Welcome to

Capricorn Region

Cowboys meet the beach, as Rockhampton and the Southern Great Barrier Reef collide in a mix of historic towns, national parks and sandy beaches. Release your inner explorer as you fossick for gemstones, explore the Capricorn Caves and experience world-class diving.

No trip would be complete without watching a rodeo in an iconic Australian pub as you dine on famous ‘Rocky’ steak – if you couldn’t tell from the giant cow in the main street, this is Australia’s beef capital.

Where great lives

This slice of Southern Great Barrier Reef is so perfect, you’ll want to keep it all to yourself. Luckily, you pretty much can.

  • Go diving, snorkelling or sailing among the 18 islands of the Keppel Island Group.
  • Live out your Castaway fantasies camping on Great Keppel Island and watch dolphins playing in the winter months.
  • Lay back on one of the 13 beaches between Yeppoon and Emu Park and feast on fresh seafood.

Natural wonders

Not content with having the World Heritage Listed Great Barrier Reef just offshore, a short drive will bring you face-to-face with these natural wonders:

  • Aboriginal rock art paintings and the Sandstone Wilderness of Carnarvon National Park.
  • A 600-metre sandstone plateau and the picturesque Rainbow Falls in Blackdown Tableland National Park.
  • Byfield National Park – where you can visit local artisans or hire a canoe on the Byfield River.
  • The natural disco ball created by the summer solstice in the above-ground Capricorn Caves.

Optional sides

Beef may be the number one thing on the menu here but history, outback life and jewels compete for a close second. 

  • Visit a crocodile farm or stay at a working cattle farm.
  • Explore the heritage-lined streets of Rockhampton or take a trip down gold rush memory lane in Mount Morgan.
  • Try your luck at the Sapphire gemfields.


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Places to Visit
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Minerva Hills National Park

Springsure, Central Highlands Area
Free Entry
A relatively small National Park near Springsure in Central Queensland, Minerva Hills is dominated by Mount Boorambool, rising 600 metres above sea level, and the larger cliff fringed Mount Zamia (560 metres), which offer panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Named after the Minerva Hills Volcanics, these mountains are some of the oldest in a line of volcanoes across the eastern Australian continent - dating back some 20 million years. The rich variety of plants provide habitat for much wildlife. Look for eastern grey kangaroos, wallaroos and several different wallabies throughout the park. Spotlighting at night may reward with a sighting of the elusive sugar-glider or the larger greater-glider. The park is also home to the locally rare fawn-footed melomies and the little known pebble-mound mouse. Fred Gorge picnic area has wood barbecues, toilets, limited drinking water and shelter sheds. Picnic tables are provided at the Springsure and Eclipse lookouts. Camping is not permitted.

Nuga Nuga National Park and Lake Nuga Nuga

Rolleston, Central Highlands Area
Free Entry
Lake Nuga Nuga (adjacent to Nuga Nuga National Park) is the largest natural water body within the Central Queensland Sandstone Belt. It provides a valuable habitat for waterbirds, and in the right season flowering waterlilies are a sight to behold. The lake can dry up in times of drought. Bird watchers will find the lake a haven for pelicans, swans and numerous water birds. Lake Nuga Nuga National Park contains Mount Warinilla (offering views over the lake and park) and protects remnants of dry rainforest scrub in a area that has been extensively cleared. A bush camping site, with no facilities, is located in the park on the banks of Lake Nuga Nuga. As this park is remote, be sure to bring adequate supplies of food, water and fuel.

Mount Archer National Park

Rockhampton, Rockhampton Area
Free Entry
With a height of 604 metres, Mt Archer dominates Mt Archer National Park and provides a dramatic backdrop to Rockhampton. The park protects a range of plants and animals, including plant species with restricted distributions, also the glossy black-cockatoo. Named in honour of the Archer brothers who explored the Fitzroy area, it is part of the Darumbal Aboriginal people’s traditional country. From Mount Archer. view spectacular sunsets. Stroll around the plateau for views across the city and the Capricorn Coast. Walk 11 kilometres from the summit to German Street. Enjoy a picnic in Fraser Park, which is managed by Rockhampton City Council.

Virgin Rock

Springsure, Central Highlands Area
Free Entry
Virgin Rock, which is situated four kilometres from Springsure is on the eastern side of Mount Zamia and has a naturally formed likeness to the Virgin Mary and Child. The spectacular cliffs are floodlit at night and can be viewed from the Lions Park. The formation is amazing and a must see when travelling to Carnarvon Gorge.

Ka Ka Mundi, Carnarvon National Park

Springsure, Central Highlands Area
Free Entry
Ka Ka Mundi, Carnarvon National Park, has more than 30 kilometres of sandstone escarpments and plateaus, dry rainforest surrounding clear springs and brigalow scrubs on clay soil. Aboriginal people have close ties to the area. Ka Ka Mundi suits wilderness seekers. Self-sufficient visitors can bush-camp near Bunbuncundoo Springs, however there are no visitor facilities. Experienced walkers with compass and map will enjoy exploring. The park is best to visit in cooler months, though mornings can be frosty.

Blackdown Tableland National Park

Dingo, Central Highlands Area
Blackdown Tableland National Park protects a sandstone plateau rising abruptly above Central Queensland’s flat plains. Bordered by high rugged cliffs, this is the traditional home of the Ghungalu people. Rock art across the park reminds us of their connection with this country. Dissected by deep gorges, the park offers spectacular lookouts and scenic waterfalls. Unique plant communities thrive in the cooler, elevated climate. Several short tracks take in creeks, lookouts and interesting relics from the past. Go spotlighting at night or relax in the peaceful Munall campground. Camping fees apply; book in advance during school holidays. Enjoy the views from Horseshoe lookout. In a four wheel drive, explore the 19 kilometre loop road.

Spyglass Peak

Springsure, Central Highlands Area
Free Entry
Spring-fed Nogoa River and Louisa Creek wind through a picturesque broad valley beneath craggy sandstone outcrops in the Salvator Rosa section of Carnarvon National Park. At the western edge of Central Queensland's sandstone belt, Salvator Rosa contains deeply eroded and spectacular rock formations, such as Spyglass Peak and the Sentinel, which dominate the skyline. See the vivid orange-barked yellow-jacket trees as you walk 500 metres to the base of Spyglass Peak. Along the path you pass through a remarkable sandstone wall that looks like the ramparts of an ancient fort. On a fine day as you stand and admire this impressive landmark, you can see blue sky through the spyglass-shaped rock formation, which is well worth a photograph.

Fairbairn Dam, Lake Maraboon

Emerald, Central Highlands Area
Free Entry
Fairbairn Dam and Lake Maraboon are holiday destinations in themselves! The lake is stocked with eight different kinds of fish including barramundi, but is famous for the Red Claw Crayfish. You can relax by the lake, take a swim or try your hand at waterskiing. Picnic tables and free electric and wood barbecues are available.

Carnarvon Gorge, Carnarvon National Park

Rolleston, Central Highlands Area
Free Entry
Hidden in the rugged ranges of Queensland's central highlands, Carnarvon Gorge features towering sandstone cliffs, vibrantly coloured side gorges, diverse flora and fauna and Aboriginal rock art. This spectacular gorge system, an oasis in the semi-arid heart of Central Queensland, is the central highlands' most popular attraction. Here, the boulder-strewn Carnarvon Creek winds through the gorge, through eucalypt and cabbage palm forests, which attract 170 bird species. Explore creeks, mossy gorges and cool rainforests on 21 kilometres of walking tracks. Walk to Mickey Creek Gorge and look for swamp wallabies or climb up the Boolimba Bluff walk to the top of the bluff, 200 metres above Carnarvon Creek. Be rewarded by the discovery of over 2,000 engravings, ochre stencils and freehand paintings adorning sandstone walls on the longer Art Gallery walk. Spot whiptail wallabies and fairy-wrens, and watch platypus in the creek in the early morning. Have a picnic on the large grassy picnic area near the entrance to the gorge. Enjoy camping in the visitor area during the Queensland school holidays: Easter, June to July and September to October. Bookings are essential. Year-round accommodation and camping is also available near the park, just five minutes from the gorge.

Capricorn Coast National Park

Capricorn Coast, Livingstone Area
Free Entry
Capricorn Coast National Park has four separate accessible sections that can be enjoyed in a 30 minute drive between Yeppoon and Emu Park. Mangroves, dry rainforest, tussock grassland and open eucalypt forest provide a wonderful contrast to the blue waters of Keppel Bay. Rocky outcrops along the Capricorn Coast are the result of violent volcanic eruptions millions of years ago. Enjoy a beachside picnic at Bluff Point day-use area and take the 2.3 kilometre walking track for fabulous views over islands and hinterland. Watch sea turtles from the high cliffs of Turtle lookout. Explore Double Head along a sealed 365 metre walking track and visit Fan Rock lookout, a fan-shaped cliff formation with hexagonal basalt columns.
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