One of the most visited picnic grounds in the Dandenong Ranges is the Grants Picnic Ground in Kallista.
What makes Grants so popular with international visitors and locals alike, is that the picnic ground is home to many friendly, yet wild Sulphur Crested Cockatoos and Crimson Rosellas that you can hand feed if you choose to do so.
Kids love the opportunity to get up close to feed the birds and because they are so friendly, don't be surprised if you end up with one on your shoulder!
Designated Bird Feeding Area
As Grants Picnic Ground is within a national park, bird feeding is kept in a designated/fenced area that you can only access by purchasing a tray of wild bird seed from the kiosk for $4.
Grants on Sherbrooke Cafe
However, the birds are wild, so they don't necessarily stick to the 'bird feeding zone', so when they are full you will see them throughout the picnic ground. In fact when we visited there were more birds just hanging out in the picnic grounds posing for photos like these guys below.
After looking at the birds we went for a stroll on the sealed Margaret Lester Forest Walk which is only 300 meters and a perfect length for toddlers to stretch their legs.
For older kids, you can follow the Coles Ridge Track from the picnic ground to the town of Belgrave (2km one way) or there is the 7.1km Eastern Sherbrooke Walk.
The picnic and BBQ facilities are very popular but usually if you venture down to the end of the car park you will find empty picnic tables amongst the trees.
Facilities include: Grants on Sherbrooke kiosk/cafe, sealed car parking with disabled spaces, toilets with disability access, picnic tables, BBQ's, drinking fountains, a large picnic shelter and a gift shop.