The Yarra Ranges National Park is located some 90km east of Melbourne and is focused around the Yarra River and the Upper Yarra Reservoir which contributes to Melbourne’s water supply.
The fame of the mighty Yarra River dates back to the gold rush days of the 1800’s when many gold deposits were uncovered in the Warburton and Hoddles Creek region and the Upper Yarra. History can be explored here in the national park as you learn how miners diverted the course of the Yarra River to assist in extracting the deposits from gold-bearing sediments hindered by the river’s water level. The diversion points are the Little and Big Peninsula Tunnels and are located close to the park entrance via Warburton.
McVeigh’s Waterwheel is another remnant of the region’s gold history. It was built for the purpose of powering mining equipment, a surveyor’s camp and hotel during the gold era. The waterwheel was the driving force behind the generator which powered up the gold rush and remains today as a reminder of the rich past.
The enormous Upper Yarra Dam on the eastern side of the national park is a storage reservoir for the Upper Yarra’s contribution to the city of Melbourne’s water supply. As the tributaries flow through the ranges the water is collected here and dispersed for the city’s use. This massive reservoir has the capacity to hold an impressive 300,000 megalites (million litres) of water.
The Upper Yarra Reservoir Park
is just 1km from the dam and offers camping for a fee of $6 per adult per night. The grassy camp area is spacious and there are picnic tables, fireplaces and amenities with hot showers. Bookings are required as there is a coded entry gate and can be made by calling 131963. If you’re looking for a quiet and cheap camp site with amenities and out amongst nature you’ll appreciate this one. The Rosellas and Parrots are very friendly here particularly if you’re offering food. Note dogs are permitted as the camp ground is just out of the national park boundary.
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Destinations in Victoria
Great Ocean Road
Return from Yarra Ranges to Victoria