The Wimmera Mallee has so much to offer our visitors with a range of different and unique places to explore. Discover natural gems and abundant wildlife, hidden getaways, local heritage, art galleries, quaint historic towns and indigenous history in Victoria’s very own Wild West, the Wimmera Mallee. No matter your interests, there is something for everyone.
The Lodge is conveniently situated in close proximity to many of Western Victoria’s Tourism attractions. Below is a snap shot to whet your appetite. Explore the Wimmera Mallee Tourism web site for more extensive information on what to do and see in this amazing and diverse region. Or watch Travel Oz S04E17 Western Victoria on Vimeo.
Explore our National Parks
The Little Desert National Park has more than 600 varieties of plants and more than 230 varieties of birds. In 1969 the Little Desert area was subject for the first major battle by conservationists who pressured the State Government and halted a bill before parliament, which proposed to divide the desert area into farming lots. The entire Little Desert was proclaimed a National Park in 1986.
The best time to visit the park is between late winter and early summer when the temperatures are comfortable and the park is full of blossoming wildflowers. The range of soil types in Little Desert National Park causes marked differences in vegetation. Many species of plants and animals have succeeded, on poor soils with little water, in creating a kind of arid landscape where survival depends on maintaining a delicate balance of natural forces.
Hike beside the Wimmera River and enjoy bushwalks, birdwatching or four-wheel driving. Explore the local history of a former Bombing range in part of what is now the National Park, used for practice during the Second World War when Nhill was a training centre for RAAF pilots. More than 2000 armed forces personnel were stationed at the aerodrome north of Nhill and you can visit the Nhill Aviation Heritage Museum to find out more.
Located in the flat, semi-arid north-western corner of Victoria, Wyperfeld is one of Australia’s most fascinating national parks and there is plenty of country to cover for 4WD enthusiasts. This vast Mallee park is a place of endless space with three distinct landscapes each offering a new experience ‐ Big Desert country to the west, Mallee to the east and floodplains and shifting sand dunes to the north. Autumn, winter and spring are the best times to visit. The central feature of this huge park is a chain of lake beds connected by Outlet Creek, the northern extension of the Wimmera River. The lakes only fill when the Wimmera River over-supplies Lake Hindmarsh to the south of Lake Albacutya. When it rains the semi-arid landscape is transformed by tiny desert plants that sprout from long-dormant seeds, carpeting the ground with clusters of flowers.
Walk through a true wilderness. The Big Desert is home to a wide variety of birds, reptiles and mammals, bird watching and nature study are rewarding in this area. It provides a challenge for the experienced hiker, offering a rare opportunity to experience a landscape largely unaffected by human activity. Bore water is available at Big Billy Bore and Broken Bucket Reserve and there are toilets at Broken Bucket. Supplies may be obtained in Nhill. 4WD & Dirt bike adventures in the Big Desert are available with organised tours or maps & information from our staff and the local tourism office.
Rising abruptly from the surrounding Western Plains, the Grampians (Gariwerd) is a series of rugged sandstone mountain ranges and forests rich in wildlife. One of Victoria’s most popular holiday destinations, the park is a great venue for climbing, scenic drives, bushwalks and nature study. A network of walking tracks throughout the park allows you to explore cascading waterfalls, brilliant spring wildflower displays and panoramic views from lookouts. Drive to Reeds and Boroka lookouts for spectacular views or visit the magnificent Fish Falls. The area has a rich Aboriginal heritage with a number of important rock art sites.
A mecca for rock climbers from around the globe, Mount Arapiles is a spectacular feature rising sharply from the Wimmera plains to form part of the Mount Arapiles-Tooan State Park. Mount Arapiles, widely regarded as the top rock climbing area in Australia, is of world renown. More than 2000 routes have been developed on the many cliffs, crags and pinnacles, presenting variety and challenge to climbers of all levels of experience. The nearby town of Natimuk offers respite after your climb with quirky galleries and cafés.
Not far over the border into South Australia is the Naracoorte Caves National Park, a World Heritage site with an incredible network of ancient underground caves. The Naracoorte Caves are part of the 800,000 year old Naracoorte East Range and one of the world’s most important fossil sites. Palaeontologists have excavated and dated numerous fossils and reconstructed the skeletons of unique Australian megafauna species that lived so long ago. Scientific research is still underway at this remarkable site with more caves and their hidden contents being discovered and protected. Of the 28 known caves in the park, four are open to the public to explore the spectacular stalactites and stalagmites. With self-guided, guided and adventure caving tours on offer year-round this daytrip has something for everyone.
Discover historic towns and museums – click on the links below to find out more:
- Nhill Aviation Heritage Centre – Nhill
- Johnny Mullagh Cricket Centre – Harrow
- Kaniva Car Museum – Kaniva
- Print Museum – Dimboola
- Wimmera Mallee Pioneer Museum
- Yurunga Homestead – Rainbow
- Ebeneezer Mission – Antwerp
Get the taste buds tingling with local wine and food