Wilson’s Promontory, or “The Prom” as most Aussies know it, is one of the most pristine and beautiful locations in the state of Victoria. The National Park contains the most Southern point of mainland Australia, is home to an array of flora and fauna, and is a popular destination for campers as well as hikers.
I was lucky to get a three-day, two-night hike in down there recently with some friends just before the floods hit a couple of weeks ago. Unfortunately, the damage sustained by the torrential downpours caused the closure of much of the park, including the main camping ground at Tidal River. It even forced air-evacuations for a few groups of school kids.
When the park is at its best it is a sensation for the senses; wild rock formations, deep blue and green ocean water, golden sands and dense forest form a stunning environment. The range of colours is incredible, I especially loved the orange glow of the rocks at sunset and sunrise.
Native wildlife is in abundance. We even crossed upon a few snakes on the first day! Wombats are common, especially around the Tidal River campground. Don’t be surprised to come across kangaroos, wallabies, possums, blue-tongued lizards and echidnas either.
Our hike began at the Mt Oberon carpark, went out to Little Waterloo Bay where we spent the first night, on to Refuge Cove for the second, and the return passed through Sealer’s Cove. It was challenging, and you need to be in reasonable shape to do it, but I wouldn’t call it difficult.
If you are keen on getting out there, hit up the Parks Victoria website for updates on the condition of the trails, as well as to obtain a required permit. The number of hikers they let in is limited, so get in early if you plan on going during holiday times. Remember that the weather can change damn quickly down there, so pack accordingly. If you’re not too keen on hiking, the main campground is pretty well kitted out, and the surrounding beaches still have a wow-factor.