the day.
Find a Water Activity That Suits You
By crossing the footbridge over Cunninghame Arm, you have access to Ninety Mile Beach, one of the Bass StraightÃs most popular beaches. With its choppy waters, Ninety Mile Beach is best reserved for surfers, though experienced swimmers are also comfortable in the waters.
Head into the 400 square kilometres of inland lakes for calmer water activities. Popular options on the lakes include the use of paddle boats, catamarans and kayaks. Swimming is possible in the lakes, as well.
Because Lakes Entrance boasts an extensive array of jetties and marinas throughout the coastline and around the lakes, there are plenty of places to cast a line. Try your hand at fishing from one of these locations, or fish from land. Whatever way you choose to fish, you are sure to be rewarded beautifully, as Lakes Entrance's seafood is top notch.
Venture into Town
Take a stroll along the main Esplanade in town, which runs along the shoreline of Cunninghame Arm. If you just feel like walking to take in the life of the town, venture through Lakes Entrance's well-maintained gardens, or walk through the marina to look at the boats. The other side of the Esplanade includes a number of retail establishments, which provide everything from essentials to gifts for your loved ones back home. When it is time to eat, there is no shortage of restaurants in Lakes Entrance, many of which offer a grand selection of fresh seafood caught locally. As you meander through town, do not forget to keep your eyes peeled for the intricately carved tree trunks along the Esplanade.
Walks and Scenic Drives around Lakes Entrance
Set just 10 kilometres from Lakes Entrance, Nyeringmalang Heritage Park is a great place to walk about and take in some of the beautiful scenery the area has to offer. There is a vast network of trails of varying lengths and many lookout points over the water. In town, a 5-kilometre walk along the narrow peninsula that separates Bass Straight from Cunninghame Arm provides the perfect walkway to enjoy views of the bush, the Gippsland Lakes and the coast. If you want to take in the area's lovely views without walking, try taking a scenic drive. Whether you choose to drive along Princes Highway or Seaview Parade, picturesque scenery abounds, so make sure you bring your camera along.
Visit Lakes Entrance
The winter months are warmer in Lakes Entrance than they are further inland, which makes the town the perfect escape, even in the winter. With such a vast range of aquatic and land-based activities and its small size, Lakes Entrance truly is a coastal retreat for those who love active, outdoorsy holidays.