I think it’s fairly safe to say that everyone has those days where you just want to escape to somewhere for a few hours of peace and quiet. Whenever Brenden and I feel like that one of our favourite spots to head to is Springbrook National Park in the Gold Coast Hinterland. In just a short 30 to 40 minute drive you can pretty much be out in the middle of some of the most spectacular scenery around.
We love Springbrook National Park! It is so accessible and is full of look-outs, picnic areas and walking trails.
PURLING BROOK FALLS
The first place you should stop at is Purling Brook Falls which is just off Springbrook Road – the main road into Springbrook. These spectacular falls are just one of many in this area. Just a short walk from the car park is the main viewing area where you can look across to the falls and down into the valley below. For the more adventurous you can take the four kilometre hike down to the bottom of the falls.
This walking track has only recently re-opened after being severely damaged in floods a couple of years ago. Make sure you walk to the viewing platform on the opposite side as well. Back in the car park there is a picnic area and also toilets. If you would like to grab a coffee and something nice to eat try the Dancing Waters Cafe just at the entrance to the car park.
SETTLEMENT CAMP GROUND
If you fancy basing yourself in Springbrook for a night or two then you should try the Settlement Camp Ground. It is only a 700 metre walk from the Purling Brook Falls to the campground. There are about 12 sites that are suitable for tents,camper trailers or camper vans. There are toilets and barbeques but no showers. Just across from the Settlement Camp Ground is a huge Day Use Area. This is an ideal spot for picnics or for the kids to run around. Camping in Springbrook National Park requires a permit which can be obtained from Queensland Parks and Wildlife.
OLD SCHOOL HOUSE AND LOOKOUT
If you continue along Springbrook Road and turn down Old School Road you will come to a building that was previously the Springbrook School House from 1911 to 1971. Then it served as the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Office for a number of years. The building looks a little unloved now but there is a great boardwalk which is easy to access that leads out to a lookout where you can see out over the valley below and all the way back to the high rises of the Gold Coast.
This is another fantastic lookout with spectacular views back to the Gold Coast. You can get a clear view of one of the Twin Falls as it starts at the cliff top, disappears into the trees and then pops out again towards the bottom of the valley. This is also the starting point for the Twin Falls Walking Circuit. It is recommended that if you are going to walk this track that you do it in an anti-clockwise direction otherwise it is a steep climb back out. This is also the starting point for the 17 kilometre long Warrie Track. If you are looking for a nice picnic area then the Tallanbana Picnic Ground is just down the road.
At the far end of Springbrook Road you will find Goomoolahra Falls and Picnic Area. The falls start off as a small creek just near the car park and spill over the cliff right next to the viewing platform. As we have not had much rain so far this year, the falls are really only a trickle at the moment but they would be spectacular after heavy rain. Once again the views are nothing short of spectacular.
BEST OF ALL LOOKOUT
Always save the best until last and as the name suggests this is the best lookout in Springbrook National Park. Located at the end of Repeater Station Road, it is about a 300 metre walk from the car park to the lookout. And the view on offer is amazing! You can see all the way out into the Tweed Valley to Mt Warning and Byron Bay. Provided you are there on a clear day that is and this time we weren’t.
We could see this mist rolling in over the hills from the Canyon Lookout. By the time we drove up to the Best of All Lookout it was blanketing the mountain. This is a very good example of why you should always be prepared for a change of weather if you are going bush walking in this area. Carry a light weight jacket with you and don’t start your bush walk late in the afternoon. Also don’t rely on mobile phone service in this area and always let someone know where you are going and what time you anticipate returning.