Wandoan and District Follow the footsteps of the daring explorer along the Leichhardt Highway as you head north from Miles. We have a productive grain and cattle industry and we are home to an ancient landscape where rare petrified tree fern can be found. Make this a stop enroute to Isla Gorge.
Wandoan • Guluguba Wandoan • 400 Ludwig Leichhardt passed through here on foot nearly 200 years ago, but lucky for you, we are now only a short car trip north from Miles on the Leichhardt Highway. You can’t miss us when you see the iconic Windmill across from the colourful mural on our main water tank. Meet Mick the Dog in O’Sullivan Park and learn his story which made him a local hero. Following Leichhardt’s glowing reports of the region, a land grab followed and resulted in Juandah Station and the development of a vibrant grain and cattle industry. Originally known as ‘Juandah’, our town was renamed Wandoan in 1926 and grew signiﬁcantly after World War II when large tracts of fertile Brigalow country were offered in the Soldier Settler Land Ballots of the 1950s. Our ‘town scape’ is dominated by grain silos which held the large production of wheat and sorghum once grown in the region. ...Originally known as ‘Juandah’, our town was renamed Wandoan in 1926... In recent years the area surrounding Wandoan has proven to host a rich deposit of coal, and consequent investment from international resource companies has seen the community of Wandoan expand both its population and its facilities. In the near future we will experience signiﬁcant change with the establishment of the Xstrata open cut coal mine, proposed to be the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere at full production. Coal Seam Gas exploration and other major projects are also envisaged for our area including the ‘missing link’ Surat Basin Joint Venture which will connect us to the Port of Gladstone via rail. Drop in and see us at the Wandoan Information Centre located in the old railway station building at the windmill and ask about our heritage trail which includes 23 points of interest, including the Waterloo Plain Environmental Park and the Juandah Historical Site. Waterloo Plain Environmental Park is an 11 hectare park with a large dam teeming with birdlife. You are welcome to park your caravan here for a night and enjoy the wetlands surrounded by native and locally occurring vegetation. Juandah Heritage Site contains original buildings from Juandah Station and many very interesting displays showcasing the history of the Wandoan area. Learn about the exploits of Ludwig Leichhardt in the area or the very interesting stories of the Solider Settler blocks. Wandoan is an active sporting community with immaculate facilities that play host to many national and state championships.
We pride ourselves on our local Showgrounds which cater for a range of sports and community groups including polocrosse, rodeo and campdraft, our famous Wandoan Diggers Race Day and our local pony club. A good time to visit is during September when we play host to the Bucking for Cancer Rodeo, a huge event for our small community which really captures our country hospitality. A monument worth seeing in our town is our Heritage Rock. This huge piece of local sandstone with its decorative face is placed in the courtyard of our Cultural Centre. The history of the district is depicted on its face. The ceramic ﬁgures were crafted by local artists using local ochre to colour their clay. The story unfolds from the top left hand side with the arrival of Leichhardt, the settling of ‘Juandah Station’ by the Royds family and the eventual appearance of mail and passenger coaches. Under one of the trees sits ‘Mick’ the cattle dog, who saved his master’s life on ‘Juandah Station’ by running home with a message scratched on a tobacco tin tucked under his collar after his master had a bad fall from his horse. The story of the Prickly Pear and it’s eradication is also depicted on the face of the rock.
Guluguba • 10 We are a small settlement on the Leichhardt Highway and home to just over forty families in the district. Our closest neighbour is Wandoan. We are known for our cattle and grain production and have a great little school which has been in operation for close to 100 years. If you venture down the Downfall Creek Road from Guluguba, you will ﬁnd the St Johns Downfall Creek Lutheran Church, which was built in 1931. This is the heart of an active community and has been a place of worship for many of the farmers who pioneered the area through the prickly pear menace to what it is now. The early pioneers developed the area producing crops such as cotton, grain, and olives. Most households had very productive market gardens and some sold produce to feed the railway fettlers in Guluguba. Downfall Creek Church remains a lively congregation with its own hall and cemetery. ...a great little school which has been in operation for close to 100 years...
Wandoan Diggers Race Day
Things to see and do...
Held in June each year at the superb facilities that are the Wandoan Showgrounds, Wandoan Diggers Race Day attracts visitors from all across the Western Downs region.
Enjoy 11 hectares of immaculately kept wetlands at Waterloo Plain Environmental Park
A blur of colour and fashion, our annual race day is a popular event enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.
...A blur of colour and fashion... With live entertainment provided to keep patrons well past the last race of the day, Wandoan Diggers Race Day is a real crowd pleaser! Bucking for Cancer Rodeo Another major event for the community of Wandoan, the Bucking for Cancer Rodeo showcases our country hospitality and generosity, raising valuable funds for cancer research. A family friendly event held in September each year, our local rodeo draws a crowd of between 800 and 1,500 people, depending on how many events we can squeeze into the day! Every second year, the Bucking for Cancer Rodeo hosts a full array of rodeo events making it a popular choice for those travelling the circuit. Camping facilities are available for those wanting to stay overnight. 24
Learn about explorer Ludwig Leichhart’s exploration of the Wandoan District at Juandah Historical Site Discover the heroic story of Mick the Dog at Wandoan’s family friendly O’Sullivan Park Browse through a unique blend of arts, crafts and information at the Wandoan Visitor Information Centre Explore the town and its rich history by taking the selfguided Heritage Trail featuring 23 points of interest Do a spot of birdwatching at Waterloo Plain Environmental Park where birdlife are in abundance Find a shady spot along Juandah Creek and try your luck at catching a Yellow belly (Golden Perch) See Wandoan’s social history captured in colourful murals throughout the town Bet on a horse or two at our annual Wandoan Diggers Race Day Come along and feel the excitement of watching the Bucking for Cancer Rodeo held in September each year Join the locals in watching the Polocrosse Carnival held in June each year at the Wandoan Showgrounds Enjoy a great day of football with the Lindsay Williams Shield held in February each year
...why not tick them off as you go
What to do in a day... As the early morning rises over the wetlands of Waterloo Plain, you’ll discover the abundant birdlife bathing and scourging through the reeds for their ﬁrst meal of the day. Capture the ultimate picture of our various species in the hideaway hut nestled between the landscape, before venturing uptown to one of our friendly eateries for your well deserved freshly brewed coffee.
We recommend you visit these destinations in Wandoan
O’Sullivan Park is home to ‘Mick the Dog’s’ heroic story and a craft shop complete with local products ranging from petriﬁed tree fern to quilting. We have an open decking, where you can rest for a while to plan your future days of activities in our region with brochures from the attached Visitor Information Centre. We may be a small community, yet our pride is evident as you appreciate the amazing gallery space and stone interpretative touch panel at our Cultural Centre.
Waterloo Plain Environmental Park
Juandah Historical Site
Wandoan Cultural Centre
Lindsay Williams Oval
For a lunch that will tempt your taste buds, call into the local pub or café before strolling down our characteristic main street. You can also follow the footsteps of our ancestors, by walking our Heritage Trail. Did you know?
Juandah Historical Site offers a relaxing setting allowing you to discover Leichhardt’s journey and amazing stories of the Soldier Settlers at your leisure.
Birdwatchers spotted a whopping 30 species of birds in just 30 minutes at Waterloo Plain Environmental Park.
Showgrounds Hamlyn St
Weldon St RO
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Follow the footsteps of the daring explorer along the Leichhardt Highway as you head north from Miles. We have a productive grain and cattle...