The Gippsland region of Victoria in Australia is our home. The Gippsland region stretches from just east of Melbourne to the New South Wales Border. It is a huge region by any explanation. Gippsland consists of four sections East, West, South and Central Gippsland. Gippsland’s natural features are diverse. Rugged mountains to rolling plains, rainforests to deserted coastlines, alpine regions to thousand-year-old forests. As one can imagine across the region there are many great things to see and do. Here we touch on 18 things to do while visiting Gippsland.
Facts about Gippsland:
- Gippsland covers an area of 41,566 square kilometres
- Gippsland accounts for 20% of Australia’s milk production
- Gippsland has a population of 255,718 people ( 2011
- Gippsland is home to 14 National Parks
Welcome to visiting Gippsland
A reconstructed Colonial Era Gold Mining town set in the hills of Gippsland is Walhalla. Once one of the richest towns in Victoria. Walhalla is today known for its Gold Fields Railway and the Long Mine Tour. Walhalla is a great place for a picnic or a bbq day trip. It also has a unique cemetery! I know it sounds morbid but it is worth a visit to see just how hard colonial times could be on families. It is also located on the side of a hill! The shops appear today to look like a colonial town of the past. Guesthouses are available for overnight stays, weekend escapes and camping is free in areas.
Family Travel Tip: There is old fashion lollie shop at Walhalla. The shop sells the old fashioned boiled loolies like humbigs and rock candy
Visiting Gippsland for Museums
Gippsland Vehicle Collection Museum:
Den of Nargun:
The Den of Nargun is a sacred Koori site on the Bataluk Trail of sites in Gippsland. Legend has it The Nargun is a large female creature who lives in a cave behind a waterfall in the Mitchell River. The Den of Nargun is a place of great cultural significance to the Gunaikurnai people. Especially the women of the tribe. Stories of the Nargun have been told around campfires of how kids who wandered off from the tribe are taken by the Nargun. These stories helped keep people away from the sacred cave. The walk out of the Den Of Nargun is quite challenging. The walk features some steep sections that are strenuous
Visiting Gippsland for small mountain towns
Licola lies on the banks beside the Macalister River, 254 kilometres east of Melbourne. The township of Licola is owned entirely by the Lions Clubs of Victoria and southern New South Wales. It is the only privately owned town in Victoria and the only one not on mains power. At last count, Licola had a population of 21 people. Licola is home to The Lions Village that caters for school group and such. The mighty Macalister River runs through Licola. The Macalister is popular for trout fishing in season. Visit Licola in Gippsland for its remoteness and beauty.
Dargo’s claim to fame is that its the most remote town in Victoria. Dargo is set in the foothills of the Dargo High Plains. The town of Dargo, with a population of approximately 150, is the gateway point for the Alpine National Park, Avon Wilderness Park, and Mitchell River National Park. The town is located 348 kilometres east of Melbourne. Dargo is an extremely popular high country town. Dargo is popular with four wheel drivers, horse riders and hunters. The Dargo pub is famous for its high country hospitality and country western concerts that are staged. A popular destination in Gippsland is Dargo
The Knob Reserve is a 56-hectare park on the outskirts of Stratford. The Knob reserve is an important indigenous site in the Gippsland region. The Knob reserve forms part of the Bataluk Trail. The Bluff high above the Avon River at the knob was a meeting spot for local Koori Tribes. A place where they made weapons and tools for everyday use. There are BBQ and toilet facilities at the Knob reserve.
The Silt jetties are located near Eagle Point they form the mouth of the Mitchel River. These naturally forming narrow banks of silt stretch for 7 kilometres into the Gippsland Lakes. These silt Jetties are the second longest in the world after the ones that form at the mouth of the Mississippi River. The formation happens over millions of years as the water slows when it enters a lake. Fishing is enjoyed along the silt jetties.
Buchan Caves comprises of two limestone caves that are accessible to the public. The Buchan Caves reserve comprises of the Fairy Cave and the Royal Cave. The caves have a length of between 3 and 4 kilometres that the public can tour with guides from Parks Victoria. The reserve has camping facilities and bush walking tracks for hiking. Camping at the Buchan Caves National Park you will encounter many native animals such as Kangaroos and Possums.
Family Travel Tip: If you visit in the summer there is an amazing swimming pool. The pool is filled by water running out of a cave just meters away from the pool.
The 90 Mile Beach is ironic since in Australia we measure everything in Kilometres. The Truth is it’s actually 94 Miles long. It runs from Port Albert in South Gippsland to Lakes Entrance in East Gippsland. The 90 Mile beach at one end is popular with summer holidaymakers at Lakes Entrance. The other end of the 90-mile beach is popular for free camping and fishing for Sharks and salmon. The 90-mile beach has notorious ocean conditions. These beaches can be dangerous for inexperienced swimmers. You will find many stretches of the 90-Mile beach deserted. You will be the only one walking golden sands of this untouched coastline
Visiting Gippsland for natural beauty
Agnes Falls are 59 meters in height which make them the highest single span falls in the state. The falls are a short walk through the forest from the car parking area. Picnic facilities are available for you on the banks of the Agnes River.
The Gippsland Lakes:
The Gippsland Lakes cover an area of 345 square kilometres. The Avon, Thomson, Latrobe, Mitchell, Nicholson and Tambo rivers. fill the lakes, marshes and lagoons. The Lakes run next to the ocean in Bass straight. The lakes are popular for boating, fishing and camping. You can take a cruise on the Gippsland Lakes or go on a fishing charter. Fishing in Gippsland is popular all year around. A permanent entrance to the ocean has been created at Lakes Entrance. The lakes are a major tourism hub. Towns on the lakes Paynesville, Metung, Loch Sport and Lakes Entrance benefit from tourists that the lakes draw. Raymond Island is great for seeing Koala’s and is an easy ferry from Paynesville
Family Travel Tip: At Lakes Entrance there is mini golf, paddle bvoats and aqua bikes to keep the kids entertained. This year camel rides have been available on the beach
Gippsland Armed Forces Museum:
Gippsland Armed Forces Museum is a small, stand-alone, volunteer-run museum located at the T.A.F.E campus at Fulham right next to the West Sale Airport. The museum was set up to keep records of the people from Gippsland’s participation in Wars. On display, you will find full-size aircraft, motorbikes, cannons and many pieces of memorabilia stretching from WW1 through to present times. This museum is a real gem to visit with amazing history and displays for the whole family. Spend a few hours at The Gippsland Armed Forces Museum you won’t be sorry.
Corrigan’s suspension bridge is located in Tarra Bulga National Park. Corrigan’s Suspension bridge is a 1.25 km walk from the car park at Tarra Bulga Visitors centre. Corrigan’s suspension bridge floats through the rainforest canopy. The bridge gives you amazing views of the valley below and the lush vegetation that surrounds it. A Tarra Bulga day trip is great with many things to see in the area. Bbq facilities and bush walks are available throughout Tarra Bulga National Park. Visiting Gippsland would not be complete without seeing the amazing Corrigans bridge.
Walkerville is an amazing place to camp. The campgrounds are right on the ocean. The beach features many rock pools that when the tide is right are excellent for exploring. One can find a myriad of different sea life in the rock pools. Fishing and bushwalking are popular in Walkerville with snapper taken off the beach. Close by Walkerville is the popular Cape Liptrap Light House.
Gippsland Plains Rail Trail:
Old train tracks have been dug up and turned into biking paths in many areas of Gippsland. The Gippsland plains rail trail runs from Traralgon to Maffra. A total length of 63 kilometres. The rail trail passes through flat dairy farm country. The trail offers panoramic views of the Great Dividing Range. The trail surface is smooth gravel though it can be soft in some of the newer sections when wet. This section is one of many rail trails in the Gippsland Area. There is also an East Gippsland and South Gippsland section of biking trails
This area is a UNESCO world biosphere reserve. The Croajingolong features 100km of rugged and unspoilt coastline and covers 87,500 hectares. Thousand-year-old pristine eucalypt forest and rainforest combine to give you a glimpse of wilderness. The area includes indigenous and endangered species in their native environment. Embrace the natural of beauty in the Croajingolong and its hinterland. Off the path, camping spots encourage beach walks and bird watching. This national park is home to more than 300 different types of birds and over 1000 native plant species.
Wineries and Vineyards:
This industry once a boutique industry in Gippsland has blossomed the last few years. Vineyards and grapes are popping up all over the region. Gippsland’s wineries have garnished a huge reputation in recent years for producing premium, cool climate wines. The wines of Gippsland are alive with full fruit flavours. There are more than 100 wineries and 40 cellar doors open to the public in Gippsland. One of our favourites is Blue Gables near Maffra. If craft beer appeals to your taste buds more small batch breweries are starting to make a name for themselves as well.
We hope visiting Gippsland is something you put on your list of things to see in Australia. Visiting Gippsland is a rewarding experience for the whole family with such diverse activities. Stay tuned for visiting Gippsland part 2 coming up soon.
A full-time worker in Disability support and part time traveller when time, money and kids schooling allow.
Next up for Wyld Family Travel is 10 weeks in Europe from November 2016 till January 2017. We will be visiting Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Germany, France, Poland, Iceland, Denmark, Croatia, Montenegro and Serbia
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