The locality was initially named “Retreat”, but was later renamed Bambra after an Aboriginal word for mushroom. The area was opened up for selection in the 1860s. Bambra State School was opened on 20 September 1866, closed temporarily in 1945-1946, and closed permanently in 1969. The Bambra Chapel, a Bible Christian Church, was opened in 1868, and became a Methodist church in 1903. A second church, the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, held its first service on 25 May 1902. Bambra Post Office opened on 23 September 1892 and closed on 29 September 1973. The churches have also closed, although one survives as a private house.
The area has predominantly been used for agricultural, pastoral and dairying purposes; however, a coal mine in adjacent Winchelsea South, sometimes referred to as the Bambra mine, was active from 1921 until between 1928 and 1931, and from 1943 to 1957.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). “Bambra (SSC)”. 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 17 November 2014.
- “Bambra (entry 100245)”. VICNAMES. Government of Victoria. Retrieved 17 June 2014.
- Kellaway, Carlotta. Farmland, Forest & Surf: Environmental History of Surf Coast Shire (PDF). Surf Coast Shire. p. 58.
- Blake, L. J. (1973). Vision and Realisation: A Centenary History of State Education in Victoria (Volume 2). Education Department of Victoria. pp. 1050–1051.
- Premier Postal History. “Post Office List”. Premier Postal Auctions. Retrieved 17 June 2014.
- 70 Bambra School Road, Bambra. domain.com.au.
- “Bambra Hall”. Surf Coast Shire. Retrieved 17 June 2014.
- “Bambra Cemetery”. australiancemeteries.com. Retrieved 17 June 2014.
- “Hare Krishna Valley”. Hare Krishna Valley. Retrieved 17 June 2014.