Umpherston Sinkhole (Balumbul) – Mount Gambier, South Australia
The Umpherston Sinkhole (or the Sunken Garden) is one of the most spectacular gardens located in the Mount Gambier region. Umpherston sinkhole was once a typical limestone cave that formed by the corrosion of limestone rocks by seawater waves and the sinkhole was naturally created when the chamber’s roof collapsed. Presently, the Umpherston Sinkhole is a beautiful sunken garden that offers a perfect setting for visitors to enjoy and spend some time. The Umpherston Sinkhole was made into a garden by James Umpherston in 1886. The sinkhole is open from dawn to dusk and, as the sun sets, the Umpherston Sinkhole comes alive with hundreds of possums as they come into this tranquil garden to feed. The sculptures at Umpherston Sinkhole are inspired by the geological processes of the region that resulted in the formation of sinkholes. The Umpherston Sinkhole has a long ramp at the entry point followed by an array of enclosed steps. From these steps, you can see the first real views of the sinkhole. As you proceed further into the sinkhole, you will be able to see the stunning garden and its picturesque landscape. From the area of this sinkhole, you can see the terraces in the garden. Once you descend to the floor of the sinkholes, you will see the fountain, hydrangeas and tree-ferns around the area. Unfortunately, there is no wheelchair access to the garden floor. The sinkhole offers an array of scenic spots and a beautiful garden; certainly offering you a very unique experience. The garden is open every day and remains open until late in the evening. Bring along some snacks and watch the possums emerge at dusk. Please note that dogs are allowed on a leash at the park surrounding the sinkhole but must not enter the sinkhole as it is home to a variety of native animals.
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