UA-102969380-1
Your browser version is outdated. We recommend that you update your browser to the latest version.

Things to see & do in the surrounding area 

Printable Tour Guide - South of Mount Gambier  A 'mud map' and overview of what to see during your visit to our beautiful district; limestone, sinkholes, volcanoes and coastline. 

 

Mount Schank

Walk around the top of a dormant volcano! Part of the Kanawinka Geopark; Australia‟s only internationally recognised Geopark.  Lieutenant Grant named this fascinating remnant volcano at the time he named Mount Gambier. It was named after a friend, Captain Schank.  There is a track which leads up and around the top, and it is possible to descend into the crater of the dormant volcano however the track is not maintained or recommended.  The walk from the carpark to the top and around the crater  is signposted; estimated as being of moderate difficulty and should take about 2- 2.5 hours.  New steps (left) have recently been installed.  No camping is allowed.

The Kanawinka Geotrail will take you on a journey through Australia's most extensive volcanic province in South East South Australia and South West Victoria, with over 60 sites offering a range of visitor experiences including beautiful waterfalls, caves and coastal formations as well as Mount Schank.

Germein Reserve

This is a diverse and unique remnant of our natural environment. The 55ha reserve was established in 1978 and expanded in 1995. Walk along the boardwalk through native flora, popular wetland areas and natural regeneration. Enjoy the network of easy walking trails ranging from 750metres to 1250metres.  For further enquiries contact Port MacDonnell Landcare Group: phone 08 87388070 or 0427388070 

 Adam Lindsay Gordon's Cottage

Set in the idyllic bush setting of Dingley Dell Conservation Park , the cottage was once home to eccentric and talented Australian poet and horseman Adam Lindsay Gordon; the only Australian poet whose bust is displayed in Westminster Abbey.  The museum provides a glimpse of life in the 1860's and an infomative self-guided walking trail meanders through the surrounding pocket of bush land, offering a sheltered picnic spot.

Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop; a journey of discovery 

Follow the trail through the early years of Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop's life and visit the Port MacDonnell Jetty, where  Mary boarded the ship SS Penola on 22 June 1867 for the journey to Adelaide where she established the Cathedral Hall School. 

Aussie Camino: Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop and Fr Tenison Woods 

The Aussie Camino is a pilgrimage route running from Portland Victoria to Penola South Australia via Port MacDonnell, inspired by the life and journeys of australia's Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop and her mentor Fr Julian Tenison Woods. 

Based on the traditions of the Camino de Santiago de Compostela, pilgrims receive passports, scallop shells and stay in the local towns along the way.  Although the Aussie Camino is designed to be self-guided, groups of around 20-30 depart at various times of the year. Guides are available online at http://aussiecamino.org/wordpress/

Caves & Sinkholes - Diving & Snorkelling:

Allendale East Sinkhole

Once used as a watering hole for Bullock Teams, the main road from Mount Gambier to Port MacDonnell is divided in Allendale East to go around the sinkhole, which is now used for diving practice by Emergency Services and Police divers.

Piccaninnie Ponds Conversation Park 

Karst Wetlands Ramsar Site 

Located along the coast and reaching the Victorian border, this is a large reed swamp with subterranean springs which has a reputation as one of Australia's best cave diving destinations. The caves are actually sinkholes and require considerable skill. The main sinkhole, Piccaninnie Pond, can be dived but a permit is needed from the National Parks and Wildlife Service in Mount Gambier.The network of springs and limestone caves is now a Ramsar site, ranked alongside the like of the Everglades National Park in the US, the Danube Delta in eastern Europe, Loch Lomond in Scotland, and Kakadu National Park in the Top End. 


Ewens Ponds Conservation Park

Located 6 kms north east of Port MacDonnell this is an important and interesting wetland habitat characterized by dense Sringybark, Blackwood, Christmas bush and a range of interesting orchids. It is also an area of sinkholes which are popular with divers.

Part of Ewens Ponds Conservation Park will be closed from Monday 31 August 2015 until 6pm on Sunday 29 November 2015.  The closure applies to all bodies of water in the reserve. As such, no diving or swimming is permitted in the Ponds during the closure period. Phone: (08) 8735 1177 for further information.

There are a huge number of beautiful birds in our area - the novice or expert can freely view some of them at the 8 Mile Creek Bird Hide
 
Little Blue Lake

The Little Blue Lake is one of the many water filled sinkholes which provide a "window" into the underground water system and a cool swim for experienced swimmers.

 

Cycling

The District Council of Grant provides beautiful, changing, natural scenery for road cyclists;  from pine forests, national parks, ocean views to farming land with dairy cows and sheep.  Dedicated cycle paths exist in many townships including Port MacDonnell.  

The Tour of the Great South Coast is held annually in August. The tour’s longest stage, a 136.7km trek is raced through the district and starts and finishes in Port MacDonnell.

View highlights from the 2016 event

View highlights from the 2015 event 

 

Telford Scrub Conservation Park 

Take a walk along the forest canopy boardwalk to experience the remaining native forest within Telford Scrub Conservation Park. The boardwalk is 100 metres long and just over 4 metres high and is placed amongst the branches of the trees, enabling visitors to catch a glimpse of the many birds that live there.

Koalas were introduced into the park in 1997 from Kangaroo Island. The vulnerable southern brown bandicoot and the endangered sugar glider can also be found. Some of the most beautiful plants in the forest are the native orchids. Over 20 species have been found in the park, including pink fingers, common donkey orchid, tiger orchid, and purple cockatoo.

Interpretative signs along the walking trails highlight some of the park's features. Choose between this easy one-hour walk or the more adventurous two-and-a-half hour Stringybark Forest Walking Trial.  A small clearing among the vegetation is an ideal spot to enjoy a picnic and has picnic tables.

  Telford Scrub Conservation Park courtesy TrailSA.comTelford Scrub Conservation Park courtesy TrailSA.com

The Bellum Hotel

Originally built in 1866, and used as a halfway stop over point for travellers from Mount Gambier to the busy port of Port MacDonnell, it was known for many years as The Halfway House Hotel Bellum Bellum, with many believing the term "Bellum Bellum‟ told of a fierce war held by the local Boandik tribe. Part of the Bar‟s floor is glass showing how the builders dug the original cellar by hand through the local limestone.

 

 

Feast's Classic Car Collection & Memorabilia

Come and let Donald and Sheila Feast show you their vast collections of all sorts, shapes and sizes from restored Valiant Cars and horse drawn wagons, to key-rings and toys, and everything in-between!

Echo Farm 

Photo courtesy of the Echo Farm Tollner Road Mount Gambier Photo courtesy of the Echo Farm Tollner Road Mount Gambier Visit a working pioneer farm and farmhouse museum. Here you can view the life and times of Australian agriculture from Federation to 1960. Wander among the outbuildings and machinery and discover stories of yesteryear. Take the Echo Farm walk to meet and greet the animals and view the time line of tree carvings. Browse through the farmhouse museum at traditional, wholesome, heritage and Aussie things - things you will remember and things you have probably forgotten about! (30km from Port MacDonnell / 6km from Mount Gambier Main Corner Complex)

 

Playgrounds, Parks & Gardens

Discover a spectacular coastline of cliffs and long stretches of surf beaches in Canunda National Park. Featuring a diversity of coastal habitats, Canunda offers great opportunities to enjoy 4-wheel driving, bush walking, observe local bird life, surf the waves or snorkel among the fish. The Wattle Rangers 4WD Club Inc in conjunction with the Department of Environment and Heritage, have produced a 'mud map' as a courtesy to visitors, which is intended as a guide only.