Dinosaurs and Fossicking

Sink your teeth into the prehistoric dinosaur history of Queensland’s Outback. Or try your luck at the old fashioned way of getting rich quick in the gold or gem fields of Queensland.
  • Take a road trip along the Tropic of Capricorn, starting at Yeppoon and roaming inland through Winton to Boulia, and you’ll uncover a living museum of prehistoric fossils and geological landscapes from a time when dinosaurs ruled the earth.
  • Put on your Palaeontologist hat and join a dig to dust off dinosaur bones or trawl through the impressive displays in the museums throughout the outback.
  • Visit the limestone Capricorn Caves to see fossils ingrained in the cave walls.
  • Fossick for dinosaur fossils at Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum.
  • See the world’s best-preserved dinosaur stampede at Lark Quarry Dinosaur Trackways.
  • Grab a fossicking pan and strike it rich with a gold or gemstone find in Capricorn.
  • Mount Morgan - one of the oldest mines in Australia.
  • Head to the Sapphire Gemfields for a guided mine tour and gem galleries that will leave twinkles in your eyes.
  • Hunt for a Queensland Boulder Opal in Opalton in Queensland's Outback.

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Thunderbird Park ® - Tamborine Mountain, Gold Coast Region

Tamborine Mountain, Scenic Rim Area
From AU$0 - 0
Thunderbird Park on Tamborine Mountain takes adventure holidays to the top. This magnificent property is less than an hour from Brisbane and Gold Coast. Come for the day or stay and play. This rainforest playground has it all.

Capricorn Region

Rockhampton, Rockhampton Area
As the name suggests, Capricorn Region lies on the Tropic of Capricorn, spanning from the National Parks of the Central Highlands that border Outback Queensland to the coastline of the Southern Great Barrier Reef and the green continental islands of the Keppel Group.

Shelly Beach

Caloundra, Sunshine Coast Area
Shelly Beach in Caloundra is one of the Sunshine Coast’s hidden gems. This lovely stretch of oceanfront is unpatrolled and not suitable for swimming meaning you’ll rarely see a crowd on the shore. In fact, you’ll often have the white sands and oceans views all to yourself!

Wycarbah

Wycarbah, Rockhampton Area
Without its main attraction, Wycarbah, to the south-west of Rockhampton, would be bypassed by most. This little town is located about 25 minute drive from Gracemere. However, as a result of an ancient lava flow, a great collection of rather ordinary looking rocks (on the outside) have congregated at a place nearby called Mt Hay.

Hydeaway Bay

If you like to seek out hidden gems on your travels, Hydeaway Bay should be on your list when visiting the Whitsundays. This tiny coastal hamlet is set on a long, white, sandy beach on a no-through road about 50 kilometres from Airlie Beach (take the Gregory-Cannon Valley Road to Dingo Beach Road and then don't miss the turn to Hydeaway Bay Drive).

Hughenden

Hughenden, Flinders Area
Visit 'Hughie', the seven-metre Muttaburrasaurus and an impressive fossil collection at the Flinders Discovery Centre. While you are there, relive the glory days of sheep production and its subsequent demise in the 'Shearing Straggler' exhibit.

Gold Panning, Deep Creek

Gympie, Gympie Area
From AU$8.50 - 72.60
In 1867 a discovery of alluvial gold in a gully near the Mary River began the first major gold rush in Queensland and resulted in the establishment of the mining town of Gympie. Today visitors to the region can still visit and try their luck in the gold-bearing gully in the town at the Deep Creek Fossicking Area.

Amiens

Amiens, Southern Downs Area
Amiens is a locality in the Granite Belt, near Stanthorpe. Head west along Amiens Road and you’ll find an area of post-World War I soldier settlements: Fleurbaix, Bullecourt, Passchendaele, Bapaume, Messines and Pozieres.

Mount Surprise

Mount Surprise, Etheridge Area
Mount Surprise is a railway town on the Cairns to Forsayth Railway and is the first town within the Gulf Savannah encountered by visitors approaching from the east. It is a centre for gem fossicking, with quantities of topaz, quartz, spinel, garnet, cairngorm and aquamarine to be found.

Richmond

Richmond, Mackay Area
Imagine being in a place so diverse, so vast, you feel an indescribable sense of freedom. From the plains of the downs country to the silvery shimmer of the sun shining on the gidgee trees in the forest country, Richmond is often referred to as an oasis in the Outback.
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