Unforgettable Things to Do in The Grampians, Victoria

Discover the best things to do in the Grampians, Australia, from chasing waterfalls to exploring charming villages – here’s your ultimate guide!

The Grampians is a nature haven boasting majestic peaks, waterfalls, and diverse flora. And beyond the renowned Grampians National Park, locally known as Gariwerd, this region offers a range of diverse experiences, making it a top destination for a short break.

The Grampians is a nature lover’s dream, and you’ll discover a world of hiking trails and wildlife encounters to cultural sites, waterfalls, creeks, walking tracks, rock-climbing routes, and camping grounds, making it popular for nature-based experiences. It’s also home to some of Victoria’s best wineries, and there are gorgeous towns and villages to explore beyond the famous National Park.

Here’s your guide to the many things to do and see when visiting Victoria’s Grampians.

Things to Do in The Grampians

Grampians National Park

Explore the Grampians National Park

We’ll start with why most people visit – The Grampians National Park, a haven for outdoor enthusiasts of all levels. The park features five striking sandstone ridges running north to south, offering expansive and rugged landscapes.

The eastern side boasts steep, craggy slopes, while the western side features gentler slopes, showcasing impressive peaks, valleys, and breathtaking panoramic views from various lookouts.

With an extensive network of hiking trails, rock climbing opportunities, and scenic drives, the park caters to various interests. Watch for native wildlife, including kangaroos, wallabies, and numerous bird species.

Popular spots like Boroka Lookout and Reed Lookout offer stunning views accessible by car, providing an ideal experience for those seeking a more relaxed adventure.

Admire Aboriginal Rock Art at Bunjil’s Shelter

The Grampians carry profound cultural importance for local Indigenous communities, boasting over 80% of Victoria’s Aboriginal rock art across around 200 accessible sites. Bunjils Cave in the Black Range Scenic Reserve near Stawell stands out. Though slightly outside the National Park, it’s a must-visit on your Grampians itinerary. The cave features a vivid Aboriginal depiction of Bunjil and his two dingoes, marking the only known painting of Bunjil in Australia and dating back over a thousand years. As a central Dreaming Being, Bunjil’s portrayal signifies his role in shaping landscapes and organising Aboriginal society, maintaining enduring significance for Traditional Owners as a protector and cultural symbol.

Indulge in Wine Tasting in the Grampians Wineries

For a more refined experience, the Grampians region boasts a selection of renowned wineries. Enjoy a leisurely afternoon tasting exquisite local wines, often accompanied by gourmet food offerings. Here are some wineries to put on your Grampians itinerary:

Best’s Great Western: One of the oldest family-owned wineries in Australia, Best’s Great Western has been crafting award-winning wines since 1866, and today boasts some of the oldest and rarest vines in the world. Known for its historic Concongella Vineyard, this winery specialises in producing cool-climate wines, including Shiraz and Riesling.

Mount Langi Ghiran Winery
Mount Langi Ghiran courtesy Visit Victoria

Mount Langi Ghiran: Renowned for its picturesque setting and premium cool-climate wines, Mount Langi Ghiran is a must-visit destination for wine connoisseurs. This winery is famous for its Shiraz and has earned a stellar reputation for producing bold, elegant red wines. Their cellar door is open on Friday, Saturday, Sunday & Monday from 10 am-5 pm; walk-ins are welcome.

Grampians Estate: Nestled in the heart of the Grampians, Grampians Estate is renowned for its meticulously crafted wines that capture the distinct essence of the region. Embracing sustainable practices, this winery offers diverse varietals, spanning sparkling, red, and white wines. Conveniently located on the Western Highway, the winery invites visitors for daily wine tastings and delightful culinary experiences at the newly opened winery café from 10 am onwards.

Montara Wines: Perched atop the Mount Langi Ghiran ranges, Montara Wines boasts a stunning location that enhances the overall wine-tasting experience. Focussed on cool-climate wines, Montara specialises in estate-grown varieties that authentically capture the refined and intense fruit characteristics inherent to the Grampians’ cool climate. The range encompasses Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Shiraz.

Seppelt-Winery-Grampians

Seppelt Wines: Steeped in history and architectural grandeur, Seppelt offers an immersive cellar-door experience rooted in the region’s past, offering an authentic glimpse into country Victoria. Visit seven days a week, immerse in local culture, and venture below ground to explore The Drives, a network of heritage-listed cellars dating back to 1868, the longest in the southern hemisphere. Sample wines, enjoy coffee, lunch, or a cheese platter.

Related: We’ve got a comprehensive guide to 12 fabulous wineries to visit in the Grampians!

Embark on the Pinnacle Hike

The Pinnacle hike is an iconic trek, rewarding adventurers with unparalleled panoramic views of the Grampians’ stunning landscapes. As the trail weaves through rocky terrains and lush forests, you’ll encounter diverse flora and fauna.

The journey is as rewarding as the destination, with wildlife encounters. Ensure you carry water, snacks, and a camera to capture the beauty of the hike and the spectacular sight from the Pinnacle.

Starting from the Wonderland Carpark, the approximately 4.2-kilometer return hike takes around 2 to 3 hours to complete. Sturdy footwear, water, and readiness for changing weather are recommended for this moderately challenging and rewarding hike.

Climb Mount Sturgeon

Mt-Sturgeon-Grampians-National-Park-2

For a more challenging adventure, consider conquering Mount Sturgeon. The steep ascent rewards climbers with spectacular views of the surrounding plains and neighbouring mountain ranges. The journey involves navigating rocky terrains and ascending through eucalyptus forests. Although the climb demands physical effort, the sense of accomplishment at the summit and incredible views of the surrounding ranges of the southern Grampians and the sweeping volcanic plains make it popular with avid hikers.

Hike the Wonderland Loop

The Wonderland Loop is a challenging and scenic hiking trail in the Grampians National Park, spanning approximately 13 kilometres (8 miles). The trail showcases diverse landscapes, including rocky outcrops, waterfalls like Mackenzie Falls, lush forests, and the iconic viewpoints of the Grand Canyon and Pinnacle. Hikers can expect steep ascents and descents, navigating through rocky terrains, with the entire loop usually taking around 4-5 hours to complete. It’s crucial to check weather conditions, carry suitable gear, stay hydrated, and be aware of park regulations before embarking on this picturesque adventure in the Grampians. It’s a photographer’s paradise, offering endless opportunities to capture the beauty of the Grampians.

Enjoy a Relaxing Day at Halls Gap

Halls-Gap-Farmlands

Halls Gap is the gateway to the Grampians and offers a charming village atmosphere. Spend a leisurely day exploring local shops, galleries, and cafes.The Halls Gap Zoo provides an opportunity to encounter native Australian wildlife, including koalas and kangaroos. The picturesque surroundings make Halls Gap a perfect base for exploring the wider region.

Discover Mackenzie Falls

Mackenzie-Falls-Grampians-2

A visit to the Grampians (Gariwerd) National Park isn’t complete without experiencing the iconic MacKenzie Falls, a spectacular natural wonder. As one of Victoria’s largest waterfalls, MacKenzie Falls flows consistently throughout the year.

The falls showcase a breathtaking sight as water cascades over massive cliffs, creating a mesmerising display of rainbow mist above a stunning gorge.

To witness this beauty, visitors can choose between an easy one-kilometre path leading to the wheelchair-accessible viewing platform at the Bluff or a slightly more challenging trail that descends to the base of the falls (30 minutes one way).

Accessible via a forty-minute drive from Halls Gap on Mount Victory Road, the MacKenzie Falls car park serves as the starting point for this memorable adventure.

Explore the towns and villages of the Grampians:

Beyond Halls Gap, there are plenty of other gorgeous towns and villages to explore by car. Some you might want to visit include:

Dunkeld:

Wickens-at-Royal-Mail-Hotel
Wickens at Royal Mail Hotel Courtesy Visit Victoria
  • Home to Wickens at Royal Mail Hotel, one of Australia’s best dining destinations, Dunkeld offers a charming retreat with a stunning vista at the foot of Mount Surgeon.
  • The quaint main street, trendy art spaces, and luxurious accommodations contribute to Dunkeld’s haven of tranquillity.

Pomonal:

  • Home to Pomonal Estate, a versatile establishment featuring a winery, microbrewery, cider house, cafe, and accommodation space.
  • Rich in culture and community, Pomonal offers walking trails, historic tunnels, and a monthly market and is known for producers like Red Rock Olives and Five Ducks Farm.
  • Famous for native flowers and orchids, Pomonal hosts the annual Native Flower Show during spring.

Willaura:

  • Located 15 minutes from Ararat, Willaura is a picturesque town with Victoria’s oldest continuous-running bakery (Willaura Bakery), a tourist attraction. Indulge in the delicious pastries while there.

Moyston:

  • Known as the birthplace of the AFL, Moyston is a tiny town with a huge heart.
  • Stop at Moyston General Store, a licensed cafe with a strong Persian influence, and explore Clayfield Wines for a personal interaction with Vigneron Simon Clayfield.

Cavendish:

  • Cavendish is a Grampians must-see known for country hospitality, historical sites, and sweeping views.
  • Explore the Bunyip Hotel, The Bridge Cafe and Settler’s Walk to glimpse Cavendish’s past and immersion in present natural beauty.

Try Rock-climbing

Courtesy Visit Victoria

The Grampians is a premier destination for rock climbers as it offers a range of experiences for both beginners and seasoned climbers alike. With a growing international reputation as a rock climbing hotspot, this region is ideal for honing techniques, sharing experiences, and advancing skills. Mount Arapiles, just west of Horsham, boasts over 2,000 designated climbs amidst dramatic formations, while Grampians (Gariwerd) National Park provides diverse challenges, with over 60% of its 165,000 hectares open to climbers. Popular sites include Bundaleer, Mount Stapylton Amphitheatre, The Watch Tower, the Wonderland Area, and Halls Gap Valley.

However, climbers must be mindful of Parks Victoria’s efforts to conserve sensitive ecosystems and Indigenous rock art, leading to climbing restrictions in certain areas. Compliance with these regulations is crucial, as fines may be issued for non-compliance.

Whether you’re an avid hiker, a wine connoisseur, or a couple seeking a romantic getaway in nature, the Grampians offers an unforgettable escape with plenty of rewarding things to do and see!

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