Lakeland

Lakeland is an agricultural region south-west of Cooktown on the inland route, and at the junction of the Mulligan Highway and Peninsula Development Road. It was established in the late 1800s to service the needs of those attracted by the gold rush in the Palmer River Goldfields to the south, and included a large cattle station called Butcher's Hill which still exists today over a fraction of the area.

These days, Horticulture covers much of the area, taking advantage of the very fertile volcanic soils. Many crops have been trialled in the past, and today you can find watermelons, pineapples, teak, pongamia (for biodiesel), sorghum, paw paws and others. Bananas are the main crop, and in recent years their production has been expanded because Lakeland is just out of reach of the cyclones that sometimes devastate the coastal growing regions. There are now some very large companies investing in the area, and you can see bananas lining the road north along the Peninsular Development Road and to Cooktown.

As you leave Lakeland for Cooktown, you'll notice a large composting operation on the right, belonging to local producers 'Swiss Farms'. They are pioneers in adopting management practices on their properties that are reducing their reliance on artificial fertilisers, and their products are distributed Australia wide.

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Emu Park

Capricorn Coast, Livingstone Area
Just a scenic 20km drive along the coast from Yeppoon, Emu Park is a peaceful coastal village with shady parks and picturesque beaches. Once an exclusive beach resort at the turn of the 20th century, Emu Park is now appreciated as an idyllic seaside village with plenty of character.

Great Keppel Island

Great Keppel Island,
Experience Oz and NZ ranked Great Keppel Island number six in Australia's Top 10 Islands to Experience 2017! The beaches on Great Keppel are really what set it apart from other islands. There are 17 pristine beaches on the island - many fringed with coral reefs, making this destination a dream holiday for those who love snorkelling or scuba diving.

Shelving Beach Dive Site

The Keppels,
The Keppel Islands off Yeppoon are a great place for divers to explore, but this area also has some wonderful snorkelling sites, with one of the most popular being Shelving Beach. Located at the south west corner of Great Keppel Island, Shelving Beach can be a little difficult to reach without a boat, but many visitors walk the bush track to explore this secluded spot.

Man and Wife Rocks Dive Site

The Keppels,
There are many wonderful dive sites found around the Keppel Islands off Yeppoon, with one of the most popular sites being Man and Wife Rocks. These two rocky outcrops can be enjoyed by divers of any experience level, as there are shallow rocky reefs and walls dropping to 18 metres.

Bald Rock Dive Site

The Keppels,
Bald Rock is located at the eastern end of Great Keppel Island, off Yeppoon, and is a great spot for smaller marine life. The rocky reef around Bald Rock varies in depth from 6 metres to 15 metres, and divers will find plenty of gutters, ledges and small caves to explore.

Egg Rock Dive Site

The Keppels,
Egg Rock is actually three rock pinnacles that rise from 30 metres to break the surface. Located in the Keppel Islands off Yeppoon, Egg Rock is always a reliable place to see schools of pelagic fish and other large marine life.

Kinka Beach

Capricorn Coast, Livingstone Area
With wide open beaches lapped by the calm, gentle waters of Keppel Bay, Kinka Beach, just 15 minutes’ drive south of Yeppoon, is the perfect seaside destination for families looking for an affordable getaway.

Child Island Dive Site

The Keppels,
Child Island is one of the most exciting dive sites at the Keppel Islands off Yeppoon. Being a fair distance offshore, Child Island is best dived when conditions are calm, but this site nearly always has the best visibility in the area.

Keppel Bay Islands National Park

The Keppels,
Free Entry
Keppel Bay Islands National Park, off Central Queensland's Capricorn Coast, protects 13 islands in the Keppel Group and is surrounded by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.

Rosslyn Bay

Capricorn Coast, Livingstone Area
Protected from the elements behind an enormous volcanic outcrop, Rosslyn Bay is just seven minutes' drive south of Yeppoon on the beautiful Southern Great Barrier Reef. The steep volcanic outcrop that shelters the bay was formed over 70 million years ago and is one of the most fascinating geological formations in the area.
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