The 800m Mait’s Rest Rainforest Walk is an easy way to take in the beauty of the temperate rainforest in Great Otway National Park. It is only 15 minutes west of Apollo Bay on the Great Ocean Road.
We stopped in here after a busy day of waterfall walks. Just as state forest inspector Maitland Bryant found when he used the area to rest his horse, it is the perfect place to relax and enjoy the sights, sounds and smell of the forest.
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6 Fun Things about the Mait’s Rest Rainforest Walk
Even though it is only a short walk, we stayed here for over an hour enjoying the scenery. There are no toilets or picnic tables here and dogs are not permitted on the Mait’s Rest Walk. Here are some of the things to look forward to as you make your way around the track.
It is an Easy Walk
Whether you have young children or you just don’t feel like using much energy, you will love this walk. Unlike the steep slopes at Melba Gully or the hundreds of steps and Beauchamp and Hopetoun Falls, this is a flat track to walk around. The path is a combination of well-formed dirt track and metal walkways.
There are lots of Places to Sit & Relax
Even though the Mait’s Rest Rainforest Walk is only 800m around, there is plenty of seating if you feel like stopping to take some deep breaths of forest air or listen to the many birds.
If you come first thing or later in the day, there are fewer people around and finding a spot to sit and unwind in the forest is super relaxing.
Our favourite rest stop was towards the end of the walk on a viewing platform that looked out over the forest. There was a lovely breeze, plenty of birds about and nice views.
Beautiful Forest Scenery
Don’t think that because this is a short walk you won’t see some great forest. The mountain ash here are as tall as on any walks we saw. There are Myrtle Beech trees, tunnels of tree ferns to walk through and plenty of other ferns, moss and lichens to see.
The Heritage Tree
There are a few special sites along the walk. The first is the Heritage Tree; a 200 year old Myrtle Beech where several trees have grown into each other to form one super tree. It is listed as a significant tree with the national trust.
Mountain Ash Look Up Seat
There are some towering mountain ash trees in Otway National Park, and usually you need to stand at their base and strain your neck to look up to the canopy. But here at Maits Rest, there is a bench seat with a reclined back where you can recline and stare up to the top of one of these colossal trees.
Stand Inside a Mountain Ash
Towards the end of the circuit, a huge mountain ash has fallen across the path. It has been to clear the path but the fallen trunk is right next to the path and it gives you a great appreciation for how big it is. You can almost stand inside its hollow centre!
The enormous base of the tree is on the other side of the path.
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