Put your walking shoes on and discover the wonders of the Little Desert and Grampians National Park with Park Trek and Conservation Volunteers Australia. This 6 day walking tour explores the vast, striking landscapes of the Little Desert and Grampians National Park.
Located in Western Victoria, more than 670 species of native plants can be found in the region, making it one of the best places to see Australian wildlife, including over 220 bird species. Birds to spot include the elusive Mallee Fowl, rare Southern Scrub Robin Parrot, wrens, honeyeaters and more. In spring the park comes to life with a stunning display of vibrant blossom and wildflowers.
Discover what makes this biodiverse and beautiful area so unique on a guided walk in the Little Desert National Park. You will also meet local conservation heroes who are undertaking world-leading wildlife conservation projects to help protect wildlife unique to the area. Then walk the highlights of The Grampians Peaks Trail, a world-class, walk that showcases the majesty of the Grampians National Park. Enjoy dramatic peaks, panoramic views and the majesty of this ancient and rugged landscape.
Be challenged and rewarded during the day on this amazing walking experience. At the end of the day return to our comfortable accommodation, complete with wildlife right on your doorstep!
This walking tour requires a moderate level of fitness.
- 10 – 15 April 2018
- Private tours available on request
Single supplement available: $2,840.00 per person
- Exploring the Little Desert and Grampians National Park on guided walks with our experienced local guides
- Guaranteed wildlife sightings including kangaroos, bandicoots, emus, bettongs and much more
- Spectacular scenery of the Little Desert National Park
- Guided private conservation reserve and Mallee Fowl Sanctuary tour
- The opportunity to support the Rewilding the Desert, wildlife conservation project
- National Park fees
- Small group of 10 or less (Minimum age is 14 years, participants under 16 are to be accompanied by an adult
- Includes 4 dinners, 5 lunches and 5 breakfasts
- Comfortable 3.5 star accommodation
- Return group transfer from Melbourne to Halls Gap
- Two-course dinners, lunches, continental breakfasts, fresh fruit, trail mix, tea/coffee and other non-alcoholic beverages.
Day 1: Melbourne – Little Desert Nature Lodge
Walking: 3km, easy grade
Depart Melbourne for the Little Desert National Park at 8.30am from the Conservation Volunteers Australia Office, 120 Roslyn St West Melbourne or North Melbourne Train Station.
On route, we travel through the Greater Grampians region visiting Mount Arapiles. Afternoon arrival at the Lodge and a leisurely one-hour walk on our private conservation reserve to discover more about the wildlife conservation project, Rewilding the Desert. Dinner and nocturnal wildlife tour – see kangaroos, bettongs, and bandicoots.
Overnight: Little Desert Nature Lodge.
Meals: lunch and dinner (Alcoholic beverages and soft drinks are available from CVA licensed dining room – cost applies).
Day 2: Little Desert National Park
Walking: 20km, moderate grade
Today we set off early for a full-day guided walk through the Little Desert National Park, commencing at the Kiata campground. A short 1.2km walk and accent takes us to Trig Point, a 360′ viewing platform overlooking the surrounding desert landscape. Walking through an array of Desert flora and fauna (beautiful section in the spring time) we then descend to the Salt Lake Junction and flat open heathland. The trail continues through open heathland before reaching a small Mallee Eucalyptus oasis and our shady half-way rest stop. From here we continue into a section of yellow gum, where we arrive at the clay pan flats, a natural waterhole great for spring time bird watching. Then on to Two Dams for lunch and bird watching. The last section of the walk is through a denser new variety of vegetation (green mallee, violet honey murtle, barbed wire bush). On arriving back at the Lodge, enjoy time to relax before dinner.
Today the trail has a minor accent and descent either side of the Trig Point Look Out at the beginning of the walk. Overall the track is well defined and mostly easy flat terrain with a few knolls here and there.
Overnight: Little Desert Nature Lodge
Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner (Alcoholic beverages and soft drinks are available from CVA licensed dining room – cost applies).
Day 3: Little Desert – Grampians National Park
Walking: 5km, easy grade
Visit to the Malleefowl Sanctuary where you’ll discover the Lodge’s Mallee Fowl recovery program and possibly catch a glimpse of these fascinating endangered mound building birds in the wild. We then continue our journey to the Grampians National Park, stopping on route at the Pink Lake.
Lunch today is in Halls Gap and here we spend half a day walking starting at Brambuk Visitor Centre, crossing Fyans Creek to the base of the Mt William Range for a steady climb to finish on top of Boronia Peak with panoramic views over the Wonderland Range and surrounding peaks. We then retrace our footsteps to return to the coach and our place of stay by late afternoon.
Overnight: Halls Gap
Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner
Day 4: Grampians National Park
Walking: 11km, moderate grade
After breakfast and lunch making we enjoy a morning walk from the heart of Halls Gap alongside Stony Creek rising towards Wonderland. The imagery and the unique shaping of the rocks gives rise to features like the Elephant Hide and the Grand Canyon. Emerge out onto the rocky spine of the Pinnacle, one of today’s visual spectacles. After lunch we continue to Sundial Peak and to Rosea Campground.
Overnight: Halls Gap
Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner
Day 5: Mount Rosea Peak Walk
Walk: 13km, moderate to challenging
Today is a challenging yet rewarding morning walk to the peak of Mount Rosea. The climb is challenging but the path is well formed and shaded before topping out at the summit of Mount Rosea. Enjoy a well-earned picnic lunch at the summit before our afternoon walk to Borough Huts. Our final dinner is enjoyed at the local hotel (at own expense).
Overnight: Halls Gap
Meals: breakfast and lunch (dinner at guest own expense)
Day 6: Mount William Walk – Melbourne
Walking: 4-6km, moderate grade
Morning walk to the top of Mount William – the highest peak in the Grampians. Look right along the entire length of the Grampians as it stretches north and south. Lunch at Halls Gap (own expense) before our return journey to Melbourne, arriving at approximately 5pm.
Meals: breakfast (lunch guest own expense)
Wildlife viewing on walks
Heathland birds include: birds of prey – Wedge Tailed Eagle, Goshawk, falcons • wrens – Shy heath-wren, Variegated fairy-wren, Superb-wren • Yellow-tailed black cockatoo • parrots • honeyeaters • wood swallows • robins• emus. Other animals include: echidnas • kangaroos and wallabies • lizards/reptiles – Bearded dragon, shingleback, sand monitor, scaly foot.
This walking tour requires a moderate level of fitness. Walks range from 3km up to 20km a day. The walks through the Little Desert are primarily on flat terrain with some moderate inclines. Walks in the Grampians National Park require some challenging sections with steep inclines. We walk at the groups’ pace to enjoy the scenery and learn about the values of these beautiful National Parks. An experienced guide is always with group on the walking trails.
Over 30% of Australia’s mammals and around 14% of birds are threatened or extinct in the wild. This tour supports Rewilding the Desert, a wildlife conservation project aiming to combat species extinction in Western Victoria. Conservation Volunteers and the FAUNA Research Alliance are ‘Rewilding the Desert’ – restoring wildlife habitat, protecting threatened species and reintroducing wildlife back into wild. The initiative will reintroduce some of Australia’s most vulnerable wildlife back into their original habitats including the Western Quoll, Malleefowl and Western barred Bandicoot, among others.
This eco tour visits Little Desert and the Grampians National Park, which is located 375km west of Melbourne, towards the South Australia border.
Little Desert Nature Lodge
You will be staying at 3.5 star ensuite accommodation including 2 nights at Little Desert Nature Lodge. With nature and wildlife right at your doorstep, the lodge offers the prefect accommodation base. All rooms include linen, heating and air-conditioning, tea and coffee facilities, and wifi.
Halls Gap – Grampians
We stay at D’Altons in Halls Gap for three night which is located within a few minutes walk of the main township and features modern facilities and amenities, including an outdoor salt water pool (so don’t forget to bring your swimmers after a day’s walking!).
We stay in lovely two bedroom cabins which have been designed with functionality and space in mind. The Cottages are generously spread over our bush site to utilise the magnificent views of the Grampians ranges. The Cottages are constructed of rough sawn hardwood and complement the ambience of the National Park. Each cottage is fully self-contained and comprises 2 bedrooms, a bathroom, toilet, fully equipped kitchen, lounge, dining area and spacious verandah.
If you prefer to have a single room rather than sharing with a friend or fellow traveller, this is of course fine, however a single supplement charge of $400 applies.
The Best Time to Visit
The region offers something different each season. Autumn (March to May) is mild with clear sunny days and cooler evenings. Winter (June to August) provides cooler weather with occasional frosts and rainfall. The summer months (December to February) are warm and sometimes quite hot with temperatures in the 30’s. Wildflowers are at their best between September and November, and birds are best spotted between August and November – although there is always something to be seen.