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Kalatha Giant Tree Walk

Home > Melbourne > Free | Outdoor | Picnic Spots | Walks
by Pat (subscribe)
Always lived in Melbourne. Love to travel! Also Write at The Roar:
Published February 19th 2019

"So he journeyed to Toolangi, where the mountain ash yearns skyward,

And the messmate and the blue-gum grow to quite abnormal size."

-- C. J. Dennis

While bushfires and logging might have threatened the forests around Toolangi, this description of the trees by C. J. Dennis in 1908 still rings true today.

Forest, Toolangi
Toolangi Forest

Only 90 minutes from the city centre, Toolangi is the perfect place to spend an afternoon, especially if you go a little bit off the beaten track. That's not to say the town itself doesn't have its pleasures, the tavern is well worth a stop for example.

But it is in the forests around Toolangi that the truly awe-inspiring can be found, as well as peace and beauty. Whilst getting there can be a little difficult, as the main road in is not signposted clearly, it's simple if you know where you're going.

From the Toolangi Tavern, travel 2km on Myer's Creek Rd, until you arrive at the (un-signposted) Sylvia Creek Rd on your left-hand side. Follow this for around 4km and you will arrive at the Wirrawilla Rainforest Walk.

This walk is a must. There is a slight downhill walk from the carpark to the creek gully, but from there it is a flat stroll on boardwalks and bridges along Sylvia Creek. Don't believe the sign in the carpark which states the walk will take an hour; it's a simple 500-metre walk. Of course, you can take an hour if you want to, and a slow walk along the creek will certainly be rewarded.

Wirrawilla, Toolangi
The Boardwalk at Wirrawirra

The water in the creek is exceptionally clear, and the Beech, Blackwood and Sassafras along the creek keep the area noticeably cooler than other areas around the forests, so you might want to spend a while simply sitting and relaxing in the clear coolness that Wirrawilla offers.

Sylvia Creek, Toolangi
Look out for Platypuses!

If it is quiet and you are very lucky, you might even see some platypuses in the creek or sunning themselves on the rocks. This is prime platypus territory.

After your walk, return to the carpark. From here travel another 6km until you arrive at Kalatha Rd, turn left and follow this road for another 2km and you will reach your destination, the Kalatha Giant Tree.

The walk to the tree itself is not difficult, although there are a few steps involved. There are interpretive signs all along, which highlight exactly what you are looking at along the walk. The natural beauty of this place cannot be stated enough. There is also evidence of logging along this walk, which just emphasises how lucky it is that the Giant Tree survived at all.

The tree itself is amazing, in a way that neither words nor pictures can really do justice to. It stands so high above all other trees that you get the feeling of seeing the last of a species, the last of the giants. In 60 years these trees can grow 70m tall, and this tree is at least 300 years old, so it is a true giant and a true survivor.

Giant Tree, Toolangi
Kalatha Giant

For lunch, try Toolangi itself, or bring a picnic from home and eat it either at Wirrawilla or at the Tanglefoot picnic ground, between Wirrawilla and the Giant Tree.

Tanglefoot Picnic Ground

Both areas are very nice, although Tanglefoot might be a bit quieter and has newer facilities if that is what you are looking for.

Both Wirrawilla and Tanglefoot offer the opportunity for long walks through the forest as well, if you happen to have the time.
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Where: Kalatha Rd, Toolangi VIC 3777
Your Comment
Enjoyed reading your article Pat, and nice photos.
Regards, Neil Follett.
by Neil Follett (score: 3|4377) 1318 days ago
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