Wrathall Reserve is a recreation reserve located on the Bellarine Peninsula, in the coastal town of Indented Head.
The reserve was originally part of the larger Batman Park area which also included Anderson Reserve and Taylor Reserve until the 1950s-60s, when it was renamed after Stephen Wrathall, the first Chairman of the committee tasked with managing the Indented Head coastal reserve area.
The reserve is situated on the water's edge, and has a good range of public facilities, including picnic shelter, tennis courts, playground, and boat ramp. Upon entering the reserve area, the picnic shelter is on the left-hand side, and features electric barbecues and picnic tables.
The picnic shelter with electric barbecues at Wrathall Reserve
For those who are keen to go fishing, but are unfamiliar with the area, there are signs located near the boat ramp with information regarding boating safety and the Port Phillip Heads Marine National Park. The signs include a map with details of the 'No Vessel Areas' along the coastline.
There is plenty of parking, with spaces suitable for cars with boat trailers, and a grass island in the centre of the car park has a fish cleaning station with running water. There's also a small, portable public toilet block, with future plans for a permanent toilet block to be built.
The fish cleaning station next to the public toilets
At the south end of the reserve, there is a single public tennis court which was first constructed in 1967. It's fenced, but unlocked and accessible to the public, and there is a small shelter with a seat.
The memorial consists of a large stone monument and stone seat which were built in 1931 and are surrounded by Golden Cypress trees. The monument has two plaques, commemorating John Batman's landing at Indented head on the 29th of May, 1835, and Matthew Flinders' landing in 1805.
The trees are another special feature of the reserve. From the 1920's, and then again during the 1950s and 60s, major tree planting programs took place. This has resulted in the presence of a variety of trees throughout the reserve, including indigenous Moonah trees and tea trees, and exotic trees such as Norfolk Island Pines, Canary Island Palms, and Golden Cypress and Monterey Cypress trees.
Wrath's Reserve is about a 40 minute drive from Geelong. After exiting the city:
Follow Portarlington Rd for 28km (through Drysdale).
As you enter Portarlington, turn right onto Smyth Street and follow for 1.5km
Turn left onto Queenscliff Road for 52 metres
Turn right onto Hood Road and follow for 5km. Wrathall Reserve will be on the right-hand side.
There's also a bus service along Route 60 which takes just under an hour from Geelong.
Overall, it's a lovely reserve that offers a peaceful place to have a picnic lunch, go for a walk, or go fishing. I imagine it'd get quite busy during summer, but during the rest of the year, it appears to be less-crowded than the recreation areas in nearby St Leonards and Portarlington.
If you feel like going for a walk, the path from Wrathall Reserve continues along to Anderson Reserve and Taylor Reserve, passing by the Ozone Shipwreck, which is visible from the track.