Gourmet Country & Outback

This drive serves up a virtual smorgasbord of experiences. Discover gourmet food and wine in the spectacular Granite Belt Region.  The captivating scenery and stunning natural attractions along the route are a truly visual feast.  Immerse yourself in the local culture and connect with these welcoming communities.  You’ll go home with a new understanding of the rich experiences to be found in Big Sky Country regions.

Day One: Brisbane to Stanthorpe

Drive Distance: approx. 246km

Travel south via the Ipswich Boonah Road to Boonah, heart of the Scenic Rim with its stunning mountain and country scenery. Follow the Falls Scenic Drive via Lake Moogerah, Carr’s Lookout and the spectacular Queens Mary Falls to Killarney. Enjoy lunch at Spring Creek Mountain Cafe with spectacular views over Condamine Gorge, Wilson’s Peak, The Border Ranges and World Heritage listed rainforest. Continue your drive to Stanthorpe in the heart of the Granite Belt Wine Region. Stay two nights at Granite Belt Retreat 

Day Two: Granite Belt Touring

Follow the Granite Belt Strange Bird Alternative Wine Trail to discover Queensland’s premier food and wine region. Sample cider and apple pie at Sutton’s Apple Farm and visit Stanthorpe Cheese which features a range of handmade farmhouse cheeses. Explore the spectacular Girraween National Park. Taste locally-made jams and conserves at Jamworks before enjoying lunch at Barrel Room Café and choose from the fresh seasonal menu. Head back to your accommodation and take a leisurely stroll through the beautiful bush tracks around the property. Take is easy tonight and enjoy dinner at the Granite Belt Brewery Restaurant.

Day Three: Stanthorpe to St George

Drive Distance: approx. 399km

Travel west towards big skies and cotton country today. Follow the Stanthorpe-Inglewood Road to the pretty township of Inglewood. Visit nearby Coolmunda Olives, walk through the beautiful olive grove and sample some delicious organic olive products. Pass through the quaint wheat village of Bungunya then call into Queensland’s oldest hotel, the Nindigully Pub for a cold drink and old-fashioned pub food. Drive a short distance to St George, the inland fishing capital of Queensland.

Day Four: St George to Bonus Downs Station

Drive Distance: approx. 255km

Spot local birdlife during a morning cruise on the Balonne River with Sandytown River Cruises or join a 4 hour guided bus tour* hosted by cotton and vineyard farmers. Discover how cotton and grapes are grown, irrigated and harvested. Enjoy a wine tasting and delicious lunch at the Riversands garden. (*tour operates most Thursdays). Travel through Mitchell to Bonus Downs Farm Stay, a privately owned property built in 1911 by one of this country’s most famous landholders.

Day Five: Bonus Downs Station Activities

Start the day with a Bonus Downs Jackaroo Breakfast and relax in your authentic station accommodation. The day is yours to wander the tranquil bush walks, take in the day’s activities and enjoy the warm country hospitality of your hosts.

Day Six: Bonus Downs to Roma

Drive Distance: approx. 134km

Travel into Mitchell for a therapeutic soak in the Great Artesian Spa. Visit the original courthouse where local bushrangers the Kenniff Brothers were committed to stand trial. Drive east on the Warrego Highway to Roma where twice weekly you can join a free tour of the Roma Saleyards, the largest cattle selling facility in the southern hemisphere. Enjoy an amazing theatrical presentation, recreating the story of Australia’s Oil and Gas Industry at the Big Rig Night Show.

Day Seven: Roma to Toowoomba

Drive Distance: approx. 355km

Continue along the Warrego Highway towards Toowoomba. Along the way visit the Miles Historical Village, one the Australia’s leading regional museums. Take a break in Chinchilla the country’s melon capital en route to the Garden City of Toowoomba in time to explore Australia’s largest and most traditionally designed Japanese garden or stroll the magnificent Queens Park. Tonight, dine at one of Toowoomba’s trendy restaurants offering fresh local produce menus.

Day Eight: Toowoomba to Brisbane (via Esk)

Drive Distance: approx. 175km

Take a scenic drive through the Toowoomba highlands to the picturesque villages of Highfields, Hampton and Cabarlah. Wander the enticing specialty, arts and crafts shops, purchase seasonal produce and share a meal in a cosy café. Breathe in the panoramic views and enjoy a picnic at Ravensbourne National Park. Follow the scenic country drive via Esk back to Brisbane.