Introducing the Grampians
Enjoy a scenic circuit to the majestic Grampians, en route driving through the three major wine regions of western Victoria – Ballarat, the Grampians and the Pyrenees – producing some of Australia’s finest cool-climate wines.
What to do and see in the Grampians
The Grampians region is one of Australia’s finest destinations for outdoor adventures. Experience the grandeur of the Grampians from a light aircraft, cast a line for trout or paddle a kayak across a lake or river.
Try rock climbing at Mount Stapylton in the Grampians National Park, hike through the pristine wilderness or take an exciting downhill mountain bike tour through the ranges.
Indulge in barrel-side wine tastings in underground tunnels or sophisticated tasting rooms, explore rugged mountain ranges, see Aboriginal rock art sites and experience a huge range of outdoor activities.
Choose from the many luxurious accommodation options in the region and dine on gourmet cuisine washed down with premium wine. Famous for its scenic beauty, the Grampians region is a great place to dine al fresco at an award-winning restaurant.
Trip length from Melbourne 3 days
Total distance 550km
Road conditions All sealed roads
Segment distances: Melbourne to Halls Gap 3hrs 15mins; 254km
Halls Gap to Avoca 1hr 30mins; 112km
Avoca to Ballarat 1hr 5mins; 72km
Ballarat to Melbourne 1hr 30mins; 112km Suggested overnight stops: Halls Gap and Ballarat
Major attractions along the route, include:
Discover a picturesque town set in the heart of the Grampians. Take time to explore on foot the many natural attractions located nearby including cascading waterfalls, scenic lookouts and unique rock formations.
Enjoy the scenic drives through the beautiful Grampians National Park, join a tour of the many ancient Aboriginal rock art sites and learn about the diverse culture of the local indigenous people at Brambuk.
Explore the park on foot or try a new adventure activity, from rock climbing and mountain biking to cycling and kayaking. Don’t miss driving along a beautiful stretch of the Southern Grampians called the Serra Range, past towering Mount Abrupt to the quiet little town of Dunkeld.
If you can, plan your trip around one of the following annual events, for a richer experience of the regions: Grampians Jazz Festival in February; Grampians Gourmet Festival in May; Grampians Wildflower and Arts Show in September; or Halls Gap Film Festival in November.
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Grampians National Park
Discover grand and rugged mountain ranges, spectacular wildflower displays (best seen from August to October) and a wealth of Aboriginal rock art sites at Billimina Shelter, Gulgurn Manja Shelter, Manja Shelter and Ngamadjidj Shelter.
Visit lookouts with stunning panoramic views over picturesque waterfalls and spot native animals and birds such as kangaroos, koalas, emus and wedge-tailed eagles. Enjoy a huge range of outdoor activities, from bushwalking, fishing and canoeing to rock climbing and abseiling.
Drive along Victoria Valley Road through the untouched southern section of the Grampians National Park. Watch out for emus and kangaroos along the way.
Enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding countryside on one of the walking tracks to Mount Sturgeon and Mount Abrupt; tee-off amid hopping kangaroos and wallabies at the Grampians Golf Course; and dine at the award-winning Dunkeld Royal Mail Hotel with stunning views of Mount Abrupt and Mount Sturgeon.
Savour tastings at local vineyards and sample some of the delicious sheep milk yoghurts and cheeses along the Glenelg Highway near Glenthompson.
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Explore an area of unspoilt and diverse scenery near the northern section of the Grampians National Park, one of the best wildflower regions in the park. Explore one of the numerous trails on Mount Stapylton, Hollow Mountain or Mount Zero.
Go on foot or on horseback and discover the majestic Grampians waterfalls such as MacKenzie Falls and enjoy magnificent panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Try your hand at fly-fishing with a local guide, go rock climbing or be on the watch for birds and wildlife.
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One of the first goldfields in the north-western area of Victoria, today the area is known for its fine wines and wool production.
Try your luck at finding gold on one of the old goldfields, go bushwalking in the Pyrenees ranges or the state forests, sample the famous Pyrenees wines at some of the district's 16 wineries and don’t miss taking the Avoca Historic Walk past historic buildings such as the courthouse (1857) and the Avoca Primary School.
Victoria’s largest inland city is recognised as the site of the world’s largest deposit of alluvial gold. Stroll along wide, tree-lined streets to discover the town’s rich history and heritage. Walk the Eureka Trail and visit the Mining Exchange, where soldiers assembled to quell the miners revolt of 1854.
Pan for gold or chat with the storekeepers and miners at Sovereign Hill, where a typical gold mining settlement has been re-created.
Re-live the ‘Battle of the Southern Cross’ in a sound and light spectacular at Sovereign Hill; check out the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery, Australia’s oldest and largest regional gallery; and visit the award-winning Ballarat Wildlife Park.
Stop at one of the wineries and sample the region’s award-winning wines at the cellar door.
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