It doesn’t have to cost a fortune to procure a G-Town experience. With Port Phillip Ferries docking into the heart of Geelong, these nine (almost) free things are yours to access, encounter and delight in.
1. Activate the Bollards
Download the FREE ‘Activate Geelong’ app in the App Store or Google Play and watch the infamous Geelong Bollards come to life. With six featured sites where the app can be activated, you can watch and partake as art and technology fuse together and create virtual fun for you and the family.
2. Take in the serenity of the Botanic Gardens
Set on 200 acres, the lush Geelong Botanic Gardens is amass of vibrant colours and sensational scents. Get lost in the ‘Forgotten Garden’, breathe in the sweet aromas of the blossoming ‘Rose Garden’, lay about on the ‘Tea House Lawn’, adventure in the award-winning ‘Geelong Play Space’. An easy walk from the ferry berth, the Geelong Botanic Gardens is an Oasis awaiting your exploration.
3. Slide into fun at Poppy Kettle Playground
With a tubular slide winding its way down to a dragon’s lair, the Poppy Kettle Playground on the Geelong Waterfront will captivate and enchant the kids. Climbing tower, spring boat, water fountains and impish elf statues are scattered throughout the playground, making it an absolute wonderland.
4. Take in the Street Art
The Geelong Bollards are not the only street art to be found within Geelong. The Waterfront Art Trail will guide you past stunning works of art that honour and celebrate Geelong; Barcode Fountain, Cargo Boxes, Paving Slats and many more. And the art doesn’t stop there either! The Central Geelong Wall Art Trail meanders you by magnificent wall, building and laneway art; the Unknown Mariner, 3D Wall Art Wave and the incomparable Jay Z & Beyonce mural. Geelong street art is big, bright, bold, fabulous and free for you to view.
5. Pier jump at Eastern Beach
Make a splash at Eastern Beach. This water utopia is home to an enclosed sea bath, boardwalk, diving towers, pier, hamster wheel, floating tower and so many more splastastic endeavours. Patrolled by lifeguards during the summer months and equipped with BBQs, picnic tables, Kyosk and change rooms, this FREE facility has everything you could need for a fantastic day out by the water.
6. Grab an ice-cream at the waterfront
Enjoy a scoopful of pure bliss from Blis Icecream; dishing up delights right on the waterfront, these guys have a huge range of creamy goodness for you to choose from, as well as gelato, sorbet, donuts, coffee and shakes. Although this activity does require funding, the enjoyment you obtain from savouring a sweet scoop is well worth it.
7. Watch the sunset over the harbour
It is a spectacular sight to see, Geelong waterfront alighting in red, orange, pink and/or purple hues as the sun sets over the bay. Wherever you place yourself along the waterfront, you will be mesmerised by the G-Town setting sun.
8. Capture a moment at the top of those stairs
Grand, white and stunning, the iconic Geelong Spanish Staircase. Readily photographed and enthusiastically climbed, these stairs ascend from Eastern Beach to a view like no other. Midway you are rewarded for your climb with a stunning art deco water fountain, complete with tortoise and crane statues. And from the tippy top you can take in Corio Bay, the promenade and the You Yangs with a simple turn of the head.
9. Ride the carousel
Rounding off our list of nine is a perfectly circular spin on The Carousel. Circa 1892, this Armitage-Herschell portable steam-driven, hand-carved wooden carousel was artfully restored to become one of only 200 in operation around the world! Housed within a floor-to-ceiling glassed pavilion on the waterfront, a gallop on one of these handsome horses affords you supreme 360-degree views of Geelong and a ride reminiscent of days gone by.