As you explore the rural heartland of South West Queensland, take a 2-hour detour from Cunnamulla to the town of Bollon. This small settlement sits on the banks of peaceful Wallam Creek. Balonne Shire waterways are renowned for Murray cod and yellowbelly. If you’re lucky enough to snag one of these freshwater fish, why not throw it on the barbecue and set up a relaxing riverside picnic? And after filling your belly with yellowbelly, you can settle in at the one–and only–pub in town,The Bollon Hotel.
For hungry travellers, a must-stop attraction is the Dirranbandi Bakehouse. This bakery is known for some of the most delicious treats in the west, thanks to its Russian-born owner. Pies, cakes, buns and bread… something for every appetite!
A trip to Moon Rocks Farm just outside St George reveals a rural business that’s been going strong for 40 years. This family-run farm cultivates all sorts of crops, including onions, garlic and broccoli. The farm is run as sustainably as possible by rotating crops, composting and keeping the soil as healthy as possible.
Another rural family is behind Black Knight Berries and Table Grapes in St George. Again, sustainable practices and a pesticide-free philosophy results in delicious fruit fresh for the market.
You can put all these local delights to the test by attending ‘Grazing by the Waterhole’, a long-table dining experience held next to the stunning Thallon silos on the last weekend of September. The event is run by Leanne Brosnan, who is part of the Thallon Progress Association. She aims to bring together the beauty of the region’s best produce in a special dinner under glittering Outback stars.
From Thallon, it’s just a 20-minute drive to Nindigully. The focal point of this small country town is its classic country pub. Nindigully’s hotel was the setting for Paperback Hero – an Aussie-made romantic comedy filmed 20 years ago, starring Hugh Jackman. Memorabilia from the movie preserved at the pub includes boomerangs used as props on set. They’re being restored to their former glory by local artist, Barry Boland.
Outback Queensland has seen its share of tough times in recent years. So when big events roll around – like the St George River Dragon Festival – the community rallies together to put on a great show. The multicultural festival runs for three days and encompasses a wide range of cultural events, including River Dragon Boat Races Regatta, water skiing, market stalls and live entertainment.
When planning your next holiday, you should consider the Outback. You’ll experience everything the incredible landscape has to offer and the towns you visit will benefit from your business.