By Derek Schlennstedt
In Australian aboriginal mythology, Bunjil is a creator deity, an ancestral being often depicted as a wedge tail eagle soaring above the clouds looking down upon the world.
A new Bunjil lookout trail at Birdsland Reserve in the Dandenong Ranges is aptly named after the wedge tail deity and is the perfect lookout for hikers and tourists.
On a clear day, visitors can get the same sky-high view that an eagle gets with the spectacular scenic views of Melbourne and beyond.
Set in the immersive bushland of the Dandenong Ranges, Birdsland is only a five-minute drive from Belgrave.
More than 130 species of native birds call the 75 hectare reserve home and quite often when hiking along one of the many trails visitors can see Bunjil – the wedge tail eagle – circling high above.
The recent addition to the reserve is the Bunjil lookout trail which is only a short walk from the car park.
Winding its way up a hill, the trail zigs and zags through bushland and open plains before reaching the lookout where a view of the entire reserve awaits.
It’s not for the faint-hearted and while it is only 850 metres in length, the trail includes steep terrain, steps and some uneven surfaces.
At every step and every turn there is something to see, whether it be a wallaby waiting and staring curiously from its safe haven behind a tree or a small blue tongue meandering across the path.
Behind each turn awaits a surprise.
Over rocks and cross bridges, the newly built path is an architectural dream with granite bridges made by local stonemasons, which are feats to be admired.
Large natural rocks are placed perfectly along the track and provide walkers with somewhere to sit and relax while taking in the views.
For the Instagram photographer, a sunset photograph is perfect to attract the likes and the Bunjil lookout is sure to provide a boost for extra followers.
However, visitors should be sure to exit the reserve before the gates close.
The Bunjil lookout trail provides is a beautiful walk among the trees, with natural wildlife, picture-perfect sunsets and cityscape views.
The Birdlands Reserve entrance is located off Mount Morton Road in Belgrave South and closing times vary depending on the season.
Check the signs at the park entrance for details.