Fossicking and prospecting

Gold panning, fossicking or prospecting typically involves the use of metal detectors, hand tools, pans or sluices in the search for gold, gemstones and other minerals. Prospecting can be an exciting experience. Many of the world’s largest gold nuggets have been found in the Golden Triangle of central Victoria. Elsewhere, gemstone fossickers have found sapphires, zeolites and agate.

Prospecting Areas Maps

Find out more about where you can go prospecting on Parks Victoria managed land using the prospecting areas maps. 
For information on other public land areas, contact the relevant land manager.


Need to know

Fossicking and prospecting

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.

  • Vaughan Spring Day Visitor Ara (Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park)

    Vaughan Springs closed due to flood impact

    Vaughan Spring day visitor area is closed due to significant impact from the October flood event. Crews are working hard to assess and reopen flood impacted sites when it is safe to do so. 

  • Steiglitz Circuit Walk (Steiglitz Historic Park, Brisbane Ranges National Park)

    Steiglitz Circuit Walk, one section is closed

    A portion of the Steiglitz Circuit Walk is closed. This closure is from Alliance Track to the bridge at Sutherland Creek. Please see attached map. Please use the Steiglitz Durdidwarrah Road to complete the circuit, use caution on the open public road.

    Attachments: Steiglitz Historic Park walking track closure (182KB)

  • Beechworth Historic Park

    Gorge Rd Closure - Powder Magazine to Pritchard Lane

    The Gorge Road is currently closed for all vehicle access due to safety concerns over the Spring Creek bridge. Pedestrians can access to Gorge Road but are not permitted on the bridge. Further advice will be provided once an engineers assessment has been undertaken. This is expected to be a long-term closure.

  • Kooyoora State Park

    Main visitor sites in Kooyoora State Park reopened as of 11 March 2023

    The main visitor sites at Kooyoora, Melville Caves Lookout, picnic area and campground will be open as of 11 March. 

    Some roads in the park will remain closed due to storm damage. These roads are 
    • Mount View Road
    • Kirwan's Road
    • Back Road
    • O'Shannessy Road
    • Summit Track
    • Sunday Morning Hills Track 

  • Notices Affecting Multiple Parks

    Increased risk of mosquito-borne diseases

    Large numbers of mosquitoes in Northern Victoria have increased the risk of mosquito-borne diseases, particularly around rivers and other water bodies.
    For information about how to protect yourself and your loved ones from mosquito bites before you head outdoors, visit the Don't Wing It!- Better Health Website or see our visitor safety tips. 

More to discover

A mother, father and their two young daughts gaze out at the sea from the lookout point of the lighthouse.

Historic sites

Journey back in time and visit some of the historic buildings of post European settlement in Australia, including huts, mansions and lighthouses.

Aboriginal heritage

Learn more about the culture, history and contemporary aspirations of the Aboriginal Traditional Owners of our land.
A couple looks on at a Wombat on Wilsons Promontory National Park,

Wildlife viewing

Get up close and personal with some of Australia's shy native wildlife or look up to spot tree-dwelling mammals and flocks of colourful birds,
The lighthouse at Cape Otway in the Otway National Park.


Learn about the seafaring past of Victoria's rugged and unforgiving coastline at marine and maritime exhibits and sites.
By using our site you accept that we use and share cookies and similar technologies with certain approved third parties. These tools enable us to improve your website experience and to provide content and ads tailored to your interests. By continuing to use our site you consent to this. Please see our Privacy Policy for more information.