Rockhampton to Carnarvon Gorge Four Night Drive

Multiple Locations

Wind your way south west on this delicious drive which begins at the Beef Capital of Australia, Rockhampton and takes in some magnificent mountains, before finishing at Queensland's gorgeous gorge at Carnarvon in the Sandstone Wilderness. Scenery, nature, heritage and history abounds along this route. Whether you visit Carnarvon because of its geological appeal, its rare and ancient indigenous rock art or for its delightful walking tracks, you will surely be struck by its magnificence and grandeur.

Journey Details

Duration
96 Hours
Distance
440 Kilometres

Full Itinerary

Rockhampton to Mount Archer

Yes, you're in the Beef Capital, the home of cowboys and cattle yards. But there's plenty of other things to do there. Visit the numerous gardens, museums and art galleries; animal lovers will adore the Rockhampton Zoo and the Koorana Crocodile Farm; and the spectacular Capricorn Caves just 30 minutes north of town. For those who like a slower pace, sit on the glorious Fitzroy River and wait for the Barramundi to bite. Check out the historic Criterion Hotel and make sure you catch some live rodeo action at the Great Western Hotel in town. Don't forget that this is one of the gateways to the Southern Great Barrier Reef, with islands, beaches and tropical environs just off shore.

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Route Details
Mode of Travel 4x4, Car, Four Wheel Drive
Route Type One Way
Mount Archer to Mount Morgan

Measuring an imposing 604 metres, Mt Archer dominates Mt Archer National Park and is a dramatic backdrop to Rockhampton. The park, which can be accessed via Frenchville Road, protects a range of plants and animals. Named after honour of the Archer brothers who explored the Fitzroy area, it is part of the Darumbal Aboriginal people's traditional country. Stroll around the plateau of Mt Archer for views across the city and the Capricorn Coast.

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Route Details
Mode of Travel 4x4, Car, Four Wheel Drive
Route Type One Way
Mount Morgan to Moura

The former gold mining town of Mount Morgan boasts a number of tourist attractions including the Railway and Historical Museums; The Big Dam; and The Private Victor Stanley Jones Suspension Bridge. Historical buildings abound here including the Mount Morgan State High School (1908); Mount Morgan School of Arts (1924); Queensland National Hotel (1899); Masonic Hall (1903); Police Station (late 1890s); The Mafeking Bell (1900). This town also pays homage to its gold mining heritage through a variety of spots including The Mine Hooter; Running of the Cutter Statue; and the Mount Morgan Mine which offers access by guided tour. You're bound to find a quirky character or history buff around here.

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Route Details
Mode of Travel 4x4, Car, Four Wheel Drive
Route Type One Way
Moura to Carnarvon Gorge

Nestled in the Dawson Valley, Moura is best known for coal, cattle, cotton and crops. Go fishing or boating on the Dawson River and a short distance west you'll find the Moura Weir which is a great spot to swim or catch barramundi, yellow belly, sooty grunter and saratoga.

An interesting detour is 177 kilometres to Kae Nuga Nuga, adjacent to Nuga Nuga National Park, the largest natural water body within the Central Queensland Sandstone Belt and part of the Sandstone Wilderness. The lake provides a valuable habitat for waterbirds, and in the right season flowering waterlilies are spectacular. Bird watchers will find the lake a haven for pelicans, swans and numerous water birds.

Finish your journey at Carnarvon National Park, renowned as one of Australia's most spectacular wilderness areas and important Aboriginal cultural sites. Covering 298000 hectares, it is broken up into numerous sections of which Carnarvon Gorge is one. Take your time and walk through this gorgeous gorge, crossing numerous creeks, visiting sacred sites and exploring ancient indigenous rock art.

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Route Details
Mode of Travel 4x4, Car, Four Wheel Drive
Route Type One Way

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Wowan

Wowan, Banana Area
In its heyday, Wowan was the dairy capital of the region. With more than 600 farmers on the job, the Dawson Valley Dairy Cooperative was topped up daily with fresh supplies of full cream milk, ready to ship off to towns and cities as far away as England.

Jambin

Jambin, Banana Area
A rural hub with a pub to service weary travellers, Jambin is on the Burnett Highway just south of Smoky Creek. Part of the Callide Valley, the town is wedged between the Callide Creek to the west and the highway to the east, making it a picturesque spot to stop.

Theodore

Theodore, Banana Area
Theodore is located on the Dawson River 105 kilometres south west of Biloela. From its earliest days, Theodore was a stopping point for travellers and the same is true today. A pretty place, Theodore is shaped like a point between the Dawson River and Castle Creek, its palm lined streets give a tropical feel to the place.

Duaringa

Duaringa, Central Highlands Area
Duaringa is located 107 kilometres west of Rockhampton along the Capricorn Highway. The small town is the essence of a small rural community. Duaringa is the oldest township in Duaringa Shire with buildings dating back to the 1860s and a corner of the local hotel has been preserved to show how early pioneers lived.

Callide Dam

Dumgree, Banana Area
Free Entry
Callide Dam is located 12 kilometres from Biloela via sealed road and approximately 90 kilometres south-west of Gladstone via the Dawson Highway. While compact, the lake provides visitors with rewarding fishing - especially for golden perch (yellowbelly) and barramundi.

Banana

Valentine Plains, Banana Area
Visitors are always a little baffled by the town’s unusual name, particularly as there isn’t a single banana tree in sight. A dun-coloured bullock is responsible for that. A favourite of local stockmen in the 1860s, Banana the bullock, so named for his yellowish colouring, would help herd wild cattle into holding yards.

150th Meridian

Moura, Banana Area
Free Entry
Located one kilometre east of Moura on the Dawson Highway, the 150th Meridian marker shows the position of the imaginary line (150 °E) on which Queensland (Eastern Standard) time is based. At the time of the equinox, a day is exactly 12 hours long anywhere on the Meridian line.

Goovigen

Goovigen, Banana Area
Goovigen is a small rural village in the region’s northern farming heartland. A short distance north-west of Jambin off the Burnett Highway, fewer than 300 people live in the town. The streets of Goovigen are as neat as a pin and the heritage buildings have been either restored to their former glory or updated for present needs.

Biloela

Biloela, Banana Area
Today, Biloela is a busy commercial and tourist hub, though it still retains that relaxed, country feeling. Along with Queensland Heritage Park, a Regional Art Gallery, the Spirit of the Land Mural and the Heritage Listed Greycliffe Homestead, the town stages an impressive annual program of festivals and events.

Thangool

Thangool, Banana Area
More than 130 years in the making, Thangool first opened to settlers, who tried it as a sheep run in the 1850s. Soon to fail, beef cattle were introduced and later, dairy and cotton took hold. Based on the success of these industries, a make-shift town sprang up.
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