Where to find Autumn Colour in the Dandenong Ranges
Autumn in the Dandenongs is another special reason to come visit, not that you really need a reason to come to the ‘highlands’!
A lovely big tree by St Michael’s Church on the corner of the Mt Dandenong Tourist Road & Falls Road is often one of the first to put on an autumn display with super colours. Chestnuts are fattening up and the annual Chestnut Festival will soon be on again. Held on the first Sunday in May, come enjoy roast chestnuts, stalls and fun for all the family.
Driving through the Dandenongs
One of the best roads to drive along, if visitors just want a quick glimpse of colour, is Sherbrooke Road between the main Tourist Road and Kallista.
All the gardens in the Dandenongs have their own autumn charm. The Alfred Nicholas Gardens, one of the most popular to visit, with a pretty ornamental lake and boat shed – a favourite destination for photographers. Being dog-friendly (on leash) is a bonus. The paths are steep, though well surfaced.
Pirianda Gardens, another spectacular spot for colour. Steep paths meander through a variety of trees, it’s one of the quieter gardens in the Dandenongs to visit, but well worth the effort.
Visit any of the gardens in the hills, they all have something to offer.
Which walk will be the best for autumn colour? The Tan Track in Sherbrooke is pretty, not a long walk and quite easy-going. Mathias Track (starting at the Silvan Road end or accessing from the Hamer Arboretum) is a favourite with photographers, hikers, dog walkers and bike riders.
Emerald Park Lake is another stunning spot for autumn colour, perhaps ride the famous Puffing Billy Steam Train from Belgrave to the Lake and enjoy a grand day out.
Walking with kids and Prams
Emerald Park Lake, Mathias Track, The Tan are all fine for prams (some tracks can get muddy, though).