Separated from New South Wales by the mighty Murray River and fronted by a beautiful coastline, Victoria boasts terrain as varied as any in Australia. Without venturing too far from the Melbourne city limits you can indulge in all sorts of pastimes—exploring the spectacular western coastline as far as the stunning Twelve Apostles; walking among the rocky outcrops, waterfalls, and fauna of the Grampians; visiting historic inland gold-mining communities; toasting the sunrise over the Yarra Valley vineyards from the basket of a hot-air balloon; or taking in a Murray River sunset from the deck of a paddle steamer.

Sweeping landscapes are quilted together in this compact state. Many of the state's best sights are within a day's drive of Melbourne. Go farther afield and you can experience the high-country solitude of Alpine National Park.

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