Warrnambool has proven a safe, and familiar, haven for the Gilbert family.
Andrew and Michelle Gilbert, and their four children, are enjoying the sunshine and visits to the beach from their campsite at Surf Side Caravan Park.
But for the Gilberts, like so many others, bushfires across the country have made this a challenging summer.
Every two years the Gilberts leave their home at Rosebud for a camping holiday with 10 other families in the New South Wales holiday destination of Eden.
It was to be a familiar tale in 2020 but, as Mr Gilbert explains, the arrival of the bushfires threw plans out the window.
"We were obviously keeping an eye on the fires but from the information we had it was safe to still go to Eden," Mr Gilbert said.
"We camped five days there but the situation got worse and the smoke from the fires was really settling in.
"It was starting to rain ash, the sky was orange and it was dark during the day.
"The information about the fires was pretty sketchy but it was getting clearer that leaving was going to be the best option.
"The only way out was up through Cooma and onto Canberra."
The Gilberts and their friends then made their way back down to Yarrawonga, where they were able to camp nearby for five nights.
But the fires remained a constant worry, with a safer alternative sought.
Mr Gilbert drew on his positive experiences of regularly camping in Warrnambool during his teenage years and led his family, and five other family groups, down to the south-west.
"The people at the caravan park here at Warrnambool have been wonderful, they have really looked after us," Mr Gilbert said.
"It has been really good to get down here, the air is so clear, the skies are blue and we can walk to the beach. Warrnambool can be a bit cold but it's a brilliant spot."
Mr Gilbert said some of the families in his camping circle had not been fortune enough to extend their holidays to Warrnambool.
"At Eden, we all had to book for two weeks ahead of time so some of the families couldn't afford it when we had to change plans to come to Warrnambool," he said.