Lower Glenelg National Park, VIC

By Jenna Hanson 23 May 2014
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Canoe through Glenelg Gorge, hike through native bush and explore a limestone cave

The Lower Glenelg National Park is near the Victorian border with South Australia, about midway between Adelaide and Melbourne. One of the main attractions is the 400km-long Glenelg River.

Along the last part of its path to the sea, the river has carved a spectacular gorge up to 50m deep through limestone. There are wonderful spots for fishing, canoeing, camping and picnicking.

Another highlight is the Princess Margaret Rose Cave, where you can see amazing limestone formations.


Walking trails: Short walks include the Gorge (10km, 3.5 hours) and Sapling Creek (4.5km, 1.5 hours). The more adventurous may walk parts of the Great South Western Walk – a 250km loop starting and ending at Portland. It passes through the park, although at press time some sections remained closed because of fire damage (www.greatsouthwestwalk.com).

Canoeing: Paddling on the Glenelg River from Nelson to Dartmoor will take about four days and canoes can be hired from either township.

Wildlife watching: Look out for eastern grey kangaroos, emus, brush-tail possums, koalas and echidnas. Small colonies of wombats can also be found within the park, the only remnants of a once widespread population in Victoria’s south-west.

The essentials

Location: The Lower Glenelg NP is about a five-hour drive from Adelaide or Melbourne.

Accommodation: You can camp at several places along the Glenelg River, including Lake Monibeong and Swan Lake, and along the walking track. There are eight special canoe camps. Permits are required and bookings can be made online at www.parkstay.vic.gov.au.

Points of interest: Over thousands of years, the slow drip of rainwater through limestone created the Princess Margaret Rose Cave, which you can visit on a 45-minute tour. Alternatively, take a trip through the Glenelg River gorge to see stunning limestone cliffs.

Maps: At the Nelson Visitor Information Centre.

More info: www.parkweb.vic.gov.au