Kandanga

Arriving in Kandanga, it is easy to imagine the roar of sawmills, the rattle of cream carriers or the chug of trucks carrying pineapples to the station. However, imagination is essential, as these noises echoed through Kandanga in the 1940s and 1950s. Now this quiet township standing on placid hills in the Mary Valley is much different.

For the record, Kandanga is about a 20 minute drive from Gympie just off the Mary Valley Highway. Kandanga is one of a string of small towns or villages running through Sunshine Coast hinterland state forests south of Gympie. Although the hustle and bustle of yesteryear might be gone, the town boasts rich pastures, fertile orchids, and spectacular views of the Mary Valley. As you come into Kandanga from the south, there is a little park that offers a tease of what is to come with an old dray, a relic of its historical past, a picnic area and a great view from the park. Picnic spots, swimming holes and scenic lookouts punctuate the forest areas all along the route south from Gympie.

For something different, The Bunya Art and Bush Tucker Centre on the Kandanga-Imbil Road lets you discover something about local Aboriginal culture and food. The breathtaking 360-degree views of the Mary Valley are a pleasant bonus when visiting the centre. For wine lovers, there is a nearby vineyard.

The Kandanga Heritage Railway is a also must see. Here's a bright and colourful station with a shady green park. This colourful spot has something for bargain hunters looking for home-made jams and chutneys or local produce, with markets on Wednesday and Sunday between 10am and noon.

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Mapleton Forest Reserve

Mapleton, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
In Mapleton Forest Reserve, Mapleton Forest Drive winds through deep forest, past Cooloolabin Dam, to Point Glorious lookout where great coastal and hinterland views await. Picnic at the Mapleton day-use area near Cedar Creek’s headwaters or camp at Gheerulla Creek.

Kondalilla National Park

Montville, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
A refuge for many species of native animals and plants, Kondalilla National Park is a popular place for birdwatchers and nature photographers as well as bushwalkers. With a magnificent waterfall, rock pools and freshwater creeks - is it any wonder the park gets its name from an Aboriginal word meaning 'rushing waters'?

Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve

Maleny, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve comprises 55 hectares of National Estate listed subtropical rainforest overlooking the Glasshouse Mountains. A remnant of the rainforests that once covered the Blackall Range, the Reserve is a living museum of diverse plant and animal life which promises to delight with its tranquility and beauty.

Bellthorpe National Park

Bellthorpe, Moreton Bay Area
Free Entry
Bellthorpe National Park is at the southern end of the Conondale Range. Rugged bush land with rainforest, waterfalls and attractive creeks is home to a large number of plant species and a haven for many endangered and threatened animals.

Conondale National Park

Conondale, Noosa Area
Free Entry
Conondale National Park forms the heart of an extensive area of unspoilt mountain scenery in the Conondale Range. With magnificent forests, deep gorges and spectacular views, this park and the adjacent State forest offer scenic drives, picnic areas and a choice of four grassy camp sites near rainforests and mountain streams.

Delicia Road Conservation Park

Mapleton, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Delicia Road Conservation Park on the scenic Blackall Range is a small park protecting remnant forest communities. It is a refuge for wildlife and a special place where visitors can enjoy a peaceful native forest.

Mapleton Falls National Park

Mapleton, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Mapleton Falls National Park marks the point just west of Mapleton where Pencil Creek cascades 120 metres over an escarpment. This small, day-use-only park shelters many bird species, including the peregrine falcon, eastern whipbird and wompoo fruit-dove.

Kenilworth Forest Reserve

Kenilworth, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Kenilworth Forest Reserve in the Conondale Range offers wonderful views, deep gorges, mountain streams and waterfalls. It protects rare and threatened plants and animals living in the rugged mountains.

Buderim Falls

Buderim, Sunshine Coast Area
Buderim Falls is a 45 hectare haven of tranquillity less than a kilometre from the north side of Buderim village on the Sunshine Coast –just 15 minutes from the coast. With its towering trees, meandering tracks and stunning waterfall, this sub-tropical oasis is a paradise for nature lovers and photographers alike.

Amamoor State Forest

Amamoor, Gympie Area
Free Entry
Amamoor State Forest produces some of the finest hoop pine in Queensland. More than 120 bird species have been sighted in its riverine rainforests and plantations of hoop and bunya pines. Enjoy a drive through the forested valley to walk through the forest along trickling creeks and streams.
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Note: Information on listed products and services are provided by the operator and were correct at the time of publishing. Rates are indicative based on the minimum and maximum available prices of products and services. Please visit the operator’s website for further information. All prices quoted are in Australian dollars (AUD).