March 3, 2020

Parks Victoria has re-opened Budj Bim National Park in the state’s south-west following a significant bushfire that started on 30 December 2019.

The fire impacted the majority of the 5,500-hectare national park, which was closed in early January to ensure the safety of the public and emergency services personnel.

After fighting the bushfire, Parks Victoria Rangers and Field Services Officers worked quickly to make the park safe for visitors to return, including clearing debris from tracks and popular walks, rebuilding steps and signs, removing hazardous trees, and restoring a water supply to facilities at campground.

While a section of the Lake Surprise Walk and a staircase at Tunnel Cave will remain closed for assessments and repair, co-managers Parks Victoria and Gunditj Mirring Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation are encouraging visitors back to the national park, which forms part of the wider Budj Bim Cultural Landscape.

Added to the UNESCO World Heritage List last year, the Budj Bim Cultural Landscape contains evidence of an aquaculture system and stone dwellings that were built by the Gunditjmara people more than 6,600 years ago.

Parks Victoria works with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning as part of Forest Fire Management Victoria and alongside CFA, the Forest Industry and Traditional Owners to prepare for, fight and recover from bushfires on public land.