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Cowes
Travel Guide

Cowes which includes a sandy beach and boating

Splash in the sea and laze on the beach, watch the penguin parade or witness the thrilling races of the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix.

Cowes is a quaint little town on the northern shore of Phillip Island, facing Victoria’s Western Port Bay. Cowes is the main township on the picturesque southern island and a popular destination for vacationers and daytrippers from Melbourne.

The island is connected to the mainland by a bridge and is easy to reach by car. Take a walk down Thompson Avenue, with its broad golden cypress trees, to The Esplanade along the waterfront. Together these streets form the beating heart of Cowes, with shops, cafés and restaurants for your convenience. Come here to enjoy an alfresco lunch on a sunny day and shop for souvenirs.

Browse Cowes’ foreshore with its golden beaches and sloping lawns. The bay’s calm waters are ideal for swimming. Afterwards, dine Aussie-style by “throwing a sausage on the barbie” in the public barbecue area. Take in the views from Cowes Jetty and chat with the local fishermen as the sun goes down.

Meet some of Australia’s iconic wildlife that calls Phillip Island home. Purchase a bag of animal food to feed the kangaroos and emus as you wander around the Phillip Island Wildlife Park or take the treetop boardwalk to get closer to a koala at the Koala Conservation Centre.

Phillip Island Penguin Parade in the evening is an opportunity to watch small penguins waddle back up the beach to their nighttime burrows. A local guide is there to answer all your questions.

Time your visit to coincide with one of the racing events at the Phillip Island Circuit. Highlights include the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix and the Superbike Championship. You only have to follow the sound of the roaring engines to find the venue on race days. On training days you can take a ride in the passenger seat of a real race car while a professional driver zooms you around the track. The History of Motorsport exhibit keeps the less adventurous visitor happy as well.

Take a cruise out on the bay for a chance to see the seals at Seal Rocks. Also keep an eye out for dolphins and seabirds. Watch the glowing sun set and the town’s Esplanade twinkle during a romantic twilight cruise. Take this moment to look back on your stay in Cowes and appreciate the many wonderful things this idyllic island town has in store.

North Pier Hotel
North Pier Hotel
3 out of 5
5 The Esplanade, Cowes, VIC
The price is AU$76 per night from 14 Jun. to 14 Jun.
Located in the heart of Cowes, this beach hotel is steps away from Phillip Island Coastal Reserve and Phillip Island Ferry Dock. Cowes Beach and Silverleaves ...
3.6/5Good! (626 reviews)
"Good location on the esplanade and handy to have the bistro for a quick feed. Comfortable room. Was ecpecting a higher floor for ocean view but technically there is still a water view from the ground floor."

Reviewed on 7 May 2021

North Pier Hotel
Ramada Resort by Wyndham Phillip Island
Ramada Resort by Wyndham Phillip Island
4 out of 5
2128 Phillip Island Road, Cowes, VIC
The price is AU$152 per night from 14 Jul. to 14 Jul.
Situated in a regional park, this resort is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Phillip Island Wildlife Park and 2.7 mi (4.4 km) from Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit. Phillip ...
3.9/5Good! (990 reviews)
"Great place to stay with the family. The kids will be entertained by the amenities and local wildlife. The rooms were clean enough and everything is supplied in the room to compliment your stay (bin bags, paper towels, towels, sheets, coffee, milk, etc.) The pools were clean and maintained. The rooms ..."

Reviewed on 12 May 2021

Ramada Resort by Wyndham Phillip Island
Phillip Island Apartments
Phillip Island Apartments
4 out of 5
9-11 Bass Ave, entrance off Chapel Ave, Cowes, VIC
The price is AU$226 per night from 16 Jun. to 16 Jun.
Located in the heart of Cowes, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Phillip Island Coastal Reserve, Phillip Island Ferry Dock and Cowes Beach. ...
4.3/5Excellent! (362 reviews)
"This property is at good location, close to the beach and shops. Just the condition of the property is a bit old, the bathroom door is not closing properly in where we live. need to be checked."

Reviewed on 26 Apr. 2021

Phillip Island Apartments
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Phillip Island Apartments
Phillip Island Apartments
4 out of 5
9-11 Bass Ave, entrance off Chapel Ave, Cowes, VIC
The price is AU$226 per night from 16 Jun. to 16 Jun.
Located in the heart of Cowes, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Phillip Island Coastal Reserve, Phillip Island Ferry Dock and Cowes Beach. ...
4.3/5Excellent! (362 reviews)
"This property is at good location, close to the beach and shops. Just the condition of the property is a bit old, the bathroom door is not closing properly in where we live. need to be checked."

Reviewed on 26 Apr. 2021

Phillip Island Apartments
Phillip Island Towers
Phillip Island Towers
4 out of 5
59-61 Chapel Street, Cowes, VIC
The price is AU$298 per night from 12 Jul. to 12 Jul.
Located in the heart of Cowes, this apartment building is 0.2 mi (0.4 km) from Cowes Beach and 1.7 mi (2.7 km) from Phillip Island Wildlife Park. Phillip Island ...
4/5Very Good! (42 reviews)
"The room is spacious, bright and clean, the kitchen equipped with enough cooking stuff. But the room needs maintenance, all door handles are very loose and the fans in the toilet and laundry couldn’t turn off, you can hear the noise all day night. Also some doors can’t shut properly and there’s no ..."

Reviewed on 26 Dec. 2020

Phillip Island Towers
Oceanic On Thompson Apartments
Oceanic On Thompson Apartments
4 out of 5
146 Thompson Ave, Cowes, VIC
The price is AU$231 per night from 15 Jun. to 15 Jun.
Located in the heart of Cowes, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Phillip Island Coastal Reserve and Phillip Island Ferry Dock. Cowes Beach ...
4.2/5Excellent! (277 reviews)
Very nice apartment
"Good size apartment, close to shops and 10 minute walk from beach"

Reviewed on 23 Feb. 2021

Oceanic On Thompson Apartments
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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