Lake Fyans is a popular summer holiday spot for young families due to the sandy beaches that slope very gently into calm, clear water.
The lake appeals to a range of ages, and is a great destination if you have a mix of younger and older kids. Toddlers can crawl or jump
around in the shallows, whilst older children can play ball games or float around a little further out. If your children are competent
swimmers, they can also challenge themselves to swim out to the inflated tyre tube that is permanent hitched to a pole in slightly deeper
Above: Kids playing the water at the holiday park beach
On my most recent visit, people were well prepared, with many bringing inflatable toys, canoes, and a couple of families setting up
shade canopies in the water, stocked with camping chairs so you could keep your feet wet but your clothes dry. I also saw kids
fishing nearby, away from the designated swimming area.
There are two main swimming beaches at Lake Fyans, both with gently sloping, sandy shorelines and oodles of wonderfully warm, amber
coloured water. On a warm summer's day I measured the water temperature a few metres from the shore at 33 degrees, which is about the
same temperature as many learn-to-swim pools in Melbourne. Intriguingly, the water in the shallows was actually two degrees warmer than
the air temperature, and with a slight breeze blowing, once you were wet it was actually warmer sitting in the water than standing out of it.
The best of the two beaches is at the back of the Lake Fyans Holiday Park on the western side of the lake, because
it has extensive soft, clean sand under foot, as well as a panoramic view of the southern
Grampians mountain range. It also has better facilities.
There is a nominal entry fee of a few dollars for day visitors if you are swimming at the back of the holiday park, where you
can park your car directly behind the beach. You pay at reception and then they let you through the boom gates. Entry allows visitors
to use the toilets and other facilities at the holiday park, with the exception of the pool, which is reserved for those staying overnight.
If you are staying at the holiday park, you can literally walk out of your cabin or camping spot and in less than twenty strides be on
Above: View of the Lake Fyans holiday park beach from the water(Order gifts or prints of this image)
The alternative beach at Lake Fyans is known as Kelleys Beach, which you can find along the south-western side of the lake. This beach
is still popular, but has more pebbles scattered in amongst the sand, is without the view of the Grampians and the facilities are a simple
run-down toilet block. There also seemed to be more motor boat traffic here on my visit. The best swimming spot along Kelleys Beach is next to the angling club,
but I also saw people swimming further to the north, near the Scout camp, where there was a lot more woody debris in the water. During my visit
in early 2017, there was a sign indicating that the public toilets next to the angling club were about to be upgraded.
I visited the lake when it was sitting at 82% of its full supply level and was perfect for swimming. The lake is maintained at a good
level for swimming most of the time due to its status as a town water supply reservoir, but conditions can deteriorate during
drought at very low lake levels. Check the managing authority's website (GWMWater) for up to date lake level information if you are heading here in
a drought year.
Here is a Splash-Rascals video of Lake Fyans, featuring Splash-Rascal Turtle taking to the water.
Essential Information Before You Go:
Location: The holiday park beach is on Mokepilly Road, Lake Fyans, 17 km by road east of Halls Gap and 250 km (approx. 3 hr) drive west of the
Melbourne CBD. Kelleys Beach is on Kelleys Beach Road.
Getting there: From Melbourne head out along the Western Fwy (A8) to Ararat, then take the Ararat-Halls Gap Road (C222) to Pomonal.
From Pomonal follow the signs to Lake Fyans along the Pomonal Road (C221). At the Mokepilly Road turnoff, head right to go to the
holiday park (along Mokepilly Road), and left to Kelleys Beach (along Tunnel Road and then Kelleys Beach Road).
The end of the road to Kelleys Beach was dirt, but suitable for 2WD at the time of my visit.
General facilities: At the holiday park beach: picnic tables, car park, boat ramp. Within the holiday park are toilets (across the road
from the beach), kiosk, shaded playground, coin operated barbecues, games room, tennis courts, bistro (open on designated nights)
available to day visitors. At Kelleys Beach: toilets, car park
Baby change facilities: None
Sun shade: Shade available out of the water, but best to bring a sun shelter.
Entrance fee: A notional fee for day visitors ($3 per vehicle at the time of my visit) or more if you are using the boat ramp. Entry
to Kelleys Beach is free.
Opening times: The holiday park beach reception to provide access in and out is open 8am to 8pm. Kelleys Beach is always open.
Wheelchair access: No
Prohibitions: At the holiday park beach: No boats in the swimming area, no dogs, no cars or
fires on the beach. At Kelleys Beach: no dogs, no horses, no camping, no fires, no motorbikes, take rubbish with you. Infringements
at Kelleys Beach carry a $2000 fine. Duck shooting during duck shooting season only. Waterskiing, boating, jetskiing and fishing are
permitted outside of the designated swimming areas.
Accommodation Options:Lake Fyans Holiday Park has camping, caravans and cabins within a stone's throw of the water.
Camping is not permitted outside of the holiday park.
Managing authority: Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water manages the lake, Northern Grampians Shire Council manages the boating, and
Lake Fyans Holiday Park manages the facilities at the holiday park.
Nearby attractions:Venus Baths near Halls Gap in the Grampians, 17 km to the west.
Before you head out, make sure to read the water safety information. Specific to this site, don't walk around bare feet under the flowering gums
at either beach, because the little flower pods that have fallen on the ground have a pointy stem that sticks into your feet. There is also
the occasional bull ant around the base of the trees. To avoid both of these hazards, bring a sun shade and set it up near the water's edge.
The marker indicates the location of the designated swimming area and picnic facilities at Sandy Point.
If you would like to leave a comment about this shallow water play area, please fill in the comment box below.
I'm particularly interested in your experiences after visiting, and any changes in conditions, etc.
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