Outback Queensland has a lot to offer tourists if they know where to look. There’s a rugged beauty to the red dirt and mulga trees that are the essence of the outback – and the physical aesthetic is only the beginning! There are heaps of events, attractions and natural landmarks that don’t just draw tourists in; they also keep them coming back time and time again.
Many of these destinations are a several hours’ drive from the east coast of Australia, so if you’re planning to holiday out west, plan in regular stops and make the most of your trip. There are gems to uncover at every stop – and, of course, Chinchilla is one gem you shouldn’t miss!
Here are our top picks for outback holidays that you won’t need to mortgage the house to afford.
Carnarvon Gorge and back again
The Carnarvon Gorge, particularly the Carnarvon National Park, is known for its majestic sandstone cliffs, side gorges, diverse flora and fauna, and rich local Aboriginal history. There is an abundance of walking tracks that take you to the notable parts of the landscape, including rock pools, rock paintings, narrow canyons, bluffs and caves.
The Carnarvon Gorge is 8-9 hours northwest of Brisbane, so be sure to plan your trip in advance.
See the stars at the Cosmos Centre
Instead of veering north as you would to discover Carnarvon, keep going west and you will end up in Charleville. This picturesque country town is a popular tourist destination thanks to its Bilby education program, the Royal Flying Doctor Service visitor centre and the iconic Warrego River, the channel river after which many locations and events in the district are named.
One of the most notable drawcards of this great town is the Cosmos Centre. This observatory and information centre features experienced guides who take you on a journey to the stars and planets, and the clear country night sky means you will get a front-row seat to the heavens. Make sure you book at the Cosmos Centre before you visit to ensure a spot in the specialised tours, and look forward to an unforgettable glimpse into the endless night sky.
Visit the Stockman’s Hall of Fame
Head northwest from Charleville through Tambo and Barcaldine to reach perhaps the most well-known town in outback Queensland: Longreach. Its popularity is largely due to the iconic Australian Stockman’s Hall of Fame, which was officially opened in 1988 by Queen Elizabeth. The Hall of Fame and Outback Heritage Centre is home to five themed galleries that use a variety of mediums to communicate the stories of key players in Australia’s outback history. Visit them online to learn more about exhibits, events and admissions.
Check in at a homestead
Homesteads in outback Queensland often showcase the vast contrasts present throughout the vibrant landscape. These beautifully kept gems nestled amongst the raw wilderness give visitors a taste of the harsh environment, which swings so quickly between calm and chaos for those that work on the land daily. No matter where you’re headed, you are likely to find a property that offers public access with guided tours by the friendly owners – head to the local visitor information centre to find out if there’s anywhere nearby you can visit.
Put yourself in the shoes of the early pioneers and take the time to discover outback Queensland. If you’re road-tripping, pick somewhere convenient like Chinchilla and use it as an overnight stay point. With plenty of facilities and great accommodation options like Kings Park Accommodation available as a launch point, you know you’ll get your outback experience off to the best start possible. Contact us today to book your stay!