Country Way

Australia’s Country Way is a tourist route that follows the Great Dividing Range from New South Wales all the way into inland Queensland.

A popular section for a touring holiday starts in Toowoomba, on the Range. Head along the New England Highway to discover a bevy of craft stores including Danish Flower Art, where the café serves no fewer than 30 different types of scones for Devonshire Tea. Further along at Cabarlah you’ll find Black Forest Hill Cuckoo Clock Centre. Inside is Australia’s biggest selection of authentic German Cuckoo Clocks. Right next door is Forest Hill Coffee House – perfect for a pick-me-up cuppa or light meal. Stay at Ravensbourne Forest Chalets – Swiss- style getaways nestled in the rainforest. Each chalet has a full kitchen but the hosts can also supply breakfast hampers, picnic lunches and BBQ dinner packs.

The Bunya Mountains are within striking distance of the Country Way. Take the turn off at Maidenwell, but not before fuelling up at the bowser and friendly café. You can also pick up local produce like olives and farm-made relishes. In Summer, it’s worth the detour to Coomba Falls – a pretty oasis just 2 kilometres from town.

The Bunya Mountains lie 30 minutes’ drive from Maidenwell. Queensland’s second oldest National Park offers a variety of rainforest walks. You can also book at the General Store for the daily feeding of wild birds. Elz Bistro offers light meals and coffee and Lyrics Restaurant serves up elegant ambience, a great local menu and Australia’s highest whisky bar. Stay at Rice’s Cabins – the perfect rustic retreat for this mountain idyll.

Back on Australia’s Country Way, the route connects with Kingaroy in the South Burnett. This town is known for peanuts and perhaps pumpkin scones but it’s also the epicentre of Queensland’s fastest growing wine region. Hundreds of hectares of vineyards cover the district. A cluster in the north, near Lake Barambah, includes Dusty Hill Winery. Check out the boutique drops with a tasting at the cellar door and settle in for a long, lazy lunch at Prendergast’s Irish Tavern. You can also stay overnight in one of the cottages or the lake-side family guesthouse. The owners of Dusty Hill also offer another character-filled accommodation option in nearby Goomeri – the Fork Inn. Formerly the town’s bank, the Inn now comfortably accommodates up to four couples

The North Burnett is next on the Country Way – a hub for Queensland’s thriving citrus industry. Check out the Big Orange at Gayndah. A little further on, near Mundubbera, there’s a new agricultural success story for the region. Smart Berries runs a vast blueberry farm across 100 hectares under netting. The ‘blue revolution’ has been embraced by locals – including award- winning Mundubbera Butcher, Tim Duggan. Head to the butchery to buy some of Tim’s Blueberry & Pork Gourmet Sausages, using the local fruit.

Also in the North Burnett you’ll find Marchioness B & B and Farmstay – a beautiful cattle property near Mount Perry. The Dingle family welcome you to this beautiful country station and offer accommodation attached to their modern timber homestead. You can BYO horses for trail riding or mustering; join a tag-a-long tour on a Polaris buggy; feed farm animals; and get to know this authentic country family.

 

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Danish Flower Art
(07) 4630 8211
www.danishflowerart.com.au

Black Forest Hill
(07) 4696 6288
www.black-forest-hill.com.au

Forest Hill Coffee House
(07) 4696 6011
www.foresthillcoffeehouse.com.au

Ravensborne Forest Chalets
(07) 4697 8185
www.ravensbourneforestchalets.com.au

Department of National Parks, Sport and Racing
www.nprsr.qld.gov.au/parks/bunya-mountains

The Bunyas
(07) 4668 3131
www.thebunyas.com.au

Rices Log Cabins
0428 321 620
www.riceslogcabins.com.au

Dusty Hill Vineyard
(07) 4168 4700
www.dustyhill.com.au

Joes Grand Hotel
(07) 4168 4131
www.joesgrandhotel.com.au/south-burnett-accommodation-fork-inn-bnb-bed- breakfast-goomeri.php

Marchioness B&B Farmstay
(07) 4156 3116
www.marchionessbbfarmstay.com

Toowoomba, Bunya Mountains, South Burnett
www.southernqueenslandcountry.com.au

North Burnett
www.bundabergregion.org