Since 1917, Bunyaville State Forest Park (formerly Bunyaville Regional Park) has been a favourite recreational destination for locals, conveniently located in the heart of Brisbane's northern suburbs. Whether you're picnicking with the family, bird watching, bush walking, or cycling, this is a great spot to spend some quiet time experiencing nature.
Bunyaville forest provides refuge for many reptiles, mammals, birds and plants as part of the ‘Mountains to Mangroves’ Corridor. The bushland corridor connects remnant bushland from the D'Aguilar Range through the suburbs to Moreton Bay Region, protecting vital wildlife habitats. The best way to enjoy this pocket of well-preserved dry rainforest is to follow one of the walking trails which wind along shady gullies and past cool waterholes.
While you're there you might be lucky enough to spot some native wildlife, such as koalas, echidnas or possums. Especially look out for Australia's largest owl – the Powerful Owl (Ninox Strenua), a nocturnal species who call the park home, or the Tawny Frogmouth (Podargus Strigoides) who are the resident masters of camouflage.
Take advantage of the Connect with Nature program and learn interesting facts while participating in nature-based activities with a guided walking tour through Bunyaville State Forest. Hike up to the education centre and learn about the locals – the fauna and flora!
The Bunyaville Track (1.6km return) is a twenty minute walk which passes through a rare forest community of large-leafed Spotted Gums (Corymbia henryi) – their leaves happen to be the koala's favourite meal, so watch out for these furry friends in the branches high above.
This track begins at the northern end of the day-use area and finishes at the southern end of the day-use area.
Bunyaville State Forest Park’s Tree Discovery Circuit (650m return) is a side track that splits-off from the Bunyaville Track. It is a gentle walkers-only track which takes around twenty minutes to complete. Part of the track is composed of a boardwalk to help minimise the impact of humans upon such a delicate ecosystem.
Both hiking Brisbane north side tracks are rated Class 3 according to Australian Standards and there are interpretive signs along the way which include interesting information about the surrounding flora and fauna. Other multi-use sections of the park also welcome bush walkers, horses, dogs on leads and mountain bikes.
Bushwalking is pretty easy-going but always enjoyable. Koalas have been known to be seen in the diverse range of eucalyptus trees and bushwalking is the perfect way to spot them – just keep your eyes to the skies!
There are two bushwalking tracks. The Tree Discovery Circuit is a 650 metre return trek and should take around 15 minutes. The Bunyaville Track is a longer walk at 1.6 kilometres taking around 30 minutes. Keep your eyes open for the wildlife, including carpet pythons, and your ears open for the kookaburras and pied currawongs.
If you’re looking for something a bit more energetic, Bunyaville State Forest is also open for cycling. Mountain bike riding is heaps of fun here, with changing gradients and a generally undulating landscape. Choose from 10 mountain bike trails and make sure you bring a high level of fitness.
Bring those energy levels down a peg or two and enjoy the beauty of the Bunyaville State Forest from horseback. Those other four legged friends, dogs, are also allowed as long as they’re on a leash on the share trails.
There are 10 designated mountain bike tracks within the park. These are well-maintained, single tracks which mostly suit confident, intermediate riders (not suitable for young children). It is possible to follow all the tracks listed below, covering about 22 kms in around 2.5 hours.
Track 1: Wayne's World (600m)
Track 2: Jurassic (1.3km)
Track 3: Nutcracker (1.3km)
Track 4: Creek Track (980m)
Track 5: Kokoda (545m)
Track 6: Carnage (790m)
Track 7: Steps (820m)
Track 8: Dark Side (1.5km)
Track 9: Mini Van (1.1m)
Track 10: Zig Zag (465m)
There are wheelchair-accessible toilet facilities located at the Bunyaville day-use area. There are also under cover picnic tables, toilets, drinking water, as well as barbecues with firewood provided in the day-use area.
Bunyaville opens at 7am. It is located 20 minutes north west of Brisbane CBD.
How to Get There: Drive out of Brisbane CBD on Bowen Bridge Road and continue to follow it as it becomes Lutwyche Road. Turn left onto Stafford Road, then right onto S Pine Road (just past Woolworths shopping Centre). Follow it as it becomes Old Northern Road in Everton Hills, to the signposted park entrance on your left. Turn-off Old Northern Road and follow the road around to the various car parks within the park grounds.
If you’re coming from the direction of Stafford, pick up a few necessities from the Woolworths Shopping Centre in Everton Park along the recommended ‘how to get there’ route.
Parking: Park in the main bitumen carparks by the toilets and BBQ & picnic areas, or continue on the sealed road onto the dirt road to park by the Bunyaville Environmental Centre where the road ends.
There is very limited hiking Brisbane northside track information/signage. The main information board is located nearby the toilets and picnicking/BBQing lawn right by one of the main carparks. A few walking track information boards are also located at the beginning of various hiking trails, but none are found deeper within the forest.
Though you won't find walking trail info past the track entrances, you will find a few mountain bike information boards dispersed around the park (these are of no use to walkers though).
It’s easy to forget that even in the midst of suburbia, there are pockets of wildlife and bushland waiting to be explored. Visitors are welcome to come, relax and explore this native animal sanctuary near Brisbane.
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