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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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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.

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.

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.

Specimen Hill Lookout

Herberton, Tablelands Area
Free Entry
The Specimen Hill Lookout walk takes you along a gravel bush track that leads you out along a shoulder of Specimen Hill. The track ends at a tunnel driven into the Hillside with other mines visible below.

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.

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.

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.

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.
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