Halls Gap is a small town nestled in the Grampians National Park in western Victoria, about 3 hours outside Melbourne. The town itself has a collection of shops, cafés and restaurants, as well as a family park area complete with electric barbecues, a swimming pool and a playground. A little outside the town centre is Brambuk, the National Park & Aboriginal Cultural Centre. It also doubles as the Park information centre.
The real attraction, though, is the surrounding Grampians National Park, which affords fantastic rock climbing, bush walking and fishing opportunities. Halls Gap makes for a great launching pad into the national park, with tours for a day or half a day easily arranged. Alternatively, if you have a car, it's not hard to navigate your way to some of the park's most popular attractions.
The Halls Gap Visitor Information Centre is located on Grampians Road. They can be contacted by phone on (03) 5361 4444 or 1800 065 599
Halls Gap is just a short drive west of the main A8 road between Horsham and Ballarat. Leave the road at Stawell, to go westwards towards the Grampians.
V/Line has has a daily coach service from Melbourne to Halls Gap (four hours). Three daily buses run between Halls Gap and Stawell.
VicLink offers buses fromo the Great Ocean Road to the Grampians with Halls Gap connected to Dunkeld, Hamilton, Port Fairy, Warrnambool and Ararat.
|Grampians YHA Eco Hostel||Corner Grampians and Buckler Roads||Hostel||5356 4544|
|Brambuk Backpackers Hostel||332 Grampians Road||Hostel||5356 4250|
|Tim's Place||42-44 Grampians Road||Hostel||5356 4288|
|Grampians Backpackers||2 Heath Street||Hostel||5356 4296|
If you are staying at one of the hostels like Tim's Place or Grampians Backpackers, then you can use their internet. Otherwise, either the Halls Gap Visitor Centre or the Brambuk National Park and Cultural Centre provide internet access.
Free wifi is getting more and more common (either with or without a code) in places like restaurants, some bars and coffee places and hotels. Sometimes a fee is required.
See also: International Telephone Calls
Australia is on a GSM 900/1800 network, so if you have an unlocked phone that works on those frequencies, you will be able to buy a prepaid SIM-card and stick into your phone when you're in Australia. You will receive a new Australian phone number with the SIM-card.
To dial out of Australia use the prefix 0011, followed by the calling code of the country you are trying to reach, followed by the area code of the city/town (without the 0!) and finally the phone number.
Within Australia, it is necessary to add an area code to the phone numbers if you are calling from outside the area. Below are Australia's area codes:
000 is the emergency telephone number in Australia, but the international GSM mobile emergency telephone number 112 also works on mobile phones.
Australia Post is the government's postal service. Most suburbs will have at least one post office. Opening times are mostly from around 8:00 or 9:00am to 5:00pm though larger ones keep longer hours sometimes. A standard letter or postcard sent within Australia will cost $0.60. Internationally, it costs $1.70 to send postcards anywhere in the world. Letters cost $1.85 to send within the Asia Pacific region and $2.60 to anywhere else in the world.. It is also possible to send things as parcels or by express mail. You can also use use private courier companies like TNT, UPS or DHL as they are competitive and reliable.
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