Its Local Government Area is the Shire of Yarra Ranges. At the 2016 Census, Belgrave had a population of 3,929. Belgrave was first settled by Europeans in 1851; it is only 16 years younger than Melbourne.
It has many animals not found closer to Melbourne, such as black cockatoos, echidnas, wallabies, ringtail possums and bushy tail possums. There are many amazing forest tracks you can walk and places to go to fully see the beauty of the place.
Belgrave was named after Mount Belgrave, a house which was built by an early settling family, the Bensons. The family was connected with Belgrave Chapel Leeds, Yorkshire, England; the name carried by Mr and Mrs R.G. Benson when they came to Melbourne in 1856. Until the 1900s Belgrave was considered a part of Upper Ferntree Gully and the train station was known as Monbulk from 1900 to 1904.
The village centre started in what is now called Tecoma, where a school was opened in 1901. At the time of World War I, Belgrave had a store, a post office, a sawmill and a dozen or more farmers and nurserymen. By 1920 it had become a small resort area and had 7 guest houses and 4 coffee shops. It also had a lolly shop, a chemist and 2 stores.
Belgrave had a population of around 1,000 in the 1920s and they decided to give the growing settlement new place names: Belgrave Heights and Belgrave South.
Belgrave was promoted as the Queen of the Dandenong Ranges and as 'Belgrave the beautiful'. To its north there was Monbulk Forest (now called Sherbrooke Forest). The popularity of Belgrave continued after the war.
The weather in Belgrave is much as would be expected about anywhere in Melbourne; unpredictable. In summer there are days where it's too hot to go outside or do anything (except maybe go to the pool). In winter the days are shorter and darker and rain and hail can be expected (but the lantern parade is on to brighten up the darkest day). A lot of days it will be sunny and rainy on and off, or suddenly become clear on a stormy day.
|Climate chart (explanation)|
Melbourne Airport is approximately 65 km from Belgrave, driving will take around an hour, taking the Belgrave line train will also take around an hour.
From Melbourne head east along Burwood Hwy.
From Gippsland and Mornington Peninsula head north along Belgrave-Hallam Rd.
Belgrave is the final station on the Belgrave line. Travel from (and to) Melbourne takes approximately 1 hour. To use public transport you'll need a Myki card, which costs $6 (or $3 for children/concession) from post offices, milk-bars, petrol stations and train stations. Once you have the Myki card it needs to be topped up with money. An adult fee (for one trip) is approximately $3 (it changes frequently) and a child/concession fee is $1.50. The number of stops doesn't change the cost.
- 1 Belgrave Railway Line (Belgrave Train Station). The train station for getting into Belgrave, and going other places.
Adjacent to the Belgrave train station is the major bus terminus for the area with multiple routes servicing the local areas. Most bus routes don't run on Sundays or aren't very frequent.
- 697 Belgrave - Belgrave South via Belgrave Heights
- 663 Belgrave - Lilydale via Kallista, The Patch, Monbulk and Mt Evelyn
- 695 Belgrave - Gembrook
- 699 Belgrave - Upwey
- 694 Belgrave - Olinda via Sherbrooke Road
- 693 Belgrave - Oakleigh via Ferntree Gully and Brandon Park
Renting a car can be useful, consider using Car Next Door (many people rent their used cars out around the Dandenong Ranges). There is plenty of parking and much of the hinterland is accessible by car. Note that the roads can be curvy, hilly, bumpy and hard to drive on if you aren't used to the area.
Bike rental is possible but only from a bike store in Monbulk (Cog Bikes Australia). There are bike tracks along the railway to get to Tecoma, Upwey and Upper-Ferntree Gully but riding along the roads can be hilly, bumpy and generally hard to ride even if you're used to the area.
- 1 Sherbrooke Forest (1 km out of Belgrave on the Monbulk Road). A unique and ecologically valuable example of a sub-tropical rain forest. The flora and fauna are broad and varied; the forest of great white Victorian mountain ash and giant tree ferns. If you walk quietly, especially around dawn you may hear, and even glimpse, the male Lyrebird's dance. Be sure to include Sherbrooke Falls on your walk through this tranquil forest.
- 2 Borthwick Park (The pool playground) (next to Belgrave Pool). Walking track and playground. Children love the playground.
- 3 Belgrave Lake Park, 35 Park Dr. Nice park, has a playground.
- 4 Sherbrooke Art Society Inc, 62 Monbulk Rd, ☏ . A pretty art gallery. It has some amazing local art. Free.
- 5 Birdsland Reserve, 271 Mt Morton Rd, Belgrave Heights. A pretty track around the lake with many birds to see.
- 6 The 1000 steps. A beautiful scenic walk up lots of stairs! There's a playground at the bottom.
- 1 Puffing Billy, 1 Old Monbulk Rd, ☏ . Puffing Billy historic steam train commences its journey from Belgrave. The train station follows on from the suburban train line. It is beautiful, especially going through the forest. For over 100 years, it was traditional for passengers to sit on the edges of the carriage windows with their legs dangling outside, but this was banned in 2018 due to safety concerns. Adults $37, children $19, under-4s free.
- 2 Trees Adventure - Glen Harrow Park (Trees Tops Adventure), Old Monbulk Rd (500 m from the town), ☏ . Beautiful tree climb, with ziplines and climbing courses all high up in the trees. There are lower courses for young children and scared adults. Adults $48, children 8-17 $38, children 4-7 $25.
- 3 Belgrave Outdoor Pool (Belgrave Pool), 69 Best St, ☏ . Open in summer. Outdoor pool, friendly atmosphere and great for families. Has a heated baby pool. Playground just outside the pool gates.
- 4 The Cameo, 1628 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . Local cinemas in an attractive art deco era building. During summer there are also outdoor cinema sessions.
- Belgrave Big Dreams Market (Big Dreams). 2nd Sunday of the month 9AM-2PM. Where local businesses sell their products. It has many stalls with food, clothing, handmade jewellery, fresh produce, arts and crafts and whatever else people from the area want to sell. Has a very large range of vegan and vegetarian stalls. This market is an important part of both Belgrave and the hills.
- Belgrave Lantern Festival, ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Held along the main street every year, usually on the Saturday closest to the winter solstice (late June). People are encouraged to make lanterns and bring them to where a procession is then held to light up the night sky.
Belgrave has an eclectic mix of small shops as well as a supermarket, post office, bakery and organic shop.
- 1 Belgrave Emporium, 1662 Burwood Hwy. Unique local handmade crafts, vintage clothing and other vintage items.
- 2 Funky Stuff, 1651 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . 10AM-5PM. Interesting clothing and artistic store. Very colourful and bright.
- 3 Belgrave Book Barn (The Book Barn), 1630 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . 10AM-5:30PM. Great book and art supply store.
- 4 Through the Looking Glass Belgrave, 1669 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . 11AM-4PM. Eclectic second-hand book store with friendly staff.
The Belgrave arcade is a small shopping mall where there are lots of little shops.
- 5 Baker and Baker Salts, The arcade, ☏ . Has lots of types of salt and pepper.
- 6 Loli Nail Salon, The Arcade, ☏ . A nail parlour with friendly staff and is fairly priced.
- 1 Babaji's Kitchen South Indian Restaurant & Food Truck (Babaji's), 1/1644 Burwood Hwy (right of the Sooki Lounge), ☏ . Th-Tu noon–8PM, W closed. Offers delicious samosas and a large range of Indian food. Has a vegan menu.
- 2 Belgrave Pizza House, 19/21 Bayview Rd, ☏ . Tu W Su 5–9:30PM, W 5–9:30PM, Th 5–10PM, F Sa 5–11PM. Suitable for families, well-priced.
- 3 La Collina Pizzeria, 1640 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . Monday 5–9PM, Tu-Th 2–9PM, F-Su noon–9:30PM. A small pizza place that also sells ice cream.
- 4 Sushi Express (The Sushi Shop), 1688 Burwood Hwy (along the street of belgrave), ☏ . M-W 11AM–7PM, Th-Sa 11AM–8PM, Su 11AM–7:15PM. Offers sushi, rice dishes and other Japanese dishes. Has a vegan menu.
- 5 Micawber Tavern (The Tavern), 65/71 Monbulk Rd (along Monbulk road in the direction of Kallista), ☏ . Cosy pub with a vegan menu, child-friendly during the day
- 6 Savvy Organic Pizza & Ice Cream, Rear 3/1647 Burwood Hwy (left of Woolworths), ☏ . Th 5–9PM, F Sa 5–9:30PM, Su 5–9PM, M-W closed. Offers a large menu with ice cream and gelato. Vegan menu.
- 7 Jade Valley Restaurant, 1647 Burwood Hwy (in the arcade), ☏ . Chinese takeaway restaurant.
- 8 Honey Thai, 1678 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . 4:30-10PM. Thai restaurant, has a vegan menu.
- 9 Knickerbocker Glory, 1708 Burwood Hwy. Th-Su noon-6PM. Really fun lolly shop, coconut soft serve is amazing, lots of vegan sweets.
- 10 Archie's Place, 1686 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . F noon–7PM, Sa noon–6PM, Su noon–5. Ice cream shop, delicious ice cream, lots of vegan flavours.
These food stores aren't very much more costly than most of the mid-range, but they feel that way.
- 11 Le Voltaire Bistro Francais, 1677 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . Late-night food, all you can eat, cosy.
- 12 India Gate Restaurant (India Gate), 3/1644 Burwood Hwy (down steps past Babaji's), ☏ . 5-10:30PM. Nice dinner restaurant, pretty inside, vegan options available.
- 13 Pho Vietnamese Street Food, 1671 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . 4:30-9PM. Big vegan menu.
- 1 Micawber Tavern (The Tavern), 65/71 Monbulk Rd (along Monbulk road in the direction of Kallista), ☏ . Cosy pub with a vegan menu, child-friendly during the day
- 2 Sooki Lounge, 1648 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . M Tu closed, W Th noon-midnight, F noon-3AM, Sa 11AM-3AM, Su 11AM-midnight.
- The Belgrave Hotel, 1645 Burwood Hwy VIC 3160, ☏ . Tu-Su noon–10PM. Restaurant, cosy warm atmosphere, well-priced.
- 3 Earthly Pleasures Cafe/Bar and Event Venue (Earthly Pleasures), 1627 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . 8:30AM–5:30PM. Beautiful cafe, it's an important part of the hills, big vegan menu, child-friendly, big garden and outdoor seating area.
- 4 Puffing Billy Cafe, 1674 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . M-F 8AM-4:30PM, Sa Su 7:30AM-4:30PM. The puffing billy inspired cafe.
- 5 The Laughing Owl, 1652 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . Su-Tu closed, W-Sa 9AM–1PM. Cafe with a large vegan menu, lots of cakes, hot drinks and funny items in the table.
- 6 The Blacksmith, 1/1700 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . M Tu 7AM–7PM, W Th 7AM–8PM, F Sa 7AM–9PM, Su 8AM–7PM. Child-friendly bakery and burger cafe. Has a play area. Vegan menu.
- 7 Bensons Cafe & Restaurant, 1710 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . M-W 9AM–4PM, Th F 9AM–9PM, Sa 8AM–9PM, Su 8AM–4PM. Cafe has coffee, cakes, lunch, brunch and dinner on some days.
- 8 Tree Of Delights, 1678 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . M-F 7AM-3PM. German cafe, good for breakfast and lunch, nice milkshakes, bread and cakes.
- 9 Cafe Hot Gossip Belgrave, 1692 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . Has nice cakes and hot drinks, has vegan options.
- 1 Belgrave Hideaway, 11 Wattle Ave, ☏ . $170.
- 2 Wildwood Lodge, 47 Bayview Rd, ☏ . Free WiFi, free parking, outdoor pool, air-conditioned, child-friendly. $198.
- 3 Stone's Throw Cottage Belgrave Accommodation, 11 Wattle Ave, ☏ . Free Breakfast, air conditioning, WiFi and parking. $220.
- 4 Belgrave Bed & Breakfast, 11 Monbulk Rd, ☏ . Free parking, air conditioning, breakfast, kitchen in rooms. $260.
- 5 Clarelee Belgrave Accommodation, 41 Terrys Ave, ☏ . Free wifi, free breakfast, free parking, air-conditioned. From $300.
If you're travelling to Belgrave (or anywhere in Victoria) you'll want to make sure you're fire-safe, especially in summer. There are 4 important things to make sure you've done when coming to Belgrave.
- Check the fire danger rating on the CFA website
- Check if there's a total fire ban also on the CFA website
- Check the local weather conditions here
- If you're staying in Belgrave for a night or more, discuss your leaving early plans (only really for summer or hot seasons)
Some roads around Belgrave can be hilly, curvy, bumpy or dangerous. It can be especially hard for new drivers to drive on some of the harder roads in the area.
- 1 Belgrave Library, Reynolds Ln, ☏ . Friendly librarians. Free WiFi to connect to.
- 2 Earthly Pleasures Cafe/Bar and Event Venue (Earthly Pleasures), 1627 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . 8:30AM–5PM. Beautiful cafe, it's an important part of the hills, big vegan menu, suitable for children, big garden and outdoor seating area. Free WiFi.
Mobile data and phone lines
Mobile data and phone lines should work in Belgrave but note that Optus based data has a blackout area in Kallista but Telstra should work fine. This only applies to Kallista and not to Belgrave.
- 1 Belgrave Community Pharmacy, 1639 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . The local pharmacy, it has medications, medicines, make-up, toys, lollies and other pharmacy items.
- 2 Australia Post - Belgrave LPO, 1706 Burwood Hwy, ☏ . The local post office.
- Triple R local radio station. Frequency is 102.7FM. Plays lots of local artists' music.
- Dandenong Ranges News local newspaper for the Dandenong Ranges and Yarra Valley
- Kallista is 4 km away from Belgrave via Monbulk Road just past the roundabout in Belgrave. The 663 bus (Belgrave to Lilydale) passes through Kallista and so does the 694. It has pretty forest tracks, a bird-feeding area and a picnic ground. There are cafes, a pizzeria and a general store. There's also an organics store with lots of fruits, vegetables and other organic produce.
- Olinda is 9 km from Belgrave. Catching the 694 bus or 688 bus will get you there in around 35 minutes. There are many gardens and picnic grounds. Also, lots of eclectic shops with unique items, and pretty cafes and a bookshop. There's a chocolate factory/cafe, a lolly shop, a playground and an outdoor pool.