VictoriaGippslandGippsland's coastal villages and country towns offer a relaxing gateway to some of the most spectacular wilderness areas in the country. Take your time and explore, the region is enormous.
Occupying Victoria's eastern corner, Gippsland covers a vast and diverse landscape that includes unspoiled beaches, enormous lakes and immense mountain ranges. Wilsons Promontory, just three hours from Melbourne, is renowned for its stunning bush and coastal scenery and acclaimed walking trails. Central Gippsland is a gourmet country, dotted with wineries, cheesemakers, farmers' markets, and fruit and berry farms. Historic gold towns and maritime villages such as Walhalla and Port Albert offer fascinating glimpses into Gippsland's past, while the Mt Baw Baw Alpine Resort is the closest downhill ski area to Melbourne. The Gippsland Lakes are fed by the waters of five major rivers and fringed by the pristine Ninety Mile Beach. The Lakes provide ample opportunities for swimming, fishing, boating and sailing. Dine al fresco at a lakeside restaurant or pub, have a family picnic by a river or take a stroll through the waterfront villages of Paynesville, Metung or Lakes Entrance. Venture into Victoria's far east to Croajingolong National Park, a World Biosphere Reserve. With more than 100 kilometres of immaculate coastline and hinterland, it is a great place to go bushwalking, surfing or spotting various species of bird and plant life. Mallacoota is a perfect base for exploring the park and also offers excellent fishing and boating.
Visit 'The Prom'
Fondly known as ‘The Prom’, Wilsons Promontory is one of Victoria’s best-loved national parks. Situated at the southernmost tip of mainland Australia, you will find spectacular scenery of granite mountains, native forests, rainforest, sweeping beaches and coastlines. From sun‐drenched summer beaches to secluded winter walks among rainforest, the Prom has something for everyone. Visitors can camp, caravan or stay in huts, cabins, wilderness retreats or lodges at Tidal River where there is a general store and take-away food shop. Enjoy short walks along Norman Beach, Picnic Bay or Squeaky Beach and see a variety of wildlife including kangaroos, wombats and emus. As with everywhere in Australia, please keep a safe distance from the animals and do not feed them. Before you go: Conditions can change in parks for many reasons. For the latest information on changes to local conditions, please visit the relevant park page on the Parks Victoria website.
Ride the East Gippsland Rail Trail
The trail runs from Bairnsdale to Orbost at a distance of 96 kilometres one-way. The trail is generally smooth dirt or gravel track and has two levels: Level One- Suitable for beginners and children. Level Two - Suitable for most ages and fitness levels. Start your journey at Howitt Park, McEacharn Street, Bairnsdale and finish at Burn Road, Newmerella. The trail ends at Newmerella, with an off-road shared pathway continuing to Orbost. Experience the diversity of East Gippsland as this trail weaves past undulating farmland, tall forests, rivers and flood plains. Cross historic timber railway bridges and enjoy views of the Gippsland Lakes before arriving at the Snowy River. Bairnsdale to Nicholson (Eight kilometres) Nicholson to Bruthen (20 kilometres) Bruthen to Nowa Nowa (30 kilometres) Nowa Nowa to Orbost (38 kilometres)
Visit Mt Baw Baw Alpine Resort
Mt Baw Baw Alpine Resort is Melbourne's closest Alpine Resort. Located only two and a half hours from Melbourne's city centre, the resort offers a host of experiences all year round. The Resort is surrounded by the magnificent Baw Baw National Park. The park enjoys spectacular summer wildflower and bush-land displays during summer and snowy woodlands in winter. During the winter months, the resort plays host to a range of winter snow sports including downhill skiing, cross country skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing and terrain park features. The Village has everything to make sure guests enjoy their alpine holiday. Ski-in ski-out style accommodation, on-mountain hire, snow sports school, snowmaking, terrain parks, ski lifts and affordable accommodation packages. Mt Baw Baw has a wide range of accommodation options to suit any budget or need. Lodges, self-contained apartments, cabins, hotel rooms or backpacker rooms are all available at Mt Baw Baw. The guest services team specialises in accommodation packages, transfers, activities and equipment hire.
Ninety Mile Beach Marine National Park
Located 30 kilometres south of Sale and adjacent to Gippsland Lakes Coastal Park, Ninety Mile Beach Marine National Park covers five kilometres of coastline. This untamed stretch of coastline runs alongside the slender strip of dunes that protect the Gippsland Lakes. Beneath the water, vast plains of sand stretch in every direction. However, the sand is not a monotonous as it may appear; wave action and currents sort sand particles into different groups and layers whilst surface features, such as mounds and ripples, are a result of animal and wave action. The coast does not have any rocky headlands or platforms, and offshore there are only a few ribbons of the reef which are periodically covered by sand. These formed as shorelines or dunes during ice-ages when the sea level was lower than today. The huge subtidal sandy expanses characteristic of the area, are teeming with marine life. They are known to have one of the highest species diversity levels of any place on the planet, with 860 species discovered within 10 square metres. These sand dwelling critters can include tube building worms, small molluscs and many tiny crustaceans.
Walhalla, a rich gold producer for 50 years, is a remote and picturesque mountain township. It is hard to imagine a more difficult site for a town than the steep, narrow valley of Stringers Creek as it winds down through the dense forests of the Baws Baws. Yet in its heyday, between 1880 and 1895, more than 4000 people lived there. The town is the start of the 650 km Australian Alps Walking Track to the ACT. But most people come to discover the remnants of a community that defied a forbidding environment in its quest for gold. The best way to see the town is on foot. Before you go Conditions can change in parks for many reasons. For the latest information on changes to local conditions, please visit the relevant park page on the Parks Victoria website. Be bushfire ready in the great outdoors. Refer to the Bushfire Safety section on the Parks Victoria website for tips on how to stay safe.
Baw Baw National Park
Covering a substantial part of the Baw Baw Plateau and sections of the Thomson and Aberfeldy River valleys, Baw Baw National Park offers colourful wildflowers in early summer and open grassy plains with Snow Gum woodlands. Mount St Gwinear, Mount Erica and the Baw Baw Alpine Village are ideal bases for bushwalking. The Thomson River downstream of the Thomson Dam offers some of the best white water rafting in Victoria. In winter, the park is ideal for ski touring and has a variety of marked trails to suit the skills of skiers. Parks Victoria acknowledges the Aboriginal Traditional Owners of Victoria - including its parks and reserves. Through their cultural traditions, the Gunaikurnai identify the Baw Baw National Park as their Traditional Country. Further information is available from Aboriginal Affairs Victoria AAV and Native Title Services Victoria. Conditions can change in parks for many reasons. For the latest information on changes to local conditions, please visit the relevant park page on the Parks Victoria website. Be bushfire ready in the great outdoors. Refer to the Bushfire Safety section on the Parks Victoria website for tips on how to stay safe.
Take on the Aberfeldy Four Wheel Drive Track
The Aberfeldy Four Wheel Drive Track is considered one of Victoria's greatest 4WD experiences. It combines rich history, striking landscapes and the thrill of touring on rugged, unsealed terrain. The route passes through some of the area's most stunning landscape, from rugged bushland to breathtaking mountain top views and stone river crossings. The 4WD track follows the original Aberfeldy track from the early 1800s, which was used as a transportation route for horse and carts during the gold rush. Step back in time and discover the heritage of the area telling tales of local families, famous travellers and important figures from long ago. Interpretation signs are en route throughout the drive marking historic sites and remnants, such as the Red Jacket Cemetery and the old mines of Toombon. 4WD enthusiasts can immerse themselves in nature with side trips for walking, and ample camping and fishing opportunities. Grade: Medium to difficult Total length: 180 kilometres Duration: 2.5 days' driving time Fuel points: Rawson Camping: Walhalla, Edwards Hill, Donnelly's Creek Recreation Ground, Goonans, O'Tooles Flats, Little O'Tooles, Jorgenson, Andersons, Matlock, Meringtons Flat and The Junction. Toilets: Walhalla, Meringtons Flat, The Junction, O'Tooles Flats, Little O'Tooles, Andersons, Donnelly's Creek Recreation Ground and Matlock.
Buchan Caves Reserve
Near the township of Buchan, lies a honeycomb of caves full of spectacular limestone formations. The caves were formed by underground rivers cutting through limestone rock. The formations are created by rainwater seeping through cracks and dissolving some of the limestones. As each droplet comes through the roof it deposits calcite which crystallises in a small ring. In time, stalactites are formed on the roof of the cave, stalagmites build up from droplets that fall to the floor. Discover the calcite-rimmed pools of Royal Cave, the stalactites and stalagmites of Fairy Cave on a daily guided tour. Buchan Caves is eco-certified and committed to sustainable practices and provides high-quality nature-based tourism experiences. Aboriginal Traditional Owners Parks Victoria acknowledges the Aboriginal Traditional Owners of Victoria - including its parks and reserves. Through their cultural traditions, the Gunaikurnai identify the Buchan Caves Reserve as their Traditional Country. Further information is available from Aboriginal Affairs Victoria AAV and Native Title Services Victoria.
Explore Gabo Island
Gabo Island is rich in cultural history. This haven for plants and animals offers stunning landscapes with magnificent views of Croajingolong National Park. The lighthouse was constructed from 1858 to 1862 using the distinctive pink granite found on the island and is the only operating island lighthouse in Victoria. Tours of the 47-metre high structure are available. The views from the top are spectacular. If you are lucky, you might spot whales, dolphins and seals. Tour fees apply - book with at Parks Victoria's Mallacoota office before your arrival on the island. Before you go Conditions can change in parks for many reasons. For the latest information on changes to local conditions, please visit the relevant park page on the Parks Victoria website. Be bushfire ready in the great outdoors. Refer to the Bushfire Safety section on the Parks Victoria website for tips on how to stay safe.
Get out on the Gippsland Lakes
The tranquil Gippsland Lakes are a system of coastal lagoons separated from the Tasman Sea by the coastal dunes of the Ninety Mile Beach. Seven rivers terminate at the lakes - the Latrobe, Avon, Nicholson, Tambo, Mitchell, Macalister and Thomson rivers. A favourite holiday destination for many Victorians, days can easily be filled with a range of activities on the water or dry land. Boating and fishing are what attracts most to the lakes. Surf fishing along Ninety Mile Beach or lake fishing from a boat, bank or jetty is popular too. Visit in spring to see spectacular displays of wildflowers including orchids, wattle, heathland and other species. Aboriginal Traditional Owners Parks Victoria acknowledges the Aboriginal Traditional Owners of Victoria - including its parks and reserves. Through their cultural traditions, the Gunaikurnai identify the Gippsland Lakes Coastal Park as their Traditional Country. Conditions can change in parks for many reasons. For the latest information on changes to local conditions, please visit the relevant park page on the Parks Victoria website.
Discover more in Victoria
- Arthurs Seat
- Barwon Heads
- Daylesford & the Macedon Ranges
- Falls Creek
- Great Ocean Road
- Great Otway National Park
- Halls Gap
- Main Ridge
- Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)
- Mornington Peninsula
- Mount Buffalo National Park
- Murray to Mountains Rail Trail
- Ocean Grove
- Phillip Island
- Point Nepean National Park
- Red Hill
- Tarra Bulga National Park
- The Bellarine Peninsula
- The Goldfields
- The High Country
- Wilsons Promontory National Park
- Yarra Valley & Dandenong Ranges