mallanganee and richmond range
This route explores pretty rural landscapes among the foothills of the Great Dividing Range. Atop the Richmond Range, the Mallanganee lookout and picnic area provides a spectacular view across the valleys of the distant volcanic plugs that form the mountains of the Rainforest Way. A loop near Urbenville takes in the village of Woodenbong and the forests and lookout at Tooloom National Park, home to the greatest diversity of macropod species in Australia.
Built as a Lions Club project to allow travellers to visit the forests, the Lions Road criss-crosses Running Creek and Gradys Creek on the Queensland and New South Wales border at the famous tick gate. Along with the amazing rainforests, the highlight is the spectacular railway engineering feat of the Border Loop and a treat for rail enthusiasts. To enable trains to cross the Border Ranges, engineers had to find a means of gaining altitude at a reasonable gradient. The answer was this ingenious spiral loop.
This drive includes parts of a scenic loop into the hinterland of Queensland’s Gold Coast.
From the east, the route begins in Nerang
and follows part of the local Tourist Drive 8
towards Tamborine Mountain
and Canungra. Tamborine Mountain is a pretty holiday community with cafés, gift shops and a real village atmosphere. There are well defined rainforest walks for a hinterland experience, and a variety of good food and wines.
The town of Boonah,
in the foothills west of Beaudesert
(42km), is a “must-do”. It’s an easy town to explore on foot, and the main street features distinctive heritage architecture. Friendly locals at the visitor information centre can direct you to Mount French National Park.
The views are spectacular and there is excellent rock climbing at Frog Buttress. Teviot
and Queen Mary Falls
are well worth a visit. The route passes through rich farmland punctuated by pockets of rainforest. Carrs Lookout
offers views of the headwaters of the Condamine River,
origin of Australia’s longest river, the mighty Murray.
mount warning view circuit
tweed range scenic drive
In Murwillumbah, visit the World Heritage Rainforest Information Centre. The dioramas and audio-visual presentations give insights into the great caldera, the creation of Mount Warning and the battle to preserve the rainforests. The route itself follows the base of Mount Warning, giving picturesque views of the valley and rim of the caldera.
These falls topple over a hundred metres to the valley floor from the rim of the ridge of Nightcap National Park. The route travels through the township of Nimbin which is known for the 70s’ Aquarius Festival and for its alternative lifestyles. East of Nimbin, you’ll see Protester Falls and the beautiful village of The Channon, home of the famous monthly markets. Signs point to the rural villages of Dunoon, Dorroughby, to Minyon Falls and on to the regional city of Lismore.
This drive is an absolute must. It features spectacular rainforests, plus unforgettable vistas of Mt Warning and the caldera. The vastness of the caldera, the mosaic of farmlands and the deep green of the rainforest stand out against the spire of Mount Warning. Short walks at Brindle Creek
and Bar Mountain
picnic areas add to the experience. The Antarctic Beech
picnic area has views over the Lost World Wilderness.
A highlight is the view from the Pinnacle Lookout
on the rim of the great caldera. At 919 metres above sea level, the view is absolutely breathtaking. To stand on the rim of the great caldera is to experience one of Australia’s great natural wonders.