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Undara Volcanic National Park

Mount Surprise, Etheridge Area

In the vast open spaces of the savanna, a sea of seasonal grasses conceals the Undara lava tube, one of the Earth's longest flows of lava originating from a single volcano. Ribbons of green remnant rainforest contrast with the surrounding dry savanna landscape, marking the course of sections of the lava tube. Caves within the tube sections are fertile pockets where rainforest plants and animals thrive.

Take a guided tour to the lava tube caves. Spend a pleasant afternoon walking around the rim of Kalkani Crater, an extinct volcano. Explore the self-guided walking trails throughout the park, ranging from short walks to a 12 kilometre return hike, following a section of historic telegraph line. Ride your mountain bike on the longer trails. Watch the sunset, while clouds of bats exit the lava tube caves. Accommodation and camping are available at the nearby resort. Access to the lava tubes is by commercial tour only.

Facilities

  • Car park

Other Information

Accessibility:

Accessible facilities available. Please contact operator for specific details.

Family Friendly:

Family friendly – please refer to operator's website for services and facilities.
Gulf Developmental Road
52 kilometres east of Mount Surprise
Mount Surprise, Etheridge Area
Queensland
Australia

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Forty Mile Scrub National Park

Mount Garnet, Tablelands Area
Free Entry
This park features ancient and recent volcanic flows, open grassy woodland, the headwaters of several creeks, and an island of dry rainforest remnant in a sea of eucalypt woodland. Large bottle trees, along with fig, Burdekin plum and white cedar trees drop their leaves in the dry season but spring to life with summer rain. Break your journey along the Kennedy Highway and have a picnic at the sheltered tables at Forty Mile Scrub. Learn about the plants and animals found in this park on the short, self-guided walk through this unique forest. Listen for the ringing calls of pied currawongs and look for lemon-bellied flycatchers, rufous fantails and other birds in the trees.

Chillagoe-Mungana Caves National Park

Chillagoe, Mareeba Area
From AU$26.30 - 26.30
Featuring spectacular limestone caves, small galleries of Aboriginal rock art, jagged limestone outcrops and an historically significant mining site, this park is rich in natural and cultural heritage. The Chillagoe landscape began to form about 400 million years ago, when the area was covered by a shallow sea. Today that limestone towers over the surrounding plains as outcrops while underground, caves and caverns created by dissolving of the limestone are decorated by stalactites, stalagmites and flowstones. Join a ranger on a guided cave tour to view splendid limestone formations. Ranger-guided tours to Donna, Trezkinn and Royal Arch caves operate daily, except Christmas Day. If you are adventurous and well-prepared you can explore other caves and Aboriginal art sites on your own. Walk the nine kilometre return track to Royal Arch Bluff or the short 440 metre return track to Balancing Rock. Visit the viewing area at the Chillagoe Smelters and learn about the State's mining and industrial heritage dating back to the 1890s.

Undara Volcanic National Park

Mount Surprise, Etheridge Area
Free Entry
In the vast open spaces of the savanna, a sea of seasonal grasses conceals the Undara lava tube, one of the Earth's longest flows of lava originating from a single volcano. Ribbons of green remnant rainforest contrast with the surrounding dry savanna landscape, marking the course of sections of the lava tube. Caves within the tube sections are fertile pockets where rainforest plants and animals thrive. Take a guided tour to the lava tube caves. Spend a pleasant afternoon walking around the rim of Kalkani Crater, an extinct volcano. Explore the self-guided walking trails throughout the park, ranging from short walks to a 12 kilometre return hike, following a section of historic telegraph line. Ride your mountain bike on the longer trails. Watch the sunset, while clouds of bats exit the lava tube caves. Accommodation and camping are available at the nearby resort. Access to the lava tubes is by commercial tour only.

Undara Experience

Mount Surprise, Etheridge Area
From AU$57 - 60
Only three and a half hours from Cairns in Tropical North Queensland's Gulf Savannah lies a land so different in contrasts - the Undara Experience. Undara is a pristine wilderness possessing one of the oldest and best preserved lava tube systems anywhere on Earth. Undara Experience boasts superb cuisine, which can be enjoyed within the nostalgic dining carriages. Relax in the bar as the burnt oranges of the sunset fade into dark to reveal the clearest starlit night. Each morning you can enjoy a true Bush Breakfast completely surrounded by native Wildlife. The Wildlife at Sunset tour is a sight not to be missed. Enjoy refreshments as the sun sets then, as dusk settles, a visit to the entrance of Barker's Tube allows you to witness the amazing emergence of literally thousands of Micro-bats as they leave to feed for the night - most spectacular in the Summer Green Season. Undara Experience presents unique railway carriage accommodation, pool, resort kiosk and many activities including Savannah Guide escorted daily tours to the incredible Undara Lava Tubes, evening wildlife spotlighting walks and campfire evenings. It is also the home of award-winning Opera in the Outback and Undara Outback Rock and Blues.

Bush Tucker Garden

Richmond, Richmond Area
Free Entry
Situated on the banks of award winning Lake Fred Tritton this garden is a joint project involving the Richmond Shire Council as well as the local indigenous and non-indigenous community and the dedication of the CDEP workers. All plants are native to the region and are labelled with their traditional purposes, helping to promote the educational aspects of indigenous culture. The garden's waterfall represents the birthplace of Richmond's water flowing from the basalt country to the white gravel. Gidgee stones and moonrocks complete the gardens.

Richmond Fossil Hunting Sites

Richmond, Richmond Area
Free Entry
After exploring the Prehistoric World at Kronosaurus Korner, they have the ideal place for you to visit. The fossil hunting sites are approximately 12 kilometres to the north of Richmond and are easily accessible to all vehicles. You don't require any digging tools - in fact most people don't have any equipment and still manage to make wonderful finds. Some of the fossils that are found in the area include belemnites, fish bones and scales, inoceramus shells and shark teeth. Fossickers are reminded that you are more than welcome to bring your discoveries back to Kronosaurus Korner for identification.

Lake Fred Tritton

Richmond, Richmond Area
Free Entry
In 2004 Lake Fred Tritton won the State and National Heart Foundation Awards for offering a better quality of life for people living in rural communities. The lake has provided Richmond locals and visitors the opportunity to participate in water sports such as fishing, skiing, canoeing and jet skiing - not normally found in small remote inland communities. The lake boasts sandy beaches, shaded playground facilities, water park, paved walking track, free barbecue facilities and clean amenities. The initial water used to fill the lake was pumped out of the Flinders River whilst it was in flood. Today it is kept topped up via a sphere point to the river, as required. The lake is stocked with over 18 species of fish by the Richmond Fish Stocking Association and monitored by the Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries. Species include red claw yabbies, barramundi, sooty grunter, sleepy cod, archer fish, forktail catfish and golf grunter. Funding of the lake was sponsored by the Richmond Shire Council in partnership with the Queensland Government Major Recreational Facilities Funding program.

Richmond

Richmond, Richmond Area
Imagine being in a place so diverse, so vast, you feel an indescribable sense of freedom. From the plains of the downs country to the silvery shimmer of the sun shining on the gidgee trees in the forest country, Richmond is often referred to as an oasis in the Outback. Crossing the rolling downs country of north west Queensland, originally opened to white settlement by the explorer William Landsborough in 1862, the township of Richmond is a welcome sight on the horizon. Situated on the Overlander’s Way halfway between Townsville and Mount Isa, the town is located on the bank of Queensland's longest river, the Flinders, and is known for its recreational Lake Fred Tritton and bougainvillea-lined streets, parks and gardens. Lake Fred Tritton is conveniently located at the edge of town. With a 1.2 kilometre circumference and a maximum depth of eight metres, Lake Fred Tritton allows visitors and locals the opportunity to enjoy a wide range of water sports. Richmond is home to the award-winning major attraction Kronosaurus Korner, where you will find the only museum in Australia primarily dedicated to displaying marine reptiles, as well as a very special dinosaur. Minmi, with impressions of its fossilised skin, is considered to be Australia's best preserved dinosaur skeleton. Minmi takes pride of place alongside the Richmond Pliosaur skeletons. This fossil, found in 1989, has to be seen to be believed. If you find that you are infected with 'fossil fever' after visiting Kronosaurus Korner, call at reception for a map to guide you through the region's designated fossicking sites. If stepping back in time is more your scene, then take a heritage walk around the town, viewing the signs depicting yesteryear. Pay your respects to the pioneers that shaped this country at the Pioneer Cemetery, relax in the Lions Park, visit the Cambridge Ruins 40 kilometres out of town, or take a walk along the Flinders River.

Chillagoe

Chillagoe, Mareeba Area
Head into the accessible outback west of Cairns and discover the underground wonders of the former mining town of Chillagoe. Just 140 kilometres west of Mareeba along the Wheelbarrow Way, Chillagoe was once an ancient coral reef which has been transformed into spectacular limestone bluffs with a network of some 560 caves, while early volcanic activity has created rich marble and mineral deposits. Wander the town to see the Railway Station, Bank Vault, Court House, Police Museum, Post Office and Post Office Hotel. The tall chimney on the edge of town is part of the former ore smelter which is now a drive-around museum with a viewing platform and story boards. Join a guided tour of the spectacular caves with a National Parks ranger and learn more about this amazing underground ecosystem. Nearby short walking tracks include Balancing Rock and two Aboriginal rock art galleries.
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