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Experience our

Central Highlands, Sandstone Wilderness+ Sapphire Gemfields Arcadia Valley I Bauhinia I Rolleston I Springsure I Eme rald I Capella I Tieri I Duaring Bluff | Blackwater I Comet a I Dingo | I Sapphire I Rubyvale I Ana kie I Willows Gemfields I Bog antungan

www.centralhighlands.com.au

2017–18 Lifestyle & Visitor Guide


Whether you have travelled from within Queensland, across Australia or from other parts of the world, our region offers you more than you expect. Experience our natural Wonders, rich local history, country hospitality and diversity of agriculture interspersed by picturesque Regional towns. With natural gemstones, freshwater lakes and amazing national parks, there’s no place like ours!

Councillor Kerry Hayes Mayor – Central Highlands Regional Council

www.centralhighlands.com.au Discover Central Highlands Qld @CHDCorp Central Highlands We acknowledge the first custodians of the Central Highlands and ask that you respect the land, its history and ancestors while you enjoy the natural beauty of the region.


CONTENTS Regional Map....................................................2 Welcome............................................................3 Getting Here......................................................4 Experience the Great Inland Way Arcadia Valley and Bauhinia.........................5 Carnarvon National Park...............................6 Rolleston..........................................................11 Springsure.......................................................12 Fairbairn Dam.................................................16 Emerald............................................................18 Capella..............................................................24 Tieri................................................................... 26 Experience the Capricorn Way Duaringa...........................................................27 Dingo................................................................ 28 Bluff.................................................................. 29 Blackdown Tableland National Park....... 30 Blackwater.......................................................32 Comet.............................................................. 35 Sapphire Gemfields..................................... 36 Sapphire...........................................................39 Rubyvale...........................................................40 Anakie.............................................................. 43 Willows Gemfields and Bogantungan......................................... 44 What Crop is That?...................................... 45 Events...............................................................46 Drive Trails...................................................... 48 Business Listings...........................................51

www.centralhighlands.com.au

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Traveller’s Tip:

When arriving in a town, make your first stop the local Visitor Information Centre. 2


WELCOME The Central Highlands is home to some of Queensland’s most unique attractions. Take time to explore the open spaces and hidden crevices of our national parks, including Carnarvon Gorge and Blackdown Tableland. Unearth a treasure at the Sapphire Gemfields, the largest of their kind in the Southern Hemisphere. The Blackwater International Coal Centre houses the Australian Coal Mining Museum, while Capella’s Pioneer Village and Springsure’s Old Rainworth Fort showcase the region’s European and Aboriginal heritage. The region’s social scene rivals that of larger centres, with horse racing, rodeos, agricultural shows, art and craft markets and various family fun days all regular features on the calendar. The Central Highlands is also blessed with top-quality restaurants and cafes, a range of pubs and bars, large-scale live performance venues, art galleries and cinemas. Accommodation options are diverse and offer something for every level of comfort and budget. From luxury motel rooms to back-to-nature camping, the selection of accommodation in the Central Highlands is varied and plentiful.

Travel Distances

Brisbane 617

Rockhampton

799

196

Blackwater

873

270

75

Emerald

927

324

130

55

Sapphire

1069

579

385

310

276

Barcaldine

1177

686

492

417

383

108

Longreach

476

469

386

402

456

700

700

Roma

720

401

225

240

295

549

657

244

Carnarvon Gorge

764

335

140

68

122

376

484

335

173

Springsure

927

324

129

54

69

343

450

455

294

121

Capella

985

382

187

112

92

366

473

513

352

179

59

Clermont

1357

747

553

478

466

741

640

879

718

545

424

376

Charters Towers

952

336

367

384

398

673

780

785

624

445

331

290

628

Mackay

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GETTING HERE By Road The Central Highlands is intersected by the Capricorn Highway (Capricorn Way) that runs east – west and the Gregory Highway (Great Inland Way) that runs south – north.

By Air QantasLink and Virgin Australia operate daily services between Brisbane and Emerald. www.qantas.com.au www.virginaustralia.com.au

For current road conditions contact the Visitor Information Centre in the town you are visiting, or visit the Queensland Government Traffic and Travel Information website www.131940.qld.gov.au

Car Hire Hertz, Budget, Avis and Thrifty have branches in Emerald.

By Rail Catch the twice weekly ‘Spirit of the Outback’ that travels along the coast from Brisbane to Rockhampton and then heads west through Blackwater and Emerald to Longreach and return. www.queenslandrailtravel.com.au By Coach Greyhound Australia offers a connecting coach service from Rockhampton to Emerald and Longreach. www.greyhound.com.au Mackay Transit Coaches runs a daily service between Mackay and Emerald. www.mackaytransit.com.au

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emerald airport Emerald Airport is the gateway to the Central Highlands region. The airport supports tourism, business, leisure, agriculture, freight and mining. The airport services Qantas Airways and Virgin Australia as well as general aviation including flying schools and aircraft maintenance.

Gregory Highway, Emerald 4720 P: 1300 242 686 E: enquiries@chrc.qld.gov.au www.centralhighlands.qld.gov.au


EXPERIENCE THE GREAT INLAND WAY Arcadia Valley

Bauhinia

Arcadia Valley is a peaceful and idyllic location. Nestled between the Expedition and Carnarvon Ranges, it lives up to the Greek origins of its name, ‘Ideal Paradise’.

Located on the Dawson Highway, Bauhinia typifies the best in country hospitality.

Things to Experience

Fishing Wet your line in Zamia Creek, ten kilometres south along the Dawson Highway.

Nuga Nuga National Park Nuga Nuga National Park offers a bushcamping area on the bank of Lake Nuga Nuga. Note: there are no visitor facilities. Lake Nuga Nuga Lake Nuga Nuga is the largest natural body of water in the Central Highlands. Local Aboriginal belief is that the lake was created by a pair of Mundagurri (Rainbow Serpents) that now reside under the two dominating peaks at the northern shoreline of the lake. ƒƒ ƒƒ ƒƒ

A birdwatcher’s delight, the lake provides a valuable habitat for water birds. Waterlilies flower at times during the year, providing a spectacular display. Explore the serenity of Lake Nuga Nuga by canoe or kayak.

Things to Experience

Expedition National Park The Robinson Gorge section of Expedition National Park can be accessed from Bauhinia. The gorge winds 14 kilometres between sheer sandstone cliffs, up to 100 metres high. Point of Interest Bauhinia is known for its local horse sport events.

Arcadia Valley Escape Station Accommodation and Station Tours Fortified by towering ranges, Arcadia Valley is a lush and fertile oasis just off the main highway. Offering Accommodation and Station Tours on a 17,000 acre cattle station it is the perfect place to experience country hospitality enroute to Carnarvon Gorge or Roma.

Expedition National Park The Lonesome section of the Expedition National Park can be accessed from Arcadia Valley. Stop at the lookout and take in the spectacular views. Station Stay and Tour For a unique experience, stay overnight on a working cattle property. Guided tours are available and feature a working dog demonstration.

Arcadia Valley Road, Injune 4454 P: 07 4626 7197 www.arcadiavalleyescape.com

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CARNARVON NATIONAL PARK

Traveller’s Tip:

We love our natural landscapes, please tread lightly, leave no trace, only footsteps. 6


experience the great inland way

Carnarvon Gorge Carnarvon Gorge lies hidden within the rugged ranges of the Central Highlands. Over millions of years, Water has eroded a deep and dramatic gorge system within the layers of soft, white sandstone – creating majestic cliffs that change colour with the movement of the sun and the change of seasons. Carnarvon Creek flows all year, giving life to a luxuriant growth of ferns, palms, shrubs and trees.

Things to Experience

Walking Take a walk at Carnarvon Gorge and explore the natural beauty of this rugged wilderness. A minimum of three days is recommended to walk the tracks, explore the side gorges and visit Aboriginal cultural sites. Remote Walking Pack your hiking gear and take on the remote sections of Carnarvon Gorge Great Walk. You’ll need 6–7 days, good preparation and high-level bushing walking experience to complete this amazing journey. Rock Art The art on sandstone overhangs is a fragile reminder of Aboriginal people’s long and continuing connection with the gorge. These ochre stencils, rock engravings and freehand paintings are some of the finest Aboriginal rock imagery in Australia. Wildlife Opportunities for birdwatching are plentiful. More than 173 bird species inhabit or visit the park. A night walk with a torch can reveal gliders, possums and bush stone-curlews. Catch a glimpse of platypus, possums and other creek life on an early morning stroll along the one kilometre Nature Trail. Picnic Areas At the entrance to Carnarvon Gorge, a large, grassy picnic area is set amongst towering eucalypts and cabbage palms. Wheelchair accessible toilets and tables, gas barbecues and drinking water are available. Swimming Take a refreshing dip in the ‘Rock Pool’, carved from the bed of Carnarvon Creek by the turbulent waters of past floods. It is the only place designated for swimming in Carnarvon Gorge.

Guided Tours and Talks Treat yourself and enhance your Carnarvon Gorge adventure with a guided tour with one of the commercial operators. Rewan Memorial On your way into Carnarvon Gorge visit the Rewan Memorial, erected to honour the lives of the Australian and US soldiers who were aboard a Dakota C-47 aircraft that broke up in a violent storm in 1943. Visitor Centre The visitor centre is open 8am – 4pm, 7 days a week. Access Carnarvon Gorge is located between Injune and Rolleston. The access road is an ‘all vehicles’ road, however it can become impassable after heavy rain. Please check the road conditions before setting out. No fuel is available after leaving Injune or Rolleston. Accommodation Camping in the national park visitor area in the gorge is available during Easter, winter and spring school holidays. Camping permits are essential – bookings must be made online in advance. Privately-run accommodation is available nearby at all times of the year. Other top spots to visit Carnarvon National Park has three other sections. Take a fourwheel-drive adventure and visit Salvator Rosa and Ka Ka Mundi (accessed via Springsure) and Mount Moffat (accessed via Injune). For further information, maps, walks and camping permits visit www.queenslandnationalparks.com.au

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tracks at a glance

Distances and return times are measured from Carnarvon Gorge visitor area unless otherwise stated

Track Name A

8

Main walking track

Class

Distance (return)

Walking time

3/4

19.4km

7-8hrs

B

Nature Trail

3

1.5km

1hr

C

Boolimba Bluff

4

6.4km

2-3hrs

D

Moss Garden

3

7km

2-3hrs

E

Amphitheatre

3

8.6km

3-4hrs

F

Wards Canyon

3

9.2km

3-4hrs

G

Art Gallery

3

10.8km

3-4hrs

H

Cathedral Cave

4

18.2km

5-6hrs

I

Boowinda Gorge

4

18.4km

5-6hrs

J

Big Bend camping area

4

19.4km

7-8hrs

K

Mickey Creek Gorge from Mickey Creek car park

3

3km

1.5hrs

L

Baloon Cave from Baloon Cave car park

2

1km

45mins

M

Rock Pool from Rock Pool car park

3

600m

30mins

M

Rock Pool from Carnarvon Gorge Visitor Area

3

3.6km

2hrs

R

Carnarvon Great Walk

3/4/5

87km

6-7 days


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Takarakka Bush Resort

Certificate of Excellence

Join us facebook.com/takarakka Book online takarakka.com.au Call (07) 49 84 84 84

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Experience the great inland way

Rolleston Rolleston lies in the centre of a rich, resourceful and beautiful valley. The sandstone cliffs that follow the Carnarvon, Expedition and Shotover Ranges mark the boundaries of this fertile agricultural district.

Things to Experience

Beazley Park Located in the heart of Rolleston, Beazley Park features Purbrook Hut, art gallery, coffee cart, outdoor cinema, playground and picnic facilities. Purbrook Hut Purbrook Hut is made from pieces of a grand homestead that was originally located on Clematis Creek before the landowners went bankrupt when prickly pear took over their land. The remnants of the home were rearranged at Beazley Park and became a shelter for travellers, contractors and hunters for more than 50 years. Local historical information is displayed on the walls. Art Gallery The historic post office building is now used as an art gallery featuring local exhibitions. Heritage Walk Discover the history behind some of Rolleston’s buildings with the heritage walk. Guides are available from the Rolleston Library.

Fishing Anglers can try their luck at the local fishing hole along the Comet River. Point of Interest The Rolleston Coffee Cart is open from April to September and offers travellers home-baked goods and fresh coffee. The cart is run by volunteers with profits going towards beautification of the park.

Rolleston Caravan Park ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■

Gateway to Carnarvon Gorge 120km to Blackdown Tablelands 100km to Lake Nuga Nuga Very friendly park Modern clean amenities Powered/unpowered sites Self-contained ensuite units Shady & grassed areas with BBQs Drive thru sites

46 Comet Street, Rolleston 4702 P: 07 4984 3145 E: rollcaravanpark@bigpond.com www.rollestoncaravanpark.weebly.com

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SPRINGSURE Springsure’s name was derived from the permanent springs in the creeks and gullies at the time of settlement in the area. It is known for its ‘heritage, hills and hospitality’.

Things to Experience

Federation Woolshed and Rich Memorial Park Located in Rich Memorial Park, Federation Woolshed is a replica of the sheds Britain sent to the colonies at the turn of the 20th century. Photos and antiques line the walls of this historical building. It also acts as the information centre and is open daily from March to November. Adjacent to the centre are two early homesteads that contain many interesting relics of the past.

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Also located in the park is a large windmill (measuring 24 feet in diameter), wagon and cattle yard display. Minerva Hills National Park Spectacular jagged peaks dotted with ancient Zamia palms provide the scenic backdrop to this national park. Formed by volcanic activity millions of years ago, Mount Boorambool and the dramatic escarpment of Mount Zamia dominate the landscape today. ƒƒ E  njoy panoramic views over the surrounding countryside from several easyto-access lookouts. ƒƒ S  top for a ‘bush picnic with a view’ from the top of the mountain at Fred’s Gorge Lookout. ƒƒ Take a bush walk along Skyline Lookout. ƒƒ S  ee if you can spot the unusual eastern pebble-mound mouse, the fawn-footed melomys or a koala (if you’re lucky).


Experience the great inland way

Traveller’s Tip:

Local weather and rain patterns change very quickly. If roads are flooded, forget it.

Virgin Rock and Lions Park Lions Park is the best vantage point to see Virgin Rock, a niche in the eastern side of Mount Zamia, which has a weathered likeness to the Virgin Mary holding her child. The spectacular cliffs are floodlit at night.

outback tyres Outback Tyres is a small family owned business in Springsure. We offer fuel and driveway service, tyres – new and repairs, batteries, wheel alignments, mechanical and suspension. Our mobile service van can come to you, it is equipped to fit and balance tyres on site (bookings required).

92 Eclipse Street, Springsure 4722 P: 07 4984 1051 E: admin@obtyres.com.au

Staircase Range Lookout Located 17 kilometres south of Springsure, the Staircase Range is named after a sandstone escarpment that has naturally formed in the shape of a staircase. See the Old Wagon Road that was cut into the sandstone by pick and crowbar.

springsure woolshed information centre ■ ■ ■ ■ ■

Open March to October 7 days a week Local arts and crafts available Cold drinks ■ Free tea and coffee Local information booklet and brochures Come in and see our local volunteers

William Street, Springsure 4722 P: 07 4984 1961

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Wills Massacre Site On the 17 October 1861, 19 early settlers of the district were killed in a conflict with the local Aborigines. A memorial headstone can be viewed at the site. Rainworth Fort Rainworth Fort Complex includes an original fort building that was built one year after the Wills Massacre to store food and resist attack. The complex also includes the relocated Cairdbeign homestead and a school building from the 1800s, as well as a fascinating collection of period pieces and historical artefacts. Yumba Burin (Keeping Place) Situated at the cemetery is a historical crypt in which bark-wrapped Aboriginal remains are stored. The technique of embalming and burial in bark is unique to the tribes in the sandstone area of Queensland. The crypt was constructed by the local Yumba Burin Heritage Association. Contact the Federation Woolshed for access. Hospital Museum Built in 1868, the original, heritage-listed Springsure hospital has been furnished to reflect the yesteryear and houses a collection of medical equipment, photos and

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records. Contact the Federation Woolshed for access. Carnarvon National Park The Ka Ka Mundi and Salvator Rosa sections of Carnarvon National Park can be accessed from Springsure. Ka Ka Mundi Drive though the undulating sandstone country and discover stately bottle trees emerging from silver brigalow forest. Camp by the springs and watch abundant birdlife. Four-wheel-drive vehicles are recommended. Salvator Rosa Rocky sandstone crags and spires dominate the skyline at Salvator Rosa. Enjoy colourful wildflower displays and camp under the timeless night sky. Access is by four-wheel-drive vehicles.

Point of Interest Labradorite, a feldspar gemstone of iridescent colour, is found in the Springsure area. Fossicking permits are available from Mitre 10, Eclipse Street.


Experience the great inland way

Springsure Town Map

Point of Interest Between Springsure and Emerald you will find the Daniels tractor display at Gindie.

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FAIRBAIRN DAM Fairbairn Dam is located 25 kilometres southwest of Emerald. It was opened in 1972 and is Queensland’s second largest lake with a massive 15,000 hectares surface area when full and holding 1.3 million megalitres of water.

While the wall and spillway is called Fairbairn Dam, the water is actually called Lake Maraboon, meaning ‘where the black duck fly’. Fairbairn Dam is more than just a recreational playground. The creation of the dam provided Emerald with a stable water supply, established a significant agricultural and horticultural irrigation area and supported surrounding coal developments.

Things to Experience

Fishing Fairbairn Dam is a popular freshwater fishing destination and is stocked with Murray cod, yellowbelly, saratoga and barramundi. A fishing permit is required and can be obtained from the Central Highlands Visitor Information Centre, Emerald. Red Clawing Red Claw, a freshwater crayfish, are abundant and are best caught in opera house traps. When it comes to bait, every fisher has their own theory, but generally fruit, partially cooked vegetables or pet food can produce productive catches. 16


Experience the great inland way

Traveller’s Tip:

A meg (megalitre) = 1,000,000 litres and a gig (gigalitre) = 1,000 megs.

Boating There are no boating restrictions on Lake Maraboon although there is a no boating and no fishing zone around the dam wall. Waterskiing, jet skiing and kayaking are popular activities. Other Activities ƒƒ Enjoy a relaxing and picturesque picnic. Tables and electric barbecues are available.

ƒƒ Refresh in the designated swimming area. ƒƒ E  njoy stunning views of the lake, spillway and surrounding area from the lookout. Accommodation Camping is not permitted around the lake, however camping and cabin facilities are available at a commercial accommodation provider nearby.

Come Stay & Play at Lake Maraboon! Whether you are staying for just the weekend or a month come and see our friendly hosts at Lake Maraboon Holiday Village for the home away from home experience. 

POWERED & UNPOWERED SITES TO SUIT ALL

2 BEDROOM VILLAS & SELF CONTAINED CABINS

CAFÉ, BAR & TAKEAWAY

KAYAK & BOAT HIRE

SWIMMING POOL & SLIDE

COME AND TRY OUR FAMOUS REDCLAW LAGER ON TAP & REDCLAW PIZZA WWW.LAKEMARABOONHOLIDAYVILLAGE.COM.AU

PH: 0749823677

E: ENQUIRIES@LMHV.COM.AU

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emerald Named not after the gem, but for the lush green pastures that once surrounded the town, Emerald is the hub of the Central Highlands. Emerald is a large, modern country town that was established in 1879 as a base to build the western railway.

Things to Experience

Strawbale Visitor Information Centre Commence your tour of Emerald and the Central Highlands at the Visitor Information Centre in Clermont Street. The building is an attraction itself as the walls are made from 300 bales of barley straw covered in lime and earthen renders. Guided Walking and Drive Tours The Visitor Information Centre offers guided tours of the Emerald CBD and one-day drive tours of the area. Bookings are essential. Van Gogh Sunflower Painting Once famous as a major sunflower producer, Emerald is

now home to the world’s biggest Vincent Van Gogh ‘Sunflower’ painting located in Morton Park. The superstructure is 25 metres high with approximately 13.6 tonnes of steel involved in its construction. Mosaic Pathway The Centenary of Federation Mosaic Pathway leads you though 100 years in 100 metres of Emerald’s colourful history. The footpath features intricately tiled designs that trace history from the beginning of the universe through to visions of the future. Pioneer Cottage Complex The Pioneer Cottage Complex echoes the rich history of the Emerald region. It showcases a small historical village, including the town’s lead-lined lockup, St Marks Presbyterian Church and a communications museum. CBD Artworks Take a short stroll along Egerton Street and view the town’s magnificent public art. All pieces were commissioned from a public competition.

Traveller’s Tip:

Got kids on-board? Get a Junior Detective sheet from the Emerald Visitor Centre.

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emerald maraboon motor inn ■

EMERALD TOURIST PARK

Our spacious rooms are comfortable, functional and contemporary ■ Surrounded by great food choices and entertainment facilities with a tropical garden pool environment and onsite fitness room Enjoy flexible check in/check out times with our commitment to guest satisfaction

Emerald Tourist Park offers spacious powered sites, a camp ground and cabins. Old fashioned friendly service and a relaxed atmosphere. Join other travellers around the bonfire each night for happy hour (seasons permitting). ■ Powered site special – STAY 5 nights PAY 4!

★★★★

5 Esmond Street, Emerald 4720 P: 07 4982 0777 E: maraboon@emeraldmotel.com.au www.emeraldmotel.com.au

43 Roberts Street, Emerald 4720 P: 07 4982 1589 E: emeraldtouristpark@villagenational.com.au www.facebook.com/emeraldtouristpark

EMERALD EXPLORERS INN

emerald central palms motel

Quality four star accommodation – Executive, Standard and Family rooms available. Explorers Inn offers great service, fine dining and relaxed surroundings. Licensed restaurant, swimming pool, Foxtel, free Wi-Fi and free under cover parking (space for larger vehicles). Close to town, airport and shopping.

Modern 4 star motel with air-conditioning, undercover parking, free Wi-Fi, swimming pool and private patio to all rooms. Walking distance to hotels, restaurants, cinemas and shops.

1585 Gregory Highway, Emerald 4720 P: 07 4982 2822 F: 07 4982 0389 E: admin@emeraldexplorersinn.com.au www.emeraldexplorersinn.com.au

19 Esmond Street, Emerald 4720 P: 07 4982 3600 E: centralpalms@iq.net.au www.emeraldcentralpalms.com

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Emerald Botanic Gardens The Emerald Botanic Gardens are located on the banks of the Nogoa River. The 42 hectares of gardens include a rose garden, maze, bush chapel, sculptures, rainforest and playground. Six kilometres of walking tracks lead to different plant communities of the Central Highlands. Railway Station Built in 1900 and restored in 1986, the National Trust-listed railway station, with its wrought iron lacework and pillared portico, provides visitors with great photo opportunities. Emerald Art Gallery Emerald Art Gallery showcases exhibitions from local, state and national artists and is located at the Central Highlands Regional Council office. Visit its Facebook page for upcoming events. Emerald Aquatic Centre Enjoy a day at the newly upgraded Emerald Aquatic Centre that features three waterslides, a jumping pillow and barbecue facilities as well as a 50-metre pool, a heated 25-metre pool and a fabulous children’s splash pad area. Fishing Try your fishing luck in the Nogoa River from either the botanic gardens or the bottom weir. Rifle Range Reserve Rifle Range Reserve is a nature refuge which provides walking tracks set in a tranquil bush setting. Dining and Entertainment From elegant dining to fast food, there’s a style to suit any taste and budget. Emerald has an art gallery, cinema, live bands and regular visiting arts and theatre in addition to a wide range of events. Shopping Emerald is a regional shopping centre and offers a thriving CBD and three major shopping complexes with Woolworths, Coles, Target and Big W. It also has many specialty and boutique stores.

Point of Interest Outside the Town Hall you will find a fossilised tree estimated to be 250 million years old. The tree was unearthed in 1979 when a new railway bridge was being built across the Mackenzie River for the Gregory Mine.

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maraboon pet resort ■ ■ ■ ■

Standard and luxury accommodation options for cats and dogs ■ Premium dog grooming studio Air conditioned rooms with indoor/outdoor runs, premium bedding and large exercise yards Doggy day care service Facility tours by appointment

2 Keeping Street (PO Box 2316), Emerald 4720 P: 07 4987 7748 E: admin@maraboonpetresort.com.au www.maraboonpetresort.com.au


EMERALD CABIN AND CARAVAN VILLAGE Centrally located within walking distance to the CBD, modern shopping centres, sporting facilities, botanical gardens and many other tourist attractions. We overlook Emerald’s 18 hole golf course which has a clubhouse and bistro.

64 Opal Street, Emerald 4720 P: 07 4982 1300 F: 07 4987 5320 E: eccv1@bigpond.net.au www.emeraldcabinandcaravanvillage.com.au

We are passionate about delivering a unique, high quality, fun and rewarding experience for all our customers both Local and Visitors. We bring the very best of authentic, warmth, character and fun to create an addictive atmosphere and pride ourselves on our customer service ... we are not just another pub! Irish pub and accommodation trading from 10am til midnight Sunday–Thursday then 10am til 2am Friday and Saturday. Open for meals from 12–3 and 5:30 til 9, 7 days a week. Live music every weekend and some week nights.  New Local Owners  New Beer Garden  Fully Refurbished  New Kids Playroom  Relaxed Dress Code  Competitive Meal and Drink Prices  Great Value, Great Service, Great Welcome. 63 Clermont St, Emerald P: 07 4987 7829 E: emerald@theirishvillage.com.au www.theirishvillage.com.au

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Capella Located within the famous Peak Downs District, Capella is renowned for its productive fertile soils and spectacular scenery.

Things to Experience

Capella Pioneer Village Explore the Central Highlands’ agricultural and pastoral history at the Capella Pioneer Village. More than 5,000 items are grouped into exhibits including: settlers, the wool industry, railway, wartime, Queensland – British Food Corporation 1948–56, grain farming and Capella life. The village features the 1869 ‘Peak Downs’ Homestead; Australia’s largest restored dropplank homestead.

Don’t miss the annual Capella Pioneer Village Heritage Day held on the second Saturday in September. Australian Light Horse Monument According to local lore, the first time Australian troops wore the now famous emu feathers in their slouch hats was at ‘Peak Downs’ station during the Great Shearers’ Strike of 1891. The locally constructed Australian Light Horse Monument in the Capella Parklands is a striking dedication to the area’s contribution to the history and tradition of Australian armed forces. Capella Creek Nature Walk Area Amble along Capella Creek to view more than 120 woodland bird species that call the area home. Examples of the area’s rocks are found in the Geo-park near the bridge. Lilyvale Waterhole Lilyvale, named after the Crinum lilies that grow around the waterhole, was once a thriving town on the Cobb and Coach route from the coast to Clermont until the railway bypassed it. Now only a few remnants of broken ceramics can be seen at the Lilyvale waterhole. A shelter was built on the original location of the Lilyvale Hotel as part of the 1988 bicentennial celebrations. Townsfolk had clung to the hotel roof during floods. Floods also washed away the headstones in the cemetery so a plaque has been mounted listing those who were buried.

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Experience the great inland way

Traveller’s Tip:

Please keep all campfires confined within an appropriate fire pit or fire place.

In addition to its historical interest, Lilyvale waterhole is a great ‘out of the way’ spot to camp. Peak Range Lookout Travel one kilometre south of Capella to the Peak Range Lookout and take in the beauty of ‘The Peaks’; a chain of prominent and picturesque mountains. Capella Covered Arena Located at the Bridgeman Park Sporting Complex, Capella Covered Arena is the largest arena of its type in Australia. It is the venue for concerts and sporting events such as cutting, campdrafting, rodeos and gymkhanas.

Capella Cultural Centre Catch some great live performances or a latest release movie at the Capella Cultural Centre. Capella Aquatic Centre Relax and unwind at Capella’s ‘beach’ – the Capella Aquatic Centre, which features five solar-heated pools, gym, squash courts, barbecues, waterslide and café. Point of Interest 30 murals are painted on light poles and walls along Peak Downs Street, depicting Capella’s history.

CAPELLA PIONEER VILLAGE

Capella Van Park

1869 mortise and tenon Peak Downs homestead, > 5000 objects in 17 buildings, country cinema, vintage farming machinery, wool industry, Capella life. Open Wed, Thurs, Fri and Sun between 9am and 12noon. $12 Adults | $9 Seniors/Students Tour and school group bookings welcome anytime.

Capella Van Park is a family owned/managed quiet and spacious country park set amongst trees, providing shaded sites, birdlife and friendly service. ■ All concrete slab powered sites ■ Grassed unpowered sites ■ Walking distance to all town facilities

1 Pioneer Street, Capella 4723 P: 07 4984 9425 E: mhburns@bigpond.com www.capella.com.au

13 Langton Street, Capella 4723 P: 07 4984 9615 F: 07 4985 2867 E: capellavanpark@hotmail.com www.facebook.com/Capella.Van.Park

www.centralhighlands.com.au

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Capella Town Map

Tieri Tieri is a vibrant mining community supporting the nearby Oaky Creek coal mine. It has a shopping centre, caravan park, hotel and cabin accommodation, community centre and sporting facilities including a swimming pool, and golf and bowls club.

Things to Experience

Bundoora Dam The man-made dam is constructed on German Creek and holds around 10,000 megalitres of water. It’s an ideal spot for water skiing and swimming and has areas of sandy shoreline. For those keen fishers, the dam is full of saratoga, golden perch, eel-tail catfish, sleepy cod, spangled perch and red claw crayfish. If you’re looking for a spot to stop overnight, this is a perfect place to camp and the area is well-equipped with tables and public amenities. 26

Point of Interest Streets in the town centre are named after cattle stations that originally surrounded the town.


Experience the capricorn way SANDSTONE WILDERNESS

EXPERIENCE THE CAPRICORN WAY

Duaringa Duaringa is the welcoming gateway to the Central Highlands. It is the oldest town in the area dating back to the 1870s and a corner of the old Duaringa Hotel has been preserved as a reminder of that pioneering lifestyle.

Things to Experience

Duaringa Historical and Tourism Centre The Duaringa Historical and Tourism Centre is easily identified from the Capricorn Highway by a huge mural; painted by local artists, depicting the meeting of the Dawson and Mackenzie Rivers flowing into the Fitzroy River. Inside you’ll find tourist information and historical pieces donated by people in the area. Local arts and crafts are also for sale. The centre is open daily from May to September. Mackenzie Park Mackenzie Park is home to the unique Budgeroo or Duaringa stringy bark tree.

These trees were of great cultural significance to the early Aboriginal community, who used its bark to make rope, baskets and building material. The park has a camping area with electric barbecues and hot showers for a gold coin donation. From May to September, enjoy delicious home cooking and meet some of the locals: ƒƒ O  n Saturday mornings for ‘Brekky in the Park’ hosted by the local Lioness Club members. ƒƒ O  n Sunday afternoons for afternoon tea hosted by the Duaringa Playgroup and Duaringa State School. Cakes and biscuits are also for sale. Fishing Anglers can try their luck in the Mackenzie River 20 kilometres to the north, or in the Dawson River nine kilometres to the south-east.

Point of Interest One of the original buildings, the Duaringa Post Office was built in 1934 and is still operational.

www.centralhighlands.com.au

27


Dingo Nestled in grazing country, Dingo is named after the native Australian dog that roamed the area. The town sits at the junction of two major highways that service the beef, timber and coal industries.

Things to Experience Dingo Statue A life-sized bronze statue of a dingo sits in the main street as a tribute to the town’s name. Bingegang Weir Located 65 kilometres north of Dingo, Bingegang Weir is a popular destination for fishing, camping and boating. World Dingo Trap Throwing Competition Dingo is home to the annual World Dingo Trap Throwing Competition held in conjunction with a country race day in August. The traps are thrown like a ‘hammer throw’ with the record currently standing at 48 metres. Blackdown Tableland Gateway Dingo (51 km) and Bluff (53 km) are convenient access points to explore Blackdown Tableland National Park and offer caravan park and hotel accommodation.

28


Experience the capricorn way

Traveller’s Tip:

Slow down, take your time, remember, you’re on HOLIDAYS.

bluff Originally known as Duckworth, the town name was changed in 1877 to Bluff to match the name of the railway station.

Things to Experience

Bluff Railway Station Bluff is a major railway assembly depot for the surrounding coal basin and a must-see destination for train spotters. Coal Train Facts ƒƒ Trains can be more than two kilometres with up to 100 carriages. ƒƒ Total loaded weight is 10,800 tonnes. ƒƒ The value of saleable coal per train is approximately $850,000 to $1 million.

bluff hotel ‘Genuine country hospitality’ Flat, grassed camping area (fees apply) ■ Power ■ Showers/toilets ■ Laundry ■ Coldest beers in the Highlands ■ Comfortable A/C ‘pub stay’ rooms ■ Meals/snacks/coffee 7 days 6am – 8pm ■

34 Main Street (Capricorn Highway), Bluff 4702 P: 07 4982 9158 M: 0409 360 911 E: emzintrust@bigpond.com.au www.bluff hotel.com

Point of Interest In 1894 Bluff Colliery began operating the Cambria mine, one of Central Queensland’s first coal mines.

www.centralhighlands.com.au

29


BLACKDOWN TABLELAND NATIONAL PARK

Traveller’s Tip:

Sorry, no pets allowed in Queensland National Parks.

30


Experience the capricorn way

Rising abruptly above the surrounding plains, Blackdown Tableland National Park is a cool oasis. Covering approximately 47, 950 hectares, this sandstone plateau boasts colourful wildlife, spectacular views and a range of nature-based activities. Blackdown is the traditional home of the Ghungalu people, who have visited this place for thousands of years and left behind rock art; vivid reminders of their special culture.

Things to Experience

Walking Walking tracks will take you to the park’s heritage sites, creeks and waterfalls. Lookouts are provided to take in stunning views and capture that spectacular photograph.

For further information, maps, walking trails and camping permits visit www.queenslandnationalparks.com.au

Four-wheel-driving Following the Loop Road, pass magnificent sandstone outcrops, alive with basket ferns and king orchids, then stop at Mitha Boongulla lookout for great views of the surrounding plains. Suitable for high clearance four-wheel-drive vehicles only. Viewing Wildlife The best way to see Blackdown’s birdlife is to wake with them at Munall camping area. By day, look carefully on sandstone ledges for skinks, geckos and goannas basking. By night, take a torchlight stroll to glimpse gliders, owls and insectivorous bats taking to the air. Picnic Areas Picnic tables, gas barbecues and toilets are provided for day visitors at Yaddamen Dhina lookout.

Access Blackdown Tableland National Park is located between Dingo and Bluff. The six kilometre sealed road up the tableland is steep and winding and is not suitable for towing heavy trailers or caravans. Accommodation Relax in Munall camping area’s cool and quiet bush surroundings. Book a campsite online, in advance. Caravan park and motel accommodation is available in Dingo, Bluff, Duaringa and Blackwater.

www.centralhighlands.com.au

31


blackwater Blackwater, known as the ‘coal capital of Queensland’, is a town filled with a rich history and a heart-warming community, and is surrounded by natural treasures.

Things to Experience

Blackwater International Coal Centre (BICC) The centre is home to the Australian Coal Mining Museum, mine tours, Japanese Gardens, Eliza’s Cottage store, coffee shop, cinema and visitor information centre. Australian Coal Mining Museum The Australian Coal Mining Museum offers a collection of exciting and educational exhibits, media displays and simulators that delve into the past, present and future of mining. Mine Tours Visit one of the largest open cut coal mines in the Southern Hemisphere for an experience to remember. See the magnificence of massive open cut pits, oversized machinery and equipment, and learn about coal mining from an expert. Tours depart from the BICC and bookings are essential. Japanese Gardens The Japanese Gardens were opened on the 1 August 1998 and built as a symbol of the relationship between Blackwater and sister city Fujisawa, Japan. The gardens provide a great spot to sit, relax, have a picnic and take in the serenity. 32

Blackwater Lions Park Found on the Capricorn Highway, the Lions Park is well known for one of the largest displays of flags in the world. The 37 flags represent the different nationalities that worked side-by-side to establish the district’s coal industry. The park has other historic features that include a restored engine of a 1953 C Class locomotive train and the old railway station that was built in 1877. Bedford Weir Escape to Bedford Weir, a popular boating, camping and fishing spot on the beautiful Mackenzie River, 25 kilometres north of Blackwater.

Blackwater International Coal Centre The iconic Blackwater International Coal Centre incorporates over 20 separate exhibits exploring the past, present and future of the Australian coal industry, guided mine tours, modern training and conference facilities, 100 seat digital cinema, Visitor Information Centre, Coal Café and Japanese Gardens.

Capricorn Highway, Blackwater 4717 P: 07 4982 7755 E: manager@bicc.com.au www.bicc.com.au


Experience the capricorn way

The area is suitable for overnight stays and water (not potable), toilets and showers are available.

Don’t miss the annual Saratoga Spectacular fishing contest held in September.

Wood-fired barbecues and a playground are set in shaded areas by the river, making it an ideal picnic spot.

Coal Face Memorial Located near the ambulance station in Mackenzie Street is a memorial titled ‘At the Coal Face’, which commemorates all the miners killed in accidents at Blackwater coal mine pits.

The weir is stocked with barramundi, saratoga and yellowbelly, or throw in a pot to catch some of our freshwater crayfish, red claw. The peace and tranquillity of Bedford Weir encourages a wide range of wildlife. Keep a look out for wallabies, potoroos, echidnas and bandicoots. Bird lovers are in for a treat, with as many as 30 species of birdlife calling the weir their home.

Point of Interest Two pine trees grown from seeds taken from the Gallipoli peninsula in Turkey are the highlight of the town’s war memorial in Arthur Street.

image: Lilyvale Waterhole

Contributing to Regional Industry Diversity. @bhpbilliton

bhpbilliton.com

www.centralhighlands.com.au

33


blackwater Town Map

34


Experience the capricorn way

comet Comet was named after the Comet River that runs close to the township. The river itself was named by Ludwig Leichhardt during his first expedition through Central Queensland after observing Comet Wilmot in the western sky in December 1844.

Things to Experience

Dig Tree View the Coolibah tree trunk that Ludwig Leichhardt marked with ‘DIG L’ and a downward arrow during his second exploration of the region in 1847. ‘DIG’ indicated to those who followed that he had buried a powder canister under the tree containing letters and journals. The marked area of the tree was later removed and is housed in a purpose-built display in Comet. Comet Railway Station Located at Whistle Stop Park, the old Comet railway station houses a display of local memorabilia including old photographs and heritage railway bridge plans. Historical Walk Take a self-guided walk that highlights the historical points of interest around the town. Fishing Drop a line into the Comet River under the railway bridge, at the Comet Weir or in the Mackenzie River at Riley’s Crossing. Historic Comet Cemetery Take a drive to the historic Comet cemetery and contemplate what may have caused the deaths of 73 people between 1877 and 1879.

Point of Interest Empty beer bottles were used in the structure of the railway bridge built in 1914. They were discovered in 2005 when the bridge was reconstructed.

www.centralhighlands.com.au

35


SAPPHIRE GEMFIELDS

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Experience the capricorn way

You’re sure to catch gem fever when you visit the towns of Rubyvale, Sapphire, Anakie and Willows Gemfields. Hear tales of famous sapphires found by local miners and fossickers at one of the world’s most significant sapphire-bearing grounds. The Central Queensland Sapphire Gemfields are only a 45-minute drive west of Emerald and cover almost 900 square kilometres. People from all over the world descend on the Sapphire Gemfields each year to experience fossicking firsthand and try their luck to find the ultimate gem. If it’s treasure that you’re seeking or the opportunity to experience a real-life mining town, the Sapphire Gemfields has it all with its array of gem shops, galleries, jewellers, underground mines and fossicking areas. The area is rich in history, character and charm, and, just like digging for buried treasure, if you look beyond the surface, you’ll be surprised what you can find. Many of the residents today were once tourists who came back and never left. The lifestyle of the Sapphire Gemfields today is very laid back and peaceful and visitors are always made to feel welcome. A visit to the Sapphire Gemfields is sure to be an experience you’ll never forget.

Things to Experience

Gemshops and Galleries There’s no better place to purchase an Australian-mined and cut sapphire or quality sapphire jewellery. Gem-cutters are available to facet your very own find and jewellers will set them into a piece of jewellery that could become a valuable family heirloom to be treasured forever. Fossicking Try your hand at finding a fortune with nine areas designated for recreational and tourist fossicking across the Sapphire Gemfields. Fossicker’s permits are required and can be purchased online or at various businesses. They are inexpensive and come with a set of maps and rules. Hand tools and mining gear are also available for sale or hire. ‘Tag Along’ Fossicking Tours Take a ‘tag along’ fossicking tour to dig, sieve, wash and inspect

your very own diggings under guidance from an experienced miner. All gear is supplied. Fossicking Parks Fossicking parks enable people of all ages and fitness to join the fun of finding a sapphire. With the digging work already done, visitors can buy a bag of wash and start searching straight away. Friendly staff are on hand to provide advice and guidance on how to sieve and sort sapphires and zircons. Four-wheel-drive Four-wheel-driving tracks are everywhere. Try a day out to Tomahawk Creek Fossicking area with 2,500 hectares of bush tracks. Camping Camping is allowed in the fossicking parks, however permits are necessary. Geo-Caching Discover 19 hidden gems on the Sapphire Gemfields geo-cache trail. Grab your GPS and treasure map from the Central Highlands Visitor Information Centre, and hit the trail for fun and adventure. Miners Common Don’t be surprised to give way to cattle, horses and camels. Officially proclaimed in November 1914 and known as the heart and soul of the Gemfields, the miners common covers 4,500 hectares. On the last remaining miners common in Australia, residents have the right to graze a few head of livestock in unfenced areas including the town centre of Sapphire and Rubyvale. Gemfields Architecture Pioneers of the Sapphire Gemfields built their homes or ‘humpies’ out of a wide range of unique materials. From billy boulders to bush timber, corrugated iron and even glass bottles. Local Characters Meet the friendly locals and characters called the ‘Gemmies’. www.centralhighlands.com.au

37


Sapphire Gemfields Map

38


Traveller’s Tip:

sapphire Things to Experience

Fossicking Big Bessie – Sapphire-bearing shallow wash covers most of the area. It has been extensively worked but there are still patches of undisturbed ground that is likely to contain sapphires.

When out and about SLIP, SLOP and SLAP and drink plenty of water.

Graves Hill – Green, yellow and blue sapphires have been found in the shallow wash that covers more than half of the 116-hectare area. Bush Walking Get in touch with nature as you walk through the 94 hectares of Sapphire Wetlands situated behind the Kangoulu Park. Photo Opportunities If you love a photo opportunity then ‘The Big Ring’, ‘Big Spanner’, and ‘Big Pick and Shovel’ can all be found in and around Sapphire.

Point of Interest FW Schlieffen was a piano tuner who drowned in a swollen creek in 1906. Floodwater made for a difficult burial, in fact holes had to be drilled into the coffin so it would sink into the grave and allow FW Schlieffen to rest in peace. Rest he did without a plaque for 94 years until 2000 when two plaques were placed on his headstone.

pat’s gems tourist fossicking park ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■

Sapphire fossicking Gemstones and jewellery Licensed café/restaurant Budget accommodation Souvenirs, and much more Open 7 days from 8am

BLUE GEM TOURIST PARK ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■

1056 Rubyvale Road, Sapphire 4702 P: 07 4985 4544 F: 07 4985 4544 E: patsgems@bigpond.com

Located on the banks of Retreat Creek – Sapphire Green grass/slab sites – vans & camping Cabins Fossicking park/ equipment hire/licences Food, fuel, gas, ice Pet friendly Excellent customer service

925 Anakie-Sapphire Road, Sapphire 4702 P: 07 4985 4162 E: kanya2@bigpond.com www.bluegemtouristpark.com.au

www.centralhighlands.com.au

39


Rubyvale Things to Experience

Fossicking Middle Ridge – Sapphire and zircon gems can be found in the mostly shallow wash of this area. Tomahawk Creek – More remotely located some 45 kilometres north-west of Rubyvale. Blue and ‘parti’ coloured sapphires have been found in the generally shallow wash. Walk-in Mine Tour Step into another world on a walk-in mine tour where the underground temperature sits at a cool 24–27 degrees Celsius. Tours take visitors through the network of tunnels, providing insight into the process of underground sapphire mining. Marvel at the tiny tunnels called ‘tummy tunnels’ used by the pioneer miners. Australian Miners Historic Museum The Australian Miners Historic Museum houses relics from the Sapphire Gemfields’ colourful history.

40

Policeman’s Knob Policeman’s Knob offers great views over the surrounding landscape and is a perfect spot to take in the sunset. Keep an eye out for rock wallabies who find the rock structure an ideal home. Point of Interest The movie Buddies was filmed in Rubyvale. It starred Colin Friels, Harold Hopkins, Kris McQuade and many local people as extras. The story depicted life on the Sapphire Gemfields during the machinery boom of the 1970s.


MINERS HERITAGE WALK-IN MINE Australia’s largest underground sapphire mine tour... Visit Miners Heritage Walk-In Mine and discover the amazing world of sapphires. Guided mine tours depart from 9.15am, we will take you 15 metres underground and through 440 metres of hand dug tunnels. Learn about the formation of sapphires and marvel at the original ‘monkey drive’ tunnels that date back to 1906 – don’t forget to bring your camera!

sapphire and semi-precious silver jewellery plus crystals, fossils and gems from all over the world. Come and experience Miners Heritage Walk-In Mine, your one stop introduction to the Sapphire Gemfields.

Want to find your own sapphires? Buy a bucket of ‘wash’, straight from our mine to you. We’ll help you identify and find your own sapphires to take home.

Features  Fully Guided Mine Tour (minimum 2 people)  Unique Handcrafted Jewellery  Underground Museum  Fossicking Park  Established 1984  Open 7 Days

With over 60 years’ combined jewellery knowledge we can help you find that extra special souvenir. Our award winning showroom has the largest display of local sapphires, exquisite handmade gold jewellery,

APRIL – SEPT 9am-5pm OCT – MARCH 9am-3pm

97 Her itage Road, Rub yvale, QLD P: 07 498 5 444 4 E: admin@minersher ita W: ww w.minersheri ge.com.au tage.c om.au

Rubyvale Gem Gallery Mining sapphires since 1974  Gem Gallery  Café  Holiday Apartments

Established 1988 The most outstanding collection of sapphires and designer jewellery. SHARING OUR SAPPHIRE STORY Main Street, Rubyvale 4702 p: 07 49 854 388 e: admin@rubyvalegemgallery.com www.rubyvalegemgallery.com

new royal hotel ■ ■ ■ ■

Winner of Best Bush Pub 2014, 2015 and 2016 A true Aussie pub located in the heart of the Gemfields Grab a cold beer or wine and enjoy a great meal Stay in the unique log cabins or top up your supplies at the bottleshop

Cnr Keilambete & Goanna Flats Roads, Rubyvale 4702 P: 07 4985 4754 E: info@rubyvalehotel.com.au www.rubyvalehotel.com.au

WINNER

2007 AUSTRALIAN TOURISM AWARDS SPECIALISED TOURISM SERVICES

Rubyvale caravan park Situated just opposite the pub and centrally located to local amenities including the post office, café and jewellery shops. The pet-friendly park has flat, shady, easy accessible caravan, motor home, camper trailer and tent sites + pool, free Wi-Fi, laundry and camp kitchen. Fully self-contained Family, Queen and Value cabins for 2 to 6 people.

16 Main Street, Rubyvale 4702 P: 07 4985 4118 E: stay@rubyvalecaravanpark.com.au www.rubyvalecaravanpark.com.au www.centralhighlands.com.au

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sapphire Map

42

rubyvale Map


Experience the capricorn way

Anakie Anakie was declared a township in 1885, making it the oldest town on the Sapphire Gemfields. It is positioned at the Sapphire Gemfields ‘crossroads’ and is the area’s civic centre with the police and school located here.

Things to Experience

Fossicking Glenalva fossicking area is situated 20 kilometres south-west of Anakie. A variety of coloured sapphires can be found in the shallow wash that covers most of this area.

Point of Interest In 1971, a disgruntled patron blew out the front section of the local hotel with gelignite.

initials of soldiers and their sweethearts before they went to war.

Gemfest – Festival of Gems Gemfest is held over four days in August each year. The festival showcases exquisite gemstones and jewellery from local, national and international traders. Anakie Railway Station The Anakie Railway Station was built in 1884 as part of the rail push into western Queensland. To meet the demand for water from the train’s steam engines a dam had to be constructed. The dam was dug by pick and shovel and at its deepest was six metres. Today the dam is used for recreational purposes. Also located next to the railway station is a 130-year-old bottle tree engraved with the

Anakie Hotel ■ ■ ■ ■

Over 100-year-old country pub, two minutes from the Capricorn Highway Cold beer and good food Dining room lined with photos and information on the area Budget motel units with AC close to Gemfest site

3 Richardson Street, Anakie 4702 P: 07 4985 4100 E: wendy@rubyvalehotel.com.au www.facebook.com/Anakie-Gemfields-Hotel-Motel

Anakie Caravan Park ■ ■ ■ ■ ■

Only 2km off the Capricorn Highway Powered/unpowered caravan and camp sites Ensuited units/budget cabins ■ Camp kitchen Kiosk/local sapphires/jewellery ■ Fossicking park Pet friendly ■ Great stopover to break your journey or to visit the famous Sapphire Gemfields

7 Richardson Street, Anakie 4702 P: 07 4985 4142 E: anakievanpark@bigpond.com

www.centralhighlands.com.au

43


Willows Gemfields

Bogantungan

The Willows Gemfields are located 35 kilometres west of the Anakie-Sapphire crossroads. It is a popular spot for fossicking, specking and experiencing a quiet bush life.

While today Bogantungan is just a few houses on the highway, it has its place in history.

Things to Experience

Fossicking The Willows Gemfields is a popular fossicking spot as very little machinery was ever used there. It is known for its green and yellow sapphires.

Bogantungan Historical Railway Station On 26 February 1960, Bogantungan became the site of one of Queensland’s worst train disasters. The Midlander passenger train, heading east to Rockhampton, passed over the flooded Medway Creek, just west of the town.

The occurrence of gems is in shallow wash and the favourite spots are reasonably close to town.

The bridge collapsed when the train was partly over, and a number of carriages dropped into the water. Sadly, four passengers and three crew were killed and 43 people were injured.

Point of Interest Some of the world’s most famous sapphires have been found on the Willows Gemfields, including a 332 carat rough yellow, aptly named the ‘Golden Willow’.

The Bogantungan railway station has numerous interpretive panels and memorabilia about the crash.

Traveller’s Tip:

Twitches, we have local bird lists available at the Emerald Visitor Centre.

44

Things to Experience

Point of Interest Take a wander through the Bogantungan cemetery and see the grave site of the ‘Unknown Pioneer’.


WHAT CROP IS THAT?

Cotton

Sorghum

Citrus

Planting August to December Picking February to June

Planting December to February Harvest April to July

Harvest March to September

Sunflower

Wheat

Table Grapes

Planting January to March Harvest June to August

Planting April to June Harvest September to November

Prune May to July Harvest October to December

Mungbeans

Chickpeas

Corn

Planting December to February Harvest March to May

Planting April to July Harvest September to November

Planting January to March Harvest June to August

www.centralhighlands.com.au

45


Ag-Grow, Emerald

EVENTS St Patrick’s Day Races, Springsure March Celebrate St Patrick’s Day the racing way with a five-race program, Fashions on the Field and after races entertainment.

Springsure St Patricks Races

Eat Street Markets, Emerald March Indulge in a foodie extravaganza, relax on a blanket under the stars and enjoy the live entertainment.

Emerald Jockey Club

Central Highlands Sunflower Festival, Emerald Easter The festival is jam-packed with activities, competitions and events. It’s fun for the whole family with a street parade, races, rodeo, art exhibition and school fete.

Central Highlands Easter Sunflower Festival

Blackwater May Day Fun Fair, Blackwater May Spend the Labour Day long weekend in Blackwater enjoying a rodeo, car and motorbike show, rides, stalls, entertainment and fireworks.

Blackwater May Day Fun Fair

Central Highlands Agricultural Show Circuit, Capella, Springsure, Emerald and Comet Late May/early June Join all the fun of the fair including ring events, pavilion displays, stalls, Sideshow Alley, live entertainment and fireworks. The Comet show is held in September. 46

July Featuring more than 300 exhibitors targeting the agricultural and mining industries. Ag-Grow incorporates several well-known events including the Queensland Working Cattle Dog Championships and the Queensland Superior Beef Bull Sale. www.aggrow.com.au

World Dingo Trap Throwing Competition and Race Day, Dingo August The World Dingo Trap Throwing Competition is held in conjunction with a country race day and features Fashions on the Field and live entertainment.

Dingo Race Club

Gigs & Digs Festival, Emerald August A regional festival that encapsulates the tastes, sounds and character of the Central Highlands. www.gigsdigs.com.au

Gemfest – Festival of Gems, Sapphire Gemfields August Gemfest is an annual four-day exhibition providing a unique gemstone and jewellery experience, including offerings from respected local, national and international gemstone traders, quality entertainment and food. www.gemfest.com.au

Capella Pioneer Village Heritage Day, Capella Second Saturday in September The Capella Old Machinery and Craft Fair is held on the second Saturday of September at the Capella Pioneer Village. There is something for everyone with craft stalls, entertainment, food, a fashion parade, blacksmithing, and vintage engines and tractor rallying.

Capella Museum


Saratoga Spectacular, Blackwater October The barras bite and the ‘togas’ tip the scales at the Saratoga Spectacular fishing competition held at Bedford Weir. Thousands of dollars worth of prizes are up for grabs for the biggest fish, lucky draw and raffles. www.spectacular.mrfsa.org.au

Emerald 100 Race Day, Emerald Second Saturday in October Pioneer Park is a sea of colour as locals converge to witness a great day’s racing and participate in the festivities on offer. The Emerald 100 is Emerald’s major race day and always a highlight of the social calendar.

Emerald Jockey Club

Markets Emerald Lions Markets – First Sunday of each month Rubyvale Markets – Every Saturday, March to October Sapphire Markets – Every Sunday, March to October For a comprehensive events calendar and the latest information contact the Central Highlands Visitor Information Centre or www.centralhighlands.com.au

10th – 13th August 2017 / 9th – 12th August 2018

www.centralhighlands.com.au

47


DRIVE TRAILS

You could spend weeks driving around the Central Highlands – it’s a perfect place to enjoy magnificent scenery, explore at your own pace and to ‘get off the beaten track’. Stop at one of the visitor information centres to pick up some suggestions for self-drive itineraries, a map, and some local knowledge on road and weather conditions. Routes vary in length from 2–3 hours, to a full day’s drive, so pack a picnic and enjoy the trip.

To get you started

Springsure: Koalas, Farming and History This scenic route takes you to the top of Mount Zamia, which overlooks Springsure. Enjoy a picnic at Fred’s Gorge, or see for miles from one of the lookouts. Continue north through Eclipse Gap, along the Acturus Road where you may be lucky to spot a koala along Springsure Creek. The Orion area is some of the best agricultural country in Central Queensland. As you head back to Springsure, view the original road up the Staircase Range that was constructed by hand in the 1880s out of the natural sandstone formation that gives the area its name. Springsure: Beautiful Buckland ‘The Home of the Rivers’ or ‘The Roof of Queensland’ are two common names for the spectacular Buckland Tableland. This section of the Great Dividing Range contains the headwaters of the Warrego, Maranoa, Comet, Nogoa and Barcoo Rivers. This tour has some beautiful panoramic views of the Buckland Tableland 48

and an experience of rugged beauty of the Buckland Gorge. Capella: Bound for Bundoora Dam This loop heads through broadacre farming and grazing country in the midst of the majestic Peak Range. As you pass open cut mines, look out for one of the huge draglines in action – the Bowen Basin is one of the richest coal deposits in the country. Enjoy a picnic or a spot of fishing at the Bundoora Dam, and visit the local town of Tieri before returning to Capella. Rubyvale: Volcanic Vistas An amazing feature of this drive are the significant number of extinct volcanos that dot the horizon. This drive will take you from Rubyvale to Theresa Creek Dam and then onto Clermont. The road is sealed all the way. Return to Rubyvale via Capella taking in views of the Peak Range National Park. Emerald: Fairbairn Dam Loop Departing Emerald via Selma Road, this drive is sealed its entire length and takes you out through the fertile irrigation areas, where you will discover citrus orchards, cotton fields, grape vines and a diverse range of agricultural activities depending on the season. Enjoy the various lookout points and recreational areas of Fairbairn Dam. Continue along Selma Road until you reach the Gregory Highway, 17 kilometres south of Emerald. A drive trail booklet is available from the Central Highlands Visitor Information Centre, Emerald.


Discover Great Deals as

An Outback Mate! Visit an Outback Visitor Information Centre for more information! rs & More! | Merchandise | Gifts | Tou nts ura sta Re | n tio da Accommo

www.outbackmates.com.au

www.centralhighlands.com.au

49


Capricorn Coast & Great Keppel Island

Welcome to paradise; an easy 3.5 hours drive east of Emerald lies the sparkling waters of the Capricorn Coast. At the heart of it all is the twin-seaside villages of Yeppoon and Emu Park, overlooking Great Keppel Island... This is the Southern Great Barrier Reef...Where great Begins! Clermont Byfield Capella

Great Keppel Island Emu Park

ROCKHAMPTON

Rubyvale EMERALD

Sapphire

Pumpkin Island

Yeppoon

Blackwater

Anakie

Mt Morgan

Willows

GLADSTONE

Dululu

Springsure

Rolleston

Biloela

Monto Carnarvon Gorge National Park

Eidsvold Mundubbera Gayndah

For tours & accommodation contact Capricorn Coast Visitor Information Centre Scenic Highway, Yeppoon Freecall 1800 675 785 l Open 7 Days www.capricornholidays.com.au


BUSINESS LISTINGS Anakie Caravan park

DUARINGA POST & NEWS

Anakie Hotel

EMERALD AIRPORT

Arcadia Valley Escape

EMERALD CABIN AND CARAVAN VILLAGE

BHP BILLITON MITSUBISHI ALLIANCE

emerald central palms motel

Blackwater International Coal Centre

EMERALD EXPLORERS INN

BLUE GEM TOURIST PARK

emerald maraboon motor inn

Bluff Hotel

EMERALD TOURIST PARK

CAPELLA PIONEER VILLAGE

Gemfest festival of gems

Capella Van Park

HELI-CENTRAL

DISCOVERY PARKS

Kalesti Butler Music

7 Richardson Street, Anakie, QLD 4702 P: 07 4985 4142 E: anakievanpark@bigpond.com

3 Richardson Street, Anakie, QLD 4702 P: 07 4985 4100 E: wendy@rubyvalehotel.com.au www.facebook.com/Anakie-Gemfields-Hotel-Motel

Arcadia Valley Road, Injune, QLD 4454 P: 07 4626 7197 www.arcadiavalleyescape.com

Unit 3, 41 Anakie Street, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 0427 000 285 E: peter.dowling@bhpbilliton.com www.bhpbilliton.com

Capricorn Highway, Blackwater, QLD 4717 P: 07 4982 7755 E: manager@bicc.com.au www.bicc.com.au

925 Anakie-Sapphire Road, Sapphire, QLD 4702 P: 07 4985 4162 E: kanya2@bigpond.com www.bluegemtouristpark.com.au

34 Main Street (Capricorn Highway), Bluff, QLD 4702 P: 07 4982 9158 E: emzintrust@bigpond.com.au www.bluff hotel.com

1 Pioneer Street, Capella, QLD 4723 P: 07 4984 9425 E: mhburns@bigpond.com www.capella.com.au

13 Langton Street, Capella, QLD 4723 P: 07 4984 9615 E: capellavanpark@hotmail.com www.facebook.com/Capella.Van.Park

93 Hospital Access Rd, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4982 1194 E: emerald@discoveryparks.com.au 74 Littlefield St, Blackwater, QLD 4717 P: 07 4982 5611 E: blackwater@discoveryparks.com.au www.discoveryholidayparks.com.au

Cnr Alice & William Streets, Duaringa, QLD 4712 P: 07 4935 7100 F: 07 4935 7341 E: duaringapost@bigpond.com

Gregory Highway, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 1300 242 686 E: enquiries@chrc.qld.gov.au www.centralhighlands.qld.gov.au

64 Opal Street, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4982 1300 E: eccv1@bigpond.net.au www.emeraldcabinandcaravanvillage.com.au

19 Esmond Street, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4982 3600 E: centralpalms@iq.net.au www.emeraldcentralpalms.com

1585 Gregory Highway, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4982 2822 E: admin@emeraldexplorersinn.com.au www.emeraldexplorersinn.com.au

5 Esmond Street, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4982 0777 E: maraboon@emeraldmotel.com.au www.emeraldmotel.com.au

43 Roberts Street, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4982 1589 E: emeraldtouristpark@villagenational.com.au www.facebook.com/emeraldtouristpark

Allen King Memorial Park, Anakie, QLD 4702 P: 07 4985 4375 E: info@gemfest.com.au www.gemfest.com.au

Carnarvon Gorge, QLD P: 07 4984 4662 E: admin@helicentral.net.au www.1800helicopter.com.au

PO Box 664, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 0439 674 759 E: manager@kalestibutler.com www.kalestibutler.com

www.centralhighlands.com.au

51


Lake maraboon holiday village

Rolleston Caravan Park

maraboon pet resort

Rubyvale caravan park

massage therapist & KINESIOLOGIST

Rubyvale gem gallery

Miners Heritage Walk-In Mine

sandstone park

Motel 707

springsure woolshed information centre

new royal hotel

Takarakka Bush Resort & Caravan Park

outback tyres

the irish village

pat’s gems tourist fossicking park

Triple A Safety, Risk & Compliance

Fairbairn Dam Access & Selma Road, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4982 3677 E: enquiries@lmhv.com.au www.lakemaraboonholidayvillage.com.au

2 Keeping Street (PO Box 2316), Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4987 7748 E: admin@maraboonpetresort.com.au www.maraboonpetresort.com.au

PO Box 131, Emerald, QLD 4720 M: 0447 404 431 E: lorelei.glory@bigpond.com

97 Heritage Road, Rubyvale, QLD 4702 P: 07 4985 4444 E: admin@minersheritage.com.au www.minersheritage.com.au

17 Ruby Street, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4982 1707 E: motel707emerald@bigpond.com www.motel707.com

Cnr Keilambete & Goanna Flats Roads, Rubyvale, QLD 4702 P: 07 4985 4754 E: info@rubyvalehotel.com.au www.rubyvalehotel.com.au

92 Eclipse Street, Springsure, QLD 4722 P: 07 4984 1051 E: admin@obtyres.com.au

1056 Rubyvale Road, Sapphire, QLD 4702 P: 07 4985 4544 F: 07 4985 4544 E: patsgems@bigpond.com

46 Comet Street, Rolleston, QLD 4702 P: 07 4984 3145 E: rollcaravanpark@bigpond.com www.rollestoncaravanpark.weebly.com

16 Main Street, Rubyvale, QLD 4702 P: 07 4985 4118 E: stay@rubyvalecaravanpark.com.au www.rubyvalecaravanpark.com.au

Main Street, Rubyvale, QLD 4702 P: 07 49 854 388 E: admin@rubyvalegemgallery.com www.rubyvalegemgallery.com

Carnarvon Gorge, QLD 4420 P: 07 4984 4679 E: info@sandstonepark.com.au www.sandstonepark.com.au

William Street, Springsure, QLD 4722 P: 07 4984 1961

Carnarvon Gorge, QLD P: 07 49 84 84 84 E: info@takarakka.com.au www.takarakka.com.au

63 Clermont Street, Emerald, QLD 4720 P: 07 4987 7829 E: emerald@theirishvillage.com.au www.theirishvillage.com.au

6/92-98 McLaughlin Street, Kawana, QLD 4701 P: 07 4914 0952 E: reception@tripleagroup.com.au www.tripleagroup.com.au

Important Contacts

Hospitals

Emergency Police, Fire, Ambulance Dial 000

Emerald 07 4987 9400

Blackwater 07 4980 1800 Springsure 07 4984 1200

Non emergency Police 13 14 44 Fire 07 4983 7590 Ambulance 13 22 33

(24 hours) 1300 242 686

SES (State Emergency Services) 13 25 00

visitor information centre.

Central Highlands Regional Council

For all church and town services contact the local

Disclaimer: This free guide is produced by the Central Highlands Development Corporation (CHDC) to assist visitors to plan a holiday to the region. Every effort has been made to ensure information is accurate and correct, however the Corporation cannot be held responsible for any errors, changes or omissions. Photo Credit: Thank you to Capricorn Enterprise, Central Highlands Regional Council, Andrea Ferris, Owen Fuller, Lionel Kavanagh, On the Road Photos, Tourism and Events Queensland, Blink Photography and the many contributors and advertisers that supplied editorial material and photographs for this publication.

52


Central Highlands Fun for the whole family Playgrounds, parks and gardens, cycling – BMX tracks and bike paths, libraries with free Wi-Fi, swimming pools – Emerald, Blackwater, Springsure and Tieri, giant waterslide, skate parks, cinemas, Science Centre, PCYCs

Need to know more? Contact the local visitor information centres. Central Highlands Regional Council #discoverch 1300 242 686

www.centralhighlands.qld.gov.au www.centralhighlands.com.au

53


VISITOR INFORMATION CENTRES EMERALD Central Highlands Visitor Information Centre 3 Clermont Street P: 07 4982 4142 E: emerald@chdc.com.au

BLACKWATER Blackwater International Coal Centre Capricorn Highway P: 07 4982 7755 E: manager@bicc.com.au

SPRINGSURE Federation Woolshed Information Centre Gregory Highway P: 07 4984 1961

DUARINGA Duaringa Historical and Tourism Centre Mackenzie Park P: 07 4935 7077

www.centralhighlands.com.au

Central Highlands 2017/2018 Lifestyle & Visitor Guide  

Whether you have travelled from within Queensland, across Australia or from other parts of the world, our region offers you more than you ex...

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