Distance: 13 Km | Duration: 4.5 Hrs | Grade: Grade 3 | Rating: | Style: Circuit
About the Walk
The walk first explores coastal woodlands, wetlands, tranquil lagoons and bird hides in the grounds of<br /> Coolart, a late Victorian mansion and historic farming property. After crossing the bridge over Merricks<br /> Creek, the route is then on sand to Merricks Beach, before returning to Coolart along the shore again.
The Walk in Detail
From the car park, head south on Loop 1 of the Woodland Walk, which then swings west and joins Loop 2, which follows Merricks Creek. This area contains many species of coastal vegetation. On reaching Home Creek, cross the footbridge and take Loops 3 and 4 around the lagoon. Swing left at the Woodland Walk marker 6, skirting the western edge of the Observatory Wetlands and continuing northwards to the Minsmere Hide on the Coolart Lagoon. The natural creek system and artificially-created wetlands attract various bird species, including ducks, ibis, swamphens, grebes, swans, reed-warblers, crakes and rails. From the hide, head south towards the homestead and entrance (toilets) for morning tea.
Continue directly south from the homestead, along the western leg of Loop 1 and then cross the timber footbridge over Merricks Creek to reach the beach. Turn right (west), walking along the shore of Western
Port, past Balnarring to Merricks Beach (toilets) for a lunch stop.
After lunch, retrace your steps along the beach, enjoying excellent views of Western Port Bay and Phillip Island enroute to the Coolart car park.
From Wallaces Rd, turn left into Nepean Hwy. At roundabout, turn left onto Dunns Creek Rd C788 (which becomes the Bittern-Dromana Rd). After 10.5km, turn right into Balnarring Rd C784 until you reach Frankston-Flinders Rd. Continue straight ahead into Sandy Point Rd for 1.9km then right into Lord Somers Rd for 1.3km to the Coolart entrance on the right. Park in the car park. (Melways 193 H9) Distance: 21km.
Be snake aware in the wetlands