Situated at the Rainbow Beach entrance to the Cooloola Great Walk, Carlo Sandblow is accessible via an easy 600-metre nature walk from Cooloola Drive. Cooloola’s ancient sands have accumulated and eroded over thousands of years. This sea of sand covers over fifteen hectares and overlooks the coastline that stretches from Double Island Point to Inskip Point and the southern tip of Fraser Island. Locals and visitors flock to Carlo Sandblow in the afternoon to take in the sun setting over Tin Can Bay.
Walk along the beach past rocks, caves and freshwater springs to the awesome coloured sands that tower over the beach about two kilometres south of Rainbow Beach Life Saving Club. The complex array in tones and hues of the sands creates a landscape of wonder.
Foreshore Bird Walk
Even the keenest birdwatcher will be amazed at the variety of bird life on the Cooloola Coast. Stroll along the bird walk that stretches four kilometres along Tin Can Bay’s foreshore, where 137 species have been sighted. A pair of binoculars and a good field guide of Australian birds will no doubt enhance your walk. Keep an eye out for the striking black and white Jabiru, the graceful silver-grey Brolga and the distinctive Brahminy Kite with its deep chestnut wings and white head. The foreshore provides a range of habitats for an excellent birding experience. The sand flats and mangroves are a feeding ground for migratory shorebirds, waders and sea birds. Patches of Wallum heath provides shelter for ground dwelling birds. Wattles, She-Oak, and Banksia offer nectar for the middle storey birds and the birds of upper-storey feed on the blossoms of the Blue Gums and Bloodwood. There are also many spots where birds of the ‘open space’ can be observed. www.tincanbayphotographytours.com
Tin Can Bay is the habitat for a unique collection of spectacular native wildflower species. Wander along the informative wildflower walk that can be accessed from the corner of Emperor Street and Oyster Parade.
Soft pink and white Wax flowers, vibrant yellow Guinea flowers and brilliant pink Melaleuca flowers can be seen year round. The walk comes alive with colour in spring and summer when you can also view Vanilla Lillies, Helmet Orchids, WallumBoronia and Spade Flowers. To see more www.tincanbayphotographytours.com
Mary Valley Country offers bushwalkers everything from a gentle stroll beside a quiet stream through to the challenging four-day Conondale Range Great Walk. Walk through riverine rainforests, hoop and bunya pine plantations, lookouts and waterfalls, and enjoy the abundant wildlife across a network of State forests and national parks.
Amamoor State Forest
Amamoor Day Use Area: Produces some of the finest hoop pine in Queensland. More than 120 bird species have been sighted in its riverine rainforests and plantations of hoop and bunya pines. A platypus viewing platform is provided on the banks of Amamoor Creek. The 1.5km Amama Walk is accessed across the road and explores lush rainforest with buttressed trees, vines, ferns and mossy rocks. Class 3.
Cedar Grove Camping Ground: The Rainforest Walk will take you past swimming holes into a sub-tropical rainforest that features large red cedars, figs and piccabeen palm grove. It will take you about 30 minutes to complete the 1 km return trip. Amamoor State Forest map: www.nprsr.qld.gov.au/parks/amamoor/pdf/amamoor-area-map.pdf.
Imbil State Forest
Fig Tree Walk: Located where Booloumba Creek joins the Mary River near Little Yabba Creek Rest Area approximately 4km south of Kenilworth along the Maleny-Kenilworth Road. Fig Tree walk is a sealed 1.4km track suitable for wheelchairs with sections of boardwalk that make for an easy short walk. Enjoy the magnificent rainforest and giant Moreton Bay Figs. Class 2.
Charlie Moreland - camping and day-use area: Birdwatch on Little Yabba or Piccabeen Circuits or take the steady climb to 360° views on the 8km Mt Allan walk which takes about 4 hours and offers views of Mary Valley Country atop a 9.6m fire tower. Class 4. Imbil state Forest-Conondale NP map:www.nprsr.qld.gov.au/parks/imbil/pdf/imbil-conondale-map.pdf.
Kilkivan – Goomeri
Kilkivan Forest Reserve & Mudlo Gap
On the Mudlo Range, north of the town of Kilkivan, this reserve protects one of the area's few remaining stands of native hoop pine rainforest. Tall hoop pines once covered much of the coastal ranges. Open eucalypt woodlands with ironbarks and forest red gums grow on exposed slopes and foothills. The reserve is near the site of Queensland's first gold discovery, at Kilkivan township in 1852.
Go for a short scenic drive to Mudlo Gap for excellent views. Enjoy a picnic beside Scrubby Creek (Picnic tables, a shelter shed, toilets and a barbecue are provided at the Gap). Wander the 1km Scrubby Creek walking track, through dry rainforest, past giant figs and lovely creeks. The Mudlo Gap track is steep with many steps, but the view from the lookout is impressive. On your walks, keep your eyes open for whiptail wallabies and wonga pigeons.