Phillip Island may seem an unusual place to find a national museum, but it’s definitely worth a stop. Dedicated to the Australian veterans of the Vietnam War, the collection includes about 6,000 artifacts, including the marbles used in Australia’s conscription lottery, uniforms, vehicles, and weapons. Four new galleries have been developed at the NVVM over the past year or so: a Remembrance Gallery and separate Air, Ground, and Naval Operations galleries. In a revamp of the whole museum, the mezzanine galleries have been rearranged to include exhibition space and a larger exhibit of the Vietnamese story. New interpretative panels have helped give visitors clearer explanations of what they are seeing. The big-ticket item is a Bell AH-IG HueyCobra helicopter gunship, one of only three in Australia, and the museum is also restoring a Canberra bomber, the only surviving example of its kind in the world. There’s a moving audiovisual on Australia’s involvement in the war from 1962 to 1972. You can have a coffee in the Nui Dat Café or buy books and memorabilia from the shop.
- Frommer's Staff