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There is an incredible number of things to do in Wilsons Prom.
Visitors are treated to unspoiled beaches, marvellous coastal views, rainforests and the beautiful Australian bush. Gorgeous wildflowers grow in the national park too, such as wattle, heathland and even orchids.
With its granite peaks and wild natural beauty, Prom country is truly something special. And it’s one of the most beautiful places in Victoria.
Encompassing 50,000 hectares, Wilsons Prom National Park is Victoria’s largest coastal wilderness area. So it’s no surprise that bushwalking is one of the most popular Wilsons Prom things to do.
There are over 30 self-guided walking tracks ranging from gentle strolls to more difficult multi-day hikes. We stuck to simple short walks that didn’t take more than a few hours.
Most of the things to do at Wilsons Prom Victoria involve physical activity of some kind, but there are plenty of beaches to laze on if you get tired.
But really Wilsons Promontory, or “The Prom” as it’s known, is all about awe-inspiring landscapes. It’s not well known amongst travellers, so you can enjoy all the gorgeousness without the crowds.
Watch this video and you’ll see what I mean.
We’re going to show you what to do in Wilsons Prom, but first here’s some information about this fabulous area.
- Evidence of Aboriginal occupation at Wilsons Promontory Victoria dates back at least 6,500 years.
- The first European to see the promontory was George Bass in January 1798.
- The name Wilson’s Promontory was recommended by George Bass and Matthew Flinders to honour Thomas Wilson, a friend from London.
- It has been a national park since 1898 and is the largest coastal wilderness area in Victoria.
- The site was closed to the public during World War II as it was used as a commando training ground.
- After disappearing due to illegal hunting, Southern Right Whales have returned to the area. Killer Whales make an appearance from time to time too.
Top Wilsons Prom Things To Do
1) Stride Along A Wilsons Prom Beach
Australia is known for sun, surf and sand, and Victoria is no exception.
With 2,500 kilometres of rugged coastline, Victorian beaches are some of the most stunning in the country. And while I can’t say The Prom has the best beaches in Victoria – I’m looking at you Great Ocean Road – Gippsland beaches are naturally beautiful, and a must do when you visit Wilsons Prom.
Here are some legendary Wilsons Prom beaches to visit.
Stunning Squeaky Beach Victoria is named for the unusual quartz sand that squeaks when you walk on it. This iconic Wilson Promontory beach is pristine mind-blowing goodness with bright white sand.
It’s a wonderful beach to walk along with huge boulders and rock pools at each end to explore. Unfortunately, the water was toe-numbingly cold (it’s the Southern Ocean) on the day we visited. But a few hardy souls were frolicking amongst the waves undeterred.
Just a short walk from Tidal River Campground, Norman Beach is popular with families. The beach is huge and at low tide, it’s great for riding bikes.
The tidal river empties into the sea here, and there’s a creek with calm water for swimming. Or you can try your hand at surfing.
It’s a beautiful wide stretch of golden sand beach with views along the coast in both directions. And it’s a great place to come down to at sunset.
Whisky Bay is a smaller secluded beach that’s about a ten-minute drive from Tidal River Camp Ground. And it’s a good option if you want to get away from the crowds at Squeaky Beach Wilsons Prom.
Whisky Bay is a glorious beach with soft sand and picturesque boulders. It’s considered a good spot to watch the sunset because the islands are silhouetted on the horizon.
2) Sail, Dive and Snorkel
The water and islands surrounding The Prom are protected by Wilsons Promontory Marine National Park. Extending along 17 kilometres of coastline it’s Victoria’s largest marine protected area.
The strict fishing regulations guarantee some of the best diving and snorkelling in the state. Divers can explore sponge gardens, reefs and small islands that are home to penguins, sea birds and seals. They can also expect to see octopuses, sharks and stingrays.
It’s also possible to do full day cruises around Refuge Cove Wilsons Prom. This is a fabulous way to see this diverse region from a different perspective. Refuge Cove Cruises have daily departures that include lunch. For more information on this great Wilsons Prom day trip click here.
3) See The World’s Southern-Most Mangroves
Millers Landing is on the southern shore of Corner Inlet in the northern part of The Prom. This section of the park doesn’t see nearly as many visitors and it’s a great place to escape the crowds.
The area is home to the world’s southern-most mangroves. Weirdly they grow upside-down with their roots in the air, as the sticky mud they live in has little oxygen to offer.
From Five Mile carpark, it’s a 40-minute walk that wanders downhill through banksia and stringybark woodland. This delightful walk offers the chance to see wildflowers, black swans and yellow-tailed black cockatoos. People have encountered emus along this track too.
4) Soak Up The Magic Of A Rainforest
When you get tired of the beaches and coastline (as if!) the Lilly Pilly Gully Nature Walk is a superb alternative.
Famous for its beautiful wildflowers Lilly Pilly Gully has a gorgeous rainforest with cool trees and plants. It’s perfect for a cloudy day when visibility is poor at Mt Oberon summit.
This is one of the easier walks in Wilsons Prom where you can really enjoy your natural surroundings. You’ll be taken through stringybark forest, dark ethereal woodland and lush rainforest. It’s like you’re in another world.
There’s more than one option for walking around Lilly Pilly Gully.
The Lilly Pilly Gully Nature Walk is an easy 2.6-kilometre walk that includes a 600-metre boardwalk. Alternatively, there’s the Lilly Pilly Gully Circuit that takes you past the track up to Mount Bishop. At 5.8 kilometres it’s still a relatively easy walk.
If you do the full circuit and Mount Bishop together it’s about 9.6 kilometres. It’s possible to climb Mt Bishop directly from the car park (7.4 km) and avoid Lilly Pilly Gully altogether.
But then you’d miss the rainforest.
5) Sink Into The Sand Dunes At Big Drift
Just a short walk from the Stockyard Campsite is an extensive series of inland sand dunes known as Big Drift. The area is often overlooked by tourists who focus on other Wilsons Prom walking tracks, and you’ll most likely have it all to yourself.
You’ll be blown away by the size of the massive white sand dunes – if not by the wind! Spend some time walking around the dunes and exploring the desert-like landscape. Adrenaline-junkies will enjoy dune surfing, boogie boarding and sledding down the steep sand hills.
Tip: It’s easy to get lost so make sure you mark the way back to the carpark as your tracks will be wiped out by the wind.
6) Stay At Wilsons Prom Lighthouse
Have you ever dreamt of staying in a lighthouse?
Then this is your chance to walk in the footsteps of previous lighthouse keepers and experience this remote way of life. You’ll have to work for it though as Wilsons Promontory Lighthouse can only be reached on foot.
It was built by convict labourers in 1859 on a rocky slither of land. Its southerly position can be cold and blustery adding to its sense of isolation.
But the Lightstation’s remoteness is part of its appeal. That, and waking up to incredible ocean views.
Visitors need to have a certain level of fitness to attempt the Wilsons Prom Lighthouse walk. There are two routes to choose from; the inland route via Telegraph Saddle carpark (19 km one way) or the coastal route from Tidal River via Oberon Bay (23.8 km one way).
Yep, you need to be fit!
There are three cottages, each has a bathroom and fully equipped kitchen. All food and bed linen must be brought in and rubbish must be taken out.
7) Stroll Along Wilsons Prom Hikes
Visiting Wilsons Promontory is all about the outdoors. And the best way to explore it is on one of the many Wilsons Promontory hikes.
There are heaps of different walking tracks and it would take you weeks to do them all. Don’t worry if you don’t have that much time (or fitness), there are walks to suit everybody some are just 1-2 kilometres long.
Enthusiastic hardcore trekker types can tackle a Wilsons Prom overnight hike or multi-day trek that takes you into the heart of the park. The South-Eastern Circuit is the most popular overnight hike, with most walkers choosing to camp and taking one to two days to complete the loop.
Hiking Wilsons Promontory is a rewarding and unique way to see the park. So make time to explore the trails and enjoy magical lookouts, stunning landscapes and a genuine return to nature.
We’ve already mentioned a few Wilsons Promontory walks in this article, but here are two of our favourites.
Wilsons Prom Walks
Darby Saddle To Sparkes Lookout
The delightful walk to Sparkes Lookout is good for anyone looking for a shorter hike.
The Darby Saddle track offers coastal views and forest scenery. It took us a couple of hours to walk including rest stops and it wasn’t difficult at all.
The track winds its way through giant trees and lush vegetation, and we were delighted with dancing butterflies. Along the way, we caught glimpses of aquamarine water – a teaser of the views to come.
At the 2.1 km mark, there’s a 300-metre side track that leads up to Sparkes Lookout. If you’d like to go further the track continues past the turnoff up to Lookout Rocks and then on down to Tongue Point, and ends just before the semi-attached island.
Mount Oberon Summit Walk
Walking to the Mount Oberon summit is one of the top Wilsons Promontory things to do. And it’s a 3.4-kilometre leg burning, butt busting, never-ending uphill trudge.
The uphill climb is relentless and just as you arrive, red-faced and heart thumping at what you think is the summit, you discover a set of steps.
Scamper up these for about another ten minutes, and you’ll forget your pain when you set eyes on the magnificent views.
The pathway up is a gravel access road that’s surrounded by ferns and beautiful eucalyptus trees. There are a couple of benches along the way (but not many) where you can sit and take a break. It’s a good idea to bring plenty of water and some snacks to nibble on.
The Mt Oberon walk starts at Telegraph Saddle carpark. The carpark is closed during peak times and you have to take the shuttle from Tidal River caravan park.
8) Spot Wildlife At The Prom
Spotting native animals out in the wild never gets tiring, and Wilsons Prom National Park is the perfect place to see Aussie wildlife.
The Wilsons Prom Wildlife Walk is great for seeing kangaroos, wallabies and emus. It’s an easy short walk that’s close to the entrance of the park. I recommend making it your first stop on your way in.
Follow the Promontory Road towards Tidal River. About halfway along you’ll spot a sign on the left that marks the start of the walk.
If you’d like to see wombats (and who wouldn’t?) then the Loo-Errn Track is your best chance. Designed for people with limited mobility the track follows Tidal River.
It’s a wonderful walk that’s mostly along a boardwalk that protects the fragile wetlands. Start the 1-kilometre walk at the picnic area in the car park opposite the Visitor Centre. Or at First Ramp on the west end of 6th Avenue.
Tip: Don’t feed the wildlife it’s dangerous for both them and you. And drive carefully keeping your eyes peeled for wildlife. Just look at this cute echidna we found by the side of the road it could have easily been run over.
9) Stop By A Victorian Country Town
The small towns in Victoria are characterful and unique, and are well worth stopping by during your Wilsons Prom visit.
Gippsland has major dairy and farming industries and visitors can expect to enjoy farms, vineyards, dairies, and local produce and smallgoods.
Surrounded by rolling hills, Foster Victoria was once the site of an early gold rush. The town’s old Post Office is now a museum which features displays of the region’s gold, timber and dairying history.
There’s a Visitor Information Centre, craft shop and gallery with exhibits by local artists, and a good range of shops and cafes.
And you’ll get to see iconic Australia scenes like this one.
Known as the “art capital of South Gippsland” Fish Creek has seriously cool art galleries. Including the gallery/bookshop of famous children’s author Alison Lester.
The area also boasts fantastic wineries that are worth a visit. But the town is best known for its pub and the giant fish that sits on its roof!
Set in an imposing Art Deco building it’s the closest hotel to Wilsons Promontory. We had dinner at the Fish Creek Pub during our stay at the Prom and we were blown away by the quality of our meal.
Yanakie sits on a narrow strip of land that connects Wilsons Prom with the rest of Victoria. It’s the last town before the entrance gates, and it’s where you’ll find the best accommodation near Wilsons Prom.
This town is tiny, consisting of a general store, petrol station and a public hall. And most of the residents are involved in either tourism or dairy farming.
Yanakie is popular with boating enthusiasts as it has calm waters, a waterfront caravan park and boat ramp. Duck Point on the eastern side has spectacular views of the waters surrounding Yanakie and the mountain peaks of The Prom.
So Where Is Wilsons Promontory?
Wilsons Promontory is located in Gippsland on the southernmost point of mainland Australia.
Gippsland travel is quite enjoyable and it’s only a few hours from Melbourne to Wilsons Prom. The diverse geographical area of Gippsland Victoria is renowned for its natural beauty, farmland and rolling hills.
How To Get To Wilsons Prom
Set on the southernmost tip of Victoria, Wilsons Prom Australia is only 224 kilometres from Melbourne. And it’s a popular weekend getaway for Melbournians – we travelled from Geelong. Even so, the area is pretty remote and a car is essential for getting around.
It’s fairly easy to get to and there are a number of Victorian country towns where you can stop and rest along the way.
From Melbourne take the South Gippsland Highway and turn off at either Meeniyan or Foster to get to the National Park entrance. From there it’s another 30 kilometres to Tidal River Campground or 33 kilometres to Telegraph Saddle Carpark.
Best Wilsons Prom Accommodation
Wilsons Prom Camping
Tidal River Camping
The Wilsons Prom caravan park at Tidal River is the only place to stay within the National Park. There are other caravan parks near Wilsons Prom – Stockyard Camp and Yanakie Caravan Park – but the Tidal River accommodation is the only Wilsons Promontory caravan park.
Tidal River Wilsons Prom can be a madhouse and it’s not somewhere we would choose to stay. The Prom is a favourite destination for Victorians and during holiday periods it’s so popular you have to apply for a campsite using a ballot system.
Wilsons Prom camping ground has 484 sites but only 20 sites are powered. It also has a Visitor Centre, general store and cafe.
Wilsons Prom Cabins
If pitching a tent at Wilsons Prom campground doesn’t sound much fun to you, then you can rent one of the Tidal River cabins. This is a far more comfortable way to stay in the park and still be amongst nature.
The Wilsons Promontory cabins range from simple huts with shared amenities to more luxurious fully equipped accommodation. Linen is not supplied in the basic huts.
Wilsons Promontory Accommodation
Our best advice on where to stay in Wilsons Prom is to stay just outside the park in Yanakie. It’s only a few minutes from the Park’s entrance with views of the Wilsons Promontory mountains and scenery and the accommodation is far more comfortable.
Set on five acres Black Cockatoo Cottages is just 3 kilometres from The Prom entrance. The warm and comfortable self-contained accommodation has panoramic views of Corner Inlet and the mountains of Wilsons Promontory.
The cabins at Buln Buln Cabins are surrounded by lush green paddocks with magnificent views. Each has a fully equipped kitchen and outdoor covered verandah where you can soak up your beautiful natural surroundings.
Promhills Cabins offers three different styles of self-contained accommodation and two safari style glamping eco-tents. And it’s the perfect choice for a peaceful and private country holiday.
Located just five minutes from the entrance to Wilsons Promontory National Park, it’s just a short walk to the Yanakie General Store. But best of all the rural property is surrounded by picturesque views, cows and alpacas. Alpacas!
Wilsons Promontory National Park offers so much more than the nine things to do we’ve listed here.
And whether you choose to camp, hike, stroll, swim, spot wildlife or take a Wilsons Prom tour, you’re sure to fall in love with this beautiful unspoilt part of Victoria.
Have you visited the Prom? Let us know what you think in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you.
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