Covering 250km, ride, canoe, and hike the incredible Great South West Walk, as you journey through an everchanging environment that offers incredible scenery and an ancient history. Ride amongst towering gums, canoe the tribal boundaries of the Gunditjimara and Bungandidj people, explore prehistoric caves, get up close and personal with Australias largest mainland seal colony, and hike along limestone cliffs that offer breathtaking ocean views.
Ride through the towering eucalyptus of the Cobbobonee Forrest
Canoe along the Glenelg River as it cuts through limestone cliffs
Hike along a coastline that offers breathtaking views
Camp with friends under the stars, sharing stories and creating memories
Learn about the great Australian outdoors and all that it has to offer!
Journey to Portland, Victoria, where your journey will both start and finish! Get comfortable on your bike, and leave the quiet town behind, as you ride through the Cobboboonee Forest. Using the Great South West Walk as a guide, ride on nearby limestone tracks to your first overnight camping location, the Surry Ridge Picnic Area. Kick back with your friends as you prepare your first camp meal together!
Back on the bike and it will be onwards to your next camp. With sun protection from the nearby towering gumtrees, continue to ride the undulating limestone tracks through the Cobboboonee Forest. Keep an eye out for Koalas andEastern Grey Kangaroos, and look for the delicious fruits of the Cherry Ballard tree. Arrive at Fitzroy camp and set up for another night in the unique bushland.
Today is your last day of bike riding! Time to finish off your ride, through the Lower Glenelg National Park. This National park will be your surrounding environment for the next 4 days. Start riding on to Moleside camp, where you will pass ‘The Inkpot’, a natural lake with black sands that make it look like it is filled with Ink. Ride downhill to Moleside camp, where you will say goodbye to the bikes, and hello to the amazing Glenelg River!
With an early start to the day, lauch your canoes and begin your paddle downstream. Take in the scenery as the morning mist sits above the water. Continue down the river as it continues to bend, stopping regularly at the numerous canoe camps to take in the beauty of the Lower Glenelg National Park. Set up your first canoe camp at Forrest Camp South.
Another day on the river, but there is still plenty to see! Continue to meander along the river, listening to the Yellow Tail Black Cockatoos overhead, and watching the waters surface in hope that a Platypus will pop their head up! Be sure to paddle along the banks of the river and watch for Koalas coming to the waters edge for a drink. Arrive at Princess Margaret Rose Caves and set up camp for the night, cooking another group meal to end the day.
By now your arms may be tired, but thats okay! Because from here, it is merely a short paddle to Nelson. Get on the river early and continue to take in all the amazing surroundings. Watch your map carefully, because you will paddle into South Australia! As a tail breeze blows, set a tarp sail up and complete the canoe sailing onwards with your friends back into Victoria! Pull up your canoes at Nelson, and set up camp for the night.
Wake to an early sunrise and strap on your hiking boots for your first day of hiking. Leaving Nelson, journey on down to the beach and watch the sunrise as you start your hike. Keep an eye out to the ocean for marine life, and along the beach looking for shells, sharks teeth, and even whale bones! Arrive at Lake Monibeong and kick off your shoes, and go for a well deserved dip in the crystal clear water of Lake Monibeong.
Wake to a cold swim in Lake Monibeong if you dare! Back on the beach, keep an eye out for the amazing Flora and Fauna of Discovery Bay. Rare birds nesting in the sands, and marine life brought to the Victorian waters by the natural ‘Bonny Upwelling’. Leave the beach, and finish the hike through the Swan Lake sand dunes. Massive ancient natural wonders which have been used for Hollywood movie sets, and by local sand boarders!
Say goodbye to the beach as you return to the bush tracks leading up to Tarragul Camp. Take in your new surroundings full of Koalas, Echidnas, Orchids and Eastern Grey Kangaroos. After completing your journey, enjoy your new campsite surrounded by caves that were used as shelters and sacred sites of the Indigenous Gunditjimarra people.
Time to leave the bush and head back to the coastal track. Walking on the remains of an ancient volcano, pass blowholes and the ancient petrified forrest. Look out over the ocean to spot Southern Right Whales, Orcas, or the biggest animal in the world; the Blue Whale! You may even see Great White Sharks stalking the coastline as just around the corner, is Australia’s biggest mainland seal colony. Watch the seals play as you finish your hike in one of Australias most beautiful beaches, Bridgewater Bay.
Time to enjoy a day free from hiking, and take on some adventurous activities. Journey to Bats Ridge Wildlife Reserve, where you will meet local cave guides who will take you through the unique caving system, challenging your teamwork as you navigate the underground wonderland. Return to Bridgewater beach to board a tour boat, where ‘Seals by the Sea tours’ will take you and your group out to the seal colony you were watching the day prior. Get up close and personal as the seals curiously circle your boat, waving their fins to say hello!
After a day of resting, its time to continue your hike. Switching between beach walks and cliff tracks, continue to take in the incredible coastline, exploring the remains of washed up shipping containers, as you make your way to the lighthouse in the distance! Observe the amazing coastal heathland, and finish your walk under the Soap Mallees, an endemic species of tree found only on the southwestern coast.
After falling asleep to the lapping sound of the ocean, it is time to wake up to the incredible sunlight and prepare for your last day. Continue along the incredible coastline, past an Australian Gannet Colony, and through to the location where it all started, Portland. Celebrate with your friends, you have just completed an incredible journey, and these memories will last with you forever.!