Palm Beach

If the Gold Coast had a middle child it would possibly be Palm Beach, nestled between Tallebudgera Creek on one side and Currumbin Creek on the other. But don't for one minute think this destination is dull. Similar to its Florida namesake - which was named America's best place to live in 2013 - Australia's Palm Beach has thrice been crowned Queensland's cleanest beach.

In another US link, borrowing from New York in this instance, Palm Beach's avenues are also numbered, in this case from first to 28th, making navigating this corner of the coast a cinch. But that's possibly where the similarities with the Big Apple exist. For their Palm Beach is one of laid-back living and is one of the best examples of where rambling beach shacks still survive, perched petulantly on million-dollar blocks.

Surfers and sunbakers flock to Palm Beach for its wide, sandy and spectacular beach. There's also a variety of eating options here and you can't go past the Palm Beach Surf Club for a feast. Accommodation options consist of everything up to the top end of town, but they reckon you can't go past a beach shack for a bit of coastal character.

Gold Coast Highway
Palm Beach, Gold Coast Area
Queensland
Australia

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Glen Aplin

Glen Aplin, Southern Downs Area
The Granite Belt town of Glen Aplin, south of Stanthorpe on the New England Highway, is famous for its fruit orchards and wineries. If you are in the area in the right season you will be able to savour the taste of fresh stone-fruits (November to March) and berries (November to early March).

Stanthorpe

Stanthorpe, Southern Downs Area
At the heart of the Granite Belt, Stanthorpe gives easy access to big sky panoramas, spectacular countryside dotted with precariously balancing prehistoric granite boulders and a generally cooler, temperate climate (there’s even an occasional winter snow-fall!

Girraween National Park

Ballandean, Southern Downs Area
Free Entry
Huge granite boulders tower above open forests in the spectacular and popular Girraween National Park, outside Stanthorpe in southern Queensland. Camp at Castle Rock or Bald Rock Creek camping areas or relax with a picnic in the shady Bald Rock Creek day-use area.

Severnlea

Severnlea,
Just south of Stanthorpe, the Granite Belt village of Severnlea is a centre for commercial fruit production and also topaz fossicking. Venture down the various byways to discover fruit stalls stocking seasonal stone fruits and berries from November to March.

Sundown National Park

Stanthorpe, Southern Downs Area
Free Entry
Journey along back roads to the spectacular wilderness of Sundown National Park on the Queensland–New South Wales border. With its dramatic landscape of sheer-sided gorges, tree-lined ridges and peaks rising over 1000 metres above the Severn River, discover for yourself the park’s wild isolation.

Glenlyon Dam

Texas, Goondiwindi Area
Free Entry
Glenlyon Dam is ideal for wildlife viewing and many water sports including skiing, sailing and fishing. Fish species in the dam include Golden Perch, Murray Cod, Silver Perch, Jew and Spangled Perch. Camping sites, cabins and caravans are available at the Glenlyon Dam Tourist Park located at the waters edge.

Ballandean

Ballandean, Southern Downs Area
Ballandean has the largest cluster of wineries on the Granite Belt. Stop over at Vineyard Cottages and Café on the highway, then head west to Ballandean Estate, Golden Grove Estate, Bungawarra and Tobin Wines.

Quart Pot Creek, Stanthorpe

Stanthorpe, Southern Downs Area
Free Entry
The pretty Quart Pot Creek meanders through granite country and natural bushland, passes through the town of Stanthorpe, and continues out through the south-west, where it meets Spring Creek to form the Severn River.

Thulimbah

Thulimbah, Southern Downs Area
Straddling the New England Highway at Thulimbah, a range of providores offer specialty items, local produce and meals. Here you're in the thick of 'apple country' - the only place in Queensland with just the right climate and growing conditions for premium apple orchards.

Donnellys Castle

Pozieres, Southern Downs Area
Free Entry
The original bushranger hideout for 'Thunderbolt' who roamed the New England Tableland. Donnelly's Castle is a granite rock formation that you can walk between, around and over! The massive boulders are just as spectacular as some of the rock formations in Girraween National Park, and is far more accessible for young adventurers.
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