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The green behind the gold, the verdant green Gold Coast Hinterland is made up of several mountain ranges littered with Gondwana Rainforest, breathtaking scenery and refreshing mountain streams. It is extremely popular with visitors and locals alike to escape the Summer heat for the coolness and lushness of the mountains for a day trip or a weekend escape. You don’t need to go chasing waterfalls in the Gold Coast Hinterland because they are very easy to access, with most being only a short bushwalk through the rainforest.
Springbrook mountain and plateau is only 32 Kms from the Gold Coast. Spectacular waterfalls, lush rainforest, ancient trees, impressive views, exceptional ecological importance and natural beauty makes this a worthwhile day trip whilst visiting the Gold Coast.
There are several walks available at the 100m Purling Brook Falls, starting with the short 100m walk to the lookout, the more challenging 4km circuit walk or the 6km Waringa Pools walk. All offer magnificent views of the waterfall and dense rainforest vegetation.
Starting from Tallanbana Picnic Area in Springbrook the 4km track of Twin Falls Circuit is one of the best and most scenic walking tracks in this world heritage listed area, which was once part of an ancient volcano.
You can also take in the superb views of Twin and Rainbow Falls, the sheer walls of The Canyon and the ocean beyond from the easy to get to Canyon Lookout.
Around 40 Kms from the Gold Coast in the glorious Gold Coast Hinterland is the scenically abundant Numinbah Valley. The valley is trapped between the Springbrook Plateau to the east and the Lamington Plateau to the west and is broadly underdeveloped apart from a small township.
Numinbah valley covers 116 km² and mainly consists of cleared verdant green grazing land, rocky outcrops, waterfalls, rainforest walks and stunning hinterland scenery. But its major attraction is the Springbrook National Park and the Natural Bridge, where tourists flock every weekend to take in this natural wonder.
Visit Natural Bridge by day to see a unique waterfall or after dark to discover the park’s amazing glow-worms. You can also picnic on the shaded banks of the Nerang River at Forest Park picnic area and have a refreshing swim in the rock pools.
40 Kms drive, give or take a few kilometers, from the Gold Coast is the plateau called Tamborine Mountain which is part of the Scenic Rim, the name given to a group of mountains in South East Queensland.
There is a vast area of rainforested national park areas on the mountain with abundant birdlife and a variety of flora, one of which is the oldest national park in Queensland, Witches Falls National Park. Walking tracks are provided in six sections of Tamborine National Park. Most walking tracks are short and can be walked within a few hours. The walks are relatively easy although some tracks have short, steep grades.
Cedar Creek Falls is a 900m path to the lookout that has views of waterfalls, cascades and rock pools.
Witches Falls track zigzags down through gorgeous palm groves and rainforest with excellent views over the Dividing Range.
Curtis Falls walk is 1.5 km circuit beside the river through the rainforest, showing lower pools and giant strangler figs. Descending down stairs to a large pool at the base of Curtis Falls.
Killarney Glen is located just off Beechmont Road, between Beechmont and Canungra. A street sign marks where the 2.5km walk to Killarney Glen starts and a narrow steep path winds its way down to the rock pools and waterfalls.
The Australian Defence Department owns and uses this property as a buffer zone for the Canungra Land Warfare Centre, and access to this waterfall may sometimes be closed due to the army training nearby. But on most weekends and school holidays it is open to the public.
There is a steep path downwards for 2.5 kms until you reach the rock-bottomed creek and waterfall into the beautiful heart-shaped rock pool. You can jump off the rocks into this “love pool” or walk further downstream where there are more rock pools that are a little easier to access.
The Gold Coast Hinterland does offer a great variety of scenic walks through rainforest to some spectacular waterfalls. I recommend seeing the waterfalls after recent rainfall when they are at their best with lots of water gushing over the escarpments.
Have you seen any of these waterfalls? Which one is your favourite?
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Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
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