I am travelling to Melbourne from Sydney with my wife and two kids (6 yrs & 2 yrs) in the first week of October. This is a self-drive trip and am conscious of the amount of time we will be spending in the car so have tried to space out the drives with overnight stops. This is our first visit to Melbourne and we are interested in visiting key tourist attractions - natural or man-made, and things for kids to do. I have not made reservations for accomodation yet so am open to other overnight stops but am not keen on changing accomodation every other day, unless absolutely required. After a lot of research, I have come up with the below itinerary and would appreciate any feedback.
Sydney to Merimbula drive (overnight at Merimbula)
Magic Mountain Theme Park (overnight at Merimbula)
Merimbula to Dandenong Ranges / Yarra Valley drive (overnight at DR / YV)
Pannys Phillip Island Chocolate Factory
Phillip Island Nature Park - 3 parks (overnight at DR / YV)
Puffing Billy Steam Railway (half day)
Yarra Valley (overnight at DR / YV)
Eureka Skydeck 88
City Circle Tram
and if time permits
Queen Victoria Market (overnight at DR / YV)
Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm
Ashcombe Maze or Enchanted Maze Garden
Lorne - Erskine Falls (overnight at Lorne)
Otway Fly Treetop Adventures & Cape Otway Light House
Loch Ard Gorge
Bay of Islands Coastal Park
Shipwrecked Sound & Laser Show (night) (overnight at Warrnambool)
Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village
Warrnambool to Albury drive (via Geelong & Melbourne) (overnight at Albury)
Albury to Sydney drive (via Goulburn & Mittagong)
1) How does the itinerary look overall in terms of coverage of key things to visit and time allocated? Is it packed with too many things to do? (I actually considered Healesville Sanctuary, Sovereign Hill & Adventure Park-Geelong but left them out as I ran out of time)
2) I am aware that from Day 7 onwards there is a lot of driving to be done and I am tossing up with dropping one night at Merimbula up front for an extra night at Lorne or Warrnambool. Thoughts?
3) I am undecided on visiting Ashcombe Maze or Enchanted Maze Garden. Which would be more suitable for kids 2 & 6?
4) Is the Otway Fly Treetop Adventures & Cape Otway Light House worth visiting considering that we have seen the Illawarra Fly Treetop around Sydney?
Any comments or suggestions are welcome. Thanks.