Springbrook National Park, QLD
A SYMPHONY created by 125 frog species greets visitors to Springbrook National Park. Covering 6725ha, and about 100km south of Brisbane, Springbrook NP is divided into four areas. Numinbah creates the northern-most border, followed by the Springbrook Plateau to the south. These are flanked by the Natural Bridge and Mt Cougal sections to the west and east respectively, with each offering their own unique attractions. A stand-out is the Natural Bridge walk, done in the evening when the park’s glow worms become visible.
Hiking: Springbrook NP caters to hikers of all experience levels. The least strenuous walks are wheelchair accessible with handrails to the featured lookouts. The most advanced walks, such as the Warrie Circuit, take hikers around 17km of the hinterland, with steep cliffs and waterfalls along the way.
Mountain biking and horse riding: Trail riders can find an alternative to the area in Springbrook’s Numinbah Forest Reserve. With connections to the Australian Trail Horse Riders Association (ATHRA), the national park invites horse and bike riders to the tracks and encourages them to use a low-impact method of riding.
Wildlife: Home to a variety of amphibians, reptiles and marsupials, the Gold Coast hinterland offers many opportunities to see native wildlife. Most prominent are pademelons and brushtail possums but lucky visitors will see a koala or spotted quoll. During the winter months, the Albert lyrebird can be heard and possibly seen.
Location: About 100km south of Brisbane and a one-hour drive west of the Gold Coast. Accommodation: Camp in the park at the Settlement camping area in the Springbrook Plateau. These sites allow visitors to access walking tracks and have all necessary facilities. Other forms of accommodation are available just outside the park.
Food/drink: Enjoy eating in a garden with a view at the Gourmet Galah Café, on Springbrook Road, a short drive south of the national park. Phone (07) 5533 5126.
Points of interest: The Natural Bridge and the glow worms.
Maps: Available from the Department of Environment and Resource Management.
More info: www.derm.qld.gov.au/parks/springbrook