Towering Tamborine Mountain, with its birds-eye panoramas of Queensland’s coastline, is breath-taking.
Less than an hour from Brisbane and the Gold Coast, Tamborine has been somewhat overshadowed by the tourism magnets of Surfers Paradise and the Gold Coast.
But the hinterland’s incredible, untouched blessing from nature has come into its own, well worth the diversion from the coast.
Rainforest, cascading waterfalls, mountaintop views, bush walks and clear air away from the rush and hustle of the tourism centres and theme parks create mountain magic.
There’s a rainforest skywalk along 1.5 kms or forest floor walks and 300 metres of steel bridge in the upper canopies with a 40-metre cantilever bridge over a creek and rainforest.
An eco-gallery provides a taste of rainforest flora and fauna with the Birdwing Café providing a taste of treats.
German timber cutters made the first moves towards industry in country where the Wangerriburra people are the traditional custodians. Farmers followed and today there is an array of agriculture pursued with local products including honey, fruit, vegetables, cheese and sweets from hand-made chocolate to ice cream.
Pub, eateries, distilleries, breweries, wineries, health services and tourist attractions extend over Tamborine, which can justifiably call itself a mountain escape.
The winding road to the plateau feels like a reach for the stars or the clouds and slowly presents some of Australia’s most dramatic views.
Given the development of the nearby coast, the vast amount of unspoilt country reassures that travellers can still rub shoulders with the natural world.
Bush turkeys regularly stroll from the national park with the sound of whipbirds cracking at the awakening dawn.
Tours include a glow worm cave and thunderegg fossicking – searching for treasures from prehistoric volcanic lava in the world’s biggest thunderegg mine.
Retreats are abundant, with king-size beds, en suites and modern facilities with wide choices of wedding venues. It seems every venue has aspects akin to eagle-eye views.
There’s a mini excavator park for kids as well as pony rides and pet alpacas, a laser skirmish and fun fair.
Mountain Tamborine was Queensland’s top tourist town in 2022 and the Scenic Rim region (formerly Beaudesert) was declared Lonely Planet’s 2022 top region.
The 30-minute Curtis Falls walk is a popular 30 minutes taking in the waterfalls, orchids and staghorns. It’s also home to a glow worm colony.
The Macdonald walk over 35 minutes is an easy stroll, most appealing to bird-watchers with its track winding through the vast rainforest.
For the Cedar Creek walk of over just 900 metres, families are attracted to rock pools, open for swimming. Picnic hampers should be packed to fully relish the natural environment while the kids dip and splash.
It is hard to believe that we are so remote from the skyscrapers and coastline we can sight in the far distance: Coolangatta, Southport, Labrador, Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach and stretching all the way to Tweed Heads.
West Aussie travellers accustomed to flat earth will be overwhelmed by this former volcanic region where jungle explodes in what has been described as ‘the richest place on earth in Australia’.
Phone 07 5545 3200.