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Ngamadjidj Shelter

Ngamadjidj Shelter

Ngamadjidj Shelter is a unique attraction nestled in the Grampians National Park and is sometimes referred to as Gariwerd. The shelter is one of five Aboriginal art sites in the park and this heritage site is highly regarded because it provided a home for the Aboriginal Jardwadjali people.

Ngamadjidj Shelter, Aboriginal Rock Paintings, Grampians Victoria

To get to the shelter, you can take a short walk from the Stapylton Camp Site. Follow the signage that leads from the main road to the shelters. The full length of the trail is 300 metres, and it is a circuit track which should only take around 5 minutes to reach. There is ample parking space at the camp site.

The shelter’s rock art boasts white-painted figures, which is why the shelter is referred to as ‘Cave of Ghosts’. The shelter that has the painted figures is sealed off, so viewing the site must be done at a distance. The paintings were likely made with Kaolin clay which was ground and mixed with water and then applied with a stick or with the fingers. It is not known how old these paintings are, however Aboriginal people have lived in Victoria for over 40,000 years.

The best thing about visiting the Ngamadjidj Shelter is that it is located in a park that is best known for its wide network of walking tracks that allow visitors to explore just about every part of the park. In addition to this, the park provides excellent and accessible lookouts that provide magical views across the park.

There are a number of camping sites within the park, all of which have basic amenities. For visitors who prefer an idyllic getaway with minimal disruptions, then the campsites along Stone Creek Road are perfect.

About the author

Michael Jones

Michael created and runs the Grampians Point website, as well as the Holiday Point travel brand that incorporates a network of 16 location based travel information and attraction websites around Australia, Asia, and around the world.

With 25+ years of online experience and a passion for travel (having lived in Melbourne most of his life and has visited the Grampians many times), Michael not only researches and writes content for the website, he also tinkers behind the scenes with the website functionality & design.

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    • Hi Isabel,

      Reading up on the Ngamadjidj Shelter, the significance of this place is that the remains of campfires and stone tools used by the Jardwadjali people were found there, which suggests it was a favoured camping place.

      The paintings at this site are also unusual because only white clay was used, where elsewhere in Gariwerd, the paintings were mostly done with red pigment. The remnants of sixteen painted figures are on the panel, but some are becoming very faint. Unfortunately, nothing is known about the meaning of the paintings, as the traditional lifestyle of the Jarwadjali people was destroyed before it could be recorded.

      Hope this helps.


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