Mount Gambier Things to Do

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Most Recent Things to Do in Mount Gambier

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    ADAM LINDSAY GORDON MONUMENT

    by balhannah Updated Sep 20, 2012

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    Adam Lindsay Gordon is a well known Australian Poet, Jockey and Politician.

    Lucky he was a good jockey, as this probably helped him survive his courageous piece of riding at the Blue Lake. Near from where the Obelisk in his memory is located, in July 1865, Gordon made his famed leap on horseback over an old post and rail guard fence onto a narrow ledge overlooking the Blue Lake and jumped back again onto the roadway. He survived!
    This was such a daring riding feat, it became known as "Gordon’s Leap." The commemorative obelisk was erected there, which is where the Rook lookout and Rotary viewpoint are located..

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    CHRIST CHURCH - ANGLICAN CHURCH

    by balhannah Written Sep 20, 2012

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    Christ/Anglican Church
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    Just a little further along Bay street, I came across the historic Christ Church - Anglican Church. What is good in Mt. Gambier, is all the heritage signs infront of the heritage buildings in the city.
    This unusual Church was built in 1865 from dolomite. In 1895 the chancel and organ chamber were added. What I thought was lovely, was the memorial porch and lych gate.

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    THE OLD COURTHOUSE

    by balhannah Written Sep 20, 2012

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    Old Courthouse

    The Old Courthouse is now known as the National Trust Law and Heritage Centre and the Courthouse Gallery. The Courthouse was built between 1864-1865, and was used as recently as 1975, when it was replaced by a more modern building. Today, the Courthouse is a popular venue for Mock Trials. Visitors can have some fun when they visit, as gowns and wigs are supplied, and you can sit in the jury box, or be the judge, send the prisoner to gaol etc.!
    Courthouse Gallery sells a good variety of craftwork and sweets.

    OPEN....Noon - 4pm.

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    VALLEY LAKE

    by balhannah Written Sep 20, 2012

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    Valley Lake
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    There are another three Lakes, the Valley Lake Crater and the Leg of Mutton Lake Crater and Brownes Lakes. The Valley Lake we viewed from the top and looked down to the Lake, and then we followed the road to the bottom. I read the Valley lake is very popular all year round. Once there, I could see why. Plenty of lawn, an excellent playground, well kept picnic areas including 16 FREE gas barbecues, covered shelters, walking paths, it had everything you could want for an enjoyable family picnic.

    FREE ENTRY .....FREE BBQ'S

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    CENTENARY TOWER

    by balhannah Written Sep 19, 2012

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    Centenary Tower

    The Centenary Tower overlooks the famous Blue Lake from the highest point in the city, no wonder we could see it all the time and eventually found our way there and to the car park. To reach the tower was an uphill walk along a bitumen pathway which had rest points, plus it's a section of the circuit track around the crater of the Valley/Browne's Lakes.

    The Flag on the Tower wasn't flying, which meant that the Tower was closed. If the Flag is flying, then the Tower is open.

    The Tower includes an extensive display of early photographs of the Crater Lakes area. I did see it lluminated at night, standing like a guard looking after the city! Drinks, ice creams, and souvenirs are available, and a small entrance fee applies.
    The Tower was built by public subscription to celebrate the sighting of Mount Gambier by Lieutenant Grant, on the Lady Nelson [ship] in 1800. It was officially opened in 1904

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    BLUE LAKE - ROTARY LOOKOUT

    by balhannah Written Sep 19, 2012

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    Mt. Shank
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    The Blue Lake Rotary Lookout I think is the BEST OF THE LOT!

    Pull into the carpark at Rook Lookout tower. When you look across the road at the Blue Lake, you will see written on the guard rail, NOT TO CROSS THE ROAD AS IT IS DANGEROUS!
    Instead, what you do, is follow a few steps down the hill from the carpark, this leads to another lookout with wonderful views over Mt. Schank, another extinct volcano. The pathway leads through a tunnel underneath the road, coming out onto a viewing platform overlooking the Blue Lake. Great views from here!

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    ROOK WALL & LOOKOUT

    by balhannah Written Sep 19, 2012

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    Rook wall & lookout
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    Our next stop beside the Blue Lake was at Rook Wall & Look-out. This nice stone look-out, I climbed some steps to enter to have a better view of the Blue Lake. It wasn't until I read the plague, that I realized this was quite a historical building and event that happened in Mt. Gambier.

    It was only 16 days after WWI had finished, that more than 1000 citizen's volunteered to build the rock wall. At 7.30am, on 27th November, 1918, 800men set about levelling the ground to build the wall out of dolomite stones and limestone. As they worked, 300 women made and served refreshments to the men. Nearly unbelievable, the wall was nearly completely finished by the end of the day!
    The look-out was the final piece built, and today, all of this stands in very good condition.

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    BLUE LAKE - APEX LOOK-OUT

    by balhannah Written Sep 19, 2012

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    Apex Lookout
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    As we drove along John Watson drive which runs around the Lake, we decided to stop at as many look-outs as we could. Why? Well, different views of the lake and different shades of Blue.
    Our first stop was at the Apex Look-out, and it was from here, we could see the pumping station. The old Blue Lake Pumping Station, built out of cream dolomite in 1884, sat on a ledge, about 150 feet above the water level.

    The old Pumping Station still contains the control board and electrical equipment and also has a museum display of some old equipment.
    I haven't done this tour, but there is one if you are interested that includes a fully guided walking visit, including going down the original well shaft in a glass paneled lift to a viewing platform near the surface of the Blue Lake. It is a chance to learn more of the geology and heritage of the lakes in the area, as well as a description of the pumping plant operation. The changing color of the Blue Lake is also explained.

    The Tourisit Information centre takes bookings.

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    THE BLUE LAKE

    by balhannah Updated Sep 19, 2012

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    The Blue Lake
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    If you didn't know it, Mt. Gambier is famous for its BLUE LAKE.

    It really is one of the wonders of the world.
    Is the lake bottomless...... nobody knows for sure, but it is believed to be an "average" depth of 80 metres deep.

    The Lake fills an extinct Volcano that erupted 28,000 years ago??, or as recent as 5000 years ago, a huge difference in estimation and another mystery!
    The Lake is about 20 metres above sea level and, because of its great depth, its bottom is about 30 metres below the level of Mount Gambier's main street. The Blue Lake supplies Mt. Gambier with town water, good quality clean water.

    What is unusual about the Blue Lake, is the colour change of the Lake. I have seen it for myself, and this time it was blue, not a bright blue that it changes to in Summer.

    Estimated months the Blue Lake changes colour..........
    From April to November - the lake is a colder steel grey colour.
    From Mid-November to March - the lake is a beautiful cobalt blue!

    The Lake is easy to see........ Just drive along the road that will take you around the whole perimeter of the Lake, or you can do the 5km lakeside walk.

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    GO TO THE VISITOR INFORMATION CENTRE

    by balhannah Updated Sep 19, 2012

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    Our first stop in the city of Mt. Gambier, was the Tourist information centre. We had been to Mt. Gambier quite a few times before, but long ago, so we decided to explore the city and area properly with a town map. As it is a city, it is quite busy.

    We found the Info Centre very easily, as it was located on the Princes Highway which we were travelling along. There is plenty of FREE off street parking available at the centre.
    The Centre is named ‘The Lady Nelson’ Visitor Centre. As you drive past to enter the carpark from a side entrance, you should notice a ship by the centre, this is the Lady Nelson.

    Inside, the staff were really friendly and helpful, telling us about the local attractions and where and how to reach our accommodation.
    They had a good range of souvenirs and local gourmet food products, lavender, pottery, books, handmade chocolates, local jewellery, models of the Ship and others, plus much more.

    Admission to the theatrette is free and you can experience the wonderful scenery, the mystery of the caves, history of the region and the attractions of Mount Gambier.

    THIS IS THE LIMESTONE COAST, and there is plenty to see and do, so pick up the FREE BROCHURES available at the centre.

    OPEN.....MONDAY - FRIDAY 9 - 5pm

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    LADY NELSON DISCOVERY CENTRE

    by balhannah Updated Sep 19, 2012

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    Erupting Volcano
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    The Lady Nelson Discovery centre really is a must see, and all it cost us, was a couple of $'s to visit.

    We didn't see the Lady Nelson [replica], as the 60 ton sailing vessel built in the year 1799, was having some restoration done. The Lady Nelson was the first ship to sail along the coastline of South Australia, however, the ship was destroyed in 1825. The Ship is usually on display at the centre.

    We walked through corridors which were full of information, then we went outside for a look before returning inside to walk over a glass floor under which, were illuminated fossil rocks, this was on the cave walk. A Volcano erupts on the tour, and there even is the shadowy Ghost, "Christina Smith," that steps out of a photo to tell her story!
    One of the prized items on display, is the fossilized skull of Simosthenurus occdentalis, an extinct short-faced kangaroo estimated to be between 50,000 and 500,000 years old.

    This Museum is very well done, different, interesting and extremely cheap

    Very cheap admission - Approx $2
    Open 9-5pm daily

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  • princess margaret rose caves

    by sxhit Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    the princess margaret rose caves are magnifficent theres heaps to see for the whole family . There are fossils everywhere water dripping so come on down you will love it if you do not love or like you will get a not a special offer.

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    Blue Lake

    by Diceman_ Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Blue Lake

    What would a visit to Mt Gambier be without seeing the Blue Lake? There are 4 seperate lookout areas along the edge of the crater all offering good photo opportunities. The lake is at it's bluest around the summer months. The Blue Lake tour guide said the blue colour was from calcium carbonate leaching into the water from rocks underground.

    I also recommend taking a drive around Valley Lake, the perfect spot for a picnic.

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    Blue Lake Magic

    by Tam13 Written Feb 7, 2009

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    No trip to Mount Gambier would be complete without a walk around the famous Blue Lake.
    The Lake changes colours throughout the year from a dull grey to a vibrant blue.
    There are a few spots to stop around the Lake to take in the view and take some happy snaps. Otherwise you can take a stroll around the Lake, which is about 4km all up - this is very popular with the locals, many of whom get up in the early hours of the morning to go and walk around the lake.

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    THE CAVE GARDENS

    by Tattugran Updated Jul 20, 2008

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    Waterfall after the rain
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    Situated in the heart of the city the cave gardens were the original water source for early settlers. Famous for its roses (which werent out when we were there) it makes a nice setting for a picnic. There are suspension platforms that you can walk out onto for a nice view.

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Comments (1)

  • Dec 30, 2012 at 3:26 AM

    We have just returned from our 2 Nights stay at Mt Gambier and we thoroughly enjoyed. Blue Lake, Brownie Lake, Umpherston Sinkhole, Crater at MountbSchank, Princess Margret Cave, Laughton Tea Garden, and on way back to Mlbourne took the SEALS BY SEA at Cape Bridgewater ( near Portland) it was an absolutely amazing experience. We stayed at Limestone Caravan Park, well appointed accommodation.
    If you have 2 to 3 days ...you must do all these and much more.

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