Just fifteen minutes out of Lorne on your way to Apollo Bay, along the magnificent Great Ocean Road is a great walk within the Otway National Park.
There are five walks available from the Sheoak Falls carpark.
- Sheoak Falls (600m – Oneway)
- Swallow Cave – via Sheoak Falls (about 1km – Oneway) if you go to the base of Sheoak Falls, about 800m without Sheoak Falls
- Sheoak Picnic Area, via Sheoak Falls, Swallow Cave, Castle Rock (7kms – Oneway)
- Cumberland River circuit, via Sheoak Falls, Swallow Cave, Castle Rock (11.5kms – return)
- Cumberland falls via the Cumberland River circuit, via Sheoak Falls, Swallow Cave, Castle Rock (13.5kms – return)
The first walk to Sheoak Falls is about fifteen to twenty minutes along the path on a mostly uphill section. The path is a mixture of gradual inclines, very steep steps, shorter steps and long windy straight sections.
As you arrive close to the Falls you have a choice head down to the Right to the base of the Gorge to see the falls from the bottom, or head right up the stairs to see Swallow Cave first.
We headed down to the base of Sheoak falls and it was worth the view.
After watching the water cascading over the 15 m cascading Falls, we ventured up towards Swallow Cave, it is almost all uphill from there, and some of the steps are almost twice the height of normal steps, so keep in mind if you have small children or back issues. But it is worth the walk.
There are two vantage point of the fall, the first lookout point allows you to see the falls, but the second part lets you really experience it.
After the first lookout, you continue your journey uphill until you get to a small river crossing (this should only be attempted if the water is not high, and covering the stones that you cross with). This is the perfect place to sit on the rocks and put your feet in the water after your climb.
But the best is still to come just 100m down the hill is the bottom lookout of Swallow Cave. From there you can see the little birds fly in and out of the caves. (Birds are normally there between spring and autumn.)
What are some of your favourite places to stop along the way?
Let us know in the comments below