One of the wettest forests in Victoria, Melba Gully is a great place to experience the majesty of Victoria’s temperate rainforests. Oh, and it has glow worms.
I know this Bush Beat isn’t strictly within the city boundaries, but it’s too good not to share. This tranquil walk is great for anyone wanting to immerse themselves in the beauty of the rainforest, and is great for wildlife enthusiasts.
Many shy nocturnal mammals, such as swamp wallabies and spot-tailed quolls are found in Melba Gully, but most people come to see the glow worms. These bioluminescent invertebrates are not actually worms, but are the larvae of fungus gnats (Arachnocampa species), which are endemic to Australia and New Zealand. Furthermore, endemic to this region is the Otway Black Snail, a carnivorous species that can be found at the base of trees and tree ferns, or within deep leaf litter.
The Madsen’s Track Nature Walk takes around half an hour to complete, and requires a relatively low level of fitness. However, the track can be very slippery, so sturdy shoes are recommended. The track meanders amongst Myrtle Beech and Mountain Ash trees and crosses the Johanna River twice. Two points on the track that are worth stopping at are Anne’s Cascade and Big Tree, an ancient fallen Messmate, measuring 27 meters around the base.
In my opinion, the best time of day to visit Melba Gully is just before sunset. This means that you have a chance to see the rainforest in all its glory, but you are also able to find some glow worms, and maybe a wallaby or two.
Level of Difficulty
Ease of Accessibility
Can be Slippery Underfoot
Lots of Wildlife