Macarthur is a small country town in South West Victoria between Hamilton and Port Fairy. Macarthur is the Gateway to Mount Eccles National Park and at the centre of Kanawinka GeoPark.
Macarthurís Memorial Rose has 150 roses, each marked by a plaque bearing the name of a local person who served overseas in the defence of Australia. Anzac services are held here each year.
Things to see
Of historic interest are the bluestone Catholic Church (1887), the Presbyterian Church (1875), the courthouse and the Victoria Hotel which was built in 1870.
Budj Bim - Mount Eccles National Park
This area was an active volcanic zone from about 18,000BC to 6,000BC. There are many features of the 7500ha National Park including a crater lake named Lake Surprise. There are also various walking trails and the opportunity to enter an extinct lava tube/lava canal (bring a torch). If you keep your eyes open you may see koalas up in the Manna gums.
The extinct volcano is covered by tall manna gum and some blackwood with echidna, bush-tailed possums, yellow-bellied gliders, ring-tail possums, koalas, eastern grey kangaroos and 70 species of birds including wedge-tailed eagles. It is ideal for walking, picnicking, swimming, wildlife spotting, lava-cave exploration and camping. During holiday periods it is best to check with a ranger to ensure a site is available - 03 5576 1338.
There are four major walking tracks which all start near the park entrance. The Crater Rim Walk (1.5 to 2 hours) follows a series of numbered pegs around the rim of the crater with a leaflet available from the information centre. The Lake Walk (45 minutes) descends into the crater and follows the shoreline of the lake.
The lava cave at the northern rim of the crater was formed by a collapsed lava canal. A two-metre opening leads into a flat-bottomed cave with an arched roof as high as five metres. The Canal Walk (2 hours) starts at the lava cave and explores a lava canal which once carried lava south-west to form today's fertile volcanic plains.