As travel restrictions begin to ease in Australia, it’s time to start thinking about travelling domestically to boost our local economies. And after months of being locked down, Aussies could all use a breath of fresh air in the nation’s beautiful reserves and national parks.
Just a short drive from Melbourne is one of our country’s finest national parks. Grampians National Park, or simply The Grampians, was given its name by the Australian explorer Sir Thomas Mitchell, who thought the sandstone mountain ranges resembled those in his native home back in the Scottish Highlands.
The Grampians has since gone on to attract travellers from all around the world who come to witness the park’s scenic lookouts, waterfalls, wildlife, and ancient Aboriginal rock art.
Add to this one of Australia’s longest running food and wine festivals along with wonderful accommodation options and you have the recipe for a perfect Aussie holiday retreat.
Oh, and did I mention there are pyramids in these hills? If you’re looking to experience one of the most unique and relaxing stays in the Grampians, look no further than Grampians Getaway which accommodates everyone from romantic couples to larger families and groups.
The Time We Stayed in a Pyramid at Grampians Getaway
Pyramids in the Grampians?
You heard me right, there are actual pyramids that you can spend the night in out in the foothills of the Grampians! (and you won’t need to be mummified like the ancient Egyptian kings and queens to grab a spot in one).
Josephina McDonald and husband Rohan have taken on the task of reinventing and reinvigorating the half dozen unique pyramids at Grampians Getaway.
Giza only has just three pyramids by the way and those took years to restore, so you can understand what an undertaking it is to take on the task of giving six pyramids a makeover!
After Josephina and Rohan’s successful transformation of the nearby Halls Gap Lakeside Tourist Park in the Grampians, which has become one of the highest rated parks in Australia, it will be exciting to see how Grampians Getaway is given a new lease on life.
Stepping Inside the Pyramids
You’ll find the Pyramids of the Grampians set on 50 hectares just outside the town of Halls Gap. Each pyramid is free-standing and fully self contained, offering up 3 bedrooms each.
The pyramids are absolutely giant, offering up 140 square metres of space with a spiral staircase that leads up to one of the bedrooms. Enjoy some relaxation in the spa, warm up by the cast-iron fireplace, or simply take in the scenic views over the lake on the upstairs balcony or private patio down below.
The pyramids’ full kitchens allow you to cook all your own meals, with several full grocery stores within a 15-20 minute drive. And each has a laundry, outdoor barbecue, TV, fresh linen and towels, spacious dining area, and open lounge room.
Outdoors, the pyramids are surrounded by gum trees and back on to a lovely pond where you can try a bit of complimentary kayaking. They also provide guests with bikes, so you won’t be bored, even on site!
Guests staying at Grampians Getaway are also allowed to use the outdoor heated pools located at the Halls Gap Lakeside Tourist Park which offers contemporary cabins, safari and bell glamping tents, and traditional campsites.
Photos of the Grampians Getaway Pyramids
A Pyramid fit for a Pooch
Dogs are welcome to accompany you to Grampians Getaway, and while they are not allowed in the national park, they can run freely around the grounds of the property and even stay with you inside the pyramids so long as they keep off the furniture and carpet.
There is even a private fenced enclosure for them outside each unit and great nearby trails for which you can take them for a long walk, so the property is very pet friendly!
Best Things to See and Do in the Grampians
Besides seeing pyramids in Australia, there are a number of things to see and do in Halls Gap area and Grampians National Park. The following are just a few of the things you shouldn’t miss during your stay.
One of the best views to be had in the park is at Boroka Lookout. The parking area for the lookout is roughly a 20-minute-drive from Halls Gap, and is especially beautiful during sunrise if you can wake yourself up that early.
I settled for afternoon views due to my tendency to sleep-in which were just as impressive in my opinion!
Those looking for a workout can also tackle the steep 6km hike from Halls Gap to reach the lookout where you can catch sight of Mt. William. Disabled access toilets are available at the lookout.
The Pinnacle Walk
Park at either the Wonderland or Sundial car park and make a 4km hiking journey along the Pinnacle Walk to the lookout, checking out the Grand Canyon along the way if coming from the Wonderland car park.
Enjoy more peace along the trails by avoiding the afternoons and weekends. Once again, toilets are located at both car parks.
One of Victoria’s largest waterfalls, MacKenzie Falls flows year-round and can be experienced by way of a waterfall lookout or hike to the base of the falls.
The hike to the base of the falls will take you about 1.5 hours while the lookout can be achieved in around 30-40 minutes.
There is a car park that provides access to both walks which is about a 40-minute-drive from Halls Gap. You can also extend your hike at MacKenzie Falls by checking out Fish Falls or Broken Falls.
Image credit: russellstreet (CC BY-SA 2.0) via Flickr
Reeds Lookout and The Balconies
If you plan on checking out Mackenzie Falls in the late afternoon, be sure to time your visit to catch sunset at Reed Lookout on the way back. The lookout overlooks a large section of the park including the Victoria Valley.
After reaching Reeds Lookout, you can extend your journey another kilometre and check out The Balconies Lookout which overlooks the Mt Difficult Range.
Halls Gap Zoo
At Halls Gap Zoo, you can be guaranteed to see iconic Australian animals such as saltwater crocodiles, cassowaries, wedge-tailed eagles, wombats, and Tasmanian devils.
Victoria’s largest regional zoo, Halls Gap Zoo is also home to a few exotic species like giraffes, cheetahs, and ring-tailed lemurs.
Of course, you may be able to spot a number of native Australian animals simply hiking through the Grampians and even around the pyramids of Grampians Getaway.
You’ll surely spot some emus and grey kangaroos, with lucky visitors maybe catching sight of a wombat, echidna, platypus, or potoroo. The Grampians are also a great spot to catch springtime wildflowers.
Grampians Grape Escape
If you plan to visit The Grampians during May, try to time your stay around the annual Grampians Grape Escape, one of Australia’s longest running food and wine festivals.
For nearly 30 years, the festival has been offering visitors artisan stalls, live music, and family entertainment. For those visiting The Grampians other times of the year, you can still visit a wide range of great restaurants, cafes, and boutique wineries anytime.
Plan Your Visit
For more information on Grampians National Park, and things to do, jump over to visitgrampians.com.au – the official tourism board for the Grampians region, Victoria.
To book a pyramid at Grampians Getaway (we highly recommend you do!) visit Grampiansgetaway.com and tell Josephina we sent you!
For glamping in the Grampians jump to hallsgaplakeside.com
The Grampians can be reached by car from Melbourne, within a 3 hours drive. While you could technically make a day trip to the region, there is so much to do here that you’d be doing yourself a disservice by not staying for at least two nights.