Bass Coast Shire

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The Bass Coast Shire is a local government area in Victoria, Australia, located in the southeastern part of the state. It covers an area of 866 square kilometres (334 sq mi) and in June 2018 had a population of 35,327. It includes the towns of Bass, Cape Paterson, Cape Woolamai, Corinella, Coronet Bay, Cowes, Inverloch, Kilcunda, Lang Lang, Newhaven, Rhyll, San Remo, Summerlands and Wonthaggi as well as the historic locality of Krowera. It also includes the popular tourist destination Phillip Island. It was formed in 1994 from the amalgamation of the Shire of Bass, Shire of Phillip Island, Borough of Wonthaggi, parts of the Shire of Woorayl, Shire of Korumburra and City of Cranbourne.The Shire is governed and administered by the Bass Coast Shire Council; its seat of local government and administrative centre is the council headquarters in Wonthaggi, with other service centres located in Cowes, Grantville and Inverloch. The Shire is named after its most precious asset, the coasts of Bass Strait and Western Port.

Towns and suburbs

In June 2018 the shire had a population of 35,327.


Local markets

Cape Paterson

Swimming Rockpool – Safety Beach, Browns Bay, Surf Beach Road Bunurong Marine Park


Lower Powlett Road – Williamsons Beach, Powlett River, Wonthaggi Wind Farm and Victorian Desalination Plant (tours and walking/cycling/horse riding) Bass Coast Rail Trail – walk/cycle/horse trot Historic mine whistle – sounds 12 noon every day in the centre of Wonthaggi, mine shaft tower, Apex Park, Murray Street Wonthaggi Museum – open Saturday mornings, Murray Street State Coal Mine – museum and tours, Garden Street Coal mine ruins – Number 5 Brace & the McBride tunnel entry, off West Area Road Wonthaggi and scattered around the region Wonthaggi Golf Course – 18 hole, par 72, ACR 70, easy walk, McKenzie Street Large chain stores Wonthaggi Hospital – Smoking ban, Graham Street

Phillip Island

Phillip Island Penguin Parade Australian motorcycle Grand Prix Pyramid Rock Festival on New Year's Eve Nobbies Centre at Seal Rocks


Garlic Farm, Olive Farm, Wayside Lookout, Dairy Farms


Kilcunda Trestle Bridge


Inverloch Shell Museum and Dinosaur Exhibition


Current composition

The council is composed of three wards and nine councillors, with three councillors per ward elected to represent each ward.

Administration and governance

The council meets in the council chambers at the council headquarters in the Wonthaggi Municipal Offices, which is also the location of the council's administrative activities. It also provides customer services at both its administrative centre in Wonthaggi, and its service centre in Cowes.

Protected areas

Collecting empty seashells and other dead remnants is legal on most Australian Beaches except for state national parks and some nature parks and reserves. If you are unsure contact the states parks authority and the local shire offices. Collecting empty seashells (leave most alone for creatures to live in), driftwood, twigs, sea glass and other non-living materials or interesting rubbish of small size and in small quantities is legal from most beaches along the Bass Coast, with the exception being Wilsons Promontory, the Bunurong Marine National Park and most of Phillip Island. On Phillip Island most beaches are off limits for shell collecting and are run by Phillip Island Nature Parks, with the exceptions of Ventnor, Cowes, Rhyll and Newhaven.The Bunurong Marine National Park is a middle outstretching section of Bunurong Marine Park which is along the coastline of Harmers Haven, Cape Paterson and Inverloch. The restricted zone (Bunurong Marine National Park inside Bunurong Marine Park) is an area south-west past Cape Paterson's Safety Beach and Undertow Bay namely; The Oaks, Twin Reefs, Shack Bay and Eagles Nest.
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