The Australian landscape is dotted with these mind-blowing natural wonders, carved out over millions of years and just ripe for exploring.
We’ve searched high and low to find the best gorges in the country, emphasising those that aren’t too far off the beaten track.
Prepare to be captivated.
This is one of the most iconic gorges in Australia. It features massive, vibrantly coloured sandstone walls that protrude among a sea of greenery and other eye-catching landscapes. Carnarvon Gorge and the wider national park that surrounds it provide ample activities for nature lovers. A bucket-list attraction.
Where is it? In Carnarvon National Park, 720km northwest of Brisbane.
Visit from: BIG4 Breeze – Carnarvon Gorge.
The towering sandstone walls of Nitmiluk Gorge and the wider area make for breathtaking viewing, and there’s ample ways to soak it all up. Join a sunrise or sunset cruise, hire a canoe, splash out on an unforgettable helicopter ride, or simply walk to dedicated lookouts. The gorge is in Nitmiluk National Park, which is rich with Indigenous history and loads of natural treasure.
Where is it? The gorge entrance of Nitmiluk National Park is 30km east of Katherine.
Visit from: BIG4 Breeze – Katherine.
The award for ‘Easiest Gorge to Reach from an Urban Centre’ goes to this beauty, spotted on the fringes of Launceston’s CBD. Admire the natural wonder from historical Kings Bridge or various lookouts or while riding what’s believed to be the world's longest single-span chairlift. The surrounding area includes gardens, walking tracks, eateries, and more, making it a popular playground.
Where is it? In Cataract Gorge Reserve, 5km southwest of Launceston.
Visit from: BIG4 Launceston.
Often overshadowed by its neighbour, the Twelve Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge warrants just as much focus. From a variety of angles, visitors can marvel at massive, windswept cliffs that have been carved with a slender opening out to sea. Spectacular.
Visit from: BIG4 parks in the Great Ocean Road region.
Cania Gorge and the wider national park that shares its name explode with natural and cultural treasure. Marvel at the gorge’s vibrant sandstone cliffs as well as other rock formations, some of which bare evidence of thousands of years of Aboriginal occupation through freehand rock art. The area teems with caves, crevices, fern-covered pools, dry rainforest, and wildlife, making for an unforgettable experience.
Where is it? In Cania Gorge National Park, 225km west of Bundaberg.
Planted in the Southern Flinders Ranges, this gorge is a stunner. Its rich orange-red walls that jut at all angles make for a seriously impressive sight. Various walking tracks allow ample chances to admire the craggy creation.
Where is it? In Mt Remarkable National Park, 300km north of Adelaide.
Here, sky-piercing cliffs carved through mountain ranges protect a raging river, and it’s all engulfed by layers of lush rainforest. Barron Gorge is found within a national park that takes its name and which forms part of the expansive Wet Tropics of Queensland World Heritage area. Treasure abounds throughout the park, with Barron Falls worthy of special mention. Hands down one of the best gorges to visit.
Where is it? In Barron Gorge National Park, 20km northwest of Cairns.
Spotted within spectacular Blue Mountains National Park, this tree-cloaked gorge is breathtaking. A prime spot to soak up its beauty is at The Rock Lookout. Spotted within the historical Mulgoa Valley, the viewing platform delivers sweeping vistas of the gorge and the Nepean River beneath it.
Where is it? The Rock Lookout is in Mulgoa Valley, 15km southwest of Penrith.
Visit from: Ingenia Holidays Nepean River, near Penrith.
So named for the flutter of common crow butterflies that call these parts home, the gorge and its neighbouring landscapes are filled with splendour. Towering walls mingle with imposing paperbarks and are joined by rock pools suited to swimming. Best of all, this attraction rarely draws a crowd.
One of the best-known gorges in Australia, the natural wonder is flanked by stunning rainforest, colourful ferns, moss-covered boulders, cool streams, and the flowing Mossman River. Spy waterfalls and a vast array of flora and fauna and hear powerful stories illustrating the area’s rich Indigenous influence.
Where is it? In Daintree National Park, 20km north of Port Douglas and 75km north of Cairns.
The soaring walls of this stunning feature deliver an awe-inspiring viewing experience, best appreciated from Ghost Gum Lookout. With a waterhole that’s well-suited to swimming, various walking tracks, and wildlife-viewing opportunities, Ormiston Gorge is must-visit material. It’s one of several of its kind found in Tjoritja/West MacDonnell National Park, joined by the likes of Serpentine, Glen Helen, and Redbank Gorge.
Where is it? In Tjoritja/West MacDonnell National Park, 135km west of Alice Springs.
Karijini National Park is home to several eye-catching gorges that are all highly deserving of a visit. Among them is Hamersley Gorge, bursting with striking walls that are richly coloured and swirly in appearance. At its base is a glorious rock pool that creates an incredibly inviting swimming spot.
Where is it? In Karijini National Park, 350km south of Port Hedland.