Darby River to Tongue Point


Darby River to Tongue Point

Wilsons Promontory National Park

Offering magnificent views over Darby Swamp, Vereker Range and Darby Beach, The Darby River to Tongue Point Walk climbs an ancient sand dune before following the weathered headland towards Tongue Point. And don’t miss out on a break at the quaint Fairy Cove, enclosed by the iconic boulders of Wilsons Prom.
This brilliant coastal walk climbs gently from the Darby River Carpark and over Darby Hill, an ancient sand dune, before hugging the windswept headland. Don’t forget to look back towards Darby Swamp on your climb. Take in the views over the Darby River, as it snakes through the deep valley towards the Vereker Range.

As you make it over the saddle, the sandy terrain soon gives way to dense coastal heath jewelled with stacks of weathered granite. The chance of spotting wallabies amidst the coastal heath is ample. And while you are less likely to cross paths with echidnas and wombats, they can be seen foraging among the thick shrub – especially dusk or dawn, when they are most active.

On the walk, a short detour down to Fairy Cove is a must! The sheltered beach lies not too far from the tip of the tongue and its white sandy beach enclosed by granite boulders and crystal-clear waters make for the perfect snorkel or swim spot.

The final stretch of the walk meanders along the ever-narrowing headland with Shellback and Norman Island standing tall over the rough swells of Bass Strait. A semi-detached island, just beyond reach marks the end of the scenic walk.

Return via the same route or for a different view of Wilsons Prom, organise a car shuffle and finish your journey at Darby Saddle.

Things to do

The lighthouse keeper's cottage and lighthouse at Wilsons Promontory National Park.

Wilsons Promontory Lightstation

The perfect place to witness the Prom’s rugged coastal environment while staying in self-contained dormitory-style or private cabin accommodation. The Lightstation can only be reached on foot (minimum 19.1km one way). The walk is challenging (5-6 hours), requiring a high level of fitness.
The view from Mt Oberon at Sunset.

Mount Oberon

Starting from the Telegraph Saddle car park, this iconic Prom walk follows the management vehicle track to the summit of Mount Oberon.Steps below the rocky summit lead to postcard perfect, panoramic views over Tidal River, the coast and offshore islands.
Three hikers walk along the beach at Wilson Promontory National Park.

Wilsons Promontory Northern Overnight Hikes

Up for more of a challenge? Try the Northern Circuit hiking and camping through the park.
The view from the top of Mt Bishop in Wilsons Promontory National Park.

Mount Bishop

Follow the Lilly Pilly Gully Circuit Track and turn off at the side track that leads to the rocky summit of Mt Bishop. Magnificent views are offered of the Prom’s west coast and off shore islands. Retrace your steps to the car park or return via Lilly Pilly Gully Nature Walk.
Two women walk along the track between granite rocks and grass trees on the Southern Circuit hiking trail at Wilsons Promontory National Park

Wilsons Promontory Southern Circuit Overnight Hikes

Hike your way to overnight camping sites and sleep in bookable shady campsites with views of glassy torquoise water.

How to get there

Darby River to Tongue Point

Wilsons Promontory National Park is a good 3-hour drive from Melbourne. For the quickest route from Melbourne, follow the Monash Freeway east. Turn off at Pakenham and follow signs towards Koo Wee Rup before connecting with the South Gippsland Highway and heading towards Wilsons Promontory.

The Darby River Carpark, from where the walk begins, lies approximately 18-kilometres or a 15-minute drive from the park entrance.

Organise a car shuffle on your visit to Tongue Point. An alternate trail allows walkers to return via the Darby Saddle to Tongue Point Walk and offers a different view out over Wilsons Prom.

When to go

Although daytime temperatures through summer can be on the warm side, the crystal clear waters of Wilsons Promontory are the perfect escape from the heat. Fairy Cove, along the Darby River to Tongue Point Walk is ideal for a quick dip or snorkel.

Need to know

Darby River to Tongue Point

Change of Conditions

Nature being nature, sometimes conditions can change at short notice. It’s a good idea to check this page ahead of your visit for any updates.

  • Yanakie Cemetery Walk (Wilsons Promontory National Park)

    Stockyard Toilet Block Closed

    The Stockyard Toilet Block is closed until further notice. 

  • Notices Affecting Multiple Sites

    Aerial deer control operation October 23rd-27th 2023

    The following tracks and visitor areas will be closed during the operation:
    • Northern overnight hike circuit
    • 5 Mile Beach 

    Access to the following areas may be restricted at various times during the operation:
    • Big Drift
    • Stockyard Campground
    • Cotters Road, Cotters Lake and Cotters Beach
    • Vereker Outlook
    • Millers Landing
    • Boundary Track
    • Shallow Inlet via Hourigan Camp Lane
    • Yanakie Cemetery Walk

    During the operation, visitors may hear gunshots and see a helicopter flying a low levels. Safety is of paramount importance and Parks Victoria will have an Operations Controller on-site to ensure visitor safety in addition to signage advising visitors of current closures. 

  • Notices Affecting Multiple Parks

    Ground shooting operations targeting deer

    Ground control operations targeting deer will be undertaken in these Parks and Reserves from December 2022 to December 2023. These areas will remain open to visitors during operations.
    Alpine National Park (Bogong High Plains, Mount Bogong, Dinner Plain, Dargo High Plains, Foothills and Southern Alps)
    Buchan Caves Reserve
    Burrowa-Pine Mountain
    Cape Conran Coastal Park
    Cape Liptrap Coastal Park
    Cabbage Tree Creek Flora Reserve
    Errinundra National Park
    Lake Tyers State Park
    Lakes National Park
    Baw Baw National Park
    Mount Buffalo National Park
    Mount Mittamatite Regional Park
    Mount Mitta Mitta Flora Reserve
    Mount Lawson State Park
    Mount Granya State Park
    Mountain Creek Education Area
    Pheasant Creek Flora Reserve
    Wabba Wilderness Park
    Wilsons Promontory National Park

    For more information about deer control to protect biodiversity, please visit this link.

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