Before you get started

What can you expect from this walk?

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Self guided inn-to-inn

Highlights:

  • 6 or 8 day itinerary (includes 4 or 6 days of walking)
  • One of Australia’s newest and least explored long distance walking tracks across an ancient volcanic caldera
  • Links Lamington and Springbrook Plateaus via the Numinbah Valley
  • Explore living Gondwanan rainforests at the heart of Australia’s Green Cauldron
  • World Heritage wilderness teeming with lush vegetation, rivers and waterfalls
  • Prolific bird life including the striking Regent bowerbird
  • Large, rare stands of massive Antarctic beech trees towering overhead
  • Overnight accommodation in luxury rainforest retreats and chalets

Overview:

Located approximately 30 minutes from the Gold Coast, this is a truly spectacular long distance walk through part of the World Heritage-listed Gondwanan Rainforests of Australia. Once an ancient and vast volcanic caldera on the Gondwanan super-continent, this sub-tropical to temperate landscape is now a collection of lush, life-giving rainforests where new plants are being found, classified and named even today. Ancient Antarctic beech, red cedar, rosewood, coachwood and booyongs tower overhead on the plateaus while giant strangler figs and hundreds of species of palms, vines, ferns and orchids thrive and teem in the valley sections of the walk. Various neighbouring indigenous tribes consider this land as sacred as Uluru in central Australia is to that area’s indigenous people.

More than 160 species of sub-tropical birds breed and flourish in this fertile area. The striking black and yellow Regent Bowerbird is a real highlight along with soaring wedge-tailed eagles, rosellas, lorikeets and cockatoos. Don’t miss the early morning guided bird walk for surprise sightings up close. Other regularly seen wildlife include red-necked pademelons, pygmy possums, sugar gliders, platypuses, bandicoots and wallabies, providing a true cornucopia of Australian native fauna.

The longest section of the walk follows the Border Track across the McPherson Range which will be a highlight for many. The Lamington and Springbrook plateau sections where the rainforest is punctuated by cascading streams, crystal-clear creek, towering waterfalls and breath-taking lookouts offer delightful resting and lunch spots.

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More on what you'll see

The Gold Coast Hinterland Walk connects the Lamington and Springbrook Plateaus together via the Numinbah Valley. You’ll generally progress in a west to east direction with some circuit walks ensuring you experience the best of this ancient and spectacular landscape.

Starting and finishing on plateaus means there are some reasonably steep descents and gradual climbs. The highest point of the work is a little under 1200m above sea level.

You can expect to walk on a variety of distinct, well signposted tracks, mostly well maintained but some rough track surfaces with exposed roots and rocks requiring care, steep grades, sets of steps and creek crossings. However, walking under the sun-dappled shade of the canopy is delightful.

This unique walk traverses well-mapped areas of Queensland’s National Parks and is paced to maximize the time spent enjoying the natural scenery and relaxing in the evening at the unique and charming rainforest retreats and lodges included in the tour price along with most meals.

You’ll be walking an average of about 14km each day either side of the longer 25km day along the iconic Border Track. Most days you’ll walk in and out from your accommodation meaning more time to enjoy the walk’s landscapes and scenery each day. We move your luggage ahead to your next accommodation at each stage, so all you need to carry is what you need for the day.

The accommodations are excellent on this walk, the superb Sky Lodges offer incredible views, amongst other things and the lodge cabins built right over the Twin Falls Creek offer one of the most tranquil environments that you will experience anywhere. All the accommodations are within national park confines or in a beautiful natural setting.

We offer this destination as either a 6 day (includes 4 days of walking) or 8 day (includes 6 days of walking) itinerary.

Let's dive into

More Details

Location

This holiday starts at the Gold Coast Airport in Coolangatta. That’s about one hour south of Brisbane. On Day 1 you will be transported from the airport to your first nights accommodation. After the final day’s walking on Day 7 you’ll spend the night in Springbook before being transported back to Coolangatta after breakfast on Day 8.

Grading

35% easy, 45% moderate, 20% harder. Longest day has 7 hours walking (can be reduced). The walking near O’Reilly’s and Binna Burra is mostly easy on well graded tracks. From there on the track become steeper and rougher underfoot. We can also arrange private transfers from Gold Coast hotels.

For more detailed information including daily walk distances and times please see our Fact Sheet.

Accommodation

Ecolodges, B&Bs & luxury chalets

PLEASE NOTE: For larger group bookings, on your nights in the Sky Lodges at Binna Burra, not all the bedrooms will have views overlooking the Coomera & Numinbah Valleys. The Sky Lodges we allocate will have two or three bedrooms (each with their own ensuite bathroom) and large communal living areas which open up to a spacious decking area for you to enjoy the views on. With this in mind, the rooms with a view will be allocated to the bookings that are received first. You can view a floor plan for the three bedroom Sky Lodge here.

What’s included

8 day itinerary: 7 nights accommodation, 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners, luggage transfers, all transport to/from the Gold Coast airport, National Park fees, insulated lunch bag, maps, map case & info pack.

6 day itinerary: 5 nights accommodation, 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners, luggage transfers, all transport to/from the Gold Coast airport, National Park fees, insulated lunch bag, maps, map case & info pack.

What’s not included

Alcohol, meals not listed in itinerary, drinks with meals (except tea/coffee and juice with breakfast).

The best time to go

The cooler months of May to August are best as there is low humidity and the temperature is usually very pleasant for walking. It can be very warm and humid from September to November and again from March to April. Not available over the summer months of December to February.

See the Bureau of Meteorology’sinformation about average temperatures and rainfall at different times of the year.

Regional food and wine

Noted for homely country style meals, washed down with local wines from Canungra valley.

The Itinerary

Let's Review

Day 1

Starts at the Gold Coast airport in Coolangatta at 2pm, with a transfer into the mountains. There is no walking scheduled for today but there are plenty of facilities you can enjoy at the guesthouse and optional activities you can participate in. You can also change the time you depart the Gold Coast.

Accommodation: O’Reilly’s

Day 2

The morning walk is an excellent introduction to the unique flora and fauna of the area. Hug the “Wishing Tree” and walk to stunning Moran Falls. After lunch at the café, the afternoon walk criss-crosses pretty Canungra Creek.

Walk through lush sub-tropical rainforest with impressive stands of brush box and piccabeen palms. Climb the giant fig tree and explore the different levels of the rainforest on the Tree Tops Walk. Finish the day with a soak in the heated outdoor spa pool.

(DAY 2 OF THE 6 DAY ITINERARY)

Accommodation: O’Reillys

Day 3

Full day Lamington Traverse. Walk across the rainforest plateau on the Border Track to Binna Burra Lodge – at 25km it’s a long way but the route is almost flat and the going is easy. The track emerges from the subtropical rainforest at several panoramic escarpment lookouts along the way.

(DAY 3 OF THE 6 DAY ITINERARY)

Accommodation: Binna Burra Eco lodge

Day 4

A full day circuit walk from Binna Burra on the Daves Creek Circuit. This takes you to the remote eastern escarpment for great views into the Numinbah Valley. There’s also an excellent optional side trip to spectacular Upper Ballanjui Falls.

(DAY 4 OF THE 6 DAY ITINERARY)

Accommodation: Binna Burra.

Day 5

Hike via the Caves Circuit and Lower Ballanjui Falls down into the Numinbah Valley. The conical shaped Egg Rock is a feature today along with the beautiful Little Nerang River.

(NOT PART OF THE 6 DAY ITINERARY)

Accommodation: Numinbah Valley area

Day 6

From the Numinbah, head uphill onto the Springbrook Plateau. Highlights include hiking alongside the Little Nerang River past waterfall after waterfall. At Warringa Pool you can enjoy a refreshing dip in a rainforest swimming hole. And Purling Brook Falls will take your breath away!

(DAY 5 OF THE 6 DAY ITINERARY)

Accommodation: Springbrook Plateau

Day 7

A circuit today, trekking on the Springbrook Plateau. The Warrie Circuit is a major highlight as it zigzags its way through a valley of waterfalls and canyons, criss-crossing the creeks and ending up at the Meeting-of-the-Waters. The climb out via Twin Falls is equally impressive. If you don’t want to go all the way there’s a shorter option of the Twin Falls Circuit.

(NOT PART OF THE 6 DAY ITINERARY)

Accommodation: Springbrook Plateau

Day 8

After breakfast, you’ll be transported back to the Gold Coast airport in Coolangatta, to end this wonderful tramping vacation.

(LAST DAY OF THE 6 DAY ITINERARY)

Enjoy a Flawless Experience

Traveller’s Tales

Cathy and Mike Joyce – September 2016, Gold Coast Hinterland

We have walked quite a bit in South Australia (around Adelaide and the Heysen Trail), Overland Track, Tour Mont Blanc,
Wainwright Coast to Coast etc but this is our first in dense rain forest. We found it a totally different walking experience as it is so closed in at times, even dark.
A great addition to our walking experiences.

Sanjeev Hirve – September 2016, Gold Coast Hinterland, USA

We planned to visit Australia for 2-3 weeks, and were looking for hiking options that did not require too much research, preparation and planning. Your firm fit the bill by taking care of all the research and logistics. Your prep notes, the detailed information on your site, and your staff were very helpful in planning what we needed to bring with us. This is one the most stress-free outdoor excursion I have enjoyed. We received excellent support during our walk. At one point we encountered a closed gate with a ‘planned burn’ notice. We called your office, and your staff worked diligently and quickly to resolve the situation. You contacted the appropriate state park officials and provided us with the update status (the planned burn notice turned out to be an old one). Your walking notes are also pretty accurately estimate the walking times and the ‘difficulty’ of the terrain. If your notes said – gentle, the trail was indeed gentle, if it said steep, it was steep. The notes about the leeches were useful – we encountered both, and were glad for your tips about dealing with them. The trail notes were an indispensable complement to the Topo map. Your choice of lodging is eclectic – ranging from great food at ‘salubrious’ lodges, to homely B&Bs with modest comfort and great hospitality – but always situated in the best locations.

James Walsh – October 2015, Gold Coast Hinterland, USA

O’Reilly’s was spectacular.
The birds were fantastic and I saw and Albert’s Lyrebird, the rarest bird I have ever seen in the wild.
The dinners were great.
The Mouse’s House was unique – we have never stayed in such a nice “wilderness” place.
If you want to really see the rainforest, this is the only way to do it.

Gold Coast Hinterland

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$ 2455 per person twin/double share
$ 495 Single Supplement (private room)

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