Dorrigo National Park
Back to nature
The walkways at Dorrigo National Park provide a unique and breathtaking experience of a World Heritage area. Start by taking the Wonga Track from The Glade Picnic Area. Under tall, lush trees you’ll venture into the heart of the rainforest where your kids can slip behind a waterfall into a rock cavern and look out through a veil of cascading water. Back at the picnic area, take the raised boardwalk which winds up into the trees, and you’ll find yourselves perched among the flowers and seedpods and nesting birds. Lastly, for the highest view of all, go to the Dorrigo Rainforest Centre and take the Skywalk, a stunning boardwalk which soars 70 metres above the rainforest floor.
Dorrigo Rainforest Centre, Dome Rd, Dorrigo; (02) 6657 2309
■ Dorrigo Rainforest Centre – start your visit here. The interactive display reveals how the rainforest evolved and you can find out about some of the animals you might spot. Make sure you pick up other advice, such as safety warnings and walking maps. There’s a cafe and toilet here too.
Many millions of years ago, Australia was part of a larger continent called Gondwana which was down in the Antarctic Circle. When Australia broke away, and moved to a warmer part of the globe, the cool-adapted Gondwanan rainforests were reduced to a narrow strip along south-eastern Australia. In Dorrigo National Park there are still primitive plant families that have direct links with the birth and spread of flowering plants over 100 million years ago.
■ Before you visit, read a book on dinosaurs with your children. When you wander together through Dorrigo’s ancient, primeval setting, you’ll be able to imagine dinosaurs just out of sight behind the dense rainforest foliage.