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Aimee Ralph
25 March 2024 | Singlefile Wines Blog | Aimee Ralph

Hiking Trails and Scenic Vistas of the Great Southern: Our Tips and Recommendations

The Great Southern region is renowned for its unparalleled natural beauty and diverse landscapes. From sweeping ocean vistas to tranquil forest trails and delicious local cuisine, our corner of the world beckons to those with an adventurous spirit.

With Easter long weekend almost here, we’re sharing our recommendations and tips for exploring some of our favourite natural landscapes.

Exploring the Bald Head Trail

Taking the time to plan a trip around the region has its benefits, particularly when activities require the majority of the day to complete. One such activity is the Bald Head Trail in Torndirrup National Park outside of Albany. This challenging 12.5km return hike leads you to the very edge of Flinders Peninsula, treating you to sweeping views of the Southern Ocean, stunning beaches only accessible by boat, and rocks lining each of its steep sides. 

While boardwalks and steps were installed as part of upgrades to the track in late 2022, it is very much a demanding hike suitable for fit and able walkers. Averaging 4-6 hours to complete, be sure to carry plenty of drinking water as there are no refill stations and very little shade. This is an activity best planned for an overcast day where you can avoid being exposed to extremely hot conditions.

Upon reaching the massive rock cairn at the halfway point, you'll be rewarded with a 360° panorama of the ancient landscape. Listening to the waves crashing below and feeling the ferocity of the wind, it’s a true testament to the raw power of nature.

Tranquility at Misery Beach

After completing the exhilarating Bald Head Trail hike, you’ll no doubt feel tempted to unwind at one of many beautiful beaches along Flinders Peninsula. Frenchman Bay and Misery Beach are closest to the trailhead and offer beautiful views of the cliffs from the sand.  Named the Best Beach in Australia in 2022, Misery Beach boasts impressive granite outcrops and tranquil waters, perfect for a rejuvenating swim (if it’s not too cold!). While enjoying the natural beauty, exercise caution and follow the advice from signage as lifeguard services are not available within the national park.

Hiking Adventures in Torndirrup National Park

Torndirrup National Park has numerous pockets of beauty to explore. For a more challenging hike, start at the Peak Head Trail. This hike brings you to the southernmost point of the park along a rugged 4.3km return walk, and includes a rock scramble to the summit for experienced hikers. This path comes alive during wildflower season and can be connected to the Stony Hill Heritage Trail. From the trailhead, this short 500m walk marks the highest point in the national park, providing 360° views of the peninsula and Albany. 

For a more leisurely adventure, indulge in the tranquility of Point Possession Heritage Trail - a 5km loop walk offering captivating views of the coastline and lush bushland. With picnic tables overlooking Shoal and Frenchman Bays, you can pack an esky full of lunch, a bottle of Singlefile wine and enjoy a break from the action.  Don't miss out on other park highlights such as Salmon Holes, Blowholes, and Cable Beach, each offering a unique perspective on the region's natural wonders.You can see the end of Bald Head from the lookout points at The Gap and Natural Bridge, where you can marvel at the wonders of nature. Standing on the platform to admire the intensity of the ocean crashing beneath you is worth visiting multiple times since the sea conditions change daily. When visiting Torndirrup National Park you’ll need to secure a park pass or day rate fee to contribute to the conservation efforts.

Gentle Trails for Beginners and Little Feet

For novice hikers or those with young children, you can still enjoy exploring nature with some shorter trail options. Located 12km from the centre of Denmark, the Harewood Forest Walk is a 2.8km loop trail that winds through riverine vegetation and karri trees. As you trace your way back to the carpark, the views down the back of the valley are particulary lovely.  Another option is the Mokare Heritage Trail, a winding 3km loop trail that offers a leisurely 1-2 hour exploration. Setting off from Berridge Park in Denmark, the trail unfolds beautiful views of the Denmark River, surrounded by towering karri trees, native bushland, and graceful paperbarks. Families with children will delight in discovering hidden fairy doors nestled discreetly along the riverside paths.

Scenic Drive Along Lower Denmark Road

After a day of exploring Torndirrup National Park, we recommend embarking on a scenic drive along Lower Denmark Road towards Denmark. West Cape Howe is home to Shelley Beach and multiple 4WD tracks, including along the sand on Muttonbird Beach. Stop by the Elleker General Store for a bite to eat and enjoy the view from Lowlands Beach. 

These are just a few recommendations of natural landscapes to explore while visiting the Great Southern. For a well-deserved reward after an eventful day, pop into the Singlefile Cellar Door between 11am - 5pm for a complimentary seated tasting, glass of wine, or cup of Stash coffee. Our friendly team would love to hear about your adventures!



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