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Winton

"Once a jolly swagman camped by a billabong..." You'll be forgiven for relentlessly whistling this famous tune while you're in Winton, as it's the very home of Banjo Patterson's 'Waltzing Matilda'. Reputedly inspired by an 1894 shearer's suicide at the nearby Combo Waterhole and first performed in Winton's North Gregory Hotel on 6th April 1895, you can learn all about Banjo and the adopted national anthem at the Waltzing Matilda Centre in Winton.

First settled in 1875 and originally called 'Pelican Waterhole', Winton has plenty on offer to keep you busy for at least a day or two. The town is home to Boulder opals that you can view and buy in town and a day trip will take you to Queensland's oldest opal fields at Opalton. Also just out of Winton is Lark Quarry, where 93 million year-old dinosaur fossils will give you a glimpse into prehistoric times.

The quirky Winton Music Fence, developed by percussionist and composer Graeme Leak, is free and a fantastic spot to let the kids explore their hidden musical talents. Arno's Wall, a wall surrounding a private residential property in town, is worth a look for its unique construction from all sorts of things including motorbikes, lawn mowers, crockery and historical items.

Winton is in the heart of Matilda Country, a diverse region in which vast mitchell grass plains are broken by magnificently coloured gorges, ridges and mesas; what the locals call 'jump-ups'. Visitors to the region will be amazed by the vastness of the plains and the undulating nature of the landscape. There is a wide variety of animal and bird life in the area, generally best seen around dusk and dawn on minor roads and tracks.

Winton
Winton, Winton Area
Queensland
Australia

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Bees on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Keswick Island is home to thriving hives of purebred Caucasian bees. Unlike bees on the Australian mainland, these bees are free of many other diseases and are sometimes used as breeding stock for the mainland colonies.

Art Gallery, The

Injune, Maranoa Area
Free Entry
Be ready to be awed by what awaits you on this walk in Carnarvon Gorge National Park, as The Art Gallery contains some of the finest Aboriginal rock art in Australia. Just 5.6 kilometres from the trailhead, at the junction of Kamoloo Creek, a signposted access track leaves the main walking trail upstream of crossing number 10, providing a gentle climb to the escarpment base where the site is located.

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.

Birdwatching on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Keswick Island is a bird watcher's paradise. The island is home to many different bird species, with sightings of at least 33 different birds documented to date - an impressive variety for an island of Keswick's size.

Wallabies on the Beach at Cape Hillsborough

Cape Hillsborough, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Cape Hillsborough National Park, approximately 45 minutes north of Mackay, is where you'll find rainforest meets the shoreline, volcanic headlands, eucalypt forests home to koalas and kookaburras and prehistoric rock formations.

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.

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'

Whale Watching on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Humpback Whales can be frequently seen around Keswick Island during their annual migration through the Whitsundays between the months of July to September. Seeing the whales frolicking nearby, or guiding a newborn calf through the protected waters of Egremont Passage, is a truly magical experience.

Iningai Nature Reserve

Longreach, Longreach Area
Free Entry
Iningai Nature Reserve is named after the Inangai, the traditional owners who lived along the Thomson River prior to European settlement. It is currently a reserve and the town common. You'll find bushwalking tracks leading from just south of town where car parking is available.

Dugong Sanctuary - Clairview

Clairview, Isaac Area
Free Entry
In 1997, the Great Barrier Reef Ministerial Council established Clairview (a small beach town approximately 1.5 hours south of Mackay) as a dugong sanctuary. Often dugongs can be spotted when they surface to breathe from the shore, or in the water, when in a kayak, boat or other recreational vessel - so keep an eye out for these majestic creatures!
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