Every now and again you feel the need to get up and go, a desire to re-charge the batteries and enjoy a change of scenery. Planning a weekend escape is almost as good as the escape itself. In South-East Queensland we are spoilt for choice. As long as you have wheels to get you there and the desire to go, adventure or relaxation, whatever you choose, awaits. A small, low convertible with its top down would be most ideal, but we all have 4wds and after taking a wrong turn, we checked out the amazing rainforest through our open windows instead. The winding drive up the mountain with sunlight sprinkling down though dense forest crowding in from either side of the road is a simple highlight in itself and for many people choosing to do just that, picnic at the top and then head on home is all they need to give their heart and mind a lift.
It seems that whichever way you turn you are greeted with inspiring and wondrous views on the mountain. To make the most of these spectacular outlooks and gain the best vantage points there are a number of lookouts scattered around the mountain that are well worth a visit.
One of the most popular is the Hang Gliders which is along the Main Western Road. This spot offers uninterrupted views and comes alive with energetic hang gliders that use this cleared mountain section as a launch site on a good day. A great spot to take a picnic and watch the festivities. We missed this one on this trip and instead stopped at Rotary Lookout which is on the same road but directly opposite the Bavarian Grill Haus Restaurant. This lookout even comes equipped with benches and binoculars.
There is a vast area of rainforest 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. After the lookout we did the Curtis Falls walk, which was a 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. They really need to review the signage, more 4 km return circuit.
We then took a stroll down Gallery Walk and stopped in all of the galleries and shops that were packed full of local souvenirs and treats. From antique stores to the Cuckoo Clock Nest there are interesting things to see behind every door on gallery walk. Personally, I don't how someone could work in a cuckoo clock shop all day, it would literally drive me cuckoo, but it's great for a visit and very hard to walk away without thinking I need one to complete my home, not
We stopped for lunch at Mount Tamborine Vineyard Winery Café. The cafe specializes in quick and tasty indulgent foods for guests wanting a quick, satisfying fix whilst exploring the Mountain. After a big burger for breakfast I went with Mountain fried chicken wings with Asian dipping sauce and Kim went with the Coconut Prawns with Petite herb salad, Sambuca dipping sauce. It was a great lunch with fast service. We went back for some more shopping and headed back to Brissy late afternoon.
Overall Tamborine Mountain is a hinterland paradise far enough away from the madding crowd of Brisbane and the Gold Coast, but near enough for a comfortable day trip.