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Emerald

How did Emerald get its name? It's thanks to a lush green hill - emerald in colour - located just north of the town called 'Emerald Downs Hill'. Established in 1879, this large country town has become the hub of the Central Highlands and gateway to one of the largest sapphire fields in the southern hemisphere.

Emerald used to be a major sunflower producer, which might explain why the town is now home to the world's biggest Van Gogh sunflower painting - measuring 25 metres high. The masterpiece can be found on an easel in Morton Park at the western end of Clermont Street. Pop into the 'straw bale' Visitor Information Centre next door to pick up brochures about the Central Highlands and let the friendly staff help you plan your holiday.

Another 'must see' in the town is the National Trust listed Railway Station built in 1900 and restored in the mid-eighties. Featuring wrought iron lacework and pillared portico, it's a spectacular sight - as is the ancient fossilised tree that's found at the Emerald Town Hall, estimated to be over 250 million years old.

3 Clermont Street
Emerald, Central Highlands Area
Queensland
Australia

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Mount Fox

Ingham, Hinchinbrook Area
Free Entry
Located south-west of Ingham, Mount Fox was created by a violent volcanic explosion about 100000 years ago. In the explosion, a lava flow 10 metres thick spewed from the southern end of the crater and chunks of molten magma were thrown out of the volcano's vent.

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.
Free Entry
The Boondall Wetlands lie on the edge of Moreton Bay between Nudgee Beach, Boondall and Shorncliffe. The wetlands include more than 1000 hectares of tidal flats, mangroves, salt marshes, melaleuca, grasslands, open forests and woodlands.

Tree Top Walkway

Canungra, Scenic Rim Area
Free Entry
O'Reilly's Tree Top Walk allows you to walk through a canopy of flowering and fruiting trees covered by vines whilst you explore the epiphytic orchids and ferns surrounded by the many birds and animals that inhabit the tree tops.

Coongarra Rock

Biggenden, North Burnett Area
Free Entry
For Four Wheel Drive enthusiasts, Coongarra Rock and Falls provide an opportunity to explore rocky outcrops, caves, rock pools and natural vegetation. It is possible to climb the rock but should only be attempted by fit and experienced bushwalkers.

Mount Beerwah

Glass House Mountains, Sunshine Coast Area
Mount Beerwah is the highest of the 10 volcanic plugs that make up the Glass House Mountains. It has two peaks, the taller of which is 556 metres high making it one of the most visually prominent mountains in south-east Queensland.

Gardners Falls

Maleny, Sunshine Coast Area
Leave your vehicle in the car park on the banks of the Obi Obi Creek and take a short, level walk downstream to Gardners Falls.  You’ll pass a number of shallow rock pools which are ideal for smaller children who just want to splash about.

Bladensburg National Park

Winton, Winton Area
Free Entry
Bladensburg National Park is a large park protecting Mitchell grass downs and channel country. It is home to a wonderful variety of wildlife, including tiny mammals called dunnarts. Flat-topped mesas and sandstone ranges form a pleasing backdrop to the park's grassland plains and river flats.

Ex-HMAS Brisbane Conservation Park

Mudjimba, Sunshine Coast Area
From AU$15 - 25
Dive the Brisbane and experience this historical treasure and budding environmental wonder. The ex-HMAS Brisbane Conservation Park is an artificial reef and dive site off the Sunshine Coast, and is set to become one of Australia's premier dive attractions.

Nanango Fauna Reserve

Nanango, South Burnett Area
Free Entry
The Nanango Fauna Reserve offers many different environments of seasonal waterholes, eucalypt woodland, acacia scrub, and dry vine scrub. It is a birdwatcher's delight with a variety of birds to be found including the Yellow-Faced Honeyeater, Australian Darter, Varied Sittella, Nankeen Night Heron, and Little Black and Little Pied Cormorant.
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