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Latest News

Winter Warmer Offer at RORO Café on the Beach

3 x Course Lunch + Return Ferry for $25.

Don’t lock the doors just because of winter! Don your winter woollies and head to RORO Café on the Beach to embrace winter.

Valid until the 31st of August 2016, Searoad Ferries are putting on a Winter Warmer, with a 3 x course lunch and return ferry to/from Sorrento for only $25. Yum!

RORO Café on the Beach provides a cosy nook for diners, right on the Queenscliff foreshore. Entertainment is included with Port Phillip Bay’s busy ship lane and coastal birdlife passing by your water facing window.

RORO Café on the Beach is open for breakfast (7 – 11:30am) and lunch (12 – 3pm 7 days a week.

Address: 1 Wharf Street, Queenscliff

For booking enquiries, please call (03) 5258 3244

The post Winter Warmer Offer at RORO Café on the Beach appeared first on Ferry Tale.

High Tea on the High Sea

Take your tea at sea every Sunday between February and mid-December on board Searoad Ferries.

Served in the Portsea Lounge, surrounded by a captain’s view of Port Phillip Bay and coastal-lands, Searoad’s team unpacks the fine china and white table cloths every Sunday to serve a selection of tea, espresso coffee, finger sandwiches, cakes and deserts.

Departing Sorrento at 11am or Queenscliff at 2pm, visitors will be treated to a new and delicious way of enjoying Port Phillip Bay. The return journey navigates the houses of the rich and famous along the Portsea foreshore, the historic Point Nepean Quarantine Station, Point Lonsdale Lighthouse and populations of bird and marine life.

Bookings for the High Tea sailings are essential and can be made online or by calling 5258 3244.

High Tea Schedule

Every Sunday between February and mid-December

Departs from Sorrento at 11am
Departs from Queenscliff at 2pm

For more information on the High Tea on the High Sea, visit the Searoad Ferries website.

The post High Tea on the High Sea appeared first on Ferry Tale.

The Millionaire’s Walk

The waterfront properties running from Portsea to Sorrento Pier, where Searoad Ferries depart, are known to be some of the most exclusive in Victoria.

Look port side (left for those land-lovers) as you depart Sorrento’s pier on board Searoad Ferries to appreciate the grand architecture, well-manicured gardens and private beach entrances.

Visitors to Sorrento are welcome to walk amongst the waterfront properties with sometime voyeuristic access being granted via the Millionaire’s Walk. The Millionaire’s Walk is a 1.5km (return) section of the Sorrento-Portsea Artists’ Trail, running between Lentell Avenue and Point King Road.

For a short trail, the Millionaire’s Walk holds big appeal, with a mix of natural, historical and aspirational check points turning this walk into a full afternoon activity. Starting at Lentell Avenue, follow the fence lines and gate entrances, keeping the sparking bay in check. On a clear day you can see all the way to the Dandenong Rangers, sitting above the opposing side of the bay. Lining the cliff face are numerous native shrubs and low lying coastal trees.

Facing the water, overlooking the Millionaire’s Walk are the landscaped gardens and stunning homes of the few lucky enough to snap up property on these exclusive shores. At times you will feel like you have over stepped your bounds, but be assured public access is welcomed.

Point King

Finishing the walk at Point King Road, a white rig station and stone monument marks the landing point of the English into Port Phillip Bay in 1802. Aboard was Lieutenant John Murray, who claimed the area for Great Britain using a flag displaying the Union Jack for the first time in Australia’s history.

Near the monument, search out the two paintings by acclaimed artists Sir Arthur Streeton and Arthur Boyd. Both painting show the artists interpretations of the view back towards Sorrento.

The Lentell Avenue entrance to the Millionaire’s Walk is 1.3km from the Searoad Ferries terminal. The return hike for Searoad Ferries foot passages including the Millionaire’s Walk is an estimated 4km of well-maintain, undulating track.

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Discovering Phillip

Port Phillip Bay was named after Governor Arthur Phillip(1738 – 1814) in 1805.

Did you know Port Phillip Bay was originally named Port King Bay, after the sitting NSW Governor, Philip King in 1802.


Phillip King was the Governor of NSW when the first British ship led by Commander John Murray, entered the bay. Governor King renamed the bay in 1805 to honour his predecessor, Governor Arthur Phillip, who retired from service in the same year.

Who was Arthur Phillip?

Arthur Phillip (1738 – 1814) was a British Royal Navy officer credited amongst other things as being the founder of Australia’s first penal colony and being the first Governor of New South Wales.

Arriving in Botany Bay as Commodore of the First Fleet in 1788, Arthur Phillip quickly moved camp to Port Jackson (encompassing Sydney Harbour) to establish Australia’s first penal colony. Phillip named the area Sydney Cove after Lord Sydney, the Home Secretary at the time.

Arthur Phillip remained in Australia as the Governor of New South Wales until 1792. In his tenure, Phillip set up official land-grants, systematic farming and a steady water-supply as well as establishing a second colony on Norfolk Island.

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RORO’s New Winter Menu has Docked

Wow, it’s getting cold out there. Time to batten down the hatches and get the soup on the boil. The new winter menu, created by head chef Brent Love, has arrived at RORO Café on the Beach.

Sitting against the sand of the Queenscliff foreshore, looking out at the wild headlands of Port Phillip Bay, RORO Café on the Beach is a spectacular location to watch the winter waves roll in to shore. The café is warmed to a treat, creating the ultimate in winter coziness.

The new winter menu at RORO Café on the Beach has docked, featuring hearty favorites like the signature Seafood Chowder, Wagyu Beef Burgers and daily soup specials served with yummy crusty bread. Cup your hands around a barista made coffee or a warming glass of locally produced red wine to ensure your cheeks glow red.

Come in and try the Winter Warmer Menu Special, including a soup,
main dish from the specials menu and a glass of wine for $18.

Check out the full winter menu including vegetarian and gluten free options.

Roro Lunch

Visiting from Sorrento? Try the 3 course lunch package for $25
including free return ferry travel with Searoad Ferries.

Roro Café, located next to the Queenscliff Searoad Ferries terminal, is open for breakfast (7 – 11:30am) and lunch (12 – 3pm) 7 days a week.

Address: 1 Wharf Street, Queenscliff
For booking enquiries, please call (03) 5258 3244

The post RORO’s New Winter Menu has Docked appeared first on Ferry Tale.

School Holiday Activities

All aboard the fun ferry! School holidays are back and we have a schedule full to the brim of FREE activities ready for our little sailors.

Running on selected dates and services over the June / July school holidays (see schedule below), kids entertainers and live aquatic creatures will cruise the coast on board our Searoad Ferries.

While the kids are being entertained, parents can sit back and relax in the lounge or have a coffee or glass of wine up on deck. There’s no better way to cruise the bay!


Family fares departing Queenscliff or Sorrento start at just $33 (one-way foot passenger). Book Now!

School Holiday Schedule:

Live Aquatic Creatures
Dates: 28 June & 5 July
Meet turtles, frogs and a crocodile and learn about how to care for aquatic creatures in a fun learning environment.
Departing: Queenscliff 12pm and 2pm.
Departing: Sorrento 1pm and 3pm

Face Painting & Aquatic Sand Art
Date: 1 July
Magical face painting! Be a princess or a pirate for the day, or create your own pictures with Aquatic Sand Art.
Departing: Queenscliff 1pm and 3pm.
Departing: Sorrento 2pm and 4pm

Tommy Terrific Balloon Artist
Date: 7 July
Crazy, fun and entertaining balloon shapes that will bring out the kid in all ages from 5 to 55!
Departing: Sorrento 11am and 1pm.
Departing: Queenscliff 12pm and 2pm

The post School Holiday Activities appeared first on Ferry Tale.

The Whales Are Back!!

The Searoad Ferries crew have been on hand this week to help welcome the migrating Southern Right Whales back into Port Phillip Bay.

The Southern Right Whales are regular winter visitors to Port Phillip Bay, using the protected waters around Victoria’s coastline to calve. The most recent whale spotting within the bay was around the Sorrento and Rye area.

Check out the recent Leader Newspaper article ‘Southern right whales spotted off Sorrento and Rye‘ for more details.

The post The Whales Are Back!! appeared first on Ferry Tale.

Do you #HappyChewbacca?

There’s no need to be alarmed if a wookie welcomes you on board your next Searoad Ferries journey.

We promise this wookie is the consummate professional and most certainly trained in all aspects of seafaring.

If you reached your download limit last week watching Candace Payne and her hysterical new Chewbacca mask, you will understand why our Searoad crew have turned so #happychewbacca.

To continue the spread of #happychewbacca, we have passed our wookie on to customer, Luke Johns. We can’t wait to see your #happychewbacca Luke!

Confused? Clearly you were living under the Death Star last week and missed the Candace Paynes #happychewbacca phenomenon. ‘Click here’ and join #happychewbacca craze.

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Nearly every passenger that has ever crossed the Bay aboard Searoad Ferries will attest to the spectacular views, the magical feeling of spotting a dolphin pod frolicking beside the ferry, the comfortable and relaxing lounge areas and the memorable day out shared with family and friends. Another element that should not be overlooked is the new and improved food and beverage offerings.

RORO Café is located right on the beach at Queenscliff with stunning views across the Bay.  Serving serious coffee and a fresh menu of local and regional producewith our new chef, Brent Love making his mark.  Great service, the best breakfast in town, and a changing menu are just a few reasons to pop in and give RORO a try.  Plus, the view just doesn’t get better than this. Open daily from 7am – 6pm.

Don’t forget RORO Café Onboard. To make your crossing even more enjoyable there is a range of sandwiches and snacks,  an onboard barista and a bar open on select sailings.  You can make your dining experience as indulgent or as simple as you choose.

Meet Head Chef – Brent Love

RORO has recently employed a new Head Chef, Brent Love, who has taken to his new role like a ferry to water! Find out a bit more about Brent, his love of food and why he has joined the team at Searoad Ferries.

What do you love about your job?
I love how I can get good local produce from both sides of the bay – got to love those ferries!

Describe your job in three words:
Always a challenge.

What is your favourite dish to cook up?
Having been a pastry chef for half my career, I would have to say banana cake. The kid loves it!

What is the most popular dish at RORO?
Seafood Chowder. It’s our signature dish.

What are your favourite autumn ingredients?
Apples, pears and berries. Should be able to make a cracking dish from them.

What is always in your fridge at home?
Duck fat and good quality butter (I’m showing my French training here!).

Who inspires you?
Marco Pierre White – what a legend.

What is the best advice you’ve been given?
Believe in yourself and you will go far.

Tell us something we would be surprised to learn about you?
I can’t stand touching live fish.


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There’s so much to do in the Bellarine and Mornington Peninsulas and Searoad Ferries is the best way to explore them both. Whether you’re travelling on foot for a leisurely day out or bringing your car to explore even further, Searoad can be your middle man!

To help you decide on what to do and where to go, Searoad has teamed up with a number of great attractions, experiences and accommodation providers to offer a range of packages to cater for all your holiday needs. Whether you plan to play for a day or enjoy a longer stay, there is a package to make your planning easier while enjoying some great savings.

Choose from a family day out at a maze, wine and dine at a top winery or brewery, tee off at a golf course, an indulge at a day spa, experience a sail and rail adventure, deluxe accommodation packages and many more.

So get packaging and book your next Peninsula getaway today.

To find out about the packages that are on offer, please visit www.searoad.com.au


The post GET PACKAGING! appeared first on Ferry Tale.

Tourism Award Win 2014



Searoad Ferries, has taken out the Major Tour/Transport Operator category at the Victorian Tourism Award for the second year in a row.

The family owned business will now go on to defend the title at the 2014 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards, to be held in early 2015.

CEO of Searoad Ferries, Matt McDonald, said the award is recognition for the hard work and dedication of the entire Searoad Ferries team.

“We are ecstatic to be the recipient of such a prestigious award two years in a row, and to have our business recognised among a winners list that includes some of the state’s largest and most popular tourist attractions is really humbling,” Matt said.

“Our business continues to grow each year and I’m so proud of what we have achieved at Searoad. What started out as a single vessel operation transporting around 300 passengers and 30 vehicles in 1987, is now the country’s busiest car and passenger ferry with three vessels carrying more than 737,000 passengers each year.”

“The Searoad team works extremely hard to provide passengers with a unique, exciting and memorable tourism experience. Whether a passenger is taking part in a traditional crossing or a special crossing such as High Tea of the High Seas or a Twilight Cruises, we strive to ensure their experience is enjoyable  and something they will remember forever.”

“We are looking forward to representing Victoria at the National Awards early next year,” he said.

Bring on Summer….. more ferries, less queues and cheaper prices!

This summer, we will run a third ferry creating more capacity, less waiting and a better travel experience. Our CEO, Matt McDonald, said “The extra ferry will operate from Boxing Day through to the 6th of January and will ease congestion and get passengers to their destination quicker. We are also encouraging all passengers who know they are travelling to go online and book their ferry ticket. Not only will this speed up ticketing and boarding, customers will also get cheaper online prices.”

Our ferry service has been operating for over 25 years and has recently made many upgrades to our facilities, including: onboard children’s playground, revitalized café, wi-fi, installment of a lift on both ferries and air conditioning, as well as larger viewing windows.  New family fares, seniors discounts and return priced tickets have recently been introduced as well as a discount card for locals.  If you live in the 3222-3227 or 3938-3944 postcodes you can become a Loyal Local Cardholder with the ferries and earn points, receive discounts and exclusive offers.

Searoad Ferries Celebrates 25 years!

Over the 15th & 16th of September, Searoad Ferries celebrated 25 years of crossing the Bay. Both vessels had onboard activities including wine tasting with vineyards from both peninsulas, gourmet food samplers from both pensinsulas, Peninsula Hot Springs bathing tubs and more! The festivities went off with a bang on Saturday night with fireworks on both Sorrento and Queenscliff sides.

Thank you to everyone that took part in the event. We have had a fantastic 25 years and look forward to the next 25!

Ferry delayed by endangered whale, but we don’t mind!

The 5:00p.m. Sorrento bound ferry was delayed in the Queenscliff harbor for 15 minutes due to an endangered Southern Right Whale swimming close to the vessel. Passengers said the junior whale surfaced several times beside the ferry and was easily visible under the water. After the ferry departed, the whale seemed to have left, but surfaced again when the next ferry arrived. It frolicked in the waters in and around the harbor until late into the evening. This is the third whale sighting for the Searoad Ferries since Saturday, two of which were Southern Right Whales and one Humpback Whale. Crew members on board Searoad Ferries said, “each year we have been seeing more and more whales on our route from Queenscliff to Sorrento.” This year the crew predicts to see at least one whale a week during the migration period, which finishes in November.

To view related news articals visit:

Geelong Advertiser – Whale delays thrilled passengers

The Mornington Peninsula Leader  – Endangered whale holds up Sorrento ferry

Whales in Port Phillip Bay!

During the month of June passengers onboard the ferries have been experiencing the magnificent Humpback Whales which have been visiting southern Port Phillip Bay…

Check out this video taken from the ferry on the 13th June.

Click here to watch

Launch of the MV Queenscliff

After an extensive Re-Fit in late 2011,  the MV Queenscliff has been a great hit with Passengers traveling between Sorrento and Queenscliff.   Some of the new features onboard include;

  • An new Cafe with fresh coffee
  • A Children’s Play Area
  • New Observation lounges
  • Tourism and Historic Information

Check out the images below – or even better – come down and see her for yourself !

MV Queenscliff departs Queenscliff on the EVEN hours and Sorrento on the ODD hours

Billboard named "new-ship" does not exist