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Go West Tours Melbourne Review – Can You Trust Them With Your Tour?

Go West Tours Melbourne Review – Can You Trust Them With Your Tour?

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If you’re planning a trip to Melbourne, you’re probably thinking about booking a few tours. Melbourne has plenty of tour companies to choose from and Go West Tours is one of the most popular. 

We know it can be tricky to judge whether or not to trust a tour company, so after taking several tours with Go West, we decided to give you our full, honest review. We weren’t paid by Go West to take these tours and just booked them through Viator, as usual, so we didn’t get any special treatment. We kept the fact that we’re travel bloggers on the down low! 

So can you trust Go West Tours? The short answer is yes, but keep on reading to discover whether or not their tours are right for you and the best tours to choose from. 

What is Go West Tours Melbourne?

A sign at loch ard gorge overlooking the ocean on the great ocean road australia
Go West tours visit some amazing places like the Loch Ard Gorge
Feeding a wallaby at the moonlit sanctuary on phillip island during a go west tour near melbourne australia
Feeding wallabies on a Go West tour at the Moonlit Sanctuary!

Go West Tours is a locally owned and operated tour company. It was founded in 2000 by a husband and wife duo who wanted to raise the standard of tours in Melbourne. Rather than providing big, generic tours, they focused on smaller and more interactive tours, with guides who knew what they were talking about. 

That hasn’t changed over the past 20 years, but the company sure has grown and won several tourism awards. They offer tours within Melbourne but mostly focus on tours out of the city to see the best of what Victoria has to offer. They also have some of our favorite tours in all of Melbourne!

One thing we really like about Go West Tours is the smaller group size. There’s usually a maximum of 24 people, rather than some larger coach tours with 50 people to one tour guide. We felt like we got more individual attention and didn’t feel like sheep being herded around!

What are the best tours Go West Tours offers in Melbourne?

Full-day Tour of Australia’s Great Ocean Road from Melbourne

the twelve apostles on a great ocean road tour australia
The Twelve Apostles rock formation
Bailey in a fallen over tree in Kennett River on a great ocean road tour australia
Enjoying a nature walk at Kennett River!

The Great Ocean Road is an incredibly scenic drive along the coast of Victoria. It’s famous for its breathtaking beauty, but taking a day trip requires a LOT of driving, so it’s best to sit back and let a tour guide do it for you.

Fortunately, Go West Tours offers this small group tour showcasing the highlights of the Great Ocean Road. Our guide also took us koala spotting in the rainforest in Kennett River (does it get more Australian than that?) and there’s a stop to buy lunch in the scenic town of Apollo Bay.

The highlight of the day is admiring the Twelve Apostles, which are a collection of limestone needles rising from the sea. Since it’s a small group tour, our guide even took the time to take us down to the beach to admire them from the sand. The final stop of the day is Loch Ard Gorge, which is definitely one of the most beautiful places in Victoria.

We loved this tour and we aren’t alone in that – there are 4,000 positive reviews you can read here! The tour costs $155 AUD, which we think is great value for a full-day tour with so many fantastic stops. 

Wildlife Tour with Stops at Phillip Island, Brighton Beach, and Moonlit Sanctuary

Penguins walk down a path on phillip Island during a go west penguin tour near melbourne australia
Penguins on parade!
Daniel smiles with a koala at the moonlit sanctuary on phillip island during a go west penguin tour near melbourne australia
Koala cuddles at the Moonlit Sanctuary!

If you love animals as much as we do, then this highly-rated tour to Phillip Island to see some iconic Australian wildlife is for you! On the way out to Phillip Island, the tour stops at Dendy Street Beach to see the famous Brighton Bathing Boxes. These brightly painted beach huts are an Australian icon, and it’s reported that each one is worth over $500,000 AUD! 

Then, it’s onto Phillip Island to visit the Moonlit Sanctuary to see some of Australia’s most amazing animals. We loved getting the chance to hand-feed wallabies and kangaroos, and pose for photos with adorable koalas – how cool is that? We did have to pay extra (about $30 AUD) for the koala experience, but our tour guide helped us book it on the day and others in our group chose to visit with dingos – that’s on our list for next time!

It gets even better, though! Phillip Island is home to one of the biggest Little Penguin colonies in the world. These adorable birds are only 30-35 cm (12-14 inches) tall. Watching them waddle across the beach back to their nesting grounds at sunset was SO cute and definitely put a big smile on our faces. 

This tour costs $175 AUD, including all entry fees, hotel pickup and dropoff, and lasts for around 12 hours. It has THOUSANDS of 5-star reviews and we wrote an in-depth review on our experience if you want more details!

Yarra Valley Gourmet Tour from Melbourne with ALL Tastings and Lunch Included

A tasting glass of wine is poured at a winery in the Yarra Valley
The wine was so good!
Grape vines at a winery in the Yarra Valley, Melbourne
I love the Yarra Valley!

The Yarra Valley is a beautiful region about 1.5 hours outside of Melbourne, and with this gourmet tour you’ll get to try the best cheese, wine, and chocolate that the area has to offer! 

Make sure to eat breakfast before you go, because the day kicks off with wine tasting at the pretty Balgownie Estate, before heading to the Coldstream Dairy to try their delicious cheeses with a beautiful vineyard view. 

This tour is perfect for gin lovers because there’s a gin tasting at the stylish Four Pillars distillery, and then it’s time for lunch and a glass of wine at Rochford Winery, although you can switch to tea or coffee if you’re all boozed out. The final stop of the day is the Yarra Valley Chocolaterie, where my sweet tooth was in heaven with all their handmade chocolates.

The tour costs $189 AUD including all of the food and drink we’ve talked about. We love this tour not only because there’s so much yummy food involved, but also because you can enjoy lots of wine and gin without having to worry about a designated driver, so everyone can enjoy it to the fullest.

Related Read: Another region wine-lovers shouldn’t miss is touring the Hunter Valley from Sydney!

Grampians National Park Small-Group Tour with Hiking, Waterfalls, and Kangaroos

Silverband Falls in Grampians National Park in Australia
Silverband Falls
A kangaroo in Grampians National Park in Australia
A kangaroo in Grampians National Park in Australia

Grampians National Park is famed for its rugged mountains and beautiful waterfalls, so this full-day tour of the park is perfect for active travelers who love hikes, and spotting wildlife. The day starts with a visit to Ballarat, a historic gold mining town, then once you arrive in the park, it’s time for a bushwalk to Silverband Falls which I think photos don’t do justice! 

There’s the chance to discover small-town life in Australia at Halls Gap, to buy lunch and then go kangaroo spotting with your guide. Our favorite part about this tour, though, is the 30-minute hike along the Wonderland Loop to the most epic viewpoint over the Wonderland mountain range. We also love the views from the Boroka Lookout, and then the day ends on a high note with a visit to MacKenzie Falls.

The tour costs $155 AUD and lasts for about 13 hours. It’s a long day, but the tour guides keep things fun and interesting, so it flies by. It runs on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, and books up fast so be sure to reserve your spot in advance!

Great Ocean Road Sunset Tour from Melbourne

Bailey and Daniel take a selfie on the Great Ocean Road sign
So excited!
Sunset at the twelve apostles on the Great Ocean Road
Sunset at the twelve apostles on the Great Ocean Road

Seeing the Twelve Apostles along the Great Ocean Road is always incredible, but what makes it truly spectacular is enjoying them at sunset – and this full-day tour allows you to do just that. There are all the normal highlights of the Great Ocean Road, such as the koalas, Apollo Bay, and the Memorial Arch, but this tour leaves later than usual to make sure you catch one of the best sunsets in Australia!

The tour leaves between 9-11 am, depending on the sunset time, so you don’t have to get up as early as you normally do to visit the Great Ocean Road from Melbourne. You’ll get back pretty late, but you can always snooze on the drive back!

The tour costs $149 AUD and there are stops at a bakery in the afternoon and for pizza on the way back to Melbourne, so there’s no need to bring a packed lunch. There are only a few sunset tours along the Great Ocean Road available in Melbourne and this one has almost exclusively 5-star reviews, so it’s popular and books up fast!

3-hour Melbourne City Sightseeing Tour

Scenic shot of a tram and train station in Melbourne Australia
Two boats cruise the Yarra River in Melbourne Australia
Melbourne is so beautiful!

If you’re short on time in Melbourne, or just looking to get acquainted with the city, this 3.5-hour tour will show you all of the highlights. From Collins Street, which is Melbourne’s trendiest street, to the Fitzroy Gardens and Melbourne Cricket Ground, you’ll get a real feel for what this city is all about. 

Of course, there’s a visit to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, one of Melbourne’s most beautiful buildings. There’s also a stroll through the stunning Royal Botanical Gardens, which is a lovely peaceful oasis in the middle of the busy city. 

There’s WiFi and air-conditioning in the tour bus, so this is a comfortable and easy way to go sightseeing, whatever the weather! The tour runs on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday mornings for $85 AUD. Make sure to ask your guide for great recommendations on where to go during the rest of your time in Melbourne. Our guides were super helpful with suggestions!

Why We Book Tours with Viator

Viator is a trusted online booking system for tours around the world! We almost always book our tours using Viator for a couple of reasons:

  • Free cancellation on most tours – Most of the tours on Viator allow you to cancel and get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance. This is handy in case plans change, or if booking an outdoor activity, the weather forecast is looking grim.
  • Reserve now and pay later – You can secure your spot on some of the most popular tours well in advance and not pay until closer to the day of the tour.
  • Lowest price guarantee – If you happen to find the same tour at a lower price elsewhere, Viator will refund you the price difference.
  • Pay in your chosen currency – Avoid costly international transaction fees by choosing to pay in your home currency.
  • Peace of mind – When booking with tour operators you find in person on the street or in small booking offices, you are often promised one thing and given another. This online platform holds tour operators accountable with a written description of inclusions as well as the opportunity for customers to leave reviews.

Check out the Viator website here! Or, for more info, read our detailed review about Viator here.

Is Go West Tours Melbourne a good company to book with?

Looking at the twelve apostles in the ocean on a great ocean road tour australia
The Twelve Apostles is so cool!

Yes, they’re a fantastic company and we love their ethos. They’ve been certified with Ecotourism Australia for almost 20 years, and are committed to sustainable tourism. We can also vouch that the guides are awesome and do a great job sharing their passion and knowledge about Melbourne and Victoria.

We enjoyed all of the tours we did with Go West – in fact, many of them made it into our guide on the best things to do in Melbourne. Go West is organized and knows how to design a great itinerary. Nothing about their tours feels generic or cookie-cutter – it’s fun, immersive adventures that are good value for money.

Would I book a tour operated by Go West Tours Melbourne again? 

Bailey sits on the beach of penguin watchout on phillip island with other people on a go west penguin tour near melbourne australia
Yes!

100% yes! We did three tours with Go West the last time we were in Melbourne, and we enjoyed them all. They were actually training guides on one of the tours that we did, and the trainees told us that they get an intensive 1-month training period per tour to make sure their knowledge and guiding skills are up to par.

I will definitely be booking more tours with them again in the future!

Related Read: If you’re also considering a cruise, read our review on the Spirit of Melbourne Dinner Cruise before you book!

Where to Stay in Melbourne

The Langham Melbourne room
Photo credit: The Langham Melbourne

If you’re planning to visit Melbourne, let us help you find a great place to stay. There’s something to fit every budget, so check out our top picks from luxury hotels to budget-friendly hostels. Here’s what you need to know!

The Langham Melbourne – $$$

For an elegant stay – think marble staircases, fountains, and chandeliers – The Langham Melbourne is the perfect place. The hotel is in the middle of Melbourne overlooking the Yarra River. You’ll get beautiful city views from the hotel’s restaurant and from the indoor pool. It’s also within walking distance of a number of top attractions.

Rooms here start at $300 – $400 AUD per night. Check availability and reserve a room here.

Grand Hotel Melbourne – $$

Stay in the Melbourne Central Business District at this historic hotel that has plenty of character. The studios and apartments at the Grand Hotel Melbourne give you more space than a typical hotel and even include a kitchen. You can also take advantage of the heated indoor pool and the fitness center with a sauna. Plus, it’s just a few minutes’ walk to Crown Casino, Southbank, Docklands, and more.

A studio starts at around $200 AUD per night and can be reserved through Booking.com here.

Space Hotel – $

You don’t have to sacrifice style for money at this hostel. The Space Hotel is a modern hostel with lots of extra guest amenities like a gym, a hot tub, and even a mini-theater. You can head to the rooftop terrace to relax and enjoy the views. The hostel is conveniently located in the Central Business District and is not far from the Queen Victoria Market and Chinatown.

Accommodation options include both private rooms and shared dorm rooms. A bed in a dorm starts at $55 AUD and private rooms begin at $100 AUD. You can reserve a spot in advance through Booking.com or HostelWorld.com.

Thanks for reading!

Daniel and Bailey on the Go West Tour bus to Phillip Island during a Penguin tour near Melbourne Australia
Thanks for reading!

I hope our review of Go West Tours was helpful as you plan a trip to Melbourne. While some tour companies can be so-so, we really enjoyed our experiences on the Go West Tours we took and have no issues recommending them to anyone headed to Melbourne!

For more travel inspiration, tips, tour ideas, and city guides, have a look through our blogs about Australia. Here are a few popular ones to get you started:

10 Things to Know BEFORE Whale Watching in Sydney

The BEST Jumping Croc Cruise in Darwin: Our Absolute Favorite Tour & Why!

Great Ocean Road Tours from Melbourne – the 5 BEST Tours for this Scenic Drive!