Royal Essence

COVID-19 Restrictions may be easing, but you’ll still want your house to smell nice… Or, you’ve been working your butt off and will want to relax with a nice bath bomb… Whatever your style, Royal Essence has you sorted.

Screen Shot 2020-05-20 at 10.20.38 pmI know I’ve started off cheesy; but, seriously, it’s because Royal Essence are amazing!

Royal Essence products are Australian-made, vegan, cruelty-free, hand-made, and uses only safe ingredients. And, best of all? Their products* come with a shiny surprise inside them!! (They call it “a Kinder Surprise for adults”).

*Well, most of them do. Some don’t.

Royal Essence range beautiful candles, diffusers, bath bombs, bath crumbles, body scrubs and whipped soap. The candles are made of the highest quality material, containing soy-wax as well as a natural cotton wick.

Some of these products include rings, earrings, or necklaces valued up to a few thousand $ (if you’re lucky!) Most of mine have been worth between $40-$120, which is a win when I’ve spent less than that on the product itself. The surprise rings are guaranteed sterling silver (despite my ring pictured above, which is from their old batch.)

There is also a Buy, Swap, Sell group on Facebook for the jewellery.

My last piece of advice? Try not to get addicted 😛

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Natural Instinct

Natural Instinct are an Australian skincare and haircare range. They use all natural ingredients, are vegan, and do not do any animal testing.

As a long time acne-sufferer (PCOS), I was excited to try Natural Instinct’s 6 week challenge, which would become the gateway for me to discovering other products from the brand. I will begin by discussing my thoughts on the 6 week challenge and then exploring the brand and some of their other products in greater detail.

(TL;DR? I give an overview at the end of the post if you find the break down of the individual products too wordy).

The 6 Week Challenge

Cleanse, nourish and brighten your skin with this natural day and night skincare regime.

Bursting with natural ingredients rich in vitamins and antioxidants – it will leave skin glowing, soft and smooth.

The 6 week Challenge was a 3-step morning and night process, in which I was required to use:

1. The Skin Refining Cleansing Oil

With 6 nourishing oils for Oily, Dry & Combination skin, this anti-oxidant natural facial cleansing oil gently cleanses without stripping the skin of its essential oils.

A beautiful lightweight blend of six botanical oil extracts to gently dissolves away dirt, makeup and excess sebum leaving a non-pore-clogging ultra-nourishing glowy sheen.

  • Delivers 20%* skin tone improvement.
  • 100%* of women saw an improvement in evenness of skin tone revealing smooth, refined and youthful skin.

*Tested under dermatological skin specialist control – 30 women after 6 weeks of application of the product. Laboratory measured Skin tone, Miravex Antera testing 2016, Centrum Kosmetykow, Dr Koziej.

2. The Plump & Renew Serum

The secret to youth and beauty – skin looks refreshed, supple and glowing.

This highly effective, multi-action natural serum visibly improves wrinkles, hydration and corrects skin tone for youthful brightness when used daily.

  • 87%* achieved a reduction in skin fatigue and stress.
  • 57% *achieved a visible reduction of wrinkles.
  • 73%*of women agreed it plumped skin and tightened pores.
  • 63%* of women achieved significant improvement with deep moisturising and soothing skin better than a moisturiser alone.

3. The Skin Radiance Facial Moisturiser in the morning; or,

Ultra-nourishing, this naturally derived facial moisturiser will fight the visible signs of ageing and improve skin elasticity and firmness.

With natural ingredients such as Goji Berry and Kakadu Plum, which are rich in minerals, amino acids and Vitamin C, this moisturiser will improve your skin quality over time with daily use and has been proven to:

  • increase skin elasticity by up to 25%† in just 3 days
  • deliver up to 50%† improvement in hydration in 4 days

4. The Vitamin C + Camellia Oil at night

A high powered, lightweight anti-ageing facial oil that helps support collagen production and reduce the visible signs of damaging free radicals

Struggling to fall asleep, combat that wired and tired feeling with Geranium Oil and Rosemary Extract to promote – emotional wellness, calm the mind and relax, brighten the skin, improve skin clarity and rejuvenation, and release tension.

The promise was that in 6 weeks using only natural ingredients would cause “amazing” results. But, was Natural Instinct able to deliver on this promise?

My observations after trying the 6- week challenge are as follows:

  1. No change in break outs.
  2. Improved scarring
  3. Smaller pores

I was initially worried that the oils would trigger an acne break out for me, as I thought my acne was caused by an oily face. However, I didn’t notice any change in break outs, despite the oils being noticeably… oily.

While I’m slightly disappointed that my break outs didn’t improve, I still think the 6-week challenge worked*!

Why?

  • I have tried many different cleansers and most leave my face feeling dry and uncomfortable, with some causing peeling. In contrast, this routine left me feeling refreshed and clean.
  • No cleaning routine has ever improved my scarring. This means that while I did not notice a change in my acne on the Natural Instinct routine, I am over the moon that at least my scarring has improved, especially since new scars can often be indistinguishable from active pimples. Therefore, improved scarring still means less spots!

One promise that came with my 6-week challenge was an invite to their Facebook group. This group was meant to be a community of supportive women (and men, I’m sure), who are all in this together. Unfortunately, when I looked the group up, it appeared to be inactive, and they never accepted my join request.

I would rate the 6-week challenge, 3/5.

-1 for not reducing my acne and -1 for the inactive group.

My favourite product from the 6-week challenge is the Plump & Renew Serum. I also really love the Cleanser and the Vitamin C + Camellia Oil. I found the moisturiser to be average.

*I would say it took longer than 6 weeks for the challenge to noticeably improve my face, but improve my face, it did!

Pink Clay Cleanser

Cleanse, detox and brighten skin with this gentle Pink Clay Cleanser.

Formulated with French Pink Clay and rich in silica, minerals and antioxidants, it draws out oil, dirt and impurities, visibly reduces the size of pores and leaves skin clean, fresh and bright.

I’ve never used a pink clay cleanser, so I bought this one to try out of curiosity. You know how you usually feel cleaner after washing your face? The Pink Clay Cleanser just doesn’t give me this feeling… It doesn’t feel as though the cleanser soaks into my pores; and I’d describe it as feeling as thought I am just washing my face with water.

1/5.

 

Radiance Mist

A unique hydrating facial mist that detoxifies, re-mineralises and brightens, leaving skin radiant and refreshed.

Formulated with Earth Marine Water and Rose Water (Magnesium + Potassium rich) this mist will visibly reduce the size of pores by up to 10%.

Love, love, love this!

This product is exactly as they describe, and it works so well that I sometimes use it in the place of moisturiser.

5/5.

+1 Bonus point because it smells like musk sticks. 6/5.

Dark Circle + Wrinkle Correction Eye Cream

A natural eye cream that intensively hydrates, reduces puffiness and smooths fine lines.

Designed to hydrate and plump the delicate layers of the eye skin, smooth fine lines, promote skin renewal and eye radiance through intense hydrating, firming and anti-inflammatory active ingredients.

25%† WRINKLE REDUCTION
93%* achieved a rapid wrinkle and dark circle reduction

I liked this product, and did notice an improvement.

(In saying this, Proactive’s Eye Brightening Serum works better for me. But, the Proactive also comes at about triple the price, which isn’t worthwhile for me for the minor difference.)

4/5.

Gentle + Soothing Facial Wipes

Beautifully soft, natural cleansing wipes that will nourish, fight skin fatigue and hydrate skin with Rosehip and Argan Oil.

Cucumber and Aloe Vera help to gently and easily remove impurities of dirt, oil and make-up. Naturally rich in Antioxidants, Green Tea extract to help protect skin from free radicals and boost skin cell regeneration and feel soft, refreshed and hydrated. Dermatologically tested for sensitive skin.

I also love these facial wipes! They definitely are gentle and soothing, as Natural Instinct claim. The only con is they aren’t the best wipes at removing make-up.

4/5.

Overall

I love this brand and will continue using it! My skin truly feels healthier, smoother, and my acne scarring has improved massively.

My 3 favourite products from their range are the Plump & Renew Serum, the Vitamin C + Camellia Oil, and the Radiance Mist.

Overall, I rate Natural Instinct 8.2/10.

+1 because the brand are vegan and do not do any animal testing.

 

Disclaimer: I am in no way endorsed by Natural Instinct and have not received any commission for this post. This is an honest review.

 

 

MTA (Mermaid Treasures Australia)

COVID-19 has highlighted, more than ever, the importance of supporting local businesses. I made it my mission to discover some of Australia’s finest, as seen in my last review, Erstwilder.

MTA

MTA (Mermaid Treasures Australia) is an Adelaide-based family business, which sells beautiful crystals, jewellery, tarot cards, books, etc. Let’s just say that once you discover MTA, you can kiss your hard-saved cash goodbye (Eek!).

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The owner, Carly, sources only the best quality crystals from all over. A couple of her latest shipments have been from Madagascar and Brazil!

Now, as amazing as the online shop is, the best thing about MTA is actually the ‘secret’ Facebook group, ‘Mermaid Treasures Crystal Addicts’. Group members have first pick of new crystals through both live sales and uploads throughout the day, as well as exclusive community discounts. The group is also a great atmosphere to be in; with a very positive and encouraging community.

Occasionally, the MTA Facebook page (not to be confused with the group) will also post super enticing things. For example, tarot card readings (as shown below)!

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Reveal As written by the Thread of Fate

Card 1 – The Pillar
The pillar signifies a need to rise to the occasion. It indicates a time where we may need to be all things: the backbone, the nurturer, the provider, the lover. The Pillar asks you to step into these roles as best as you can, knowing that you are being pushed outside of your comfort zone. You will learn just how capable you are. It is a time where we take our gifts to new heights and learn that our perceived flaws are just that, perceived. If you have been resisting a new opportunity or role that has presented itself it is time to step into it and trust that you will learn as you go. This is also a time where our container grows. We learn just how much space we can hold for ourselves and for others. Continue to listen to yourself, fill up your own cupso that you can be there for others, but do not forget to push yoursefl!Balanced Pillar energy is being able to wear many hats, to hold space for family and community, but doing these things with empowered boundaries. It is placing your personal well-being and needs first, knowing that your service will be better because of it.

Card 2 – Sacred Sexuality
Our sexual self and sexual energy is such a layered and potent part of who we are – it can show us our wounds, it can provide healing, it can help us manifest, it can teach us boundaries and an fuel and empower us. Sacred sexuality does not mean that your sexual presence or expression needs to look a certain way – it simply means that your sexuality is sacred as it is. It is a core part of your humanity as well as your spiritual and universal self.

Card 3 – Love
This card is an invitation to examine love in all facets of your life. This is a love of self, love of others, your healthy or not so healthy boundaries, your presence with others, your relationship with intimacy, if you feel seen and heard, passion, joy and total responsibility. This card could signal a need to build a better relationship internally, or maybe with a partner, in your business or work life or even towards a goal or hobby. It could also be a reminder that love is a choice.

My Order

We call it ‘mermail’ when you receive your MTA order… My two mermails were long-awaited thanks to COVID-19 causing an influx in postage (shout out to Auspost for their hard work though!)

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The above photo shows my two deliveries together. The Dreamtime oracle card and the bag of small crystals came as a lovely surprise with my larger order. (I love that I received a ‘Storyteller’ card…)

Below are the shop’s professional photo’s of the crystals I bought:

Thoughts

  • My crystals are just as lovely in person as advertised.
  • The community is awesome – I look forward to seeing new posts every day.
  • Only con is this will ruin my purse.

5/5.

I definitely recommend MTA to any new or old crystal lovers!

 

(Disclaimer: Photo-frame and photo not included.)

Erstwilder

They say the best way to help the community during the COVID-19 outbreak is to shop local! So, I have taken it upon myself to find some new local treasures via online shopping… Introducing my first treasured find…

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Erstwilder is a Melbourne-based Australian company that designs cute, limited edition brooches, jewellery, and scarves. Established by a local artist in 2011, the company now has a team of local designers and other staff, as well as fan communities and buy-swap-sells across Facebook. The Erstwilder label draws inspiration from all things vintage, rockabilly, pinup, retro and art deco; with a focus on (cute!) animals. All ‘Erstildlings’ arrive with a unique name and short story as a homage to history, myth, pop-culture and classic storytelling.

I discovered Erstwilder as they re-released their Peter Rabbit range – lucky because their products have a tendency to sell out quickly!

Peter Rabbit Brooch

I ordered Peter Rabbit, Benjamin Bunny, and Jemima Puddle-Duck brooches, as well as a set of three scarves. My Erstwilder order arrived in a delicately and lovingly wrapped package. And they threw in a free sticker that now looks great on my laptop!

The brooches are as lovely as they were in the pictures. (Cheeky – the cockatiel- quality testing my Benjamin Bunny).

Cheeky and I decidedly love Erstwilder for their cute designs, product quality, swift arrival, and the love they put into their product. We rate them a 5/5!

The Grounds of Alexandria

The Grounds of Alexandria are a beautiful floral themed space, located in a 1920s Industrial area. This history has been absorbed into the design of the Grounds, creating a unique, rustic, and quaint space. The Grounds include The Café, open for breakfast and lunch; The Potting Shed, open from 11:30am until late; and, The Garden, a variety of takeaway style eateries, namely The Garden Bar, The BBQ, and The Pizza Silo. 

The Grounds are well known for featuring a changing theme. The current theme is Disney’s Maleficent. 

“As a beautiful young woman of pure heart, Maleficent has an idyllic life in a forest kingdom…”

One way in which The Grounds have incorporated the dark beauty of Maleficent into their garden is as you walk down the main walkway, you are flanked by hedges decorated with black roses, crow feathers, and wispy dead leaves. These additions stick out haphazardly yet in perfect harmony. This pathway is truly stunning, if not dark. The effect is that you feel as though you really are entering the horned fairy’s dominion.

Halfway down the walkway, there is an opening to the right where you can enter into the courtyard of The Grounds; the centrepiece of which is a beautiful water fountain. The backdrop, an archway of fairy lights, looks as though it continues eternally in an ethereal fashion. This area is particularly picturesque at night. I felt as though this space would be perfect for hosting a wedding reception.

There is also plenty to do here, with a kid’s play corner containing a rocking horse, both a cow and a pig seat, a large connect four game, and more… All to keep the little ones entertained while you browse the gardens. There’s a pig pen for The Grounds’ resident pig Harry Trotter, as well as a pen of hens + Russel Crow the Rooster. All of these areas keep to a farmyard theme and are ultra fun additions to the venue.

The rear side of the courtyard connects to The Garden, where the aforementioned takeaway shops are located. This too is beautiful to walk down, and if you take a left here it also loops back to the main walkway.

Design 5/5.

The Potting Shed

Luke and I had a dinner reservation at The Potting Shed for our third anniversary. We arrived half an hour early, yet the staff were willing to seat us and begin service upon our arrival. There was a line up, however, to get a seat and only one lady on host, so in saying this, we did have to wait about five minutes in line before we were eventually seated. We also found the service throughout the night a bit slow.

We were seated directly under a large industrial heater. Our waitress offered to turn the heater off for us if it became too hot, but we found it comfortable in light of a slight chilly breeze.

We were handed a drink menu and two food menus. The food menus came on a heavy metal clipboard, once again tying in to that industrial history of The Grounds.

We read through the drinks menu and I immediately fell in love with the description of a cocktail The Casual Encounter at first sight. “Save a dance for this belle of the highball – the glassiest drink in the gin joint. A thirst-quenching kiss of elderflower, Tanqueray Gin, peach and rose syrup.” The drink itself looked better than the water-colour illustration in the menu and it tasted equally as satisfying.

We ordered a Grounds Garlic & Herb Baguette to start. We found it quite bland. There was a twig of rosemary on the side; while this appeared aesthetically pleasing on the side of our bread board, it would’ve added more to the taste of the baguette if it had been baked into the bread.

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On its arrival, I ordered my second cocktail, The Fluffy-tiki. “Dedicated to our feathered friend, Fluffy. Delightful Captain Morgan Spiced Rum with pineapple and chased by citrus. Cheers Fluffy.” The Fluffy-tiki is served in a parrot mug. No, I’m not joking… Yes, it looked awesome. I didn’t realise this on the night, but you have the option of buying the mug from the restaurant for an extra $17.

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Our food arrived next:

1x The Shed Cheeseburger for Luke

ground brisket, onion rings, house sauce, pickles and melted cheese with chips; and

1x The Potting Shed Game Sausages for me

with colcannon mash, burnt onion and thyme gravy (gf) 

While the dinner could have been ever so slightly more tasteful, particularly for how much it costs, I otherwise couldn’t fault it.

Drinks 5/5.

Food 3/5. (-1 not as tasteful as it could be; -0.5 price; -0.5 understaffed).

Amenities

I have never seen bathrooms that look as nice as the ones at The Grounds. So much thought and effort has gone behind the design of these bathrooms and I loved it. To sum up how pretty they are, I have to point out: How often do you have the urge to take a picture of a bathroom?

5/5.

Overall

The Grounds of Alexandria have, within me, inspired a love for nature, beauty, and the rustic. I will definitely be going back in the future.

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My overall rating for The Grounds of Alexandria is 9/10!

St Kilda’s Pier

A hidden gem in the heart of Melbourne, St Kilda’s Pier is lovely for an evening or night-time stroll. The pier is, in my opinion, one of Melbourne’s best kept secrets.

Why?

Because it is the home of a Little Penguin colony as well as the Rakali (water rats). To boot, entry is free of charge!

About 1,400 penguins live on the breakwater at any given time. The breakwater is located on the pier, if you continue to the left of the kiosk. The best time to view the penguins is 30 minutes after sunset, however, in saying this, we strolled down the pier around 10pm and we still saw plenty of penguins and one Rakali (who scared the heck out of us since we didn’t realise that there were water rats living in the rocks here).

When planning your visit, consider that you will see the greatest number of penguins between October and April, and if you visit between November and December you will also see some baby chicks. We went at the end of July, which was beneficial for us as there weren’t many other tourists to compete with and, as aforementioned, we still encountered much of the wildlife.

Most tourists will travel to nearby Phillip Island to see the Little Penguins for their nightly march back to their burrows. We did both encounters. Our experience was that both viewings were unique and we would recommend everyone do both if possible. Our favourite aspect of the St Kilda Pier experience was that we were able to get up close to the wildlife (yet keeping more than three metres away) – and it was free. To think that a colony of penguins chooses to live on an inner-city beach is truly mind-blowing; for such a shy species to willingly live so close to humans inspires me to consider that perhaps humans aren’t so bad after all. 

The Little Penguin colony located here is managed and cared for by Earthcare St Kilda. A volunteer penguin guide is present every night to ensure tourists don’t harm the penguins by abiding by the rules they have set up to protect the penguins. These are:

  • No handling or feeding of the penguins
  • No flash photography of the penguins
  • No torches to be shone on the penguins without a red filter over the front
  • No dogs past the entry gate into the penguin viewing area, trained assistance dogs excepted
  • No climbing or sitting on the rocks
  • No littering, please take your litter with you
  • Keep at least 3m away from penguins moving around the viewing area

While people are generally respectful and mindful of the penguins’ welfare, unfortunately a fence was erected over the breakwater in July 2017 to protect the colony due to some harmful behaviour.

Seeing the penguins up close was honestly a treat I will never forget and an experience I highly recommend! 

In lieu of the free encounter, I would advocate making a small donation to Earthcare St Kilda for their work at St Kilda Pier. There is a donation pole at the kiosk on the pier or you can alternatively donate here.

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Photo credit: Pictures taken by Synchronous Photography & Editing

TV Review: 🖤❌🤖 Love Death + Robots

Love, Death, & Robots is an anthology of animated science fiction short films. The series was produced by J. Donen, D. Flincher, J. Miller, and T. Miller. This anthology is available on Australian Netflix, where the episode order is randomised from viewer-to-viewer across the platform.

Warning: The anthology is aimed at adults and has some confronting themes of violence, language, and sex. I do not recommend the show to any persons under 18 years of age.

The following review contains spoilers. Please read at your own discretion.

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Grease Monkey, Canberra

My partner and I were told the Braddon precinct was the best place for food in Canberra. We had a quick look around and decided to eat at Grease Monkey as it looked enticing, busy, and came recommended by locals online.

Atmosphere

Busy but not noisy.

Great music.

Great set-up with plenty of seating and heaters, as well as bottles of sauce and paper towels across the establishment.

5/5.

Drinks

My partner ordered a beer, which I (of course) had a sip of. It was their equivalent of a house beer and on their menu was called the Greasy Lager. It was cheap, costing only $5. I thought it tasted a lot like a Great Northern. We both loved it!

My partner also bought me a cocktail. He couldn’t remember the name of it and I was unable to find the drink on their website, but it was made up of rum, passionfruit, pomegranate, and came garnished with a lemon slice. I don’t usually drink rum but I really loved this drink!

My drink also came with a paper straw. I’ve always loved the idea of supporting the environment by using straws alternative to plastic, however I find that I don’t like paper straws much as they break easily and their texture feels gross… What I really loved about this particular straw is it stayed solid and was pleasant to drink from.

5/5.

Food

I ordered the Grease Burger (below, left). It’s a typical beef burger with pickles, lettuce, mayo, cheese, and onion. For $15, it was incredibly disappointed. It seemed basic with not a lot on it, and tasted as plain as it looked.

My partner ordered the Parma Burger (above, right). It was a fried chicken burger and was just as lacklustre as my Grease Burger. I even managed to find a bone when I took a bite into his burger, which could’ve been potentially dangerous had I swallowed it.

The chips were also disappointing. They looked and tasted flat and had a strong peppery taste. If this peppery seasoning had more flavour to it, the chips could have potentially tasted great. The tastelessness of these chips weren’t helped by the fact that the only sauce available was self-serve bottled tomato sauce. Having a great side of sauce may have made these chips amazing.

1/5.

Amenities

Toilets were clean.

I wasn’t a fan of the hand wash basin as it was open to the bar and eatery and I felt exposed as I washed and dried my hands. It also seemed like the noise of the hand drier was super distracting for other patrons because a few people did look over when I used it.

2/5.

Overall

I would highly recommend the Grease Monkey for their bar.

However, I would definitely not recommend eating here.

It was a nice establishment, but the bathroom section should be separated from the rest of the bar/ restaurant for privacy and sound management reasons.

6.5/10.

Looking for other activities near Canberra? View Days 1-2 of my itinerary here for ideas!

Accommodation in Albury-Wodonga

We chose to stay at David’s Airbnb in East Albury due to its convenient location close to the centre of Albury. Only a five minute drive to the main boulevard, we felt staying here gave us more options for things to do in the short space of time we had to do these.

Dave’s Airbnb is a recently renovated standalone unit attached to the bottom of his house. It is incredibly modern with beautiful decor. We were ‘wow-ed’ the moment we stepped into the room. If I could describe the unit in three words, they’d be: luxurious, spacey, and warm.

From the way the bed was made to the placement of the ladder, the decor really blew us away. We also really loved some of the artworks on the wall- one of the first things you’ll notice as you step into the room. Our favourite facet of David’s place, however, was the heated floor! Such a small detail really improved our mid-winter stay.

From the beginning, Dave was very helpful with giving tips for things to do and even offering to lend us his bike if we decided to go cycling (there’s a beautiful cycleway in the area called the 6km Wagirra Trail, a must-see in the region, but we unfortunately didn’t have time to ride the path!). One tip that Dave gave us that we did take on-board was to visit the Albury Railway Station. It’s a historic station, still in use, known for its extra long platform, with the length due to the station being the interchange between Victorian and NSW trains.

We enjoyed our time staying at David’s Airbnb and would definitely go back if we pass through the area again. Next time we’ll leave more time to explore though!

Book your Airbnb accommodation here and receive $55 AUD off your booking! If you want to stay with David, search ‘Albury, New South Wales’ and then select Modern, private, and close to town.

Looking for things to do around Albury-Wodonga? View Days 2-3 of my itinerary here for ideas!

Photo credit: Pictures not taken by me were taken by Synchronous Photography & Editing

Hanging Rock

You may or may not have heard the mysterious story of Miranda, Edith, Irma, Marion and Miss McCraw and want to explore the haunted scenes from the novel and movie for yourself…

Or, perhaps, you want to explore Ngannelong, a place of Indigenous spiritual significance as a border territory and meeting place between different tribes for their Corrobborees, Initiation Ceremonies, Songline Ceremonies, trade, relationship building, and a place where laws were passed…

Or, even, to just admire the beautiful landscape and the unique mamelon volcanic rocks formed by about six million years ago by a stiff magma pouring from a geologic vent and congealing in its place, creating that jutty appearance the rocks are famous for…

Whatever your reason, Hanging Rock is one of the most beautiful landscapes Australia has to offer and, conveniently located only an hour away from Melbourne, it is a must-see in Victoria!

Because we arrived at about 4:15pm, with the park closing at 5pm, our walk felt incredibly rushed. I would definitely recommend leaving a few hours to garner the full experience from Hanging Rock! The return walk to the summit takes about an hour, but there is also the Base Walk, a small museum, and a cafe.

The view of rural Victoria and the Macedon ranges from the summit of Hanging Rock is truly breathtaking, while the Base Walk offers an easier but no-less-enjoyable circuit around the mountain. What’s more is that certain points of interest on the track are marked for full enjoyment. There is a brochure with a detailed map available to pick up from the Visitor’s Centre.

Summit Walk

The maximum elevation at hanging rock is 718m, to be explored in a 1.8km return trip that, as aforementioned, takes about 50 minutes to complete. The path forks as you near the top and there are two options for how you complete the track: a more gradual climb up to the summit (if you veer left) or stairs (to the right). The Hanging Rock itself is located on the track with the stairs, so if you are keen to see this but unsure how you will cope with the slope, take the stairs on your way back.

There are 10 points of interest, starting with 1. The Visitor’s Centre, a small museum (so to speak) explaining the rock formation and depicting the fictitious history of Hanging Rock.

2. The Forest. Admire the natural beauty of the national park along your walk.

3. Edge of the Rock. The track splits here and, if you are on the summit walk, this is where you begin to walk along the edge of the cliff face.

4. Hanging Rock. The ‘hanging rock’ itself, for which the park is named, as well as the title of the original novel Picnic at Hanging Rock.

5. Natural Amphitheatre. Here, I sat on one of the rocks as if I were in back row of an amphitheatre watching nature as a play. This spot is imaginatively named.

6. Check Out the Views. This is the point where you think you’re finally at the top, but you’re not… There’s some room to explore (sort of off-track) if you take a right here. The path to the summit continues on the left.

(I love how I look semi-aesthetic in this image when in reality I was dying from running up the mountain!)

7. The Top! You’ve finally reached the top. Take in a deep breath- you’ve earned it!

8. Views of Mount Macedon. Hanging Rock is located on one of the mountains of the Mount Macedon ranges, which were (re)named by explorer Major Thomas Michell after Phillip of Macedon since he was able to see Port Phillip from the summit of Mt Macedon. At the 8th point of interest, you are able to view Mt Macedon, which rises to an impressive 1010 meters above sea-level.

9. Rock Pillar. Pillars of rock overhang the cliffs. They look like they have faces making it easy to see how the site may be sacred.

10. Wildlife. Glimpse popular wildlife like grey kangaroos, wallabies, echidnas and hundreds of species of birds.

Base Walk

The Base Walking Track takes you in a clockwise direction around the base of the formation.  It is a wide, easy path, with some undulations, that enables you to experience to beauty of the park with ease.  The 2km track is clearly signposted with arrows. This track is perfect for the eldery, those with children, and those who want an easier walk.

Post-scriptum

The summit walk isn’t appropriate for young kids as there are no barriers on the cliffs. The base walk is, however, just as beautiful as the summit walk and completely safe for children.

Dogs are permitted on leash in the picnic areas but not on the walking track due to the presence of native animals.

The entry fee is $10 per car or $4 for pedestrians. There is a ticket machine just outside the cafe. You produce the ticket when you exit the park.

The park strictly closes at 5pm. If you’re late, your car (and you) will be locked in! Beware that with the creepy history of this forest, you’re in for a haunted night should you be locked in!

The North Gate is closed. However, if you do drive over to the North Gate it is possible to see kangaroo’s up close (or are they wallabies? I can never tell the difference!…)

Looking for things to do near Hanging Rock? View Day 3 of my itinerary here for ideas!

Photo credit: Pictures taken by Synchronous Photography & Editing

Featured image credit: Scene from film Picnic at Hanging Rock with credit to BBC and Fremantle Media.