Wilsons Reserve - urban oasis walk

Irvine Road, Ivanhoe East

Wilsons Reserve - urban oasis walk

Irvine Road, Ivanhoe East
Staff Pick
1 h 5 m
4.38 km
Directions to walk Directions


Explore the beautiful wetlands and forests of the Wilson Reserve along the banks of the Yarra River, without a house in sight.

Wilsons Reserve - urban oasis walk

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So close and yet seemingly so far from the city, this walk takes in the urban oasis of Wilson Reserve.

Moving through mostly tall native forest, with the occasional glimpse of golf course, this walk takes you along the Yarra River and adjacent billabongs. At times it's easy to forget you're in the city, as the reserve is buffered by golf courses on both sides. Only when the path gets near to the Eastern Freeway do you hear any traffic noise.

Once home to the local scouts and swimming club, the reserve became known as Wilson Reserve after “Skipper” Wilson, leader of the Sea Scouts in the early 1900s.

Although the area was almost entirely cleared for dairy farming and cropping in the mid-19th Century, the forest along the river and surrounding billabongs has since regrown. Now an important ecological area, 121 species of bird, 7 frog and 6 micro-bat species have been found in the reserve.

With so much natural beauty, so close to the city, it's not wonder that this is a popular area for walking.

- Sorry, no dogs allowed on this one.
- This walk is flat and easy. The path is earth /gravel but generally the surface is good.


Points of Interest

1. Forest pool

The walk begins and ends with this stunning billabong.

2. Details

As on any walk, keep an eye out for the beauty around you. Here a colourful fungus grows on a fallen log.

3. River pool

Take a detour off the main path along the side of the river, to a point where it surrounds you on all sides.

4. Swamp forest

Take the time to step off the path and check out the wetlands in this area. Beautiful.

5. Horseshoe Billabong

This billabong is filled with floodwater from the Yarra about once every two years.

6. Golf ball protection

One of the few non-natural features of this walk are these structures which protect the path in places where it is close to the Ivanhoe Golf Course.

7. Grassy park

Our walk ends (turns around) at this large grassy open space area with BBQs and picnic tables.

8. The River

As you walk back you get to admire the Yarra where the path runs alongside.

9. Trees

There are some really quite beautiful trees on this walk.

10. Playground

If you have kids, there is a lovely playground in the forest to start or end the walk. Right next to the billabong too, very nice.


Natural Trail Natural Trail
Coast/River/Lake Coast/River/Lake
Park(s)/Garden(s) Park(s)/Garden(s)
Playground Playground
Picnic Spot Picnic Spot
Seating Available Seating Available
Pram friendly Pram friendly


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