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The Bat Hospital Visitor Centre

Atherton, Tablelands Area

Enjoy an intriguing insight into the world of bats. The Bat Hospital Visitor Centre has Advanced Ecotourism accreditation and offers a unique 'up close and personal' wildlife experience just outside Atherton. You will meet some small insectivorous microbats, seen in the wild at nearby Undara and Paronella Park; and the larger fruit and nectar eating megabats like flying foxes. The Visitor Centre experience includes a short video about the work of the hospital, and world-class interpretive signage.

Personalised tours operate 3.00 p.m. to 6.00 p.m. throughout the year. They are open daily June to September, but bookings are essential October to May. The flying foxes live in a six metre high cage and only come down to eye-level at feeding time.

Situated on five acres of landscaped gardens, and nestled in a wet sclerophyll/rainforest valley, a visit to the Bat Hospital can also offer a great birding experience. Visit Hastie's Swamp, a fabulous migratory bird wetland just down the road. The Bat Hospital attracts visitors, volunteers and students from around the world, is actively engaged in research and has featured in many television documentaries. The Director has won numerous awards for community conservation and education.

Entry Costs

Entry Cost AUD Valid From Inclusions
Adult $15.00 15 March 2014 – 30 June 2015
Child $8.00 15 March 2014 – 30 June 2015 Entry is free for children four years of age and under.
Concession $12.00 15 March 2014 – 30 June 2015

Open Times

Public Holiday: The flying foxes come down to eye level at different times, always best to telephone first incase they are not coming down until quite late in the afternoon. ...... Note: Open 1500 to 1800 daily but bookings essential October to May.

Facilities

  • Car park

Other Information

Accessibility:

Wheelchair access to most areas of Visitor Centre. There are no wheelchair toilet facilities.

Children:

Children are welcome. There is lots of room to run around, batman/woman outfits to wear, activity sheets to do.
134 Carrington Road
Atherton, Tablelands Area
Queensland
Australia

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Hasties Swamp National Park

Atherton, Tablelands Area
Free Entry
A birdwatcher's delight, this park is a large seasonal wetland renowned for its diverse range of resident and migratory birds. At least 220 bird species have been recorded, mainly in the wetland and open woodland. The park's wetland environment varies with the season. Open water, reeds, muddy edges and sedge land vary with the cycle of wet and dry seasons. Open eucalypt forest surrounding the swamp contrasts with the lush rainforests found elsewhere on the Atherton Tableland. Enjoy watching the birds from a two-storey bird hide which has wheelchair access and is large enough to cater for a school group. Observe the birds from the comfort of the hide, using the signs as a guide to species identification. Best birdwatching time is during the dry season (April to October) when the swamp dries out and the area becomes an important refuge for waterbirds.

Hallorans Hill Conservation Park

Atherton, Tablelands Area
Free Entry
This park, in the middle of the township of Atherton, protects eucalypt forest and a remnant of the endangered mabi forest on an extinct volcanic cone. The cone is part of the legacy of the Atherton Tableland's fiery geological past. Enjoy the 1.4 kilometres walk to the top of Hallorans Hill or drive through the residential area of Atherton to the car park at the top of the hill. Enjoy the expansive views from the summit that showcase the tableland's mosaic of different land uses and geological formations. A council park adjoins the conservation park and provides barbecues, toilets, tables, play equipment, walking track and interpretive signs.

Wongabel State Forest

Atherton, Tablelands Area
Free Entry
This state forest protects a remnant of an endangered type of forest, known as mabi forest. Here, in 1903, red cedar seedlings were planted in the forest to replace mature trees which had been logged. Commercial plantations of hoop, kauri and Caribbean pine now grow beside native forest. Two walking tracks, catering for the visually impaired, wind through this area. Enjoy a 750 metre return walk through the forest or take the longer 2.5 kilometre route. Both tracks have been designed with consideration for walkers who are vision impaired. Braille booklets and audio headsets are available from the visitor centre in Atherton. Both tracks are also wheelchair accessible, but assistance may be required for the longer walk. Signs tell of the history of the area, as well as forestry practices and local ecology. Look for Lumholtz's tree-kangaroos and possums while spotlighting at night.

Atherton Tablelands

Atherton, Tablelands Area
The Atherton Tablelands is an uplifting destination of timeless villages, exotic tropical foods, country markets and diverse wildlife. A network of scenic drives through contrasting landscapes makes it easy to explore waterfalls and crater lakes or taste food and wine at its source. Situated above Cairns, this naturally beautiful part of Tropical North Queensland offers cooler temperatures and diverse experiences. Whether your passion is fishing or water skiing, bush walking, bird watching or gourmet food, the Tablelands is the place for a variety of fun adventures. Tropical food and wine is plentiful with self-drive trails highlighting the best the region has to offer. Pack a picnic and follow the waterfall circuit, stopping to swim in rainforest-clad lakes or marvel at rainforest giants like the majestic curtain fig. Lake Tinaroo is the place to catch whopping barramundi or tasty redclaw crayfish, whiz behind a speed boat on skis or spend lazy days aboard a houseboat exploring the calm waterways. Step back in time at a restored historical village, discover relics from World War 2, visit a restored Chinese temple, have a classic Aussie meal at a country pub or buy fresh produce at a farmer's market. Platypus, tree kangaroos, wallabies and colourful finches are among the varied wildlife commonly seen, or spend some time at a bird hide to see how many of the area's 230 species you can identify. Bed and breakfast accommodation is popular on the Atherton Tablelands with luxurious tree houses and family homes among the choices. There are also caravan parks, camping grounds, motels and farm-stays where you can interact with the animals.

Herberton

Herberton, Tablelands Area
This historic tin mining town on the banks of the Wild River is the oldest town on the Atherton Tablelands. Buildings include a wonderful collection of Queensland architectural styles, from churches to public buildings and large houses with wide verandahs. The picturesque town is enhanced by rich colours of golden wattles in winter and purple Jacaranda trees blooming in spring. The well-preserved town centre can be explored on a self-guided heritage walk and offers interpretive photo posts highlighting historic scenes. Renovated buildings include the butcher's shop, newsagency, cafes, hotel, gift and craft shops. The Mining Museum and Visitor Information Centre offers maps and brochures and presents an interesting and educational interpretation of the region's extensive mining and social history, including John Moffat's Great Northern Mine. The Mine Walk features restored machinery sheds with rare examples of early deep haul shaft mining machinery. Longer scenic walks are popular with visitors and plentiful birdlife and seasonal wildflowers add to the appeal. On the outskirts of Herberton is the amazing Herberton Historic Village, well-deserved winner of multiple tourism awards. This major attraction features a collection of around 50 historic buildings with fascinating interior displays. Attractions included the award winning Historic Village Herberton, the Spy and Camera Museum and the Railway Museum. The climate is usually cooler than the coast and snow has even been recorded in winter. Use Herberton as a base to visit historic Irvinebank to the west, Atherton, a short drive down the range, or Mount Hypipamee National Park with its famous crater and waterfall.

Tolga

Tolga, Tablelands Area
Tolga is within approximately eight kilometres from Atherton, travelling through the rainforest canopied Kennedy Highway. Tolga presents a quaint little town with good examples of early Queensland architecture. A centre strip in the main street features a towering fig tree and heritage and timber display consisting of seven carved poles, much like totem poles. These showcase in creative carving, aspects of the Atherton Tableland's rich heritage including Aboriginal culture, animals plants and threats to the rainforest habitat. With its range of accommodation from caravan parks, motels to five star retreat, and displays of art work by local people it is an interesting little township. Close by is Rocky Creek Memorial Park, which is dedicated to the thousands of soldiers who were stationed in this area during World War Two. With its many plaques on display, it is a popular stop-over for many.

Mt Hypipamee Crater and Dinner Falls

Atherton, Tablelands Area
Free Entry
The Hypipamee crater is referred to as a volcanic pipe. The pipe was opened upward through surface rocks by gas produced from molten rock below and as a result of tremendous pressure, the vent exploded sending volcanic bombs far across the landscape. It has a diameter of 61 metres at the water level which is 58 metres below the platform. Even 85 metres below the water surface, the pipe hasn't lost any of its dimensions. Approximately 10 minute on concrete path to the Crater and the choice of taking the 'natural' path along to see the different levels of Dinner Falls. Free spotlighting nights are regularly held here as there is an abundance of wildlife throughout the park.

Atherton Tablelands

Atherton, Tablelands Area
There's an entire holiday waiting for you there on the Atherton Tablelands - if someone tells you it is possible to see the Tablelands in a day, chances are they aren't from there! People ask 'what is the best thing about the region?' Well, there's more than one! Firstly, the gourmet food and wine trails that criss-cross their 'food bowl of the tropics'. Secondly, their wildlife with a particular emphasis on bird watching and unique marsupials like the tree kangaroo. Thirdly, the waterfall circuits with their stunning rainforest backdrops and hidden gems. Finally, there's the region's natural wonders such as the Curtain Fig Tree, Lake Tinaroo, Mt Hypipamee Crater, Undara Lava Tubes, Broomfield Swamp, Paronella Park and the twin crater lakes of Barrine and Eacham just to name a few! Venture out, and discover how wonderful it is to stay at cosy Bed and Breakfasts, timber tree-houses, inviting inns, holiday parks and eco-lodges.
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