Gayle Beveridge is a past winner of the Boroondara Literary Awards and her work has appeared in Award Winning Australian Writing. Gayle is passionate about family, writing, photography, and with Victoria’s beautiful Bass Coast which she now calls home.
Published November 20th 2022
Scenic Waterfall in Beautiful Prom Country
There are more waterfalls in Victoria than you might think, but Agnes Falls is my favourite. In beautiful Prom Country, in the hills of the Strezlecki Ranges, they are easily accessible and can be viewed from a safe lookout. There's plenty to like about Agnes Falls and the Agnes Falls Scenic Reserve and plenty to enjoy while you're in the area. The Falls are very popular and attract up to 30,000 visitors annually. Agnes Falls has been a tourist attraction since the early 1900s. In 1909 the Weekly Times reported on a new road for tourists to the Falls. This area, close to Wilsons Promontory is a great weekend getaway from Melbourne.
Agnes Falls, fed by the Agnes River, drops in picturesque tiers of cascades, finally falling fifty-nine metres to the gorge below. The Falls, which are the highest single span falls in Victoria, are accessed by a short and easy walking track of just over 200 metres, which starts at the picnic ground. Just follow the signs. There is an information board along the way and it's worth stopping to read it. At the end of the track, there is a fenced viewing platform with two spots overlooking the falls and the gorge below.
The Falls run all year round and are at their best after rains. In times of severe drought, they may be reduced to a trickle, but the area is no less beautiful for it. The gorge is spectacular. Trees sprout from a rugged, rocky cliff face.
There is a picnic ground at the Agnes Falls Scenic Reserve with a generous grassed area. There are picnic tables, some in the open and some under the cover of a rotunda. Enjoy your meal or just take a rest beside the Agnes River. You will be encapsulated in nature by tall Blue Gums, and Blackwood and Silver Wattle trees, shrubbery and ferns, and by the calls of birds. There are no BBQs at the reserve and you will need to bring your own drinking water.
Even if you aren't an avid bird watcher, you can't help but be captivated by the birdlife here. Kookaburras are common in the area. Listen for their laughing call and look up. They will often perch on trees at the reserve. The first time my husband and I visited we watched a grey shrike thrush hopping around the picnic area. It seemed fearless and came quite close to us.
Fairy wrens are often amongst the ferns. Red-browed finches may perch on the low branches. You might also see grey fantails, eastern yellow robins, currawongs, and rosellas. Look on the river for ducks and coots.
Visit the Silcocks Hill Road Lookout travelling to or from the Falls. Watch out for the sign to the carpark on your right as you drive up the hill, (or your left as you drive down.) Here you will have wide views over the rural landscape, the town of Toora and across the water to the mountains of Wilsons Promontory. Photographers will need to take a panorama to capture this scenic feast. A monument in the form of a compass clock was erected here in 1988 to commemorate Toora's centenary of settlement.
The Toora Hill Wind Farm is along Silcocks Hill Road. The carpark at the farm has been set up as a tourist attraction. The Toora Wind Farm was one of the first commercial wind farms in Victoria. Here you are near the turbines of which there are 12. You will be so close to one of them that you will hear the controversial noise of the blades for yourself. There are a couple of comprehensive information boards, one of which has a detailed diagram of a turbine and an explanation of how it works.
Getting There, Accommodation and Other Things to Do
Agnes Falls in the Agnes Falls Scenic Reserve is at 125 Agnes Falls Road, Hazel Park. You can reach them from the South Gippsland Highway at Toora by following Silcocks Hill Road, Hazel Park Road and Agnes Falls Road. You can also reach the reserve from Welshpool via Slade Hill Road and Hazel Park Road. There is a parking area at the end of the road and there are toilets there before you go down to the picnic area.
The Falls are just 12 kilometres from the township of Toora, a lovely weekend getaway, which is in Prom Country, 180 kilometres and around two and a half hours south-east of Melbourne along the South Gippsland Highway, or 13 kilometres east of Foster. For more to see and do in the area, check out the Weekend Notes article Top 9 Things to Do on a Toora Getaway.