The Sandstone Country in Central Queensland is of outstanding natural beauty, featuring unique sandstone gorges, water sculptured formations and significant Aboriginal art sites. Here, the wild dramatic scenery and evidence of an ancient yet ongoing culture will lift your spirits and capture your imagination.
Carnarvon Gorge National Park
Carnarvon Gorge is an icon of Queensland’s Sandstone Country and will strike you by its magnificence and grandeur. The Gorge is a hiker’s paradise. The marvellous narrow-sided gorges, cliffs, moss gardens, Aboriginal rock art sites and abundant plant life are in stark contrast to the surrounding brigalow country. Carnarvon Gorge National Park is a great place to see wildlife, with over 173 bird species inhabiting or visiting the park. Make the most of your visit and join a guided tour with Carnarvon Gorge Eco Tours.
If you are looking for something a little more off the beaten track, then consider some of the remote camping opportunities offered at Salvator Rosa section of Carnarvon National Park.
Where to stay? Accommodation is located within a short drive from the main walking track offering caravan, tent, cabin and boutique retreat style accommodation. Check out Takarakka Bush Resort, Carnarvon Gorge Wilderness Lodge or Sandstone Park for further details.
High above the surrounding plains of Central Queensland lies the true inland oasis of Blackdown Tableland National Park. Home to a deep gorge that dissects the landscape and provides avenues for cascading rockpools, scenic waterfalls and swimming holes, this landscape is one of Queensland’s best kept natural secrets.
Where to stay? National Park camping is available for tents, campers and small motor homes. Motel and Caravan accommodation is available in the nearby towns of Dingo and Duaringa.
Minerva Hills is one of the lesser-known National Parks in Central Queensland but we are predicting that its quieter days are numbered. Born of blazing volcanic eruptions over 30 million years ago, today you will be in awe of a myriad of colours, peaks, gorges, plateaus and wildlife – you my even see a snoozing koala. A visit is not complete without a wander along Skyline lookout track for close-up views of Virgin Rock.
Where to stay? Camping is not permitted at this park. Motels and Caravan park are available 4km west in the nearby town of Springsure.
Located only a couple of hours from Carnarvon Gorge National Park, is the little known Lake Nuga Nuga and the National Park that shares the same name. Accessed via the Carnarvon Highway and Arcadia Valley Highway, Lake Nuga Nuga is the largest natural body of water within the Central Queensland Sandstone Belt. The park is quite remote and has no facilities and is a birdwatchers and photographers delight. The bird life is quite extraordinary, some of them included black swans, wedge-tail eagles, black and white cockatoos, Australian bustards and straw-necked ibis. Apart from the birdlife, there are plenty of kangaroos and wallabies in the area as well.
The Sandstone Wilderness is dotted with points of historical significance, from famous explorers of the ilk of Ludwig Leichhardt and Major Mitchell to Australia’s most famous sheep shearer, Jackie Howe.
Hankering for cheekier tales? Look no further than Australia’s last legendary bush rangers, the Kenniff Brothers, who caused mischief and mayhem near Carnarvon Gorge.
The region is home to some of Australia’s most significant stories and sites for for the Traditional Custodians, ranging from habitation sites to paintings and ancient rock art. The Art Gallery and Cathedral Cave in Carnarvon Gorge draw global recognition as being home to some of the finest examples of Aboriginal stencil and engraving techniques in the world. There are also smaller samples of artwork to be found at Blackdown Tableland National Park.