School excursion

Venture to the falls at Dorrigo

Stage 3 (Years 5-6), Geography, Dorrigo National Park

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Venture to the falls with your NPWS guide on this Stage 3 (Years 5-6) geography excursion in Dorrigo National Park. Together we’ll explore the important geographical concepts of place, environment, interconnection and sustainability.

Read more about Venture to the falls at Dorrigo

Starting at the spectacular canopy-top Skywalk lookout, students will gain an appreciation of the geological landforms of the Great Eastern Escarpment. We’ll sight the Ebor volcano before delving deep into the World-Heritage-listed Dorrigo rainforest. 

Here we’ll use fieldwork techniques to observe how plants and animals have evolved curious and wonderful strategies to maximise their survival. Making our way to Crystal Shower Falls we’ll stop at various observation points for exploration and discussion. 

Students will learn about the Gumbaynggirr People, the traditional custodians of this land. We’ll discuss how they live and interact with their Country now and over millenia. We’ll explore the changing human values and management practices affecting the rainforest over time. 

This excursion is designed to support the K-10 geography syllabus topic Factors that Shape Places. 

For program outline, safety and practical information about this excursion, see info for teachers

Stage Stage 3 (Years 5-6)
Learning area Geography
Student outcomes

GE3-1. Describes the diverse features and characteristics of places and environments

GE3-2. Explains interactions and connections between people, places and environments

GE3-3. Compares and contrasts influences on the management of places and environments

GE3-4. Acquires, processes and communicates geographical information using geographical tools for inquiry


Students will:

  • Visit the World Heritage-listed Gondwana Rainforest 
  • Observe the physical landforms that make up part of the Great Eastern Escarpment 
  • Use geographical tools of enquiry to better understand the local environment at Dorrigo 
  • Observe the adaptations of various plants and animals that have evolved to thrive here 
  • Learn about the Gumbaynggirr People; the traditional custodians of this land.
  • Explore the Crystal Shower Falls and discuss their significance to living things in the area  
  • Gain an understanding of the nature of a World Heritage-listed place, its significance and how it’s cared for.

Excursion details

Guided. Available on request.

$305 per group (includes GST). Maximum 30 students per group. For groups over 30 conditions apply.

No wheelchair access
Meeting point
Dorrigo Rainforest Centre, via Waterfall Way and Dome Road
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Info for teachers

All the practical information you need to know about Venture to the falls at Dorrigo.

Program outline

  • Welcome, acknowledgement of Country and safety briefing 
  • View the Great Eastern Escarpment and landforms from Skywalk lookout
  • Explore the rainforest, observing the unique adaptations of plants and animals that live here. Discuss interconnections and co-dependencies.
  • Learn about the traditional custodians of this land, the Gumbaynggirr People, and how they lived in harmony with their environment for millenia.
  • Discuss the evolving management practices impacting the rainforest
  • Farewell and depart 

Getting there and parking

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    What to bring

    Please wear long pants, closed, comfortable shoes and bring a hat and sunscreen. Be ready for all weather conditions with a jumper and raincoat. Remember to bring extra food and water, and any necessary medications. Please bring your belongings in a backpack rather than a plastic bag.

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    Pre activity briefing: participants will be briefed at the start of the activity/day.

    Safety equipment: NPWS staff carry radios and first aid kits, hold current first aid certificates and are aware of emergency procedures.

    Staff accreditation: NPWS staff have current Senior First Aid accreditation. They are experienced in working with groups of students in the natural environment and have excellent knowledge of the specific areas they are visiting including potential hazards. NPWS is committed to a Child Safe and Friendly Environment. Our staff have been screened for child-related employment and have completed a Working with Children Check.

    Emergencies: NPWS staff are trained to deal with emergencies and emergency procedures are in place. Ongoing supervision of a student following first aid treatment will be the responsibility of the visiting school.

    Risk assessment and risk benefits

    Our rangers and guides have the technical skill and experience to assess the risks and the benefits of a variety of activities delivered as part of our learning programs.

    We believe in including opportunities that allow students to learn and experience for themselves through exploration in the natural environment.

    Please make your own risk assessment based on the information provided. Detailed potential risks and controls are provided for the site to assist teachers in risk management planning. Teachers and carers should be aware of, and consider the needs, abilities and medical conditions of students when visiting this site. The supervision of students remains the responsibility of the teacher. The school must ensure an adequate number of adult supervisors are present.


    Disability access level - no wheelchair access

    Guided activities on a path including a 30-metre-long, medium gradient timber ramp. Sealed tracks with some narrow and uneven sections and one small seasonal creek causeway.