Rosebud is a seaside town on the Mornington Peninsula, approximately 75 km southeast of the Melbourne city centre. It is a large beach-side town fronting Port Phillip, located between Rye and Dromana, and has a population of 13,195 (2016 census).
Rosebud provides safe swimming beaches along its continuous stretch of sandy bay coastline, with the focal point being Rosebud Pier which it located opposite Jetty Road and extends about 300 metres into the water.
Originally known as Banksia Point, Rosebud began life as a fishing community in the early 1850s. On 2 June 1855, the cargo vessel Rosebud, owned by one of the colony’s best known pastoralists Edward Hobson, was washed over the large sandbars and onto the beach. The burgeoning community made off with the cargo of damask and household goods, but the wreck remained for many years as the locals slowly stripped its hull to use in the construction of houses. It became commonplace to call the area “The Rosebud” in reference to the ship, which was shortened to “Rosebud” as the last vestiges of the ship disappeared.
Rosebud’s commercial centre stretches along one side of about a 2 kilometre length of Point Nepean Road, with some shops separated from this wide thoroughfare by a service road. The shopping precinct features attractive garden strips, paved areas and several wood carvings of notable local identities from the past.
A notable feature of Rosebud’s bay foreshore is a lack of commercial development. Most of the area between the coastal route of Point Nepean Road and the beach consists of community facilities, parkland and camping areas within sections of bushland.
A striking landmark in Rosebud is the bushy mountain peak of Arthurs Seat. It rises up in the distance behind the shops along Point Nepean Road and provides a scenic backdrop when viewed on Rosebud’s beaches.
Rosebud covers an area of 1,051 square km.
The foreshore area of Rosebud is one of the largest camping areas on the peninsula. During the summer months the populations of Rosebud and Dromana can double is size. Making a very touristy feel.
Rosebud has a temperate coastal climate, and is usually several degrees cooler than Melbourne. The annual maximum mean temperature is 19.1 degrees C.
By the 1960s, Rosebud had emerged as the largest town on the southern peninsula, complete with a shopping centre and extensive sporting facilities. In time it became home to an increasing number of permanent residents, including ‘sea change’ retirees.
Some of the famous residents (permanent and holiday) of Rosebud were Judith Mavis Cock (Judith Durham), Arthur Boyd and William John Ferrier. Durham spent her first six summers in the weatherboard house that stood on the west side of Durham Place. It is well documented on many websites that Boyd, the 1995 Australian of the Year, launched his fabulous career as a painter from the age of 16 while living in Rosebud from 1936-9 with his grandfather. One of young Arthur’s paintings was of the Burnhams’ jetty at the end of Boneo Rd; it is reproduced in Peter Wilson’s “On the Road to Rosebud” alongside photos of the jetty. Ferrier won acclaim from all over Australia, and probably a job in the lighthouse branch, because of his heroic rescue of two of the seven crewmen of the La Bella at Warrnambool.
Fresh brewed coffee is a must have for weekends away and Rosebud is a must visit destination with great coffee haunts around the town. Here are a few to check out when heading down to this pretty township.
THE HOLY BEAN CAFE
1489 Point Nepean Rd
Hearty brekkie fare and tasting plates made with local produce served in a cosy, charming café and some of the best coffee in town.
THE CORNER CAFE
1455 Point Nepean Rd
Great for a quick meal or a delicious coffee and relax in the unique café with a rich history.
D’ALIA’S BAKERY CAFÉ
1041 Point Nepean Road
Great coffee in a casual dining setting with a large menu of hot and cold foods to choose from.
THE PIER CAFE
889 Point Nepean Rd
Authentic Greek handmade cakes and pastries that go perfectly with their excellent coffee, or sit down to a full meal for something more substantial.
WHAT TO DO?
There’s always something to do in the charming seaside township of Rosebud with its calm waters and white sandy beaches, great for boating, swimming and all water sports.
Rosebud is the quintessential seaside village with a stretch of retail about 2km long, a shopping centre at either end with the beach right over the road.
The focal point is Rosebud Pier which extends about 300 metres into the water and is a prime fishing spot.
Rosebud is best known for the campground on the foreshore that has been a holiday favourite for generations of families. While there’s a big focus on the sea at Rosebud, there’s plenty more to see and do with great golf courses nearby, the wetlands, boutique shopping and cosmopolitan eateries.
For the simpler life, don’t forget how much fun camping on the foreshore can be.