Walks & Hikes

There are plenty of beautiful walks & hikes around Fernhouse. Walk straight from the house, or have a short drive up to get to spectacular views, majestic coastlines or deep into the rainforest. 

Elliott River 053A6780.jpg
Elliott River 053A6780.jpg

Elliot River Loop Walk

Elliot River Loop Walk is the closest walk to Fernhouse, and it is spectacular!  Enjoy beautiful fern gullies and spectacular ocean views. The walk is rated as moderate. When walking from Fernhouse, cross the road onto Elliot River Road, after that follow the signs. When walking from Fernhouse, this walk is 6.5 kilomiter, if you want it to be a bit shorter, drive to Shelly Beach Picnic area, the loop is 4.8 kilometer when starting from there. 

Time: 1,5hrs to 3 hours
Length: 4,5km from picnic area, or 6,5 km from Fernhouse
Difficulty: medium

Considerations: when there is much rain, the river might be hard to pass through.

Shelly Beach Circuit

This walk can be done from Fernhouse! You will experience it all on this short walk with fern gullies, coastal scrub, beach walking and rocky platforms. Once past Elliot River make sure you keep an eye out for Kolas that make the blue gums their home. the nocturnal possum, yellow bellied Glider, has also been seen in this area.

The walk starts and finishes at the Shelley Beach picnic area, but can also be walked from Fernhouse. To walk from Fernhouse to Shelly Beach picnic area, cross the road from the house onto Elliot River Road. Shelly Beach is at the end of the road. 

Time: 45min to 2 hours.
Length: 2,5km from picnic area, or 4,5 km from Fernhouse.
Difficulty: Introductory

Considerations: Beach walking on this circuit. should only be done during low tide.

Shelley beach - Elliott River 053A6883 (1).jpg
Elliott River 053A6780.jpg
Melba Glow worms (1).jpg

Maits Rest 

Towering myrtle beech trees - some 300 years-old - and an understory of lush greenery and tree ferns lends an other-wordly feel to this popular walk. Drive 15 minutes towards Cape Otway, and you will pass Maits Rest carpark.

Mait's Rest is also considered one of the best areas within the Otways to spot glow worms - usually at ground level next to the track. If you want to see them, head to Maits Rest just after nightfall. While they are more commonly sighted in warm, wet conditions they are present throughout the year. 

Time: 30 minutes to 1 hr
Length: 1 km
Difficulty: introductory

Considerations: bring a torch when visiting after dark

Marriners Lookout

Marriners Lookout is a short drive or a long walk to the northern outskirts of Apollo Bay.

It is about a 10 minute easy walk from the lookout carpark to a spectacular ocean, beach and town outlook.

For those wanting a fairly strenuous workout, walk about 1.5 kms north from Apollo Bay  along the beach or Great Ocean Road, then climb a steep hill along a surfaced road for another 1.5 km to the lookout track.

Time: 15min to 1hr
Length: 150m from carpark, or 1.5km from beach.
Difficulty: introductory or medium

Mariners Lookout Apollo Bay Great Ocean Road Regional Tourism 053A9018.jpg
Elliott River 053A6780.jpg
Hopetoun Falls Beech Forest Otways Great Ocean RoadDSC02768.jpg

Beauchamp falls

Beauchamp falls – The 3km (return) walk to this 20-metre high waterfall is considered strenuous and takes around an hour so. It is suitable for those with a reasonable physical ability & fitness level. There is access to the falls and brave ones can go for a swim in the refreshing swimming hole.

This is only one of many waterfalls in our area - Beauchamp is our favourite. Do have a look at the 'waterfalls' section on our website, to find more short walks to waterfalls.

Time: about 1 hour
Length: 3 km
Difficulty: medium