• Length: 6.2km

  • Duration: 2hrs

  • Grade: 2

  • Style: One Way

  • Start: Kilvington Drive Emerald

  • End: Pakenham Road Cockatoo

  • Closest Town: Emerald

  • Location: Wright Forest Bushland Reserve

  • Distance from state capital: 54km

  • State: VIC

  • Latitude: -37.9344160900

  • Longitude: 145.4408633700


Emerald to Cockatoo Trail is a 6.2km, grade 2 One Way hike located in Wright Forest Bushland Reserve Victoria. The hike should take approximately 2hrs to complete.


From Emerald, the trail begins where the Puffing Billy Railway line crosses Kilvington Drive, behind the Gemco Players Community theatre. Yellow arrows are quite distinct and are easy to follow.

A short distance along the track, cross over the train tracks and follow the path to the left. Carefully cross over the Beaconsfield – Emerald Road and head down Crichton Road.

The yellow arrows and signage point off to the right, heading down into Emerald Park Lake. Pass through the main car parking area at the Lake and follow the main entry road around the lake to join the trail again.

Cross over Bellbird Crescent, turn right, and follow the road a short distance until the track starts again on the left, heading uphill and over the Puffing Billy Train line and into Wright forest and follow the arrows along Wright Track. The trail through the forest is gently undulating and has a good firm surface most of the time. It can be slippery when wet and on some loose gravel. Always use caution.

The trail comes out on Bailey Road in Cockatoo, close to the main street. Plenty of cafes and a small IGA in Cockatoo.
Note that this hike can be done as a return hike or in either direction.

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About the region

There are a number of walking trails within the forest, ranging from short trails that take half an hour, to longer trails that require more than half a day to complete. It is also possible to take a walk to Emerald Lake Park through the numerous interconnected trails between the park and the forest. The forest’s proximity to the Puffing Billy Railway Line offers visitors the chance to watch out for this historic steam train, undoubtedly one of Australia’s most treasured relics.

Getting there

Follow M1 towards the South Eastern Suburbs/Dandenong. Take exit 13 to merge onto Wellington Road/State Route 18 towards State Route 18. Continue straight to stay on Wellington Road/State Route 18. At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto Wellington Road/C413. At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto Belgrave-Gembrook Road/C412. At the roundabout, take the 3rd exit onto Kilvington Drive and park in the carpark near Gemco.


  • This hike is deal for families and is pram friendly
  • Cafes in Emerald, Emerald Park Lake & Cockatoo
  • Public toilets in Emerald, Emerald Park Lake and Cockatoo
  • Picnic & BBQ facilities in Emerald by the playground on the corner of Kilvington Drive and Heroes Avenue and at Emerald Park Lake
  • Public bus transport is available between villages, it could be an option to ride or walk one way, use public transport to return to collect a vehicle.
  • Hikers can also use Puffing Billy as an option, the station in Cockatoo is not attended, but the train does stop and passengers may board. Check timetables and costs via the Puffing Billy website
  • This is a multi purpose trail so expect bikes and prams to be sharing the trail 


Total distance: 6202 m
Max elevation: 330 m
Min elevation: 186 m
Total climbing: 73 m
Total descent: -211 m
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