I'm a student at La Trobe University in Bundoora studying history and cinema studies. I love writing about the amazing sites around Melbourne.
Published January 22nd 2015
Lysterfield Park is popular for bike riding and bush walking around the lake, which is also used for a number of water activities.
Driving in from the Belgrave- Hallam Road takes you down Horswood Road, through the entrance and into the Mahogany car park. Left takes you towards numerous car parks, which loop around near the swimming beaches. Right takes you to more car parks, a cafe, boat trailer parking and the boat ramps.
The park can also be accessed on Wellington Road by a dirt track, not accessible by car. There is a small strip of parking and the trail is popular with cyclists. You can also enter from Heatherton road, but must exit from Horswood Road.
The lake circuit walk is 5.5km and takes about 2 hours to complete. The park is suitable for short walks to admire the lake and longer bush walks.
Activities on the lake include kayaking, rowing, sailboarding, swimming and sailing. The water is not always safe to swim in due to algae, in which case warning signs are put up around the lake.
In summer the lake is a popular place for families to gather, relax by the lake and enjoy a dip in the refreshing water. Barbeques, two toilets blocks and picnic tables line the edge of the lake near the two swimming beaches. The swimming beaches are protected and surrounded by gravel sand. The water is quite deep so one needs to be wary.
The picnic areas are mostly shaded under the gum trees, which are perfect for summer. This area is also a meeting point for trail bikes. Information boards are provided to give those interested an idea about conservation, wildlife, bush fire advice, mountain bike riding and maps. Other lesser known activities include horse riding.
A bird hide also provides nature lovers with a view of various waterbirds including Eastern Swamphens and Black Pacific ducks. Those completing the trails might also see echidnas, wallabies, koalas or possums. The park provides a range of habitats for Australian native animals and 140 bird species.
Mountain bike riding is one of the most popular activities at the park which caters to people of all abilities; from easy family trails to the more adventurous and steep trails. The trails are graded and sign posted. There are 20km of trails for mountain bikes; the State Mountain Bike Course was used for the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games. Bring your own bike or hire one from the café which also doubles as an information centre and bike store.