Explore + Adventure

From sandstone escarpments and sparkling Sapphire Gemfields to glistening fresh water springs, the Central Highlands Queensland is the perfect place to embark on an Aussie adventure.

Central Highlands is one of those rare areas that have so many natural attractions to see. You can enjoy bush walking and camping under the vast star filled sky at the range of parks and forests in the region.

For those who feel lucky, try fossicking at the Sapphire Gemfields in quest of that big shimmering sapphire! Maybe kick back, relax and enjoy a fish or ski at one of our many dams.

Take advantage of the Blackwater International Coal Centre where you can learn more about the locally treasured ‘black gold’ then visit the interactive displays, where you will be sure to get a real ‘feel’ for this industry.

Perhaps you enjoy journeys through diverse and scenic country side? Then the individual self drive tours along one of the eight tourist routes are ideal. Take the time to soak up the history of each area in this large and wonderful region through the local museums and buildings.

Dig The Tropic

Dig The Tropic is a themed Geo-Tourism Trail linking the wonders of the Southern Great Barrier Reef with the mysteries of Queensland’s Outback. It is the only known trail of its kind in the world, enabling visitors to experience a self-drive trail like no other. Following the Tropic of Capricorn, you will experience a living museum created by ancient events left behind. Visit sites such as the Stone House Museum, Age of Dinosaurs Museum, Lark Quarry, the Sapphire Gemfields, Capricorn Caves and the Great Barrier Reef. For more information, download the brochure and start planning your journey to this ancient world today.

Contact the local Visitor Information Centre for more information.

Great Inland Way

The Great Inland Way is a fully-sealed route that weaves its way from Sydney to outback NSW and Queensland, the Central Highlands and then as far north as Cooktown. It is a driving route between Sydney, NSW and Cooktown, Queensland that offers an exciting alternative to the well-trodden coastal path.

Contact the local Visitor Information Centre for more information.

National Parks

For the more scenic route enjoy some wonderful nature in one of the regions national parks:

  1. Blackdown Tableland National Park
  2. Carnarvon Gorge, Carnarvon National Park
  3. Carnarvon Great Walk
  4. Salvator Rosa, Carnarvon National Park
  5. Minerva Hills National Park

Contact the local Visitor Information Centre for more information.


Try your luck fossicking at the Sapphire Gemfields and discover the famous jewels of the Central Highlands, Queensland.

Contact the local Visitor Information Centre for more information.

Fishing + Redclaw Hot Spots

Bedford Weir, via Blackwater

This is a popular boating, skiing and fishing destination and has been stocked with sports fish, including Barramundi, Saratoga, yellowbelly, jew and redclaw. The area is suitable for overnight stays and toilets and showers are available free of charge. Wood fired barbecues and a children’s playground are set in shaded areas by the river, making it an ideal picnic spot.

Lake Maraboon/Fairbairn Dam, via Emerald

Picnic and barbecue facilities are available, among well-kept lawns and shady trees. There is a caravan park on site, though no other camping is available. With plenty of water in the dam at the moment, locals and visitors are enjoying the boating, skiing and fishing. The dam is stocked with yellowbelly, sarotoga, murray cod, barramundi, jew and redclaw.

Bottom Weir, Nogoa River, Emerald

Fish for sarotoga, yellowbelly, silver bream.

Bundoora Dam, via Tieri or Middlemount

Water levels can fluctuate quickly when water is being drawn down. Boating is permitted, and picnic facilities are available. Fish for sarotoga, golden perch, eel-tailed catfish, sleepy cod, spangled perch and redclaw.

Zamia Creek, Bauhinia

Fish for golden perch, yellowbelly, sarotoga or jew.

Local Tips

Looking for some local tips on where to fish? Contact the local Visitor Information Centre.

Maps and Permits

The local Visitor Information Centre will have maps and details on licences, size, take and possession limits. For more information, check with the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry on 13 25 23.

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