One of Queensland’s unexpected holiday destinations is Rockhampton. Typically known as the Beef Capital of Australia, Rockhampton truly offers the opportunity to reconnect with nature. It has many different experiences on offer allowing you to find the perfect balance between adventure-filled activities and glorious sunsets where you can sit back, relax and take time out for yourself. It’s ideally located in the centre of the Pacific Coast Way (Bruce Highway), Capricorn and Burnett Highways making it the perfect stopover as you make your way up or down the Queensland coastline.
For those looking to get active, Mount Archer (Nurim) National Park has many bushwalks, hikes, mountain bike trails, and an elevated treetop boardwalk offering sweeping panoramic views across Rockhampton and the surrounding countryside. Recently named a Tripadvisor 2020 Travellers’ Choice Winner, Mount Archer is a must-see for all age groups.
If you’re more of a history buff, Rockhampton is a town full of heritage and history. From the late 1800s to early 1900s, the discovery and development of the Mount Morgan mine provided the region with funding for many impressive buildings along Quay Street, now one of Australia’s longest National Trust heritage-listed streets. Commencing operation in 1882, the Mount Morgan mine became one of the richest gold mines in Australia, and for a period of time the world. During its 99 years of mining the area declared a total of 252 tons of gold, 27 tons of silver and 284 tons of copper.
Outside of the city lies a range of farm stays to choose from where you can enjoy a leisurely horseback ride, feed farm animals, toast marshmallows by the campfire, ride a quadbike, and catch that picture perfect sunset. Each farm stay is situated on working, family-run cattle properties providing an authentic farm experience. A number of the properties also have onsite camping and caravanning facilities so you can park your caravan and stay for the night.
Gemstones and caves
For lapidary lovers who are keen fossickers, Mount Hay Gemstone Park is a 30 minute drive west of Rockhampton. Mount Hay is the remains of an extinct volcano last active 120 million years ago. When active, the volcano had millions of gas bubbles present in the molten rhyolite lava – forming thunder eggs.
Just outside of Rockhampton you can also explore underground caves that are 390 million years old. Whether you’re a thrill seekers or just want to marvel at the beauty of underground geological formations, Capricorn Caves offers a range of tours for all ages and fitness abilities.
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