The Nook is a small natural lake on Jacksons Creek on the eastern edge of Sunbury, near Melbourne. Information about the
history of this swimming hole is scarce, but according to a sign at the lake, The Nook was home to the local swimming
club, and hosted the Sunbury Swimming Carnival every Easter in the early 20th century. It included three diving boards,
changing rooms and showers, all of which are no longer evident.
Above: The rope swing over the water at The Nook
(Order this image, photo gifts or prints)
The Nook is still used as a swimming hole by some locals, but this is not recommended by the managing authority. A
rope swing is located on the eastern side of the lake, which you can access by climbing up the twisted gum tree that juts
out over the water. You may see some people using the rope swing on hot days. The climb up the tree is precarious, and the
rope is difficult to reach, so hats off to the local tree surfers who managed to tie it onto the branch and nail in the wooden steps.
You can access that side of the lake from the pedestrian bridge near the car park, or by
jumping across the gap in the small concrete weir at the upstream end of the lake.
Visibility in the water is non-existant, and the water quality is poor. I saw plenty of algal growth in the water,
fuelled by the raft of ducks that now occupy the lake, and agricultural activities in the river upstream.
The lake was dredged for submerged logs when it was actively used for swimming
carnivals, but this is no longer the case, so you can expect there to be some submerged hazards. For these reasons, I'm not
recommending swimming at The Nook at the current time. You can cool your feet in the shallow weir pool (it's about shin deep most
of the time) at the entrance to the lake, where you can sit on the concrete wall or the rocks that sit above the waterline.
The rocks under the water here are however quite slippery.
The outlook from the hill overlooking the lake, and the surrounding parkland, is quite pleasant, so The Nook is still
attractive as a picnic spot. See below for the various picnic facilities available, but a highlight is the bicycle path that
runs alongside Jacksons Creek, which you can access from The Nook.
This swimming hole did not make it into my top 50 in Victoria. The main reason being the poor water quality and
low visibility of underwater hazards. My favourite swimming hole west of Melbourne is only a short distance away, so if you
want an amazing swim in pristine bushland not far from Sunbury, grab yourself a copy of the guide to
Freshwater Swimming Holes in Victoria.
Essential Information Before You Go:
Vaughan St, Sunbury, 39 km (approx. 35 min drive) north west of the Melbourne CBD
From Melbourne take the Tullamarine Fwy (M2) and Sunbury Road/Macedon St (C743) to Sunbury. Turn
north into Vaughan St shortly after crossing Jacksons Creek as you head into Sunbury.
Sheltered picnic tables, lawns, park benches, car park, rubbish bins, drinking fountain, bicycle path
Rock, pebbles and mud
Maximum water depth:
Greater than 2 metres
Minimum swimming proficiency required:
Prohibitions including whether you can bring your dog:
No motorbikes, dogs on leads ok. Dogs permitted off leash
from 5pm to 8 am on weekends at the time of visiting, but not within certain distances of barbecues or playgrounds.
Shade available out of the water
Wheelchair accessible paths
Hume City Council
Nearby attractions: Lerderderg Gorge
Before you head out, make sure to read the
swimming safety information.
The marker indicates the approximate location of the lake at The Nook.
If you have swum at The Nook, particularly when the swimming club was still active here, I would love to hear
about your experiences. Please fill in the comment box below. All fields are required if you would like your comments published on this website.
© Brad Neal 2019. All rights reserved.