Colac is located 148 km west of Melbourne, on the southern shore of Lake Colac, one of many lakes in the district, and at the eastern end of the rich agricultural area known as the 'Western District'. Colac lies at an elevation of 134 metres, and is the first major town on the Princes Highway (A1) west of Geelong, providing a faster route to the attractions and towns of the western Victorian coast than the Great Ocean Road.
Colac is a commercial, service and local government centre of nearly 11,000 people located at the eastern edge of the world's third-largest volcanic plain, a landscape scattered with craters and cones, that has shaped the evolution of the district. Its fertile soil results in a productive area with agricultural, pastoral and dairying industries, noted for its onions, potatoes, cattle, pigs, poultry, timber, sheep and milk products. The area's prosperity is evident in a number of fine homesteads.
Colac is also known by some as the 'Gateway to the Otways', a reference to the nearby Otway Ranges and the surrounding forests lying to the south of town.
Above and top: Views of Murray Street, named after the area's original squatter, Hugh Murray, who arrived in 1837 and is generally regarded as the founder of the town. Murray Street is part of the Princes Highway (A1).
Memorial Square was developed at the turn of the twentieth century and later
dedicated as a memorial to local residents who served in World War I. The
Square boasts a striking planting of mature elm trees, and there are barbecue
facilities, public toilets, a children's playground and a bandstand. The
Lions Club's market is held on the third Sunday of each month. The Square
is also the venue for a variety of events including Colac Custom Car & Bike
Show in January and the Colac Kana Festival.