Getting Back to Nature
If you and your family are all about getting back to nature – be it parks, bushwalks, camping or fishing – Brisbane offers an abundance of choice throughout the region.
For koala lovers, Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary at Fig Tree Pocket boasts the largest koala sanctuary in the world. Daisy Hill Forest also offers koala viewing as well as a huge park, picnic tables and barbecues, and bushwalks suitable for all ages.
In Ipswich, you can’t go past Queens Park and its environmental centre. The park has space and playgrounds while the centre offers family activities, workshops and information about local wildlife.
If you prefer to be near the water, then Pumicestone Passage on Bribie Island is the place. The calm, warm water channel is perfectly suited for nature lovers as it is home to more than 350 species of birdlife (more than Kakadu) and features common sightings of dugong, dolphin and turtles.
Staying on the water, just an hour north-west of Brisbane sits Lake Wivenhoe – a spectacular water reserve offering a peaceful and tranquil outing complete with panoramic views. A favourite for those who love sailing, canoeing and non-powered water craft, it's the perfect place for quiet and relaxed family breaks.
For stunning waterfalls, you can’t go past Tamborine Mountain, which boasts many beautiful waterfalls all over the mountain. A highlight is Cedar Creek Falls. A short walk from the car park gives access to the falls, cascades and rock pools – the only swimming holes on the mountain.
If you're looking for a luxurious natural adventure, Glamping at Castaways on Moreton Island offers you the best of camping minus the sandy bed. The luxury tents accommodate couples and families, and each has electricity, a little deck out front and an ensuite bathroom.
North Stradbroke Island is the perfect spot for a nature getaway. Start your day early with the North Gorge Headland Walk at Point Lookout. The view along the walk is absolutely breathtaking as you look out over the ocean and pristine sands of the seemingly endless Home Beach. You can spot dolphins, turtles and manta rays year round, and humpback whales during migrating season (June to November).
Fordsdale Horseback Adventures offers a nature experience like no other. It caters to experienced horse riders as well beginners, and many of the horses used for the trail rides are seasoned competition horses. There are plenty of camping spots throughout the more than 1000ha of tranquil bushland for those who like to stay that little bit longer.
True campers can become engaged with the wilderness by pitching a tent at Mount Barney Lodge campground, where you can enjoy open campfires and breathtaking views of the surrounding peaks of Mt Barney, Mt Ernest and Mt Maroon. The water hole is just a short stroll away for a cooling swim.