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Relax in secluded gardens at McCrae Beach
  • Panaromic view of historic Lighthouse
  • Holiday house set in secluded grounds
  • Watch ships in the channel and yachts under sail
  • Pristine McCrae Beach
  • Hidden 3 acres of nature - stroll to the sandy beach

Welcome to Doolkoora - a 3-acre garden residence situated at McCrae Beach on the Mornington Peninsula, about one hour's drive from Melbourne. Hidden from public view within a diverse native garden, Doolkoora is only five minutes' walk to the beach, and little more to nearby cafes and restaurants. From the house, enjoy sweeping bay views, including the historic McCrae Lighthouse and passing ships. Explore the gardens and marvel at the array of catalogued plants.

The garden ambience of Doolkoora is unique. Planted over 50 years ago, the property contains over 300 species of trees, grasses and ferns. Such a large variety of plants is made possible by the large variation in elevation, which creates a number of different microclimates, such as ti-trees up on high ridges, local she-oaks in flat bushland, and tree-ferns down in a cool gully with its own creek. There is even a lawn. Together, the diversity creates a wonderful, relaxing atmosphere, as well as secluding the gardens from the surrounding properties. It is easy to enjoy whole days exploring this vast, natural maze - indeed, the garden has earned the property the nickname "the Adventure House":

"Our children remember their holidays at Doolkoora as the 'Adventure House' because of the beautiful grounds."

Doolkoora is very welcoming to families and pets. Built to be child and senior-friendly, all living areas including the balcony are situated at the same level as the driveway entry (no steps to climb to access the views!). The lawn, overlooked by the balcony, is also great for young children, as they can be free to play while under complete supervision (of course, older children would much rather map out the rest of the gardens). Pets will also love the property, which gives them the opportunity to discover the garden and the beach, while the house and balcony are secured with gates to prevent their escape:

"Our grandson and bassett hounds spend hours and hours exploring the lovely bush garden and enjoying ... walking along the paths and ... watching all the birds. We went walking on the beach everyday. It's been a restful and beautiful holiday."

Doolkoora is unique. The large, secluded garden property located so close to Melbourne, yet a stroll to the beach, is quite unparalleled on Port Philip Bay. There is just so much for one to do - explore the natural gardens, have picnics and swim in the pristine beach, go bush walking in the area, or enjoy fine dining at the nearby Heronswood Garden Cafe or one of the fine restaurants in McCrae Village. Enjoy holiday attractions nearby, up Arthurs Seat through Red Hill and across to Shoreham, or down the esplanade to Point Nepean and over scenic terrain to Flinders. Feeling tired after all that? Just sit back and relax, and enjoy the amazing bay views. There really is something for everyone.

Come down to Doolkoora - a place where it is impossible to be bored.

Doolkoora is proud to be shortlisted in the 2010 TakeABreak Awards. Check out Doolkoora on takeabreak.com.au

About the author
Kath Mark wrote this article

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