Waterfall Wonder for Southeast Tourist Attraction

An unusually heavy deluge of rain has created a stunning waterfall at Mount Gambier’s Cave Gardens, and locals say it’s rare to see such a dramatic sight. Watch the video.

While Mount Gambier residents are well used to seeing water flow into limestone sinkhole gardens in the center of town during the winter, this was an event that drew more spectators than usual.

The videos and photos generated strong reactions as they emerged on social media, showing the Cave Gardens Reserve in its glory. The sinkhole site is where Mount Gambier was first established to take advantage of the abundant fresh water in the Cave 30 meters deep.

“I have never, ever seen water flow in Cave Gardens like that, I used to see a trickle, never, never anything like that,” said Misty Glenys.

Mount Gambier resident Cheryl Cameron said the video followed heavy afternoon rain, while Diana Lock said: “I’ve never seen so much water in the cave.”

The Bay Road site in February was given two names by the Mount Gambier Council as Thugi, the Bunganditj name meaning bullfrogs. Visitors can look out from viewing platforms, including one that rises dramatically over the sinkhole.

The cave gardens in dry weather. Photo: Thom Devereux/Wikimedia Commons

The cave was initially used as a water source for the village and in 1870 the area was turned into a reserve with gas lamps and seating gradually installed. The site is now a tourist attraction and a place for community events and picnics.

Mayor Lynette Martin said Mount Gambier received above-average rainfall in August, but typical spring coverage.

“Cave Garden/Thugi remains a must-see destination year-round, and in winter the waterfall in the sinkhole creates a wonderland. With Mount Gambier’s proximity to the border, we experienced a busy period with the Victorian school holidays, the recent long weekend and now the South Australian school holidays,” he said.

Adjacent to Cave Garden/Thugi, the City of Mount Gambier’s Riddoch Arts and Cultural Center has a light show that tells the Dreamtime stories of the Boandik peoples and their connection to Cave Garden/Thugi and Blue Lake/Warwar.

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