Hanging Rock

Hanging Rock – Australia's Famous Natural Amphitheatre

This scenic and mysterious rock formation is the famous setting for Australia's classic novel and film Hanging Rock.

Legend has it that a party of schoolgirls enjoyed a class picnic at Hanging Rock on Valentines Day in 1900. While climbing the rock, some of the girls mysteriously disappeared. Later, one of the girls was found, but had no memory of what happened to her or her classmates.

Whatever really happened during the mysterious picnic remains unknown. However, it did spark Joan Lindsay's famous novel, which, in 1975, was adapted into a film of the same name by director Peter Weir.

Six Million Years in the Making

But don't get scared off by the spooky atmosphere that is pinned to the place in the story. The mountainous landscape of Hanging Rock is a fantastic place to go for a hike, have a picnic or simply enjoy the stunning views across the land.

Hanging Rock has also sparked a lot of interest from geologists and is said to be an excellent example of a mamelon, which was created 6.25 million years ago by stiff magma pouring from a narrow vent in the bedrock. Erosion and weathering have since turned it into a conglomerate of unusual rock formations.

Today Hanging Rock is the habitat of kangaroos, koalas, echidnas and many colourful birds. Night tours operate during summer and give you a good insight into the regions native fauna.

At the Hanging Rock Discovery Centre you can find out all about the formation of the rock, the flora and fauna of the reserve as well the mysterious events in its more recent history, that have made it famous. The café next door serves delicious lunches and coffees.

The Backdrop for World-Class Outdoor Events

New Year's Day and Australia Day (January 26) are particularly busy with the Hanging Rock Picnic Races. The Macedon Ranges & District Motor Club holds an Annual Picnic Day Car Display at the Reserve.

The natural amphitheatre also creates an impressive setting for outdoor concerts and cinema, and there is an abundance of events to choose from, particularly in the summer months.