Get a feel for real rural Australian life with a visit to Capricorn’s Central Highlands.
You don’t need to go beyond the black stump to get off the beaten track when holidaying in Central Queensland. While not exactly a yellow brick road, if you travel west from Rockhampton along the Capricorn Highway you will reach the Emerald City. Well not quite a city, but the large country town of Emerald is undoubtedly the jewel in the crown that is the Central Highlands.
Named not after the gem, but for the lush green pastures that surround the town, Emerald is considered the “hub” of the Central Highlands and the “gateway” for the Sapphire Gemfields. In 1972, the construction of Fairbairn Dam and the Emerald Irrigation Scheme allowed for the significant development and expansion of agriculture across the region. The dam construction and its associated Lake Maraboon, also kicked off large-scale coal production with this section of the Bowen Basin producing a significant proportion of Queensland’s total coal exports.
Take a drive through country Queensland
And of course it isn’t all about the destination; it is also about the journey and you will learn plenty on your path through original outback frontier towns like Dingo, Bluff, Comet and Alpha. If you are including a visit to Carnarvon Gorge, the towns of Springsure and Rolleston along the Great Inland Way are also well worth scoping out. Take your time and enjoy your tour, the Central Highlands are a most inviting and engaging region of the great Land of Oz!
See for yourself!