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in Australia

Base: Gold Coast

 Ecology and protection of the environment does not lack in Australia. Fines can be severe for those who do not follow Australia's rules of preservation. All that should be taken away from national parks and marine parks are photographs and any garbage, including cigarette buds. Any fires lit need to be treated with great attention, and make sure that the fire has been put out well when finished. In some forest, marine parks, and islands, it is necessary to get permission (normally by buying a permit). If you want to camp, prices for such permits are very low, and is in place more as a form of control. Consult the Rangers about any type of activity you intend to make, either in a marine park, reserve forest, or any national parks. Remember there are many types of animals that can present some danger such as snakes, spiders, and even poisonous plants.

There are more than a thousand National Parks in Australia, all kept by the rangers, and are well marked. Most of the parks offer simple and free maps, and some parks have detailed maps for sale, prices ranging from A$10. Many parks have Aborigines relics that are considered sacred, and the destruction of any form, could pose heavy fines and even prison. Australia has all types of parks. They include some deserts, sub-tropical, tropical vegetation, Marine Parks etc. The number is so large that it would be almost impossible to describe each one. If you would like to know more about it, there is a guide in bookstores, with tips and description of most parks. 

On the Gold Coast the main National Parks are the following:

Lamington National Park - 20.600 hectares of valleys and green hills covered by rainforest. This park is divided in two sections: Binna Burra and Green Mountains. There are many tracks for all kinds of bushwalkers and ages, with a great variety of birds, native animals and caves to be observed and appreciated. More information phone: 55333584

Mt Barney National Park - Most of the area is covered by Eucalyptus, however there are also areas with forest, waterfalls, valleys, and diversified rare plants. Phone: 54635041

Springbrook National Park - This park is only 40 km from the Gold Coast, enclosed in the mountains which surrounds the city, this place is perfect for a picnic with family or friends. The park has beautiful vegetation, and an abundance of wildlife. There are tracks leading you to the edge of the mountain, and even underneath waterfalls. Lookout points offer wonderful views of the Tweed Valley, Surfers Paradise, and most of the Gold Coast. The park is a remnant part of an extinct volcano, Mt.Warning, which is the highest peak in the area. The Natural Arch (photo) is one of the greatest attractions. Phone: 55335147.

Numinbah Valley - Between the Lamington and the Springbrook Parks, this place has its own "Natural Bridge", a natural bridge with waterfall. At night, the cave is illuminated by a large colony of "Glow-worms" (species of firefly that does not blink and are always glowing). 

Mc Pherson Ranges -  It's located in southern Gold Coast, crossing the border to the state of New South Wales, and following west in direction of the colourful city of Murwillumbah, near the Tweed River. Amongst the best activities, are climbing Mt.Warning and bush walking through the various challenging tracks.

Tamborine National Park - Another park which is a remainder of an extinct volcano, it is situated half way from the Gold Coast and Brisbane, it has many subtropical forests, waterfalls and animal life. The ascent is fairly steep, and may not be recommended for caravan trailers and heavy vehicle. At the top of the mountain, there is a small town (similar to a village) with a few rustic style restaurants, cafes, and shops, give that special touch to the mountain climate and atmosphere. Mt Tamborine is an amazing place with great views and the best sunsets on the coast. This place is simply a treasure not to be missed. Phone: 55453200. 

South e North Stradbroke Island - They are 2 islands with the North Island being the largest. Until not too long ago both island were one. A cyclone was responsible for dividing the island in two. Whales in northward migration can be observed close to the coast, especially from Point Lookout on North Stradbroke. Many desert beaches serve to all tastes, some with excellent Surf (although some with plenty of sharks too) and plenty of dolphins. The islands are great for camping, with many crystal clear freshwater lakes (In the North only) which are filtered by clean white sand. North Stradbroke has good basic infrastructure including, a few inns and hotels, restaurants, small markets and shops, camping and cabin for rent by the sea side and also 4x4 tours. It is definitely worth spending a day or weekend there. The Ferry boat for South Stradbroke Island, leaves Runaway Bay 7 days per week to the 10:30 of the morning. Extra boats function in other schedules and days of the week. Other information can be obtained from phone: (07) 55773311. 

Want to see a spectacular Tour in National Parks? Click here!

Read about the spectacular Carnarvon National Park 


Photos on this page courtesy of Tourism Queensland 



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