Walking to Port Fairy Lighthouse: The Ultimate Guide

On a recent trip to Warrnambool in Western Victoria, we decided to head to Port Fairy. Port Fairy is a charming coastal town in Western Victoria, Australia. Known for its historic architecture, scenic landscapes, and maritime heritage, it’s a popular destination for locals and visitors.

High on our list of things to do was walking to Port Fairy Lighthouse. The lighthouse is located on Griffiths Island, not far from the middle of Port Fairy.

Besides being home to the Griffiths Island lighthouse (Port Fairy Lighthouse), the island is also a reserve for nesting birds, including the shearwater that flies in from the northern hemisphere each year.

the boardwalk over the water heading to Port Fairy Lighthouse
The boardwalk at the start of the walk to Port Fairy Lighthouse

Port Fairy Lighthouse Walk

The Port Fairy Lighthouse walk starts at the parking lot on Ocean Drive. Before you start, you will have a choice when walking to Port Fairy Lighthouse: should you take the path left or right? One way is all on patched paths, while the other includes paths, beaches, and boardwalks with some rocks to navigate.

The North path starts off by taking you to the beach
One of the many ocean views on Griffiths Island.

The track around Griffiths Island is a loop, so many people do the whole lot, but if you have mobility issues, take the south track along the Moyne River.

We decided to take the North Track and head towards the beach. The Walking to Port Fairy Lighthouse on this path is 1660 meters long. The start of the walk has you crossing a short walkway over water. The water is stunning—some of the bluest water you will see anywhere.

A collage from the scenic view of Griffith Island, Port Fairy, Victoria, Australia, showcasing serene coastal landscapes and natural beauty
Walking the beach to the Lighthouse

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Let the walking to Port Fairy Lighthouse begin!

After you cross the water, there is a walk of around 300 metres to the beach. From here, you can see the waves rolling in before you continue on the path leading to a beach walk.

It’s a lovely walk along the water’s edge when you hit the beach. Depending on the time of the day and the tides, you may have to go over some rocks at the water’s edge onto a short section of the boardwalk that takes you past an old quarry before back onto the sand.

Strolling towards Port Fairy Lighthouse, a picturesque coastal scene in Victoria, Australia
Sights on Griffiths Island Port Fairy.

You pass a small, enclosed bay that would be perfect for swimming on a warm day. From here, the last 600 metres are pathed as the magical site of the Port Fairy lighthouse comes into view.

If you are lucky, you will get some time at the lighthouse with no one else around. This historic Griffiths Island Lighthouse has safely guided ships into Port Fairy since 1859.

Majestic Port Fairy Lighthouse on Griffiths Island, Victoria, Australia, set against a tranquil coastal landscape with the merging hues of the sky and sea
Port Fairy Lighthouse Photos.

You can walk out to the lighthouse’s base and sit on the retaining wall, taking in the scenery. After some time, you can begin the walk back from the Port Fairly lighthouse on the south track.

The south track is 1135 metres long and uneventful for the first 600 meters. You walk through a grassy area where birds nest until you come out on a boardwalk on the Moyne River.

The Moyne River in Port Fairy on the Griffiths Island Walking Track
The path back to the carpark

As you head back to the parking lot via the water edge, you will have views of the entrance to the river and the town of Port Fairy on the other side. The walk back along the water is scenic and relaxing as you reach your start and finish points.

It is easy to see why the lighthouse plays a big part in Port Fairy tourism. Expect to spend around 1–1.5 hours on Griffiths Island exploring the lighthouse at Port Fairy. After you have finished, head to Port Fairy sites such as the Port Fairy Wharf.

How to get to Port Fairy

Port Fairy is located in the far west of Victoria. If you travel from Melbourne to Port Fairy, you will get there by following the M1 Princess Highway. You can catch a train to Warrnambool from Melbourne and then a bus to Port Fairy.

  • Melbourne to Port Fairy distance – 282.6 kilometres
  • Geelong to Port Fairy distance – 212.4 Kilometres
  • Torquay to Port via the Great Ocean Road – 278 Kilometres
  • Warrnambool to Port Fairy distance – 26.3 Kilometres

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Where to stay in Port Fairy

Port Fairy offers a variety of accommodation options to suit different preferences and budgets. Whether you prefer staying in a historic guesthouse, a cosy bed and breakfast, or a caravan park, Port Fairy has something for everyone. Here are some recommendations for Port Fairy.

boats and houses along the waterfront in Port fairy

We hope this article from us here at Explore Victoria has inspired you to embark on your adventure in Victoria, Australia, from popular caravan parks and pristine beaches to drives along the Great Ocean Road. Enjoy weekends away on the Mornington Peninsula and discover the cosmopolitan charm of Melbourne, Victoria, with a range of experiences for every traveller who wants to visit Victoria.

Whether you’re drawn to the rugged beauty of the Grampians, the cultural richness of Ballarat, or the autumn colours of Bright and Northern Victoria, there’s no shortage of hidden gems waiting to be discovered in Victoria.

Even if you love exploring Gippsland or driving the Great Alpine Road, Victoria has something special for you, and there is so much more for you to discover. If you are looking for more incredible and best places to visit in Melbourne or more travel in Victoria destinations, Explore Victoria has some more articles below for you to check out. Expand your horizons and get out and about in Victoria, Australia, for an unforgettable experience. 

If you have an idea, attraction, or top spot in Victoria, please comment or email us at contact@explorevictoriaaustralia.com.

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Author Bio

Mark Wyld is a passionate writer and explorer, weaving tales inspired by a deep love for his home state of Victoria. With local knowledge, Mark seeks to share insights and experiences that captivate and inspire readers. When not immersed in writing, you can find him working in Disability Support or spending time with family and friends. Follow Mark for a journey through Victoria’s best sights, tastes and attractions.