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Culture and heritage

Aboriginal occupation of the Grampians dates back well over 20,000 years and the area contains the majority of surviving Aboriginal rock art sites in south-east Australia. Today you can discover this rich heritage through Brambuk – The National Park and Cultural Centre which is managed by local Indigenous communities.

The ranges were named by NSW Surveyor-General Sir Thomas Mitchell after mountains in his native Scotland in 1836, although their Indigenous name - Gariwerd - is now increasingly used as well.

As European settlement spread, the Grampians became, and remain, a vital source of water for farming and domestic purposes in a large part of north-western Victoria.

The Grampians’ rich and diverse heritage also includes timber production for mines and farms, gold mining, stone quarrying and tourism.

Mafeking was the site of the last major gold rush in Victoria and evidence of gold mining can be seen on the Mafeking heritage walk. Heatherlie Quarry yielded large amounts of high quality sandstone used in late 19th and early 20th century public buildings and signs along the heritage track help to explain its history.

A tourist industry began in the late 19th century, with the spread of railways and a developing interest in natural landscapes, and continues to this day.