The beautiful Rainforest Gallery can be found not far from Warburton, it’s one of the Yarra Valley’s hidden gems; The Warburton Rainforest Gallery.
There are two activities here to enjoy. The first is a 40 metre long observation platform (apparently one of only three of its type in Australia) which takes you into the rainforest canopy 15 metres above the ground. You feel like you are really getting close to the trees. But then you look up and realise that the trees are massive and keep going up and up!
The observation deck is accessible to all as there are no steps but if you are afraid of heights it may give you the heebie jeevies if you look below your feet through the steel grating. It is very solid though, so apart from perhaps a slight head spin our group was not scared! There are handrails and safety fencing (which is not climbable if you are worried about little ones).
Below the observation platform is the second activity which is a 350 metre long elevated walkway which meanders down through the Rainforest Gallery where you will see magnificent 65 metre tall Mountain Ash trees, ancient Myrtle Beech trees (many of which are 300 to 400 years old), ferns, mosses and other plants that make up this damp and diverse rainforest environment. You are on a platform the whole way so next to no chance of leeches!
There are several viewing spots along the walkway where you can pause and enjoy the sounds of Cement Creek flowing past on its journey to the Yarra River. Please don’t climb over the safety rail for a photo like we saw people doing. It’s unnecessary and disturbs the environment. This is one of the wonderful things to do in Warburton. Given the number of cars in the car park the day we visited I think this is a fairly popular attraction but it was the first time we had visited.
This is by no means a bush walk. It is only 350m long and takes between 10-20 minutes to walk the loop. The site is run by Parks Victoria.
The elevated walkway has many steps and is not suitable for prams.
There are many wonderful sites within the Yarra Ranges National Park. I’d recommend combing the Rainforest Gallery with the Redwoods Forest.
How to get to the Rainforest Gallery
The Rainforest Gallery is located not far from Warburton on the road up to Mt Donna Buang. So be prepared for a few bends!
There is a car park with designated parking and toilets.
Things to note when visiting the Rainforest Gallery
- The rainforest observation platform and walkway are free
- The platform is suitable for all abilities but the walkway has steps so is not suitable for prams etc
- There are toilets in the car park
- The car park is quite small. I am not sure where you would park if it was full as the windy road is far too dangerous to park on.
- This is not an attraction of the Yarra Ranges I would make a day trip specifically for; but combined with the Redwoods Forest, a hike or bike ride, exploring Warburton or visiting Mt Donna Buang I think it is well worth a stop.
Happy exploring x
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