Wildlife abounds on the golden grasslands and rocky cliffs of the famous Great Ocean Road. Pockets of forest are home to Koalas; Kangaroos graze the plains, Echidnas amble through dense coastal heathland. Sea-birds and outback cockatoos share the rocky cliffs. Waterbirds are found on the largest permanent lakes in Australia contained in the huge craters of extinct volcanoes.
Janine Duffy and Roger Smith founded Echidna Walkabout in 1993, to foster respect for Australia�s wildlife and to ensure its wild and free-living future. Most tours depart Melbourne and travel to carefully chosen wildlife locations in south eastern Australia.
NOTE: this itinerary is an indication only, due to conditions on the day it can change slightly to maximise wildlife viewing opportunities
DAY 1 WILDLIFE OF THE WESTERN PLAINS The Savannah Walkabout See Kangaroos and Koalas IN THE WILD! In small groups this Naturalist guided journey gives you quality time to learn about wildlife and enjoy the wide open spaces of Australia. Watch the natural behaviour of wild kangaroos, koalas and abundant birdlife. Get involved in koala research with your Nature Guide. A delicious bush lunch is included. Walk amongst free ranging "mobs" (groups) of wild kangaroos. Spot Emus, Cockatoos and other unique Australian wildlife on the grasslands, in the bush and around the billabongs of Melbourne�s Western Plains. Visit an open forest in a National Park that is home to a large and healthy population of wild koalas. Our Koala Research Project ensures that on most days we have multiple sightings of these delightful creatures. Within easy reach from the centre of the city of Melbourne, these environments provide the perfect introduction to Australia's unique wildlife and indigenous culture. During your journey your guide will share with you the great significance of the Western Plains to Aboriginal People. Accommodation tonight is at a B&B in the tiny outback town of Little River. Dinner is at your own expense at the local pub (L)
DAY 3 THE EXPANSE OF THE WESTERN PLAINS - volcanoes and lakes in a great savannah. This morning we have one last look at the coast in the dramatic morning light before returning to Melbourne across the vast grasslands of the Western Plains. Created by intense volcanic activity over the past 2 million years, the 7000 volcanoes of the Western Plains are now extinct but the resultant savannah is now pasture to the richest wool growing area on earth - a wonderful example of Australia's great range lands. We stop en route to drive to the top of an extinct volcano with spectacular views across the plains. From the summit we see some of the hundreds of volcanic lakes scattered across the plains. Later we pass Lake Corangamite, the largest permanent lake in Australia, often covered with prolific birdlife. We return to Melbourne in the late afternoon. (BL)