We’ve been enjoying our stay in one spot for a little while, and so we would be remiss to not make the most of our time and explore our immediate area slightly more.
The Otways National Forest covers over 250,000 acres and so we certainly weren’t short of places to explore that allowed us to see some of the forest, as well as the seaside in Lorne.
One of our first outings into the forest came when we had returned from an afternoon of blog writing (super dedicated over here) and were considering a nice walk the following day. We asked Luke if he could recommend anything nearby. To which he suggested we went for a walk right now! It was lovely to get out and about and away from those screens.
We took regular detours off the path to explore and frolic among the fields of not-wheat.
We had been walking along a path for awhile when we took a sudden turn straight into the bush once again. After a short while of confidently walking from James and Luke, and scrambling and falling down holes or getting stuck in trees from me, we were surprised (well James and I were) to discover we were in fact, at the top of a waterfall!
Standing at the top – but not too close to the edge thank-you-very-much – we were presented with a new and seldom seen perspective on the forest and it was incredible.
The walk back was slightly more direct and contained a path, so we headed home before the sun totally set and enjoyed another evening tea in hand, round the fire.
With the next day proving to be another lovely dry day we decided to head off on a slightly longer walk. Luke told us of another lovely walk in the area and pointed us in the right direction..that direction being along the so-called cleared area around the powerlines to begin with…
Once we’d come out the other side and found a path again, we noticed that James’ shoes had opted for the camo look.
We found the recommended track to follow and got on our way!
There were signs telling us that ahead was a 4×4 track and would not be suitable for anything else, for the first part we felt this was slightly over cautious as, while being fairly unused it seemed in pretty good condition.
And then it wasn’t.
However, luckily we were on two feet and found the track no problem at all!
We found ourselves captivated by the trees and the forest itself and felt really quite tiny next to some of the mammoths.
Another incredible thing about the area, is the sheer number of waterfalls within a short distance of our temporary home. The most well known of which is, arguably, the Erskine Falls.
On one particularly hot day at the end of January, we decided to head down to the falls to take a dip and avoid the crowds at the beach. Unfortunately, it seemed like everyone else had had the same idea.
After walking down to the bottom of the falls we decided that queuing for a waterfall seems just wrong and so we headed back up the gazillion stairs and straight to the beach!
Having explained our woes at the busy waterfall to one of the lovely people we’ve met in our time here: Toby. He offered to show us a different spot which would be much quieter but just as beautiful.
So on a slightly cooler day, we met up and headed off into the woods.
This walk was much quieter than our outing to Erskine Falls and much more like our previous walks in the woods. With just as much capering.
It wasn’t long before we came across the Lower Kalimna Falls. Although slightly less powerful than when the water is high, it was still a majestic lagoon nestled amongst the trees with the light and water dancing around, it was beautiful.
The rocks behind the waterfall had been carved out into a grotto and so we wasted no time in exploring behind the falls.
We stayed there for a little while just taking in the surroundings and listen to the water fall.
We decided to head further up, to the Upper Kalimna Falls. There we found one of the only other people we met on our outing (the other being a barefoot man who looked like he’d woken up in a bush, but seemed rather content with the situation) a friendly man who had spent some time at the bottom of the waterfall, waiting for the perfect moment. However, it’s easy to see how someone could lose an afternoon just watching the waterfall.
After a brief chat with the photographer, James and Toby decided to head over and get a closer look, they graciously vaulted over the rocks and nimbly climbed up with ease. After a short while I decided to join them, my journey was much more hands-and-knees, “whoops I’ve slipped a bit”, “I can’t reach my leg up there” and general giggling. I got there though!
With only slightly more scrambling and giggling we managed to get back to the path and back to civilisation just in time for tea!
But it’s not all about the bushwalks in the Otways; Lorne itself is a wonderful little town and worth exploring. And not just for the beach!
As well as the town centre, we’ve found some brilliant places on the outskirts to explore too.
A particular highlight for me, is Qdos Arts, an art gallery with contemporary art, including the onsite pottery.
The outside area is interesting too.
Lorne, Benwerrin and the Otways are such a lovely place to stay and we’ve certainly tried to explore what we can. Although we’ve barely scratched the surface!
James will be up next to tell you all about the other things we’ve experienced and learned during our time here. (There will be cakes!)