The Pinnacle Lookout rewards visitors with one of the Grampian’s most spectacular viewpoints. Protruding granite platforms and interesting rock formations make up this stellar summit, rising sharply above the popular hub of Halls Gap below. But, you’ll need to be prepared for a bit of a walk to reach it. So, in this guide, we’ll detail 3 excellent Grampians Pinnacle walking routes, including our favourite, the Wonderland Loop Track.
For more walks in the Grampians, read 15 Best Hikes In The Grampians: The Complete Guide
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Where Is the Grampians Pinnacle Lookout?
The Pinnacle Walk and Lookout is located in the town of Halls Gap within the Grampians National Park. The national park is three hours west of Melbourne in western Victoria, Australia.
To help get your bearings, please click on the image below to access an interactive map of the area on Google Maps.
How to Get to the Grampians Pinnacle Lookout: 3 Route Options
To experience the spectacular views from the Grampians Pinnacle Lookout, you’ll need to complete a bit of a walk. There are three main options. You can park at Wonderland Car Park, Sundial Car Park or in Halls Gap.
Beginning the walk from Halls Gap is the longest of the Grampians Pinnacle walk options. This route option is known as the Wonderland Loop Walk as well as the Halls Gap to Pinnacle Loop Walk. It’s the walk we’ll describe in most detail below. But don’t worry, we’ll provide information on the shorter options further down, in the Other Grampians Pinnacle Walking Routes section, so you have all the information you need to reach the Pinnacle Lookout.
The Wonderland Loop Walk Overview & Map
- Type: Loop
- Distance: 9km
- Time: 3.5–5 hours
- Accumulated elevation gain: 530m
- Difficulty: Medium–Hard
- Trailhead: Halls Gap Picnic Reserve
- Map: Wikiloc
Difficulty rated by Parks Victoria
The Grampians Pinnacle Walk: Wonderland Loop Hike
The moderately challenging walk begins in the heart of Halls Gap at the Halls Gap Picnic Reserve. You’ll find ample parking at the car park there. Walking past the northern end of the Halls Gap Caravan Park, you’ll head into the forest and join the Wonderland Loop Track, which hugs along the left-hand side of Stony Creek. Soon enough, you’ll reach Venus Baths.
Reaching Venus Baths involves taking a short side trail away from the main Pinnacle walking trail. But, it’s well worth it to view this tranquil spot of natural rock pools. The clear water has a translucent brown appearance as it settles in the stone troughs – it’s like individual plunge pools. Indeed, Venus Baths is one of the most popular swimming holes in the Grampians National Park and can easily be visited as a simple out and back in its own right.
Retracing your steps from Venus Baths back to the Pinnacle walking trail, the Grampians hike continues along the Wonderland Loop Track toward Splitters Falls. The path from Venus Baths to Splitters Falls is clear and easy to follow. But, the steep ascents certainly begin to start.
As you approach Splitters Falls, you’ll find a small turn-off trail to reach the cascade. Splitters Falls is a multi-tiered drop cascade over laminated rock slabs. It’s quite the attraction and so surprising that there’s a fraction of the visitors here compared to Venus Baths. The enclosed location of Splitters Falls gives the feeling of stumbling across a secluded and secret waterfall on the Pinnacle Walk.
Splitters Falls might not be the largest waterfall you’ll ever see, but it’s certainly a very pretty one. Do remember though, that Splitters Falls is a seasonal waterfall. So, it’s not unusual for it to dry up during the summer months.
After enjoying the waterfall, head back on to the Wonderland Loop Track. Now, on toward the famous Grand Canyon along the Pinnacle Lookout Walk.
The Grand Canyon
During the time Dan and I hiked the Grampians Pinnacle Walk, the Grand Canyon was closed off for maintenance and so we had to detour around it. Disappointed but undeterred, we ventured into the Grampians Grand Canyon as far as we were able to, before looping back around and following the diversion. It was great to experience some of the Grand Canyon along this fantastic Grampian Pinnacle Walk, even if we couldn’t enjoy all of it. Hopefully, you’ll have no problems hiking through.
The Grand Canyon is a spectacular gorge of typical Grampian granite. The grey-brown, multi-layered rock is instantly recognisable as belonging to the Grampians. Its tall columns are amazingly shaped like stacked cubes, with defined edges rather than sloping curves. The Grand Canyon also features a smallish waterfall at its far end, which we’re told is seasonal. But, nevertheless, the rock formations alone make this section of the Grampians Pinnacle Walk a worthy part of the hike to pass through.
At the start of the Grand Canyon path is the Wonderland Car Park. This is a popular starting point for a shorter Pinnacles Lookout walk in the Grampians, which we’ll discuss in a little more detail below. It’s also possible to start the Wonderland Loop Walk to the Pinnacle Lookout from this car park, although Halls Gap just feels like a more natural start and finish point. Additionally, you can simply hike a Grand Canyon Loop Walk from here, if that’s all you want to see.
After passing through the Grand Canyon, the trail opens up and the Grampians Pinnacle Walk really begins to steeply climb. Along this section of the Pinnacle Lookout Walk, you’ll reach Cool Chamber. This long and narrow cave cuts into the orange rock face as the trail passes by. The long, slim chamber can be crawled into and explored, if the mood takes you. There’s also a sign hanging over the cavern reading ‘Cool Chamber’. So, for one you know you’ve reached it, and for two, you know we haven’t just made that name up!
On a hot summer day, Cool Chamber is a great place to stop and have a break along the Grampians Pinnacle Lookout Walk.
Continuing the hike, a set of stone steps climb up the side of the mountain where Cool Chamaber lies. Follow along this trail to reach Bridal Veil Falls.
Bridal Veil Falls
Soon enough, you’ll encounter a gentle, wide and elegant cascade. It’s supposed to be reminiscent of a bride’s veil, hence the name. We’ve seen a fair few Bridal Veil Falls on our travels, and we had high hopes for the Grampians version.
Bridal Veil Falls quintessentially sums up a seasonal waterfall. Meaning, if it hasn’t rained much, then there really won’t be much to see. This couldn’t have been more true for our visit. We’d had rain in the area the last few days, but this didn’t seem to have added much to the trickle we were greeted with. No wonder other hikers weren’t bothering to stop. Sadly, there wasn’t much to stop for. If we hadn’t been looking out for it on our Grampians Pinnacle Walk GPS map, then I’m confident we’d have walked straight past it.
We were a little disappointed, but that’s the nature of nature I suppose. We have seen photographs of this waterfall looking much fuller when you can even stray from the path a little and walk behind it. The cascade drops into a small pool at the side of the path, though nothing major and certainly not during our visit. We guess the falls are just a nice addition to an excellent hike, rather than a main attraction in their own right. If you do visit when Bridal Veil Falls is a little more active, then let us know in the comments below, we’d love to hear about it.
Continuing on from Bridal Veil Falls brings you to another fun and catchily named section of the Grampians Pinnacle Walk – Silent Street. Once you’ve arrived at Silent Street, you’re on the final push to the top and reaching the Pinnacle Lookout.
The stacked rock walls, so typical of the Grampians, close in to form a tall and narrow gorge. You’ll feel a sense of being small as the walls loom high on either side of you, almost as though you’ve been shrunk down. The trail even feels like it gets narrower as you venture through, like Alice in Wonderland, only culminating with a small wooden staircase at the far end, and not a door. From here, you can squeeze out and back into the open.
Now, it’s a straight rock hop over the bubble-shaped rock pillows to the summit and the Pinnacle Lookout. There’s no path, so to speak, but the Grampians Pinnacle walking trail is obvious, and you’ll most definitely be in the company of others.
The Grampians Pinnacle Summit & Lookout
The Pinnacle Lookout and summit are often busy. To be expected I suppose when they provide keen hikers, recreational walkers, families, and more with some of the best views across the Grampians National Park. But don’t worry, there’s plenty of space at the top to enjoy your own spot to soak it all in, revelling in the accomplishment of the climb and relishing the well-earned reward of such magnificent views.
There’s a fenced viewing platform that extends over one of the rocky stacks on the edge of the mountain. We found there to be a steady conveyor belt of people all waiting to get their turn capturing the views from this peak. You might as well do the same. After all, you’ve put the effort in to get to the Pinnacle Lookout.
Looking out over the valley below, and to the left of the fenced lookout, is another rock platform that protrudes cautiously over the mountainside below. This isn’t fenced, so it’s possible to access this ledge for some unimpeded photography. Be warned, it’s not for the faint-hearted. As usual, if you do decide to head out onto this platform, as many do, take great care.
Return to Halls Gap
From the Grampians Pinnacle Lookout, the return walking trail hugs along the edge of the mountainside as it descends through the forest back towards Halls Gap.
At the Grampians Pinnacle summit, the various return routes are signposted. You’ll want to take the Halls Gap to Pinnacle Track back down. But, do take care in finding the correct path. We came across a father and son duo who had taken the Halls Gap Track back down when really they wanted the Wonderland Track back to the car park. It does seem quite easy to lose your bearings a little at the top, due to the fact, as we’ve mentioned before, there is no definite path to follow. Just a wide rocky expanse.
Once you’ve navigated leaving the summit and joined the Halls Gap to Pinnacle Track, the trail is very straightforward. There are some steep staircase sections, but nothing technically demanding. The views out to your right over Halls Gap are wonderful, as you spy glimmers through the trees. But, also take a moment to look to your right and admire the skyscraper rock face you’re traversing down. The stark orange of the rocks is pretty mind-blowing and easy to miss if you have a one-track mind on just reaching the bottom.
Soon enough, the Grampians Pinnacle Walk re-enters the woodlands and you’ll be back at Halls Gap Picnic Reserve in no time.
Other Grampians Pinnacle Walking Routes
The Wonderland Loop Hike to the Grampians Pinnacle Lookout is the longest and most attraction-packed of all the possible routes to the summit. We highly recommend this Grampians walk. Still, there are a couple of alternative options if you’re looking for a shorter and easier trail to the Pinnacle Lookout and those special Grampians views. Let’s take a look.
Pinnacle Lookout Walk From Wonderland Car Park
The Grampians Pinnacle Walk from Wonderland Car Park is easily one of the most popular routes to the lookout. The 4.5km out-and-back route covers a big chunk of some of the most popular sights along the Pinnacle Lookout walk including Cool Chamber, Bridal Veil Falls, the Grand Canyon and Silent Street. Indeed, the final sections of the Wonderland Loop Walk from Halls Gap we described above are part of the Pinnacle Lookout walk from Wonderland Car Park.
You can follow the trail here.
Pinnacle Lookout Walk From Sundial Car Park
The Pinnacle Walk from the Sundial Car Park is a 5km trail that takes less than two hours to complete. The path is undulating yet straightforward and is considered the easiest of the Grampian’s Pinnacle walking trails. But, this route does miss out on visiting the fun attractions of Cool Chamber, Silent Street and the Grand Canyon. So, we wouldn’t necessarily recommend this route. But, it is the most family-friendly.
You can follow the trail here.
Other Walks in the Grampians
We spent almost a week enjoying the trails in the Grampians. Below are a few of our favourites.
- Mount William: hike to the highest peak in the Grampians National Park.
- Boroka Lookout: one of the best lookouts in the Grampians that’s easy to get to.
- The Balconies Grampians: a classic viewpoint in the Grampians.
- Mackenzie Falls: possibly the best waterfall in the Grampians.
- Silverband Falls: a simple walk to this shimmering sliver of a cascade.
- Hollow Mountain: outstanding views await, framed by the orange-walled cave chamber at Hollow Mountain.
- Beehive Falls: a fantastic waterfall in the north of the Grampians, made even better by continuing to walk to Briggs Bluff.
How to Get to Halls Gap, Grampians
Halls Gap and the Pinnacle Lookout are located within the Grampians National Park. The national park lies around 250km west of Melbourne and takes around three hours to drive to.
Although it’s possible to take public transport from Melbourne to Halls Gap, you’re looking at an extremely long journey. Instead, it’s best to have access to your own set of wheels. If you need a car, we recommend using DiscoverCars.com. It’s a fantastic search engine for finding the cheapest car hire. Search for cheap car hire in Melbourne today. A 2WD will suffice for this adventure.
Getting to Melbourne
Of course, you’ll first need to fly to Melbourne to visit the Grampians if travelling from abroad. We recommend using Skyscanner to search for the cheapest flights. When flying abroad, we always get the ball rolling with a Skyscanner search. Check out cheap flights to Melbourne today!
Where to Stay in Halls Gap
Halls Gap is the main hub of the Grampians and also the starting point for the Wonderland Loop Walking Track to the Pinnacle Lookout. The small town isn’t short of accommodation options. Below, we’ve put together the best budget, mid-range and luxury accommodation options to help plan your trip.
- Budget – Grampians Eco YHA: the main hostel in town is the Grampians Eco YHA. Although the price doesn’t feel super budget, this is probably one of the nicest hostels you’ll ever stay in. Enjoy clean facilities and plenty of space.
- Mid-range – Halls Gap Lakeside Tourist Park: enjoy a pool, mountain view and well-equipped kitchenettes at the Halls Gap Lakeside Tourist Park.
- Luxury – Grampians Chalets: enjoy lake views, friendly kangaroos and a fantastic location at the Grampians Chalets modern and comfortable holiday lets. Also, try the Marwood Villas for a stay in an individual bijoux villa.
More Grampians Accommodation
- Camping in Halls Gap: 8 Epic Campgrounds In Central Grampians
- Camping In The Grampians: The Complete Guide
- Grampians Caravan Parks: 5 Best Caravan Parks in Halls Gap
- Halls Gap Accommodation: Best Hotel, Camping & Caravan Parks
- Grampians Accommodation: Where To Stay & What To Book
Five Hiking Gear Essentials For the Grampians Pinnacle Walk
Osprey Skarab 30
The Osprey Skarab 30 is our go-to hiking backpack for day hikes. This well-designed unisex backpack is comfortable and spacious, so you’ll have plenty of space to pack everything without feeling the strain on your upper back.
Osprey Ultralight Raincover
A waterproof backpack cover is an absolute must when you’re adventuring outdoors. The Osprey Ultralight Raincover Medium is a high-quality waterproof cover that’ll keep your backpack bone dry.
GRAYL Reusable Water Bottle
The GRAYL GeoPress is the best water filter bottle that allows you to purify 710mL (12 ounces) of water. This bottle will make water safe to drink wherever you’re hiking.
BUFF Original Ecostretch
The BUFF Original Ecostretch is a great option when it comes to multifunctional headwear. We use the Ecostretch as a neck gaiter to keep the sun off our necks and it helps us keep warm in cooler climates.
To find out more about all of the gear that we use and recommend, read our guides about our favourite hiking gear, travel gear and camera gear. Otherwise, read our comprehensive travel packing checklist.
Grampians Pinnacle Walk FAQs
Below, we’ll answer the most frequently asked questions about the Pinnacle Lookout Walks in the Grampians.
How Long Is the Pinnacle Walk?
The Pinnacle Walk in the Grampians can take anywhere between 2 to 5 hours, depending on your route of choice.
How High Is the Grampians Pinnacle?
The Pinnacle Grampian’s height is 720 metres above sea level.
How Hard Is the Pinnacle Walk?
This depends on the route you take. From the Sundial Car Park, there is a minimal elevation gain of around 100 metres over a short 5km walk. So, this is the easiest option. The Wonderland Car Park route has an elevation gain of 280 metres, so it’s slightly harder, but not much further in distance. The most challenging route is the Wonderland Loop Walk from Halls Gap. But, this is more than achievable for those with a decent level of fitness.
- No dogs allowed: unfortunately, you can’t bring your furry friend to the Pinnacle in the Grampians.
- Facilities: you’ll find toilets at both the Sundial and Wonderland Car Parks, as well as in Halls Gap.
- Start early: to avoid the crowds, we recommend doing this walk early or late in the day.
Let us know which route you chose to walk to the Pinnacle in the Grampians in the comments below.