Information and links to trails in Queensland
What is a trail?
A beaten path through rough country such as a forest or moor. (Oxford Dictionary)
A route for travel over land, especially a narrow, unpaved pathway for use by hikers, horseback riders, etc. (Wikipedia)
A trail is a travel way established either through construction or use and is passable by at least one or more of the following, including but not limited to: foot traffic, stock, watercraft, bicycles, in-line skates, wheelchairs, cross-country skis, off-road recreation vehicles such as motorcycles, snowmobiles, ATVs and 4-wheel drive vehicles. (US National Recreation Trails Program)
The National Trail is Australia’s premier long distance, multi-use recreational trekking route, stretching an extraordinary 5,330 kilometres from Cooktown in tropical far north Queensland to Healesville in Victoria.
Variously known as ‘the BNT’, the National Trail or simply ‘the Trail’, the National Trail follows the foothills of the Great Dividing Range and the Eastern Escarpment offering self reliant distance trekkers a uniquely Australian adventure.
As it winds along Australia’s eastern seaboard the National Trail reveals some of the most spectacular scenery in the country. The Trail provides access through some of Australia’s wildest, most inaccessible country and provides endless fascination for those interested in our unique fauna and flora.
The National Trail was originally conceived as a route for the long distance horse trekker but is now enjoyed by cyclists and hikers as well.
There are plenty of trails available to explore the Tablelands region including:
- Atherton Tablelands Rail Trail
- Art, Crafts & Heritage Trail
- Malanda Mosaic Trail
- Popular Atherton Tablelands Walking & Hiking Trails
- Tablelands Anzac Trail
- Tolga-Kairi Cycle Loop
- Top Ten Waterfalls On The Atherton Tablelands
- Top Ten Trails
Drop into a Visitor Information Centre for more information on things to see and do in the region.
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AllTrails has 3,845 great hiking trails, trail running trails, mountain biking trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you.
Whether you’re looking for the best trails in Uluṟu-Kata Tjuṯa National Park or Neerabup National Park – we’ve got you covered. If you’re looking for great state park trails check out Blue Mountains National Park in New South Wales or Cradle Mountain-Lake Saint Clair National Park in Tasmania. Or for some great local park options, check out Werribee Gorge State Park near Victoria or Lesmurdie Falls Picnic Area near Western Australia. Ready for some activity?
Start checking them out on AllTrails and you’ll be out on the trail in no time!
Witnessing sunrise through the rainforest canopy, smelling gum trees through the morning mist, or unhooking yourself from a wait-a-while vine are all signs that you’re out there doing it; exploring the magnificent great outdoors.
You don’t have to be a camper, rambler or trail runner to enjoy the secluded tracks and trails that criss-cross the National Parks of our state when you have our guide to 10 of the best walks in Queensland.
Moreton Bay is a vast region set amongst a diverse landscape, offering numerous recreational trail opportunities for bush walkers, mountain bikers and horse riders. The trails range from short leisurely experiences for all fitness levels to more strenuous longer trails, recommended for more experienced users.
A new resource from We Are Explorers
With year-round hiking, diverse landscapes, and world-class walking tracks, Queensland has some epic multi-day hikes that need to be on your bucket list. 11 of Queensland’s best, spanning over 10 national parks – and they include a few gems that might not be on your radar yet. Listed from shortest to longest distance, these are Queensland’s best multiday hikes. (weareexplorers)
Looking for more trails? Why not explore the Wide Bay Burnett region, with internationally recognised pristine coastlines through to rugged mountain ranges, there is something for everyone to enjoy the natural wonders of the region.
From the Coastal Pathway to horse riding, paddling and walking tracks, the Sunshine Coast has it all.
Sunshine Coast Adventures
Over 150 free, self-guided walking, cycling, mountain biking, horse riding and canoeing activities, Adventure Sunshine Coast is the ultimate guide to the great outdoors of the Sunshine Coast.
Walking and cycling maps
Explore pathways in your local area with the Sunshine Coast Active Travel Maps, designed to help you walk, ride or catch the bus from Peregian Springs through to Pelican Waters. Discover a new way to get to the beach or find a bike park for the kids using these comprehensive maps. You can view them online, or pick up a copy from council’s customer contact centres, libraries or your local bike shop.
Explore Queensland’s best natural areas on foot!
The Great Walks of Queensland are a world-class system of walking tracks through Queensland’s protected area estate, including four magnificent World Heritage Areas, and offer a range of experiences, from short, easy strolls to half and full-day walks and extended overnight adventures, giving people of all ages and abilities the opportunity to explore, experience and enjoy the magnificence of Queensland’s parks and forests
With more than 63km of walking trails, 50km of mountain biking trails and 23km of horse riding trails, Toowoomba Region is a must go destination for the outdoor enthusiasts.
To find more about what the region offers please follow this link: http://www.tr.qld.gov.au/facilities-recreation/sport-recreation/fields-outdoor-recreation/227-where-to-walk
For example: Picnic Point Park
164 Tourist Rd,
Toowoomba City QLD 4350
Find on Google Maps
From Toowoomba CBD head towards James Street and follow east. Turn right onto Tourist Road and turn left at the roundabout. Continue to the end of the road and find a carpark.
Description: A mix of urban parkland and bushland close to the city. The escarpment bushland area provides a lovely natural experience where visitors can escape the city and enjoy excellent views east from the Great Dividing Range. A number of walking tracks exist through the escarpment park, which are popular with bushwalkers. From the top of the range and down through bushland to the east there are a number of graded walks and a bridle trail. Ranging from an easy 500-metres to over five kilometres, the trails take the visitor into a world of busy birdlife and distinctive native flora.
(CURRENTLY NOT AVAILABLE)
A comprehensive source of information for all water related activities in the region in one complete guide. From pristine inland freshwater rivers, vast lakes and wetlands to the exciting and diverse coastline, the Wide Bay Burnett region of Queensland invites you to enjoy the best it has to offer.
Atherton Tablelands offers some of the best mountain bike and road cycling adventures in Queensland. Magnificent flowing single track, family trails, epic mountain bike rides and scenic back country road rides that will take your breath away. Atherton Tablelands is fast becoming the ultimate cycling destination in Queensland.
Rail trails are shared-use paths recycled from abandoned railway corridors. They can be used for walking, cycling and horse riding, and meandering through scenic countryside link small country towns as railways did in the past.
See also Brisbane Valley Rail Trail below
The Noosa Trail Network is made up of eight scenic hinterland trails suitable for walking, horse riding or mountain biking. The spectacular countryside trails are well signposted, and vary in length and difficulty.
A compiled database of 4wd tracks right across Queensland, New South Wales and Australia. Each 4×4 track writeup includes great content, Videos & images of how to drive your 4wd on the Track.
Source: 4WD Life
While not in Queensland, The Clarence Canoe & Kayak Trail, just over the border, is the longest white water trail in Australia! It covers more than 195 km of river between the Nymboi-Binderay National Park and the township of Copmanhurst encompassing the Nymboida, Mann and Clarence river systems. It offers spectacular scenery, an abundance of wildlife and some exhilarating whitewater adventure!
Your go-to site for all things hiking and adventures in Brisbane.
A selection of some of the best trails around Brisbane
We host meet-ups and connect like minded adventurers!
Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (BVRT)
Official TMR website: https://www.tmr.qld.gov.au/bvrt
The Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (BVRT) follows the disused Brisbane Valley rail line that commenced construction at Wulkuraka near Ipswich in 1884 and was completed at Yarraman in 1913. The BVRT winds its way up the Brisbane valley, traversing farmland, forests, picturesque rural settings and country towns. Being on the old railway line, the BVRT provides an easy climb up the valley for day trippers, overnight camping or longer term adventures.
The first Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (BVRT) Strategic Plan has been endorsed and released by the Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR)
The BVRT utilises the former Brisbane Valley railway line from Wulkuraka, near Ipswich, to Yarraman, west of Kilcoy and provides recreational opportunities for walkers, bike and horse riders. It is not your average rail trail; from the 20 minute ‘just going to stretch my legs’ walker to the 322 kilometre ‘end to end and back again’ endurance rider, this rail trail truly has something for everyone. Learn More.
The Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) is the state agency responsible for the day-to-day management and maintenance of the BVRT in conjunction with Ipswich City Council, Somerset, South Burnett and Toowoomba Regional Councils, and The Ambassadors of the BVRT–Moore Linville Benarkin Blackbutt Inc.
TMR has produced a five-year Strategic Plan for the BVRT that provides a blueprint for the future development and management of the rail trail with a focus on identifying tourism and marketing initiatives. Read Full Story
The Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) and Somerset Regional Council collaborated with The University of Queensland’s Business School Service Innovation Alliance (SIA) to carry out visitor research on the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (BVRT).
In August 2021, Council released the BVRT Visitor Research Report which analysed trail usage through late 2020. The report contains extensive information on local and visitor usage, including visitor profiling, trip characteristics, information touchpoints, travel motivations, visitor spending, visitor experience and visitor sentiment. The report is a must read for tourism operators servicing BVRT users.
To assist in consuming the report, Council has produced the attached four page Infographic. The infographic highlights selected non-local user statistics that may be of assistance to business operators in the region.
Australian Walking Track Grading System
The AWTGS classifies tracks into 5 grades, based on the Australian Standard for walking track construction (AS 2156). It was funded and developed by a Victorian Government initiative, in partnership government agencies and non-government groups across Australia.
Full User Guide:
Australian Walking Track Grading System
No bushwalking experience required. Flat even surface with no steps or steep sections. Suitable for wheelchair users who have someone to assist them. Walks no greater than 5km.
No bushwalking experience required. The track is hardened or compacted surface and may have a gentle hill section or sections and occasional steps. Walks no greater than 10km.
Suitable for most ages and fitness levels. Some bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may have short steep hill sections a rough surface and many steps. Walks up to 20km.
Bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may be long, rough and very steep. Directional signage may be limited.
Very experienced bushwalkers with specialised skills, including navigation and emergency first aid. Tracks are likely to be very rough, very steep and unmarked. Walks may be more than 20km.
Full User Guide: Australian Walking Track Grading System
Other Useful Information
Currently, the Queensland Government is exploring the following ecotourism opportunities as part of this program (with additional future opportunities expected):
The objectives of the State’s Ecotourism Trails program are to better protect, present and maintain our national parks and to work with Traditional Owner groups, councils, community and industry to create local jobs.
It’s about conservation, protecting biodiversity and offering tourism in an ecologically-sustainable manner.
The Nature Conservation Act 1992 (NC Act) provides for development of low-impact, purpose-built ecotourism infrastructure on national parks that is ecologically sustainable, is in the public interest and, to the greatest possible extent, preserves the land’s natural and cultural condition.
The Queensland Government also recognises the need to capture a greater share of higher yielding nature-based visitors. This is reflected in the Queensland Ecotourism Plan 2016-2020, where one of the five strategic directions is stimulating investment in new and refurbished ecotourism opportunities.
Information, links and resources on maintaining and developing effective trails
Excerpts from the Rail Trails Australia Magazine “Rail Trail Connections
- Queensland Rail Trail News, Rail Trail Connections (Spring 2018)
Published courtesy of
Rail Trails Australia
Great Walks is Australia’s ultimate walking magazine. Every issue is packed with gear guides, product reviews, advice on the best travel destinations, inspiring real-life accounts from seasoned walkers and practical information on specific walks and their accompanying maps.
Trails Map of Queensland
Source: Bushwalking Queensland
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