fbpx

Walking tracks in Lamington National Park

Lush rainforests, ancient trees, spectacular views, extensive walking tracks, exceptional ecological importance and natural beauty make this Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area an outstanding place to visit.

THE BORDER TRACK

Experience the true essence of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area on this long-distance track.

Delve into the heartland of this ancient landscape on this full-day hike connecting the Green Mountains and Binna Burra sections of the park. Boasting stunning scenery and spectacular views, the Border Track is the backbone of the Lamington walking track system, with most walks radiating from it. It's also a part of the longer Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk.

Hike through warm and cool subtropical and temperate rainforests, into lush gullies and valleys, over crystal mountain streams, past stunning waterfalls, and along prominent ridge lines.

On a clear day, lookouts provide spectacular views of the Limpinwood Valley, 'Wollumbin' (Mount Warning) and the Tweed Range. During winter months, walkers are likely to hear the loud ringing call of the Albert's lyrebird(external link).

There is a short (600m return), steep side track that leads to two lookouts—Beereenbano and Merino—with views over the Tweed and Limpinwood valleys. The track passes through areas of forest damaged during a severe storm in 1983.

This park is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area, famed for its ongoing geological processes, evolutionary history, and diversity (especially of rare, threatened and endemic species).

Warning: there is no shorter way to walk from either trailhead in the park. Stay on the Border Track. Other routes may appear to reduce the distance, but end up being longer. Whichever end you begin, leave as the sun rises and organise to be picked up at the end of your walk or stay overnight at your destination.

Experience the true essence of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia. Read More:

Delve into the heartland of this ancient landscape on this full-day hike connecting the Green Mountains and Binna Burra sections of the park. Boasting stunning scenery and spectacular views, the Border Track is the backbone of the Lamington walking track system, with most walks radiating from it. It's also a part of the longer Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk.

Hike through warm and cool subtropical and temperate rainforests, into lush gullies and valleys, over crystal mountain streams, past stunning waterfalls, and along prominent ridge lines.

On a clear day, lookouts provide spectacular views of the Limpinwood Valley, 'Wollumbin' (Mount Warning) and the Tweed Range. During winter months, walkers are likely to hear the loud ringing call of the Albert's lyrebird

There is a short (600m return), steep side track that leads to two lookouts—Beereenbano and Merino—with views over the Tweed and Limpinwood valleys. The track passes through areas of forest damaged during a severe storm in 1983.

This park is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area, famed for its ongoing geological processes, evolutionary history, and diversity (especially of rare, threatened and endemic species).

Warning: there is no shorter way to walk from either trailhead in the park. Stay on the Border Track. Other routes may appear to reduce the distance, but end up being longer. Whichever end you begin, leave as the sun rises and organise to be picked up at the end of your walk or stay overnight at your destination.

Are you up to the challenge?!

Walk the famous Border Track with this one-way bus transfer service!

One way transfer from Binna Burra Lodge to the Green Mountains section of Lamington National Park (O'Reillys). Regular bus transfers run every Saturday departing at 8am prompt so you walk the 21.4km track back to Binna Burra at your own pace (self-guided). The Border Track is part of the Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk and follows the ancient volcanic landscape of the Tweed Volcano, which is still being eroded by rushing streams and plummeting waterfalls, and through lush rainforest with relicts of Gondwana flora and fauna.

This is not a guided activity. Maps are available from Binna Burra Gift Store.  Please come prepared for a full day walk with essentials such as food, water and sunscreen.

This is a jointly operated service between Binna Burra Lodge and O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat and may involve a brief toilet stop at Canungra Valley Vineyards where a change of bus may be required.  Typical arrival time at Green Mountains is 9.50am.

Walk the famous Border Track with this one-way bus transfer service! Read More:

One way transfer from Binna Burra Lodge to the Green Mountains section of Lamington National Park (O'Reillys). Regular bus transfers run every Saturday departing at 8am prompt so you walk the 21.4km track back to Binna Burra at your own pace (self-guided). The Border Track is part of the Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk and follows the ancient volcanic landscape of the Tweed Volcano, which is still being eroded by rushing streams and plummeting waterfalls, and through lush rainforest with relicts of Gondwana flora and fauna.

This is not a guided activity. Maps are available from Binna Burra Gift Store.  Please come prepared for a full day walk with essentials such as food, water and sunscreen.

This is a jointly operated service between Binna Burra Lodge and O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat and may involve a brief toilet stop at Canungra Valley Vineyards where a change of bus may be required.  Typical arrival time at Green Mountains is 9.50am.

Short Walks

Rainforest Circuit

For a quick introduction to the 'typical' warm subtropical rainforest of Lamington, follow the Border Track for 500m from the Binna Burra trailhead, then branch right on to the Rainforest circuit. Wander under the thick, green canopy and listen for the distinctive calls of bowerbirds and catbirds. These are members of the oldest lineage of songbirds.

Tullawallal Circuit

The pocket of Antarctic beech Nothofagus moorei on the summit is the northernmost patch of this species in Australia and is one of our remaining links with the ancient forests of Gondwana. Nothofagus forests that were once widespread across Australia and provided a habitat for many animals that have long since disappeared from our landscape.

Caves Circuit

From the park's information centre, this interesting walk winds up through open forest, where koalas are often seen, and into rainforest before emerging at the Saddle trailhead on the road near the Binna Burra Mountain Lodge road entrance. White-throated treecreepers, members of one of the oldest groups of songbirds, are frequently seen on this track.

Gwongoorool Track

Start at the Lower picnic area trailhead and descend a series of steep rock steps (approximately 200 in total) to the Coomera River, passing cliffs of volcanic ash (tuff). At the valley floor, follow the Coomera River to picturesque Gwongoorool Pool. The river, along with all of Lamington’s waterways, is important habitat for hylid frogs (tree frog family), freshwater crayfish, eels and eastern water dragons. Return on the same track.

Half Day Walks

Lower Bellbird Circuit

Detour currently in place due to repairs.

Admire spectacular views across Ships Stern, Turtle Rock, 'Kurraragin' (Egg Rock), and down into Numinbah Valley from Koolaninilba and Yangahla lookouts. Wind past cliff faces adorned with orchids and ferns, cross mountain streams and pass through a patch of dry rainforest dominated by hoop pine—regarded as an example of the rise of the 'dry adapted' flora now widespread in Australia. Follow the track below Bellbird lookout and emerge at a clearing, once a dairy farm. From here, return back along the same path to the Saddle trailhead to avoid walking beside the bitumen road to complete the circuit.

Dave's Creek Circuit

Descend through the head of Kurraragin Valley out into Daves Creek country. Keep an eye out for Surprise Rock—a volcanic dyke made of hardy trachyte and enjoy magnificent views from Numinbah lookout. Be sure to stop and enjoy the cool surrounds of Picnic Creek. The circuit passes through several distinctive vegetation types: warm and cool subtropical rainforest along the Border Track; warm temperate rainforest, containing many examples of ancient angiosperms such as coachwood Ceratopetalum apetalum, in Nixon Creek's headwaters; and wet sclerophyll forest.

Full Day Walks

Coomera circuit

The scenic Coomera circuit leaves the Border Track 1.9km from the Binna Burra trailhead and passes through subtropical and warm temperate rainforest communities, and giant brush box Lophostemon confertusforest. Walk up to Coomera Falls lookout (5.5km from the trailhead) and witness the power of the Coomera River as it cascades over the magnificent Coomera and Yarrabilgong falls down into the 160m deep gorge.

Continue to ascend, along the edge of Coomera Gorge, following the Coomera River past a series of other lovely cascades and waterfalls and look for Lamington spiny crayfish along the way. Cross the river several times before rejoining the Border Track and returning to the Binna Burra trailhead.

Warning: this circuit has several river crossings which involve stepping from rock to rock. This can be hazardous after heavy rain and should not be attempted when the river is in flood—you may get caught between creek crossings.

Ships Stern circuit

Commencing at the Saddle trailhead, descend along the Lower Bellbird circuit track past Koolanbilba and Yangahla lookouts before branching off onto the Ships Stern circuit track. Pass through a fine stand of piccabeen palm Archontophoenix cunninghamii to the floor of Nixon Valley where red cedar Toona ciliatae and the majestic flooded gum Eucalyptus grandis thrive. Take the short Lower Ballunji Falls side track (an additional 1.2km return) to the bottom of Ballunjui Falls. Continuing on the circuit, cross Nixon Creek and ascend through Hidden Valley past Charraboomba Rock to the top of Ships Stern range and into open eucalypt forest. This is one of the few places within the park where scribbly gum Eucalyptus racemosa can be seen. Enjoy impressive views from a number of lookouts as the circuit continues through rainforest and open forest. The Upper Ballunjui side track (an additional 2.6km return) leads to Guraigumai Rock and Upper Ballunjui falls. Continue past Nagarigoon Falls to the junction with Daves Creek circuit, turn right to head along the Border Track and complete the circuit back to the Saddle trailhead. For the very energetic, Daves Creek circuit can be added to this walk, making it a total of 23km.

Illinbah circuit

To walk the Illinbah circuit clockwise, start at the Lower picnic area trailhead and descend steeply along the Gwongoorool track through rainforest and open forest to the Coomera River. The dry rainforest on the river's western side provides habitat for the black-breasted button-quail(external link), a member of an ancient order of birds.

Rock-hop or wade through the swirling river waters as you navigate the many crossing following the 'Old Cedar Road', once used by timber-getters in the early 1900s. The circuit then leaves the river and climbs the Beechmont Range to return to Binna Burra.

Warning: in hot weather it may be less strenuous to walk this circuit in an anticlockwise direction. Always carry enough drinking water. River crossings can be hazardous after heavy rain and should not be attempted when the river is in flood.

Araucaria lookout track

From the Binna Burra trailhead, follow the Border Track for 5.4km before branching off onto the Araucaria lookout track. This 2.6km track passes Orchid Bower lookout and ends at Araucaria lookout—named after the hoop pines Araucaria cunninghamii, which can be viewed from the lookout. These hoop pine communities are a living representative of the Jurassic Age (the age of the conifers) about 180 million years ago. Both lookouts offer impressive views towards the Springbrook plateau.

Wagawn track

This track splits from the Araucaria lookout track 900m from the Border Track junction. Hike up, often through misty clouds, to Garragoolba lookout for uninterrupted views of Springbrook, the Tweed Valley and 'Wollumbin' (Mount Warning). Please do not damage or remove vegetation as many of these plants are significant species in the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area. Remember, all plants are protected by legislation.

Mount Hobwee circuit

The Mount Hobwee circuit branches off the Wagawn track 2km after the Border Track junction. Wind up through rainforest filled with ferns, stream lillies, fungi and epiphytes, to the Antarctic beech-clad summit of Mount Hobwee (1164m). Look for clusters of beech oranges—the fruiting body of a fungus species only found on Antarctic beech trees in Australia and South America. The Nothofagus forest and associated communities found here and on Mount Merino provide strong evidence of the Gondwana connection.

Resources

Click here for more park information and guidelines

Park features

Declared in 1915, Lamington National Park covers 21,176ha and boasts extensive walking tracks along the McPherson Range, which allow visitors to explore the area's forests, creeks and waterfalls.

Dramatic lookouts in Lamington afford views over the Gold Coast, south-east Queensland and northern New South Wales.

Lamington is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area, which includes the most extensive areas of subtropical rainforest in the world, most of the world's warm temperate rainforest and nearly all of the Antarctic beech Nothofagus moorei cool temperate rainforest.

Looking after the park

The natural beauty of Lamington National Park attracts thousands of people to the area, but high visitor numbers create many pressures. Litter, erosion caused by shortcutting tracks, damage to vegetation and disturbance to wildlife all threaten nature's delicate existence.

You can help protect the park by:

Guidelines

  • please leave all plants and animals undisturbed
  • please do not feed the wildlife. Feeding native animals may cause poor health and sometimes death.
  • use toilets if available. Away from toilets, take care with sanitation and hygiene and don't pollute natural water supplies. Ensure all faecal matter and toilet paper is properly buried (15cm deep) well away from tracks, camp sites and 100m from all watercourses and drainage channels (carry a small trowel for this purpose). Bag and carry out disposable nappies and sanitary products.
  • wash away from streams, gullies and watercourses, as all detergents, soaps, sunscreens and toothpastes pollute water and damage aquatic life.
  • take your rubbish home. Minimal impact bushwalkers take great care to avoid leaving any rubbish. Remember—pack it in, pack it out. This includes all food scraps, scraps of foil, sweet’s wrappers and cigarette butts.
  • keep to the walking tracks where provided, don't shortcut, and take care near cliff edges.

Fuel stoves only

No open fires are allowed in the park; fuel stoves must be used. This is because of;

  • the possibility of pathogens, fire ants and cane toadlets being bought into the park from introduced firewood
  • the importance of fallen and dead timber (as homes for insects, reptiles and small mammals and in returning nutrients to the soil)
  • the danger of starting wildfires
  • damage caused by people trampling as they gather wood.

Pathogens

Stop the spread of pathogens (disease producing organisms such as phytophthora(external link), myrtle rust and amphibian chytrid fungus). Soil and detritus can contain pathogens such as fungal spores that are harmful to the forest and frogs.

  • Keep to designated roads and walking tracks at all times.
  • Start and finish you bushwalk with clean footwear and camping gear by removing soil from footwear, camping spade or trowel and tent pegs before leaving an area and keep all gear as clean and free from soil as possible during the walk.
  • Please clean and disinfect your footwear and camping equipment using a disinfectant either at home or before visiting the park. Use pathogen control stations located at track entrances in the park.
  • Watch the Stop the spread of weeds and pathogens web clip for more information.

Please refer to the Green Mountains and Binna Burra section maps for locations of these pathogen control stations.

Be frog friendly

Lamington's waterways provide important habitats for a number of endangered or vulnerable species, particularly frogs. Please help protect these sensitive habitats by following the guidelines below.

  • Please do not disturb, handle or remove frogs, their eggs or tadpoles.
  • Do not use or discard, soap, detergent, shampoo, sunscreen, insect repellent or any other potential pollutant in creeks or along the banks.
  • Keep to walking tracks and cross directly where the track crosses the creek.
  • Please do not disturb or remove rocks or trample vegetation in or directly adjacent to creeks.

See the guidelines on caring for parks for more information about protecting our environment and heritage in parks.

Park management

Lamington National Park is a reserve of international significance and is managed by the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) under the Nature Conservation Act 1992, to preserve and present its remarkable natural and cultural values in perpetuity.

Lamington's outstanding geological history, evolutionary significance and role in nature conservation are recognised through its inclusion in the World Heritage listed Gondwana Rainforests of Australia. Management is in accordance with internationally recognised obligations under the World Heritage Convention.

For more information about the management of Lamington National Park, refer to the Lamington National Park Management Plan (PDF, 1MB). Future planning for Lamington National Park will be developed under the Values Based Management Framework.

Tourism information links

Beaudesert Community Arts and Information Centre
Westerman Park
Cnr Mt Lindesay Highway and Enterprise Drive
BEAUDESERT QLD 4285
Ph: (07) 5541 4495
Email: bdstarts@bigpond.net.au
www.visitscenicrim.com.au(external link)

For more tourist information about the Gold Coast see Destination Gold Coast(external link).

For tourism information for all regions in Queensland see Queensland Holidays(external link).