Sweeping dunes mirror star-strewn vistas in this overnight microadventure to the Big Drift on Wilson’s Promontory on the southernmost tip of Australia. 


  • Sweeping vistas
  • Massive sand dunes
  • Awesome astrophotography conditions

The Big Drift

Chasing the Milky Way at The Big Drift // Wilsons Prom (VIC) Chris Langton, stars, milky way, night sky, silhouettes
My best mate and I journeyed down to Wilson’s Prom on a Thursday afternoon to catch some perfect new moon, clear conditions for astrophotography and to explore a new area of the park I hadn’t yet visited – known as ‘The Big Drift’. I had heard of these massive sand dunes within Wilson’s Prom National Park and had seen some incredible shots and knew it would be a great spot for some night photography.

We arrived at our campsite at the Stockyard mid-afternoon, set up our camp and ventured out to the dunes to do some recon. It’s an easy 25 minute walk from the campsite down a grassy, sandy track till you reach the first dune.

Once you climb up you are met by this massive, desert-like landscape that stretches all the way out to the western coastline of the Prom, with views all the way back across down to Mt Oberon and beyond. It’s very impressive. We knew it would be difficult to locate our chosen spot later in the night when it was pitch black, so we set up some sticks and markers to help us (it didn’t help us as we still ended up getting lost!)

Once it was dark enough, we ventured back out and after getting lost for a short time, running into a couple of deer and some wombats, we found our way back out onto the dunes and set up our equipment. We spent the next three to four hours out amongst the dunes, drinking whiskey, pondering the infinite size of space and snapping some impressive Milky Way shots. A night very well spent.

Essential Gear

  • Head-torches for night time exploring.
  • The campsite is well set up for ‘glamping’ so you can bring anything that fits in your car to the site.

How To Get There

Wilsons Prom is an approx 2.5 hour drive, south-east from Melbourne to the front gate of the park. The Stockyard Campsite is located just near the entrance, and needs to be booked online via the Parks Victoria site.


  • Photography
  • Sand tobogganing
  • Hiking/Walking

Skill Level


Distance covered / Elevation Gain

6-10km round trip, depending on how far out onto the dunes you explore.


Feature photo by Sam Perkins