Noosa walks to love
Well known for its golden arcs of sand and aquamarine sea, Noosa is a bushwalkers’ paradise. You can follow wending tracks through stands of coastal gums (complete with resident koalas) and along the banks of the Noosa Everglades (one of only two in the world, the other in Florida and full of alligators).
But turn your sights west and you’ll discover a hinterland of glorious green, with lush valleys, undulating hills and a raft of walks that will challenge and delight.
The race of royalty
The ascent of Mt Cooroora in Tuchekoi National Park is probably the most famous of the Noosa hinterland climbs because of the King of the Mountain race held annually in July (since 1979). The fact that it’s a race from the pub in the nearby town of Pomona, and the best time is 22 minutes 43 seconds, may give you the impression that it’s an easy climb. But trust us, it’s not!
Soaring to an impressive 439m, Mt Cooroora’s 1.2km (one way) hike is challenging, and includes a series of concrete, rock chiselled and metal stairways, but climbers are rewarded with a sweeping 360-degree view, including the coastal lakes and dunes of the Cooloola Recreation Area.
If slogging up a hill isn’t your idea of a good time, try one of the other walking tracks, including shared trails at the base of the mountain for walkers, horse riders and mountain bikers.
Be prepared, especially in hot weather, with a hat, water and sunscreen, and allow adequate time to complete the walk. Suitable sturdy footwear is recommended because the track has a loose surface and is often slippery.
If you’re visiting on Saturday, call in at the Pomona Country Markets (7am– 11.30am), in the heart of town. There are more than 65 stalls offering plants, seedlings and fruit trees, organic dried fruit and nuts, chemical-free fruit and vegetables, coffee and yummy cakes including gluten-free foods. Plus collectibles, vintage and handcrafted items. Paths are wheelchair-friendly. Free parking.
Noosa Network Trail
The Noosa Trail Network is made up of eight scenic hinterland trails suitable for walking, horse riding or mountain biking. The spectacular countryside trails are well signposted, and vary in length and difficulty.
Here’s a few to add to your list:
The Scenic Trail (25km one way): The spectacular views along this trail make it worth the effort.
Kin Kin to Lake Macdonald (25km one way): This trail crosses a variety of terrain, passes through a rainforest and provides spectacular views.
Noosa Hinterland Circuit (40km circuit): This circuit can be completed as a leisurely three-day walk.
The Kin Kin Countryside Loop (14km circuit): Stroll through the delightful countryside of the Noosa hinterland. This trail is ideal for birdwatching.
Cooroora Trail (9km one way): This trail provides some wonderful viewing of Mt Cooroora and Mt Cooran, and is largely located through Tuchekoi National Park.
Visit Noosa for more.