Every Sunday, we like to get out of the house and do something. Whether it’s a quick stroll to the beach, or a little walk and some brunch, we just like to stretch our legs and feel like we’re not wasting the day.
This weekend, we felt like doing something different, and after a quick google search, we found that there was a National Park called ‘Hanging Rock’ just 45 mins drive away.
North West of Melbourne’s CBD, the drive is pretty beautiful, once you’re through the suburbs, you get hit with a mixture of bushland, mountains and man-made forests. Deeper into the mountains and towards the ski resorts (yes, ski resorts in Oz do exist), you come across Hanging Rock. It’s a fairly pleasant and small park with a few bushwalks thrown in for good measure.
What is a ‘Hanging Rock’?
Hanging Rock National Park is what is known as a ‘Mamelon‘:
‘A mamelon (from French mamelon, “nipple”) is a rock formation created by eruption of relatively thick or stiff lava through a narrow vent in the bedrock. Because the lava is not fluid, it does not flow away; instead it congeals around the vent, forming a small hill or mound on the surface. The outflow from successive eruptions forms additional layers on top, and the resulting pile of layers may stand over 100 metres (330 ft) above the surrounding surface.’ – Wikipedia
We opted to trek to the summit (I’m trying to overcome the fear of heights that’s setting in as I get older). The other available trails are a little longer, and on flat ground, so definitely ideal for those with kids in tow.
As you start the 1800m round trip trek to the top, you notice how steep it gets, and how quickly. Photo opps are available at every opportunity and the Spring landscape is just gorgeous right now.
At one point, the path splits and you’re given the option of reaching the summit either via stairs or the ramp. We decided to do the ramp on the way up, and take the stairs on the way down to get the full 360 degree experience. (I think you’re actually supposed to do it the other way round, but hey-ho!).
The predominantly concrete paving and clear signage helps to ensure you don’t get lost, but there is still ample opportunity for explorers to go slightly off track and explore all the nooks and crannies.
I absolutely loved it, the views were insane, and any geological marvel is totally awe inspiring for me. Well worth the drive out if you’re looking for something different to do, but don’t want to stray too far from Melbourne.
For those less inclined to hiking, there is a great little visitors centre, parkland area and cafe.
Entrance fees are $10 per car, payable on check out. It’s well worth the pocket change though. Perfect Sunday.
Do you like to do something different on Sundays? What’s the coolest geological marvel you have visited?