Binna Burra & Lamington National Park
Let’s face it – there are very few days in Brisbane that require a woolly scarf or a thick jacket. But if you’re wanting an excuse to rug up, then bundle up your Brisbane Kids and head for the hills, or more specifically, Binna Burra Lodge in the world heritage listed Lamington National Park.
At Binna Burra, the air is always crisp and cool thanks to its positioning 800 metres above sea level amidst sub-tropical rainforest in the Gold Coast hinterland. In summer, it offers a welcome respite from the heat, and in the cooler months, you can gather around a roaring fire with a warming drink.
Escape for the day or stay longer
It is possible to conquer Binna Burra in a day trip from Brisbane, but if you have the time, it is well worth staying a little longer. Binna Burra is an authentic heritage listed lodge and has been welcoming guests since the early 1930s. Impressively, it is listed in the top 10 eco lodges and green hotels in the world by Independent Traveller.
There are a number of accommodation options including camping (bring your own gear or use the permanent safari tents), lodge cabins, Groom’s Cottage, or the luxurious sky lodges. Campers can toast marshmallows over an open fire in designated fire pits, lodge guests can sit by the fire in the library or guest lounge, and sky lodge residents can enjoy their own private gas fireplace in their one, two or three bedroom apartment.
If you’re planning to stay only for the day, you can still use the lodge facilities. Our pick is a sunset drink on the terrace while the kids play croquet! There are also public toilets, BBQs and beautiful picnic areas in the national park that surrounds Binna Burra Lodge. Allow up to two hours to drive the 90km to Binna Burra from Brisbane as there is beautiful scenery along the way and you may want to stop to take photos, or purchase fruit and vegetables from roadside stalls.
Food, glorious food
Binna Burra is a glorious spot to have a picnic or BBQ with your Brisbane Kids in the clean fresh air. Alternatively, you can enjoy an informal breakfast, snack, lunch or dinner in the Lamington Tea House. Be sure to snag a window seat and enjoy the amazing views over the Numinbah Valley. On Friday nights, there’s live music and pizza, while Saturday nights are “pizza and pasta night”. You can also purchase BBQ packs and packed lunches from the Tea House to take with you into the national park.
In addition, the Cliff Top Dining Room in the lodge serves breakfast and dinner daily but bookings are required. Again, you will want to get there early to secure a window seat as the views over the Coomera Valley are breath taking. Bear in mind that the dinner service begins at 6.3opm which may be a little late if you have younger diners.
If you’re staying in the Groom’s Cottage, Sky Lodges or selected cabins, you will have self-catering facilities. Don’t forget to bring your groceries with you, as it is a long drive to the closest supermarket.
Activities for the young and young at heart
There is lots for kids to do at Binna Burra, beginning with the 160 km of bushwalking tracks through ancient Antarctic Beech forest, along exposed escarpments and into heath-land. There are pristine rock pools, fern gullies and beautiful views to be found on the walks.
The rainforest circuit is only 1.2km and is suitable for children of all ages as it is fairly flat and only takes 30 minutes to complete, yet it offers glimpses of the abundance of birds and unique wildlife that inhabit this complex and diverse ecosystem. Please note that this track is not wheel chair or pram accessible, so children will need to walk or be carried.
For younger children, there is a natural playground (near the lodge car park) with a maze and obstacle course, fort and flying fox. Older children and adults (for a fee) can zip through the treetops on the 160 metre flying fox, or try rock climbing and abseiling.
On weekends and school holidays there is a family friendly activity program offering everything from spotlighting tours to movie nights. The program changes weekly, so pick up a copy at the Lodge reception to find out what is happening during your stay. They will even host adventure birthday parties, if you so desire!
Become a tourist in your own back yard this weekend, and discover the natural beauty that is Lamington National Park and Binna Burra Lodge.