Updates – Parks Victoria
Parks Access Update – 3 June 2020
The Victorian Government has announced the easing of restrictions throughout the state from 11:59pm Sunday 31 May 2020.
The re-opening of the event, filming and photography industries will require permittees to comply with strict rules and guidelines relating to density, physical distancing and hygiene to ensure a safe experience for all staff and visitors. Guidelines are currently being developed by the State Government who are liaising with industry groups to ensure the latest protocols are understood and properly implemented.
Details on Victoria’s restriction levels are available on the Department of Health and Human Services website.
What does this mean for Victoria’s parks?
From 11.59pm on 31 May:
- People can attend gatherings of no more than 20 people. Gatherings of more than 20 people are permitted only if all 20 people have the same residential address. Gatherings can happen indoors, in a public space or outside. People must stay 1.5 metres apart.
- Up to 20 people can participate in outdoor group sport and exercise activities, provided you keep your distance (at least 1.5 metres apart) and the sports activities are not competitive and non-contact.
- Up to 20 people can use public playgrounds, outdoor gyms and skateparks, while staying 1.5metres apart.
- Up to 20 people can gather at beaches, providing they stay 1.5 metres apart, where possible.
- You can stay at a caravan park or campground, or in roofed accommodation such as cabins. Communal toilets will be open, but no other communal facilities (e.g. showers, kitchens, barbecues and water fountains) will be available.
- Accommodation with no facilities to share (e.g. remote camping) is allowed. Campers will need to maintain physical standards and supply all items they need for personal hygiene.
- Parks Victoria will welcome visitors back to stay at 1,348 camping and accommodation sites in Victoria’s parks.
- Campsite bookings can be made via https://www.parks.vic.gov.au/where-to-stay/camping
All parks will be open to visitors from 1 June 2020, with the exception of the following sites:
- Buchan Caves Reserve – cave tours closed
- Lower Glenelg National Park – Princess Margaret Rose Cave closed
- State Coal Mine – underground tours closed
- Point Nepean National Park – Fort Nepean, including underground tunnels closed (no access beyond Fort Pearce)
- St Kilda Pier – penguin viewing platform is closed
- Twelve Apostles Visitor Centre and lookouts are closed
- Wilsons Promontory light station is closed
- Cave tours/activities are not permitted
- Lighthouses are closed
These sites within parks will remain closed until further notice as they contain viewing experiences which encourage congregation, congestion and the gathering of visitors at focal points, which don’t comply with physical distancing measures.
Across all Parks Victoria managed parks barbecues, drinking fountains, showers and communal kitchens remain closed and are not available for public use in line with the latest requirements to help slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).
Some parks also remain closed due to seasonal closures and for bushfire recovery. For more information on general park closures and affected visitor sites visit www.parks.vic.gov.au/COVID19.
Visitors will must continue to adhere to physical distancing measures and supply all items needed for personal hygiene.
Stay safe by maintaining good hygiene, keeping your distance from others and if you feel unwell stay home. If you have symptoms of coronavirus you should get tested. For more information visit: www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au
What does this mean for me?
Parks Victoria is able to accept applications and permit activities which are not currently restricted by the Directions issued by the Chief Health Officer.
I already have a permit, will I be able to proceed?
Parks Victoria is only able to allow activities to proceed where the group size and activity are not currently restricted by the Directions issued by the Chief Health Officer. Please reach out to your allocated Parks Victoria officer to seek further advice.
I have submitted an application however I have not received a permit, when will I receive a permit?
Parks Victoria is only able to process applications for activities which are not currently restricted by the Directions issued by the Chief Health Officer. Once restrictions affecting the proposed activity are lifted, the application review process will proceed and an officer will contact you.
Three campground closures in Otway National Park – 1 June 2020
Please be advised of three campground closures within the Great Otway National Park.
Jamieson Creek Campground – closed until 15 June 2020
Jamieson Campground has undergone a major upgrade as part of the Wye River fire recovery project.
Due to the safety of staff and visitors the site will remain closed. Parks Victoria are working with the State-wide Recovery Program to have the campground reopen on the 15th June.
Allenvale Campground – closed until 15 June 2020
Big Hill Campground and Big Hill Track – closed until 1 November 2020 (following the seasonal closure period)
Allenvale and Big Hill Campgrounds are undergoing refurbishments as part of the Great Outdoor Package. As a result, campgrounds will not be safe to access and construction work would provide a significantly reduced visitor experience.
Refurbishment works as part of the Great Outdoor Package have been completed at Hammonds Campground, which is inland from Aireys Inlet and will reopen as of today.
Visitors will still have the opportunity to camp within the eastern section of Great Otway National Park at Sharps Campground, Lorne, and Hammonds Campground. Alternatively, there are a range of formalised and dispersed camping opportunities in Otway Forest Park.