Little River, Victoria

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Little River
Little River is located in Melbourne
Little River
Little River
Coordinates37°55′59″S 144°30′00″E / 37.933°S 144.500°E / -37.933; 144.500Coordinates: 37°55′59″S 144°30′00″E / 37.933°S 144.500°E / -37.933; 144.500
Population1,322 (2016 census)[1]
Elevation22 m (72 ft)
State electorate(s)
Federal division(s)
Localities around Little River:
Balliang Quandong Mambourin
Anakie Little River Werribee
Anakie Lara Point Wilson and Cocoroc

Little River is a town in Victoria, Australia, that is located about 49 kilometres (30 mi) south-west of the Melbourne central business district, located within the Cities of Greater Geelong and Wyndham local government areas. Little River recorded a population of 1,322 at the 2016 census.[1]


The Little River has headwaters in the nearby Brisbane Ranges. It was also known as the Cocoroc Rivulet,[2][3] Cocoroc being a locality near the area. Where the road from Melbourne to Geelong crossed Little River, the Travellers Rest Inn was opened there in about 1839.[4]

It had been one of the Port Phillip Association's pastoral runs (the first occupier being James Simpson), and later a large part of the district was included in the Chirnside Estate centred on Werribee. Early on small farmers had the benefit of an 80 square kilometres (31 sq mi) common for grazing.

The Post Office opened on 1 February 1858.[5]

The railway line through the town was opened in 1857,[6] as part of the line to Geelong. The local railway station is served by V/Line passenger services on the Geelong line.

Aboriginal history[edit]

In the vicinity of Mount Rothwell, near Little River, a semi-circular arrangement of rocks now known as Wurdi Youang was discovered and in 2011 described by an astrophysicist from the CSIRO as indicating the setting sun at the solstices and equinox. Although the age is unknown, it could range from 200 to 30,000 years.[7]

Heritage sites[edit]

Little River contains a number of heritage listed sites, including:


The township has a petrol station and post office, a primary school, a kindergarten, a pub, a bed and breakfast, a park, two playgrounds, a train station, a cricket ground and several churches. Visitors from Melbourne pass through the town on the way to the You Yangs Regional Park and the Mount Rothwell Biodiversity Interpretation Centre.

Australian rock band Little River Band is named after Little River after seeing the name on a road sign on their way to a gig in Geelong.[12] Some scenes for the Australian television series We Can Be Heroes: Finding The Australian of the Year and Angry Boys were filmed at Little River, although it was referred to as the fictional town of 'Dunt'. Little River also featured in the movie Mad Max, with Little River Road being used as the movie's infamous "Highway 9".

Some parts of Little River and surrounding areas were filmed in the Australian television drama series, Blue Heelers. Also, in the nearby You Yangs, the 2003 film, Ned Kelly was shot.[citation needed]

Census populations[edit]

Little River, Victoria
Year Population Source(s)
1861 4
1871 121
1911 294
1954 358
1966 191
2001 353 [13]
2006 1,744 [14]
2011 1,393 [15]
2016 1,322 [1]

See also[edit]

  • Shire of Corio - Parts of Little River were previously within this former local government area.


  1. ^ a b c Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Little River (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 15 January 2022. Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ Victorian Places (2015). "Little River". Monash University; The University of Queensland. The Vic Places project is a joint initiative of Monash University and the University of Queensland. Retrieved 15 January 2022.
  3. ^ Bustout. "Little River".
  4. ^ Little River Historical Society: A Brief History of Little River
  5. ^ Phoenix Auctions History. "Post Office List". Retrieved 9 March 2021.
  6. ^ "Little River". Vicsig. Retrieved 18 October 2020.
  7. ^ Wurdi Youang rocks could prove Aborigines were first astronomers, Andrew Carswell and Robert Cockburn, The Daily Telegraph (Sydney), 5 February 2011
  8. ^ "Little River Railway Station and Goods Yard (H1572)". Victorian Heritage Register. Heritage Victoria. Retrieved 4 July 2014.
  9. ^ "Mount Rothwell Homestead (H1107)". Victorian Heritage Register. Heritage Victoria. Retrieved 4 July 2014.
  10. ^ "Rothwell Bridge (H1454)". Victorian Heritage Register. Heritage Victoria. Retrieved 4 July 2014.
  11. ^ "History". Little River Historical Society. Retrieved 1 October 2021.
  12. ^ Little River Band Archived 2009-05-11 at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (9 March 2006). "Little River (Urban Centres and Localities)". 2001 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
  14. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Little River (State Suburb)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
  15. ^ "2011 Census QuickStats Little River". Australian Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 6 July 2019.

External links[edit]