Our list of the best Walking and Hiking Trails in the Dandenong Ranges National Park and beyond!
The 17km long & our premier hilly trail follows the Puffing Billy steam railway through the Eastern Dandenong Ranges starting at Clematis and finishing in Gembrook offering a full range of experiences for users – hills, forests, farms, rural villages, picnic facilities, heritage railway.
Wright Forest has several walking tracks to choose from. The tracks link to Emerald Lake Park and the town centre of Cockatoo. Wrights Forest is a remnant native eucalypt forest and consists of over 75 species of native plants.
An intimate 17km walking track along Sassafras Creek. You can start from Emerald or Sassafras with picnic grounds along the way. You’ll see many native birds and wallabies at dusk. You can picnic at Kays, Olympic, Kensleys & Beagleys picnic grounds.
Butterfield Wildlife Reserve was a former logging and gold mining region. The track starts from Emerald-Monbulk Rd, also a starting point to walk the Dandenong Ranges Tourist Track to Emerald or onto Monbulk. The chimney remnants of Bill Butterfield’s cottage built in the early 1940’s can be viewed at the start of this gentle and peaceful walk.
Gembrook Park is a 5 minute walk from the Gembrook Town Centre and Puffing Billy railway station. There is a picnic area and 2 short walks to explore. Fern Gully Walk is a 1.5km walk. Hillside Walk continues on for another 1.2km. The park is around 29 hectares is a display of mountain grey gums, mountain ash and messmate stringy bark.
A selection of short and longer walks for all abilities taking in woodlands, heathlands on river plains, Mountain Ash and natives.
There are 7 short walking tracks to choose from in Emerald Lake Park. All the walks are very scenic and vary in difficulty. The Wishing Well track, an easy to moderate walk is most popular taking you through an ancient forest gully with tall European trees towering a native rainforest.
A short steep track linking the Wishing Well Track to Pine Track via the Emerald–Cockatoo Multi-use Trail. Array of native and some large elm trees at the bottom end of the track. Note - This track can be slippery during wet weather.
Proceeding south from the cafe, you will reach Lake Nobelius. This lake was constructed as a sediment trap for stormwater entering the park from urban areas to the east of the park and the natural spring that enters from the south. A number of boardwalks pass over the water, allowing walkers to view the abundant animal life.
This track is well-formed and is dominated at one end by mature pine trees (Pinus radiata), giving the trail its name. The track joins the Emerald–Cockatoo Multi-use Trail on the border of the Nobelius Heritage Nursery.
The Wishing Well Track walk is the most popular within the park. Walk through a stand of chestnuts, into an ancient forest gully with very tall European trees towering over the native rainforest. When you reached the end, make a wish at the wishing well.
This track, narrow and steep in parts, meanders along the stormwater course that flows from Nobelius Heritage Nursery through to Lakeside car park. You will head through the gully filled with native and exotic flora then come to a small field of ferns. This track is very narrow and is slippery after rain.
This trail runs from Nobelius nursery through to Wombat corner, and is part of a longer trail that links Emerald to Cockatoo via Emerald Lake Park and Wrights Forest. The trail is lined with ferns and a mix of exotic and native flora.
Nobelius Track follows Puffing Billy railway line, from the Carl Stemp amphitheatre to the packing shed. The walk has a number of pine trees, chestnuts and oaks, together with a mix of indigenous flora. The track passes the old Nobelius station and is part of the annual Great Train Race fun run.
From Grants Picnic Ground you can explore several different walks designed to cater to everyone. The forest contains the tallest flowering plants in the world, the Mountain Ash. Picnic with the song of the Lyrebird in the background, discover rare orchids and marvel at the tree ferns.
This hard-surfaced track has been especially designed for the disabled. The track follows a steady gradient weaving through spectacular Mountain Ash forest and features interpretive signs to introduce you to the surrounding forest.
This easy Interpretive Walk takes you back in time to ancient origins with signs that will introduce you to the cool temperate rainforest which is threatened throughout the world.
The route follows Lyrebird Walk passing though cleared areas of bush created by the successive wildfires of the early 1900’s. At Paddy Track Junction turn south and cross Hardy Creek before climbing Welch Track and following Coles Ridge Rd back to the picnic ground.
Exploring the walking trails in and around the Dandenong Ranges in Victoria, Australia can be a great way to enjoy the natural beauty of the region, get some exercise, and relax in a peaceful setting.
Check Conditions before you leave.
Check the Parks Vic website for any change in conditions in the National Parks. Picnic Grounds and Walking Trails could be closed due to adverse weather or fallen trees.
The TrailRider allows people who are wheelchair bound or have limited mobility the freedom to explore some of the more rugged trails. The TrailRider is motorised and requires a minimum of two operators. Four operators are recommended for long trails or walks with significant gradients. The passenger of the TrailRider chair is required to wear a bike helmet when using the chair and visitors are asked to provide their own helmet.
The TrailRider is conveniently located at Grants Picnic Ground and can be booked by calling 03 9755 2888.