From chasing waterfalls, dipping your toes in freshwater swimming holes and hiking through national parks, here's how to make the most of your 72 hours of outdoor adventures in the hinterland.
Leave your troubles behind and let the natural beauty of Stony Creek distract you.
This quietly hidden paradise is a local favourite, located in the southern end of the Bellthorpe National Park on the Conondale Ranges. Stony Creek Day Use area has an open grassy spot with picnic tables and wood fire BBQ’s (BYO timber), for you to enjoy a picnic with friends or family.
With a name like Stony Creek, it’s no surprise a 20-meter trail from the Day Use Area leads to a boulder hopping paradise with water cascading and trickling through pebbles into a large natural swimming hole.
If having a relaxing float is your style, pack your favourite inflatables and enjoy the serenity.
Meander through rugged open eucalypt forest trails, eyes peeled for wildlife and hidden rock pools. Explore the remnants of Brandon’s Sawmill which can still be seen on West Bellthorpe Road.
For those with a 4WD, Bellthorpe National Park does not disappoint. The views through the trees in the Bellthorpe National Park are stunning, looking out over Mount Kilcoy and the Connondale Ranges. You can access the park from three primary entry points and also use any combination of these as entry and exit points.
Once you've checked in to your Woodford accommodation, make your way to the Woodford Hotel for dinner and drinks.
It serves up one of the best pub meals in the region and has the country charm you'd expect to find in this small town.
Witness D'Aguilar National Park from one of its most iconic viewpoints, Jolly’s Lookout. The lookout, located just off Mount Glorious Road, provides unrivaled views that stretch out far beyond the valley.
After taking the perfect panoramic shot, be sure to pull out that picnic basket and enjoy a snack.
Voted as one of top attractions to visit near Brisbane, Rocky Hole is a stunning swimming hole etched into the natural contours of Mount Mee’s granite filled gullies. In amidst the eucalypt forest, there’s a 200m walk that will lead you down a gravel path to the magical Rocky Hole.
No matter who you are, people of all ages and fitness levels can easily enjoy this hidden gem.
Start your scenic drive up the hilltop village of Mount Glorious and enjoy breakfast and coffee.
Once you've got your caffeine fix, it's time to find higher ground and set off for Lake Wivenhoe Lookout. Generally, where there are lakes there are lookouts and you will sure need one to take in the beauty of Lake Wivenhoe. You'll find the lookout at the beautiful Mount Glorious. Main access areas are from Waterworks Road, The Gap and Ashgrove, via the Enoggera Reservoir. Once you wind your way up the mountain and reach Mt Nebo-Mt Glorious Road, follow for 12km. The entrance to the Lake Wivenhoe Lookout carpark will be on your left.
A short five-minute walk from the carpark leads you to a breathtaking viewpoint over Wivenhoe Dam. Stroll along the boardwalk to an opening where you can catch a glimpse of the glistening waters in the distance.
Travel less then 10 minutes along the windy roads down the mountain, from Wivenhoe Lookout to Maiala Day Use Area. Take a seat at one of the picnic tables, pull out the picnic lunch and soak up the scenery.
If you're feeling a bit energetic, you can strap the runners on and enjoy some of the bushwhacks in the Maiala National Park. There's tracks for every fitness level - but trust us, the views will be worth it.
After stopping on the way to grab a quick bite to eat (and picking up a bottle of water and some snacks for your afternoon), you're heading towards the last stop on your ultimate outdoor tour of the hinterland.
Although unknown to many, this well-hidden hike is a must for anyone who loves bush-bashing and riverbed walking interspersed with gorgeous gorges requiring swimming, as well as ankle-deep and waist high wading. If turquoise water, a dense canopy and Jungle Book like scenes tickles your fancy Northbrook Gorge is a must-visit.
Set deep in the Brisbane Forest Park in the southern section of D’Aguilar National Park you will find an awe-inspiring large, almost crystal clear, rock swimming pool, complete with a short waterfall, found in the second gorge. Expect a refreshingly cool swim as this large waterhole is shaded by the forest’s towering trees and the gorge’s tall walls.
Be sure to pack your walking boots, a bottle of water and a bite to eat. Northbrook Gorge although a challenging hike and a few hours long, the reward is sure worth the wait.
A couple of things to keep in mind on this hike. There is no reception, no bins, no amenities and this trail is not maintained by the Department of National Parks. Caution needs to be exercised when entering the area.
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