Don't leave Halls Gap without visiting the superb cultural centre at Brambuk, 2.5km south of town. Run by five Koorie communities (including the Jardwadjali and Djab Wurrung people, the traditional custodians of the region) in conjunction with Parks Victoria, the centre offers insights into local culture and history through traditional stories, art, music, dance, weapons, tools and photographs.
The striking building combines timeless Aboriginal motifs with contemporary design and construction materials. Its flowing orange roof represents the open wings of a cockatoo and references the peaks of the Grampians.
The Gariwerd Dreaming Theatre (tickets $5/3/15 per adult/child/family) shows two 15-minute films explaining Dreaming stories of Gariwerd (the region's original name) and the creation story of Bunjil. The ceiling here represents the southern right whale (totem of the Gunditjmara people). There’s an art room where kids can try their hand at Indigenous painting (from $10), boomerang throwing and didgeridoo playing, among various holiday programs. Native species used for food and medicine are planted outside.
Also offered are trips to nearby Aboriginal rock-art sites (from $80/50 per adult/child), which take in other significant sites along the way.
The centre has an important section on Aboriginal political issues experienced since colonial times, including sobering coverage of the massacres of Indigenous people that took place across the state.
In a separate building – where you first enter the complex – are a souvenir shop and interesting educational displays covering the natural features and history of the Grampians; staff can advise on walks and sell camping permits. The bush-tucker cafe has a lovely deck overlooking the gardens.