We had a lovely stay at the Green Hill Lake Reserve. It was part of a weekend escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. This was our first visit to the Reserve which is a free camping area with warm showers!! It certainly won’t be our last. The area is scenic and peaceful. Dogs are welcome and can be unleashed along the walking/cycling path into Ararat.
If you love fishing, the word is the lake is full of trout!! Whilst we were there there were a number of keen fishermen relaxing as they had their lines in. If you have a boat there’s a boat ramp.
There’s even a tiny island which you can reach by a small bridge where you can fish or just sit on one of the seats provided to take in the ambience of the birds singing away.
Reasons to camp at Green Hill Lake Reserve
- Scenic surroundings
- Free Camping
- Fires allowed in the fire pits provided – check the local fire restrictions
- Flushing toilets
- Warm shower
- Rubbish bins
- Sheltered areas
- Boat ramp
- Swimming is allowed in the Green Hill Lake
- Dogs allowed
- Fishing – Trout
Imagine waking up and looking out onto this beautiful lake, camping doesn’t get much better than this. There’s plenty of trees to seek shelter from the hot summer sun. From different parts of the lake you can see the nearby wind farms.
Just think if you catch a trout or two you could be cooking it up on this BBQ whilst looking out onto the lake where you just caught it!! What a view to have whilst cooking up a treat!! Family/friends can be gathered around the picnic table just waiting to enjoy a feast.
No matter where you are or what time of year it is always check the fire danger rating in the area you are in. Only light camp fires when permitted. Ensure you take water to extinguish your camp fire/s. Note: water is available here which makes camping easier.
The reserve is suitable for all types of campers, whether you have a tent, caravan or camper van you’re bound to find a spot which suits your needs. With warm showers available you cannot pass by this free campground, it’s awesome!!
There are a couple of toilet blocks which have flushing toilets, wash basins and even a warm shower. Rubbish bins are also available.
9 Reasons to visit Green Hill Lake Reserve for a day trip
The below are just a few reasons why you should visit here for a day trip or turn your day trip into something longer!! It is truly a delightful family friendly place where you can bring your dog provided it’s on a lead.
- Picnic/BBQ areas
- Fire pits provided
- Swimming permitted in the Green Hill Lake
- Boating facilities
- Flushing Toilets
- Warm shower
- Fishing spot
- Bird watching
Why not have a fire and cook marshmallows whilst looking out on the beautiful lake.
Green Hill Lake Reserve is a great destination for day trippers looking for a place to spend with family/friends. If you are into water sports, look no further. With a boat ramp, warm shower, toilet facilities and scenic surroundings you couldn’t ask for much more.
If water sport aren’t your thing there’s plenty of space to kick a ball around, walk your dog or simply relax whilst taking in the beauty after enjoying a BBQ/picnic.
You have a choice of cooking facilities, either under cover on the BBQ’s provided or using one of the fire pits. Whichever you opt for you can still take in the serenity and perhaps cook your catch of the day!!
The reserve is family friendly and has a great undercover playground for the kids to burn off their excess energy. As you watch the kids play you can still take in the gorgeous scenery.
On a Friday night after work we hit the road in our camper van and headed to Ararat. We arrived about 8.30pm. Arriving at this hour can be risky when heading to free camping areas as you cannot book a site. To secure a site you need to be early. This spot is on a beautiful lake so if you are heading here in warmer weather or in peak holiday times make sure you arrive early to avoid disappointment.
Being spring we were able to secure a site without any problems. There are certain areas which are available for free camping whilst other areas are to be used by day trippers.
Whilst fires are permitted, they are only allowed in the fire pits provided. As these are limited if you are looking for a spot to have a camp fire, fire restrictions permitting, again you need to arrive early.
We found a beautiful spot along the lake and awoke to the sound of birds happily singing whilst we watched the ducks and swans on the lake. What bliss…
After relaxing in the tranquility we took a stroll along the lakeside to the boat ramp. Whilst there was no-one utilizing the boat ramp when we were there we are confident it would be a popular destination for water sport enthusiasts in warmer weather. Swimming is also permitted in the lake.
We took a stroll over the small bridge to a tiny island where you can sit and watch the fishermen or just sit and relax.
It was then time to pack up camp and head into Ararat to take a tour of the J Ward Lunatic Asylum, explored the town and have lunch in the lovely Alexander Gardens which are situated near the J Ward Lunatic Asylum.
After lunch we fare-welled Ararat and headed approximately 60km to Avoca where we stayed the next night.
If you would like to check out the rest of our weekend we would love you to click on the following link.
The Green Hill Lake Reserve is a great place to visit for a day trip or longer. Whilst there is plenty of space, there are no dedicated camp sites, you can camp wherever you like as long as you are in the designated camping area. Some of the reserve is designated for day trippers only.
It’s a perfect spot to stay whilst you explore the town of Ararat before continuing on an extended adventure to Halls Gap, Grampians or perhaps you want to head to Horsham to name a few. There are so many wonderful places nearby to explore from wineries to bush walks to gaols. If you go into Ararat there is a large Visitor Information centre at the Ararat train station which have numerous books and maps on places to visit. The gentleman was very friendly and helpful.
How much does it cost
It is free to camp at Green Hill Lake Reserve. There is a donation box to assist in the maintenance of the reserve. Permits are not required provided your stay is less than 5 days/nights. If you are intending to camp for longer you are required to obtain a camping permit which allows camping in the area for a maximum period of less than 28 days in any calendar year.
Greenhill Lake Reserve Location
- 40 Vincent St, Ararat VIC 3377
- Approximately 202km, 2hrs 21min from Melbourne CBD
- 4km East of Ararat
Our 3 day escape
Staying at Greenhill Lake Reserve, Ararat was part of a weekend road trip for us. Leaving the hustle and bustle of Melbourne behind we spent a night at Greenhill Lake Reserve, the day exploring Ararat before heading to Avoca then back to Melbourne via Maryborough. If you would like to read up more on our weekend trip and places we explored click on the below links.
- Historical town of Ararat
- Alexandra Gardens Park
- J Ward Asylum
- Valley Walk, Percydale
- Governors Rock Lookout Tower
- Avoca Chinese Gardens
Nearby free campgrounds
You can also follow our 3 day itinerary Melbourne – Ararat – Avoca – Melbourne by clicking on the link.
Another great place and what we consider a must go to place to explore is Halls Gap, Grampians. Check out our following link to see how we have spent 3 nights at Halls Gap, Grampians which is approximately 49km, 40mins from Ararat
We also enjoyed our 3 day escape at Mt Franklin reserve which is a free campground situated on an extinct volcanic crater and is within an easy drive to the popular tourist destination, Daylesford. This would be a great place to stop on your way back from Avoca to Melbourne if you have more than 3 days.
Have you explored the historical gold mining town of Ararat or nearby areas? If you have we would love you to share your experiences or suggestions with us