BOOMING business at Lake Eppalock accommodation has hopes high that the next six months will make up for COVID-19 driven tourism losses, as Australians are limited to domestic holidays.
Phones have been ringing off the hook at Lake Eppalock Holiday Park since the state government confirmed it would end the regional-metro travel ban on Sunday night.
The lake's water levels sit at nearly 47 per cent, making water sports possible.
Lake Eppalock Holiday Park owner Peter Rose said he expected Christmas to be the busiest at the park in his nine years there.
Mr Rose said staff had barely been able to keep up with calls, Melburnians were so keen to leave their homes after months of lockdown.
Even before "ring of steel" opened, regional Victorians were keeping the park busy, he said.
Mr Rose said doing good trade, but was still trying to make up for the money he hadn't made over the past eight months.
But he said state and federal government support had helped keep caravan parks such as his afloat.
Mr Rose said the park had taken the visitor-free time as an opportunity to do major works, such as replacing the sewerage systems.
He felt the chance to reset and think about the future was the silver lining of a forced shutdown.
But he said it was good to see the smiles on guests faces again.
"It's just good to see people so happy and so grateful just to get out from home, even if home might not be that far away," he said.
"Just them having an appreciation of the simple things in life, just getting out to the bush, getting out to the lake, seeing their kids playing, that sort of thing."
Mr Rose said every weekend till Christmas was jam-packed, which he expected to continue while overseas travel remained off limits.
He expected accommodation would book out nearly every weekend over the coming weeks.