QUEENSCLIFF (and Point Lonsdale)
Queenscliff is one of those places that are fantastic. Queenscliff will a place visited that will be remembered for life. Be sure to allow a minimum of two days for this great region. A trip to Sorrento is a part of what’s on offer. The other fantastic thing about Queenscliff is the obvious love of heritage relevance and importance.
European explorers first arrived in 1802; the first European settler in the area was convict escapee William Buckley.
Permanent settlement began in 1836 when squatters arrived in the area known as Whale Head. The name was changed to Shortland's Bluff in honour of Lieutenant John Shortland. The Post Office opened on 1 May 1853 as Shortland's Bluff and was renamed Queenscliff in 1854.
The Palace Hotel was built in 1879 (later renamed Esplanade Hotel), the Baillieu Hotel was built in 1881 (later renamed Ozone Hotel) the Vue Grande Hotel was built in 1883, and the Queenscliff Hotel was built in 1887. To this day a number of boutique hotels are open.
The advent of the car saw Queenscliff drop in popularity as a tourist destination, as tourists were no longer dependent on its role as a transport hub. The railway ceased weekly passenger services in 1950, and was closed in 1976.
The 1980s saw a return in the town's tourist popularity and that momentum will continue as the appreciation of heritage factors grows.