&noscript=1" /> 18 Best Waterfalls Near Melbourne for Nature Lovers
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Hopetoun Falls
Source: Visit Victoria

18 Best Waterfalls Near Melbourne for Nature Lovers

15/05/2024
11 mins read

Are you excited for an adventure that brings together the excitement of exploring and the calm beauty of nature? Not far from Melbourne, you can find amazing waterfalls.

From the impressive height of Trentham Falls to the less known beauty of Turpins Falls, each one gives you a special chance to experience Victoria’s beautiful scenery. So, get your picnic ready, take your camera, and let’s head out to see some of Melbourne’s most stunning waterfalls. They’re great for a day out or a short vacation!

Our Favourites

Mackenzie Falls

Mackenzie Falls, found in the tough center of the Grampians National Park, stands out as one of the biggest and most impressive waterfalls in Victoria. These falls keep flowing all year, pouring a strong stream of water down into a deep pool, making a mist that shines in the sunlight. The area around Mackenzie Falls is great for spending a whole day exploring, with many walking paths that provide amazing views of the falls and the nature around them.

For those who want to take the perfect picture, the bottom of the falls is a favorite spot. You can get there by following a well-kept path. This path might be a bit difficult for some, but it’s worth it for everyone who tries it.

  • Website: Mackenzie Falls
  • Address: Grampians National Park, Northern Grampians Rd, Zumsteins VIC
  • Things to note: The trail to the base of the falls includes steps and can be strenuous. It’s advisable to visit during the cooler parts of the day during summer.
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/pDXKapsxp9gLE67i8

Marriners Falls

Despite being just a 25-minute drive from the stunning coastal town of Apollo Bay, you feel a world away at the base of Marriners Falls. Finding this waterfall contributes to the feeling of isolation. The winding access road and outdated walking track lead you deeper into the back forests of the Great Otway National Park. The 1.8-kilometre trek is difficult and can be dangerous, with many fallen trees and slippery river crossings.

This pretty waterfall is enclosed by a steep-walled cove, where a number of fallen trees now lay in the shape of an arch. It may lack the height and power of Erskine and Hopetoun Falls, but this hidden location truly awakens your adventurous side.

Note that in 2011, Parks Victoria permanently closed the walking track due to falling trees posing a risk to visitors’ safety. If you are still adamant on visiting, pay close attention to weather conditions to avoid strong winds or possible flash flooding.

Steavenson Falls

Just a short drive from the town of Marysville, Steavenson Falls offers visitors the chance to see one of Victoria’s tallest waterfalls, with waters plunging over 80 meters. By day, the falls are a peaceful natural spectacle, and by night, they transform into an illuminated wonder, lit up until midnight to enhance the magical experience.

The surrounding area provides a picnic ground where families and friends can gather, and a network of trails invites you to explore further into the native bushland.

Trentham Falls

Trentham Falls, proudly holding the title of the highest single-drop waterfall in Victoria, offers a spectacular natural display just over an hour’s drive from Melbourne. The falls drop dramatically over ancient basalt columns, set against a backdrop of dense bushland that changes colors with the seasons. It’s a perfect spot for those looking to snap that Instagram-worthy photo or simply enjoy a moment of tranquility.

The area around the falls includes picnic facilities, making it an ideal location for a leisurely lunch amidst nature. For the adventurous, nearby trails offer the chance to explore more of the scenic surroundings.

  • Website: Trentham Falls
  • Address: Trentham Scenic Reserve, Trentham Falls Road, Trentham, Victoria
  • Things to note: The viewing platform is easily accessible, but access to the base of the falls is restricted to preserve the natural environment.
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/pV9SzcFtFJaeVnCr7

Turpins Falls

Turpins Falls is like a secret paradise that feels far removed from the busy city life. Found near Kyneton, this big, calm pool is surrounded by tall rock walls and makes a private place for swimming or just relaxing on a warm day.

The waterfalls flow down into the pool in a beautiful way, creating a breathtaking natural scene. Since it’s a bit off the beaten path, it’s usually not too crowded, offering a more personal time with nature. Don’t forget to bring your camera because the scenic view is definitely worth capturing.

Hopetoun Falls

Hopetoun Falls, located in the lush Great Otway National Park, is a must-visit for waterfall enthusiasts. The falls are a breathtaking sight as they plunge 30 meters into the Aire River. A well-maintained boardwalk leads to a viewing platform that offers a prime view of the falls, making it accessible for all visitors.

For those looking for a closer look, a steep stairway descends to the base of the falls, where the sounds of cascading water and calls of native birds create a mesmerizing natural symphony.

Toorongo Falls

Toorongo Falls, located in a native forest close to Noojee, offers a peaceful getaway with its beautiful series of waterfalls and pools.

The Toorongo Falls Reserve has a lovely loop trail that takes you past both Toorongo and Amphitheatre Falls, ideal for anyone who enjoys a good walk and the sight of beautiful natural scenery.

The path is clearly marked and is both refreshing and calming, surrounded by rich green plants and the relaxing noise of water moving.

Keppel Falls

Keppel Falls, located in the Yarra Ranges National Park, offers a serene escape with its cascading waters set amidst towering eucalypts and lush ferns. The walk to the falls is relatively short but rewarding, with the path shaded by native bushland, making it a pleasant journey even on warmer days.

The falls themselves tumble gracefully over rocks, creating a picturesque scene perfect for photography enthusiasts and nature lovers alike. The sound of the water and the cool air that surrounds the falls provide a refreshing respite from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Sheoak Falls

Sheoak Falls, located near Lorne just off the Great Ocean Road, is a favorite spot for travelers on this famous path. You can reach the falls with a short, beautiful walk from the parking area, making it a simple spot to add to any road trip plan.

The trail takes you to a lovely waterfall that flows into a calm pool, all surrounded by local trees and plants. It’s an excellent place for a quick stop to relax from driving, listen to the calming water sounds, and stretch your legs on the easy-to-walk path.

  • Website: Sheoak Falls
  • Address: Sheoak Falls, Great Ocean Road, Lorne, Victoria
  • Things to note: There are no picnic facilities or toilets at the site, so plan accordingly. The nearest amenities are in Lorne.
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/iz8sSxyEh6WsFxnL6

Henderson Falls

A leisurely climb from Sheoak Picnic Area lands you at the base of Henderson Falls, an impressive ten-metre cascade. The walk itself is a highlight, winding through lush bushland and offering views of smaller gems like Won Wondah Falls and the enchanting Canyon.

This trail is perfect for those who enjoy a moderate hike with plenty of natural beauty to take in. The falls are surrounded by dense greenery, making it a peaceful spot to relax and enjoy the sounds of nature. It’s a fantastic way to spend a morning or afternoon immersed in the natural wonders of the area.

Lower and Upper Kalimna Falls

Lower Kalimna Falls offers a unique trickle over a rock ledge into a little cave—absolutely worth the short drive from Lorne and a breezy three-kilometre bushwalk. This hidden gem is perfect for those who love a bit of exploration without too much effort.

For the overachievers among us, keep trekking another kilometre to find the towering Upper Kalimna Falls, which stand tall and proud above the lush forest floor. The journey through the Otway bushland is as rewarding as the falls themselves, offering plenty of photo ops and moments of tranquility.

Cumberland Falls

Nestled three kilometres inland from the coast, Cumberland Falls is a scenic six-kilometre round trip. The falls might not be as grand as some others, but the journey there is half the fun, weaving through potential swimming spots like Jebs Pool with its smooth rock slide.

The path follows the Cumberland River, making for a picturesque and refreshing hike. Start your journey from the Cumberland River Holiday Park and enjoy the lush surroundings and serene atmosphere. It’s a great spot for a leisurely day hike with plenty of opportunities to cool off along the way.

Cora Lynn Cascades

For those craving a bit of solitude, the picturesque Cora Lynn Cascades are just the ticket. This moderate trek, starting from Blanket Leaf Car Park, can get muddy after a good rain, so come prepared for a bit of fun and mess—it’s all part of the adventure! The four-kilometre return trek takes you off the beaten path, offering a chance to enjoy the peaceful sounds of nature and the beauty of the cascades.

The area is often quiet, providing a perfect escape from the crowds and a chance to connect with the natural world. The cascades themselves are a stunning sight, with water flowing gracefully over the rocks, creating a serene and calming atmosphere.

Phantom Falls

Just a couple of kays from Lorne town centre, Phantom Falls is a gem worth the 3.5-kilometre return hike.

If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, you can extend your trek to include Won Wondah Falls and Henderson Falls in the same circuit. Start at Allenvale Mill and follow the Saint George River for a stunning trek through lush greenery and picturesque landscapes. It’s a perfect day out for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle.

Won Wondah Falls

Smaller than its neighbours, Won Wondah Falls still charms its way into your heart en route to Henderson Falls. It’s a peaceful spot that’s perfect for a quick pause during your hike. The gentle flow of water and the serene surroundings make it a lovely spot to catch your breath and enjoy a moment of tranquility.

Despite its smaller size, Won Wondah Falls has a unique charm that makes it a worthwhile stop on your hike. The path to the falls is well-marked and easy to follow, making it accessible for hikers of all levels.

Triplet Falls

One of the most spectacular sights in the Great Otway National Park, Triplet Falls offers a unique experience with its three distinct cascades flowing through ancient rainforests. The loop walk to view the falls is well worth the effort, featuring towering mountain ashes and lush ferns that create a canopy overhead.

This walk not only offers views of the falls but also immerses visitors in the rich biodiversity of the Otways, making it a must-visit for nature enthusiasts and photographers.

  • Website: Triplet Falls
  • Address: Youngs Creek Track, Great Otway National Park, Victoria
  • Things to note: The walk involves some steps and uneven surfaces, so it’s best suited for those with moderate fitness levels. Also, the area’s natural beauty is particularly lush during the wetter months, enhancing the flow and beauty of the falls.
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/P5SizTqbRLyx8oKC6

Erskine Falls

Tucked away in the lush landscapes of the Great Otway National Park, Erskine Falls cascades dramatically over fern-covered cliffs, dropping 30 meters into the cool depths below. This spot isn’t just a feast for the eyes; it’s a haven for those looking to escape the city’s buzz. The sound of the water tumbling down into the serene pool offers a natural melody that complements the peaceful surroundings.

Whether you’re an avid photographer or a casual nature lover, Erskine Falls provides the perfect backdrop for a day of exploration. The area offers several vantage points, including an easily accessible upper lookout and a more secluded lower lookout, reached by descending a set of steep steps.

Sherbrooke Falls

Located in the Dandenong Ranges, a quick drive from Melbourne, Sherbrooke Falls is a lovely spot for people who want to take an easy walk among tall mountain ash trees and rich fern areas. The path to the falls is pretty simple, which makes it great for families and people who just like to walk for fun.

While you’re walking, look out for the local birds and you might even see a lyrebird or two. The falls might not be very tall, but they make a beautiful picture as they flow over the moss-covered rocks.

Morwell River Falls

The Morwell River winds through the Strzelecki Ranges for over 40 kilometres, showcasing Gippsland’s lush landscape. Known for its towering Mountain Ash Eucalyptus trees and dense undergrowth, the area hides the Morwell River Falls. The first drop, framed by an overhanging tree branch, is the most picturesque. Further downstream, the water flows gracefully over two successive drops. While the falls aren’t grand or powerful, this hidden spot offers a serene escape.

Morwell River Falls framed by an overhanging branch and swing

Despite its serene beauty, reaching Morwell River Falls can be tricky. Morwell River Road is unsealed for some of the journey, and while a 4WD vehicle is not essential, the track has steep, slippery steps. Be cautious as the path can be rough and slippery, making it unsuitable for prams and challenging for young children. There are no toilet facilities, so plan accordingly.

  • Address: 965 Morwell River Road, Grand Ridge, Victoria
  • Things to note: Water flows all year round. The swing at the base of the first fall adds to the serenity, but use it with caution.

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the best time of year to visit waterfalls near Melbourne?

The best time to visit waterfalls near Melbourne is during the winter and spring months, from June to October. This is when rainfall is higher, ensuring the waterfalls are flowing at their fullest and most spectacular.

Can I swim at any of these waterfalls?

Yes, some waterfalls near Melbourne have pools at their base where swimming is allowed. Turpins Falls and Erskine Falls are popular spots for a dip. However, always assess the current conditions and signage as safety comes first.

How accessible are these waterfalls?

Many of the waterfalls near Melbourne are accessible via well-marked tracks and boardwalks. For example, Sherbrooke Falls and Steavenson Falls have relatively easy access. However, some waterfalls, like the base of Erskine Falls, require descending steep steps and may not be suitable for all visitors.

Are there any facilities available at these waterfall sites?

Facilities vary by location. For instance, Steavenson Falls offers picnic grounds and is floodlit at night, while Trentham Falls has a viewing platform but restricted access to the base to preserve the natural environment. Always check the specific site for details on available facilities like picnic areas, toilets, and parking.

Is there an entry fee to visit these waterfalls?

Most waterfalls near Melbourne do not have an entry fee and are open to the public. However, national parks or specific attractions may have parking fees or require a parks pass. For example, visiting Mackenzie Falls in the Grampians National Park may require a park pass.

Lachlan Taylor

Lachlan aka Lockie is a contributing writer at Humble Trail, known for his down-to-earth style and passion for the great outdoors. Born and raised in the small town of Deloriane, Tasmania, Lockie developed a deep love for nature and adventure from a young age.

His articles are a blend of his personal adventures and insightful explorations, often focused on sustainable travel, wilderness treks, and the serene beauty of untouched landscapes.

Always with his own reusable coffee cup in hand, Lockie loves a good caffeine fix as much as everyone else on the Humbletrail team.

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