MUNGO NATIONAL PARK

About Mungo NP

Attractions

Things To Do

How to get there from Balranald

ABOUT MUNGO NATIONAL PARK

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​​ Home of the famous Mungo Lady & Mungo Man
 
World Heritage Mungo National Park, home of the famous Mungo Lady and Mungo Man, and explore a place rich in Aboriginal history. Enjoy a walk or picnic, or camp near Lake Mungo.
Wander the sands of time in ancient Mungo National Park at the heart of NSW's Willandra Lakes World Heritage Area. This extraordinary place is of great significance to the Ngyiampaa, Mutthi Mutthi and Southern Paakantyi people.

The remarkable archaelogical finds of Mungo Lady and Mungo Man, the world's oldest human cremations, represent the early emergence of humanity's spiritual beliefs. These fascinating 42,000 year old ritual burials, along with past human footprints, tell an incredible story about the long history of Australian Aboriginal people, and led to the establishment of Mungo National Park.

Dramatic & Spectacular Landscape

In 1981 three places of stunning natural beauty became Australia’s first World Heritage List sites. The Northern Territory’s Kakadu and Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef were obvious choices. The third was a place right here on our doorstep – Mungo National Park.  Humans have called it home for more than 50,000 years.

The spectacular landscape is almost always described as “lunar”, albeit a lunar landscape tinged with the classic ochre hues of inland Australia.

The most dramatic formation is the Great Walls of China, which run along what was the eastern shoreline of the largest lake. Almost 35km long and reaching 30m high, the “walls” were formed over thousands of years by sediments deposited by winds as the lakes dried.  Dust bowls now, the lakes were in the long distant past, a place of bounty. Stone tools, grinders for making flour, a stone axe head, middens with shells and bones, and evidence of hearths have been found, some going back 50,000 years.

Long before World Heritage listing, in 1968 Dr Jim Bowler uncovered the remains of Mungo Man. Believed to have lived about 40,000 years ago during the Ice Age, Mungo Man is the oldest anatomically modern human found in Australia.  

Footprints declaring the world’s largest human trackway were found in 2003 and since then more than 450 prints of adults and children in at least 23 tracks have been uncovered.

Red and Western Grey kangaroos, echidnas, native mice and bats roam the park, along with shinglebacks, bearded dragons and geckos. Large but flightless emus wander freely and are just one of 150 bird species to be found in Mungo National Park.
TOURS TO MUNGO from BALRANALD
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ATTRACTIONS AT MUNGO NP

The Walls of China

Location:  From Balranald follow the signs to Ivanhoe (Ivanhoe Road) for 53km. Turn left 3km after Box Creek Bridge (signposted) and follow this road until you reach the park. The Walls of China starts at Mungo Visitor Centre in the south western precinct of Mungo National Park
Opening Times: Mungo National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to weather conditons. Mungo Visitor Centre is not permanently staffed.   
Phone:  Buronga Park Office:  03 5021 8900            
MAP & FURTHER DETAILS     

After the lake dried up, winds swept storms of sand up from the lake floor, dumping it on the shoreline and creating the famous Mungo lunette. This is the site of the spectacular Great Walls of China, which have been carved from layers of the lunette. As the lunette erodes it reveals remains and fossils. ​The ancient dunes at Mungo are known as the "Walls of China". As the sands shift, ancient and extremely well preserved campfires, cooking hearths and burials as well as the remains of long extinct animals have been uncovered.
Seeing the Walls of China up close is best undertaken with a liscenced tour guide or a Parks' Ranger who can explain the significance of the lunette and its history. We highly recommend Outback Geo Adventures who run both day and sunset tours from Balranald.

Mungo Woolshed

Location:  From Balranald follow the signs to Ivanhoe (Ivanhoe Road) for 53km. Turn left 3km after Box Creek Bridge (signposted) and follow this road until you reach the park. The Mungo Woolshed is adjacent to the Visitor Centre in the south western precinct of Mungo National Park
Opening Times: Mungo National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to weather conditons. Mungo Visitor Centre is not permanently staffed.   
Phone:  Buronga Park Office:  03 5021 8900            

Long after the mega fauna roamed the vast desert landscape, historic Gol Gol Station brought mega flocks of sheep to the region, now protected by Mungo National Park. Adjacent to Mungo Visitor Centre, the heritage Mungo woolshed, built in 1869, harks back to the pastoral history of this dramatic yet fragile landscape.

Step inside the shady cool and marvel at the ingenious drop-log construction, made from local cypress pine. At its peak, this shed was a hive of activity, with 18 men hand-shearing over 50,000 sheep. You’ll admire both the craftsmanship and sheer effort of the early labourers. Ironically the erosion caused by sheep, rabbits and tree-felling reduced the capacity for farming, and revealed the long-held secrets of the ancient lakebed.

Redtop Lookout & Boardwalk

Location:  From Balranald follow the signs to Ivanhoe (Ivanhoe Road) for 53km. Turn left 3km after Box Creek Bridge (signposted) and follow this road until you reach the park. From the Visitor Centre in the south western precinct of the park you can access the Redtop Lookout & Boardwalk via the self-guided drive (Mungo Loop Track) 
Opening Times: Mungo National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to weather conditons. Mungo Visitor Centre is not permanently staffed.   
Phone:  Buronga Park Office:  03 5021 8900            

Mungo is one of a handful of places where you can see the extraordinary effects of erosion on the landscape. Red Top lookout and boardwalk is an unbeatable vantage point, offering bird's eye views of the park's remarkable deep ravines, rippling patterns and rich textures.
This short walk along a boardwalk takes in the views to the north along the Mungo lunette and to the west across the bed of Lake Mungo. The deeply eroded ravines cut through the layers of windblown sediment and can be spectacular at sunset. Informative signs explain some of the human and environmental history held within those sediments.
From Mungo Visitor Centre, it's an easy half-hour drive to the lookout via the Mungo Self-guided Drive tour (Mungo TracK). 

Zanci Homestead

Location:  From Balranald follow the signs to Ivanhoe (Ivanhoe Road) for 53km. Turn left 3km after Box Creek Bridge (signposted) and follow this road until you reach the park. From the Visitor Centre in the south western precinct of the park you can access the Zanci Homestead via the self-guided drive (Mungo Loop Track) 
Opening Times: Mungo National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to weather conditons. Mungo Visitor Centre is not permanently staffed.   
Phone:  Buronga Park Office:  03 5021 8900            

The Zanci Homestead site comprises a range of buildings – some still proudly in their original condition having been refurbished, and some of which are now only ruins.​
Built from iron and flattened kerosene tins, the original homestead had two rooms and a small kitchen, where cooking was carried out over an open fire and with camp ovens.

Today, you can visit the homestead’s renowned 'dugout', built into the ground for use as a cool room. Lose yourself in Mungo’s pastoral heritage at the shearing shed and yards, and check out the drop pine log-walled and spinifex thatched stables. Be sure not to miss the Zanci Woolshed either. Once part of the famous Mungo woolshed, this notable structure was transported and rebuilt on the Zanci station.​​

Mungo Self-Guided Tour (Mungo Loop Track)

Location:  From Balranald follow the signs to Ivanhoe (Ivanhoe Road) for 53km. Turn left 3km after Box Creek Bridge (signposted) and follow this road until you reach the park. The Mungo self-guided drive tour starts at Mungo Visitor Centre in the south western precinct of the park.
Opening Times: Mungo National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to weather conditons. Mungo Visitor Centre is not permanently staffed.   
Phone:  Buronga Park Office:  03 5021 8900            

Mungo self-guided drive tour, also known as Mungo loop track, is a brilliant introduction to the awe-inspiring desert landscape and a chance to experience the historic significance of Mungo National Park in comfort. Crossing the ancient lake-bed to the Walls of China, the route takes in the iconic dunes and mallee country of outback NSW, before tracing the north-east shores of the lake.  To get the most of your outback tour, drop by Mungo Visitor Centre and pick up ‘Driving the Mungo Story’. Stretch your legs at Walls boardwalk and then continue onto Red Top lookout and boardwalk which overlooks the dunes.
Emus and western red kangaroos are often seen bounding through the mallee scrub, and the park is home to numerous birds of prey. Keep your eyes peeled for the whistling kite, wedge-tailed eagle and brown goshawk.

Mungo Lookout

Location:  From Balranald follow the signs to Ivanhoe (Ivanhoe Road) for 53km. Turn left 3km after Box Creek Bridge (signposted) and follow this road until you reach the park. From the carpark off the main park access road, a quick path will take you to  the Mungo Lookout and an expansive view over Lake Mungo.
Opening Times: Mungo National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to weather conditons. Mungo Visitor Centre is not permanently staffed.   
Phone:  Buronga Park Office:  03 5021 8900            
MAP & FURTHER DETAILS

At Mungo lookout in Mungo National Park, you can gaze across the ice age lake bed that has uncovered bones of the original megafauna.
Gaze across at the iconic ‘Walls of China’ formation, sculpted over thousands of years, by wind and rain. This erosion has also uncovered artefacts of the Ngyiampaa, Mutthi Muhhti, and Paakantyi Aboriginal People, dating back over 40,000 years. It’s an awesome and humbling vision at any time of day, especially dusk. For more information be sure to stop into Mungo Visitor Centre.
Combine this scenic lookout with accessible Grassland Nature stroll for an overview of the more recent plants and animals of the region. 

Tracks, Trails & Walks

Location:  
Grasslands Nature Walk Trail: The walk starts and finishes from the southern end of Main Camp 

Mallee Stop Walking Track: The track starts from the Mallee Stop, around the eastern side of Lake Mungo on the Mungo Track

Zanci Pastoral Heritage Loop: Commences behind the Visitor Centre

Foreshore Walk: Starts behind the Meeting Place at the Visitor Centre and follows markers across the ancient shoreline of Lake Mungo

Opening Times: Mungo National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to weather conditons. Mungo Visitor Centre is not permanently staffed.   
Phone:  Buronga Park Office:  03 5021 8900            

Grasslands Nature Walk Trail 

Mallee Stop Walking Track 

Zanci Pastoral Loop 

Foreshore Walk     

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THINGS TO DO

  • Journey through the spectacular outback landscapes of the Walls of China with liscenced tour guide Outback Geo Adventures (from Balranald) or with a NPWS Aboriginal ranger (at the Park) to guide you through the historical significance. Make it extra special by booking a Sunset Tour with Outback Geo Adventures 

  • Drive the Mungo self-guided drive tour through Mungo National Park which offers scenic desert views of Walls of China and cycling options

  • Lose yourself in Mungo’s pastoral heritage. The Zanci Homestead site is a fascinating part of the Willandra Lakes region’s heritage, and can be accessed by mountain bike.

  • Step back in time at the Mungo Woolshed, built in 1869 and  is an ingenious drop-log cypress pine construction from the historic Gol Gol pastoral station.

  • Don't miss iconic views from wheelchair-accessible Walls of China viewing platform are some of the best in World Heritage-listed Mungo National Park

  • Cycling or car touring the historic Zanci Pastoral loop through Willandra Lakes World Heritage area in Mungo National Park, offers superb wildlife and birdwatching.

  • Take in the magnificent views from the Mungo lookout which offers scenic desert views across to the famous and historic Walls of China formation

  • Enjoy lunch and some birdwatching at the Rosewood picnic spot. It’s well-positioned near walking tracks, and is a great place to contemplate Mungo’s scenery and Aboriginal history.

  • Visit the Mungo Visitor Centre which has excellent displays and tourist information. From the centre, you can join a Willandra Lakes guided tour.

  • Discover the highlights of Mungo National Park with the Foreshore Walk. This is an easy walk across Lake Mungo while you soak up the rich Aboriginal heritage of Willandra Lakes World Heritage region.

  • Walk the wheelchair-accessible Grassland Nature trail is a short, easy walk through grassy woodlands offering scenic views and birdwatching

  • Have an enjoyable lunch at the Round Tank picnic area which offers a picnic spot on Mungo Self-guided Drive tour, with excellent birdwatching opportunities

  • Share Aboriginal heritage and climb dunes near Lake Mungo on the Mallee Stop Walking Track

  • Enjoy a break at the Historic Vigars Well picnic area which offers vast dune views, picnicking and birdwatching on the scenic Self-guided Drive tour
  
For more information including camping sites and picnic areas visit the National Parks website:
http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/visit-a-park/parks/Mungo-National-Park  
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Mungo Visitor Centre - How to get there from Balranald

Mungo National Park & Visitor Centre

How to get there from Balranald:  From Balranald follow the signs to Ivanhoe (Ivanhoe Road) for 53km. Turn left 3km after Box Creek Bridge (signposted) and follow this road until you reach the park.

Mungo Visitor Centre Hours: Mungo Visitor Centre is always open, but it is not permanently staffed. During school holidays the centre may be staffed for short periods. To talk to someone about Discovery tours and staff timing, contact the Buronga park office. 

Buronga Office Contact Details:   03 5021 8900  | Corner of Sturt Highway and Melaleuca Street, Buronga NSW  | Opening Hours 8.30am-4.30pm 
Corner of Sturt Highway and Melaleuca Street, Buronga NSW

Email: buronga.office@environment.nsw.gov.au

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