For those who get their kicks from putting on a pair of hiking boots and heading into the great outdoors, you’re in for a ripper of a read. Hiking, or as we like to call it down here, bushwalking, is an incredible way to experience the natural wonders that our country has to offer. We’re not just talking about a quick jaunt around the block; we’re talking multi-day treks that take you from the rugged coastal scenery to lush rainforest trails and striking outback landscapes.
We’ve gathered a handful of the best bushwalking trails in Australia, where you can spend a few days trekking through some of the most unique and diverse environments on the planet. So, lace up your boots, fill up your water bottle, and get ready to uncover some of the best multi-day hikes Down Under.
The Great Ocean Walk
Starting off our list is the iconic The Great Ocean Walk. Stretching 104 kilometers, this awe-inspiring trail traces the coastline of Victoria from Apollo Bay to the Twelve Apostles. It’s one of the best coastal hikes in Australia, presenting you with stunning cliff-top vistas, diverse plant life, and a chance to spot native wildlife.
The path navigates through the majestic Great Otway National Park, teeming with ancient rainforests and cascading waterfalls. And, of course, the cherry on top: the breathtaking Twelve Apostles, the collection of limestone stacks rising majestically from the Southern Ocean.
Planning to embark on this journey requires a fair bit of prep. Ensure you’re in good physical shape, and pack for all weather conditions, as the trail can be unpredictable. It’s also wise to pre-book your campsites to secure a place to rest your weary legs at the end of the day.
The Overland Track
Next up, we venture to Tasmania, home of the Overland Track. This world-famous 65-kilometer trail takes you through the heart of the Tasmanian wilderness, from Cradle Mountain to Lake St. Clair, Australia’s deepest lake. This six-day trek provides a variety of landscapes from alpine plains, dense myrtle forests, to mossy swamps.
Highlights include majestic Cradle Mountain, the serene beauty of Lake St. Clair, and the cascading fury of waterfalls like D’Alton and Ferguson. You may also encounter wombats, pademelons, and, if you’re lucky, the elusive Tasmanian Devil.
Like all good adventures, preparation is key. Booking your trip in advance is essential as the number of walkers is restricted during the peak season. Pack layers for all weather conditions, and remember to follow the ‘Leave No Trace’ principles.
The Larapinta Trail
From the coastal views and lush wilderness, we move to the stark beauty of
the Australian outback with The Larapinta Trail. This challenging 223-kilometer trek across the West MacDonnell Ranges in the Northern Territory offers an unforgettable journey through the heart of the Australian desert.
The trail, comprised of 12 sections, immerses hikers in the red-earth landscapes of the Outback. Highlights include the lofty peak of Mount Sonder, ancient Aboriginal sacred sites, and the dramatic gorges of Ormiston and Ellery Creek.
With extreme conditions and challenging terrain, this trail isn’t for the faint-hearted. Prepare thoroughly, carry plenty of water, and plan your itinerary according to your fitness level.
The Thorsborne Trail
Last but certainly not least, let’s explore The Thorsborne Trail, a slice of tropical paradise on Hinchinbrook Island in North Queensland. This 32-kilometer journey takes you across pristine beaches, through lush rainforests, and past cascading waterfalls. All these natural wonders make it one of the best national park hiking trails in Australia.
Some must-see attractions include Zoe Bay, with its stunning waterfall and inviting swimming hole, and the panoramic vista from Nina Peak. Keep your eyes peeled for the island’s diverse wildlife, including a host of bird species, crocodiles, and even the occasional dugong off the coast.
Just like the rest, planning for The Thorsborne Trail requires a fair dinkum effort. Book your trip well in advance, as the park limits the number of hikers to protect its unique ecosystem. Make sure to pack lightweight gear suitable for tropical weather and plenty of insect repellent!
And there you have it, folks! A roundup of the best multi-day hikes in Australia, covering the full spectrum of our vast and varied landscapes. Whether you’re keen to tackle the dramatic cliffs and winding trails of The Great Ocean Walk, the pristine wilderness of The Overland Track, the rugged beauty of The Larapinta Trail, or the tropical paradise of The Thorsborne Trail, you’re bound to have a fair dinkum unforgettable adventure.
As we mentioned earlier, make sure you’re well-prepared for each hike. That means staying physically fit, packing the right gear, and making your bookings in advance. And always remember, these stunning landscapes are ours to enjoy and protect, so please follow the ‘Leave No Trace’ principles.
So, are you ready to pull on those hiking boots and tackle some of the best bushwalking trails in Australia? We reckon you are! Happy hiking, cobbers!