9 Amazing Waterfalls In The Great Otway National Park
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The Great Otway National Park is one of the most beautiful places in Victoria, Australia. The waterfalls are fed by rain and moisture of the forests, many of which cascade down steep rock faces into deep pools below.
It’s home to dozens of impressive waterfalls, making for perfect photo opportunities. So if you’re looking for a breathtaking nature escape just a few hours from Melbourne, visit this National Park in Victoria and check out the most stunning waterfalls in Australia.
How To Get To The Great Otway National Park?
The easiest way to get to the Great Otway National Park is by following the Great Ocean Road (B100) from Melbourne to Lorne and Apollo Bay. However, you can also reach the park by an inland road from the town of Colac.
You can also visit the park by taking the bus from Melbourne to Warrnambool with stops in Lorne and Apollo Bay.
The Best Time To Visit The Great Otway National Park
The summer months (December – February) are without a doubt a good time to visit the National Park but Spring and Autumn are considered better periods as it is less crowded and the temperatures are still pleasant.
Nevertheless, winter in Victoria can be magical too but temperatures can go down to 0 degrees, so warm clothes are recommended.
I explored all the waterfalls of the Great Otway National Park in June, so the images in this article can give a good impression if you plan your visit during that time of the year.
8 Amazing Waterfalls In The Great Otway National Park
The Erskine Falls
The Erskine Falls is one of the most popular waterfalls in the Great Otway and is easy to reach as it’s only a few kilometers from the town of Lorne in the south of Victoria, Australia.
The track to Erskine Falls starts at a car park and it’s a very easy walk to the first lookout that gives a beautiful view from the top. However, if you want to admire the complete waterfall, you need to walk down 300 steps to reach the bottom, which I highly recommend doing.
The walking track is a well-made and graded track suitable for people of all ages and fitness levels. You can even follow the 7.5km walking trail back to the town of Lorne.
LOCATION: Erskine Falls Car Park
Won Wondah Falls
The Won Wondah waterfall is very easy to reach as it is located on the same walking track as the Henderson Falls and close to the Sheoak Picnic Area. You can start either from the Sheoak Picnic Area or from the Sharp Rd. and follow the signs along the way until you reach the view platform of the Won Wondah Falls.
The walking track is easy and very peaceful as it is surrounded by lush ferns and impressive eucalyptus trees. along the way, you will also come across a sign that leads towards the Phantom Falls.
The view platform has a beautiful view from the top of the falls but unfortunately, there is no access to the bottom of the Won Wondah Falls.
LOCATION: Won Wondah Falls
Henderson Falls is located at the end of the walking trail of the Won Wondah Falls. The signs are clearly marked but after some rainfall, the trail can be very muddy and slippery so wear decent shoes. (My Converse shoes did a great job though).
The best way to start the walk is from the Sheoak Picnic Area, however, I parked my car closer and started from this point. When you start your walk from the Sheoak Picnic Area, it’s a roughly 2km walk to the Henderson Falls, with amazing and very tall Eucalypt trees along the way.
I recommend visiting the Henderson Falls before lunchtime as the sunrays will shine through the lush green leaves and create an impressive beautiful atmosphere around the waterfall.
LOCATION: Henderson Falls
The Phantom Falls is a very scenic waterfall at the St. George River and for sure one of my favorite ones in Australia! You can reach the Phantom Waterfalls from the walking track of the Henderson Falls and Won Wondah Falls. There is a sign just before the view platform of the Won Wondah Falls. However, the track from Henderson Falls was too muddy so I decided to start the 1,5km walking trail from the Allenvale Road Carpark.
From The AllenVale Carpark, I crossed the road until I reached the bridge to cross the St. George River and then continued walking next to the tree orchard until I reached the cute little farmhouse. from here you can easily follow the signs toward the waterfall.
LOCATION: Phantom Falls
The best way to visit the Sheoak Falls is to drive along the Great Ocean Road until you reach the bend at the Sheoak Creek, continue for about 100m, and turn then right to find the car park. It was not easy to find as there is no sign of the car park.
From the car park follow the wooden stairs and walking trail to the end, where you can admire the magical Sheoak Falls in its serene surrounding.
TIP: Go before sunset as the light creates a beautiful glow on the hills and surrounding area.
LOCATION: Sheoak Car Park
READ ALSO: The Great Ocean Road: 9 amazing viewpoints
Hidden in the forest, the Carisbrook Falls is a little bit different than all the previous waterfalls, as the falls can only be seen from the lookout. There is also not a real car park so it’s not easy to find but definitely worth visiting.
Use the location link to see the exact location of the car park. From the Carpark it’s an 800m walk to the lookout where you will be rewarded by a stunning view of the falls and the Great Ocean Road.
LOCATION: Carisbrook Falls
Another beauty on this list and for sure one you cannot miss is the Hopetoun Falls. It is one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the Great Otway National Park, about 6 km from Beech Forest Rd (C159).
Once you reach the carpark, you can see on the left side the falls from the top but I recommend walking down to the bottom where you can admire the falls from the view platform.
LOCATION: Hopetoun Falls
This image received an award in 2021 in the Nokia Photographer of the Year Awards.
This is probably one of the most fairy-tale waterfalls you will have seen. Surrounded by lush green forests, this waterfall is located deep into the National Park and close to the Hopetoun falls.
Unfortunately, the Beauchamp waterfalls were closed during my trip for renovations at the car park, and access was strictly prohibited but this waterfall should be on everyone’s list.
LOCATION: Beauchamp Falls
Photo credit: @Brendan Hung
There is an amazing secret waterfall, which is not accessible to the public as the waterfall is located on private land but you can actually see it from the road. The Secret Falls, as I call them are located behind the Seafarers Getaway and can best be seen when you drive from Apollo Bay towards the hotel.
It’s a great stop along the way and the best time to visit or find this waterfall is after a rainy day when there is plenty of water in the creek
LOCATION: Seafarers Getaway
Victoria has some of the most amazing waterfalls in Australia, each with a unique character and charm. Whether you’re an experienced bushwalker or just looking for an easy walk to a beautiful waterfall, there’s something for everyone in the Great Otway National Park.
So what are you waiting for? Head out on an adventure to see some of Victoria’s most spectacular waterfalls. Don’t forget to pack your camera! These waterfalls are definitely photo-worthy.
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PICTURES AND EDITING
All the pictures on this page are made and owned by me or credited to their original artist with permission. If you are interested in some pictures to use for your magazine, website, blog, or any other purpose, just send me an email and we’ll figure it out.
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The camera gear I used for this trip
I never go out without my camera and many people ask me which gear I use. So to make it quite easy, I listed all the gear I used for this trip below.
Most of the time, I travel with the Sony A7III and the Sony 24-105mm/f4 as my primary lens but depending on the location, I change to another setup. However, I love the Tamron 17-28 to shoot in the big cities.