Visit Springbrook National Park with Kids
With its stunning scenery of breathtaking panoramic views, lush rainforest and cascading waterfalls, as well as amazing wildlife and great bushwalks, Springbrook National Park is a spectacular place to visit.
About Springbrook National Park
Springbrook National Park covers an area of 6725 hectares and is located in the Gold Coast hinterland, about 100km south of Brisbane. It is set on a high plateau, which is the remains of the ancient Tweed Volcano, which erupted 23 million years ago. The plateau is covered with subtropical and temperate rainforest, open eucalypt forest and montane health. There are cool streams that tumble over the sheer cliff edges of the plateau in shimmering waterfalls, diverse flora with trees that are up to 3,000 years old, and a wide range of beautiful and rare wildlife. As an extremely important area of ecological significance and outstanding natural beauty, Springbrook National Park is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area.
‘Meenyahgu Yugambeh jagun’—welcome to Yugambeh country.
Springbrook is Yugambeh country. The Yugambeh people have inhabited this area for thousands of years, and remain here to this day, caring for this sacred and spiritual mountain land and its wildlife, with this important message, ‘Nyah-nyah ngalingah kurul kaban’ — ‘Take care of our wilderness.’ You can read more about the culture and history of Springbrook here.
At 900 metres above sea level, Springbrook sits high above the surrounding countryside, with stunning views across the rainforest canopy and out to the bay or down over New South Wales. There are lookouts to make the most of the sweeping vistas, and some amazing walking tracks to explore the surroundings. There are also lovely picnic spots, local cafes and beautiful rainforest accommodation, making this perfect place to come to explore for a day or stay for a week!
Getting to Springbrook National Park with kids
Getting to Springbrook from Brisbane, simply follow the Pacific Motorway south, then take exit 69 at Nerang and take the Nerang–Murwillumbah Road then the Gold Coast-Springbrook Road. Or take exit 79 at Mudgeeraba and take the Gold-Coast Springbrook Road. Both roads are windy, narrow and steep in places, and sometimes have single-lane sections.
There is no staffed visitor’s centre actually in Springbrook National Park, but on arrival it is worth stopping at the National Parks Information Centre on School Road (open 8am-3.30pm daily). The centre features wildlife and historical displays, and there is a boardwalk, a lookout 100m from the carpark and public toilets.
There is also a community Information Centre opposite the Wunburra lookout (open 10am-2pm on weekends and public holidays), which is run by volunteers.
Check out this awesome Springbrook Mountain Visitors Guide from explorespringbrook.com for a great map showing all of the attractions of Springbrook.
Amazing walks, waterfalls and lookouts
There are many beautiful walks to enjoy in Springbrook National Park, from 30 metres long to 54 kilometres! You can see all of them at nprsr.qld.gov.au, including their distances, classifications and full descriptions.
With kids, we recommend doing the 30m walks to Wunburra Lookout and Canyon Lookout, and the 200m walk to Goomoolahra Lookout. And you can’t miss Best of All Lookout, which you can read all about here!
For a nice easy walk on a sealed circuit track, the Natural Bridge Circuit is excellent. The Natural Bridge is a stunning natural arched cave with a waterfall cascading through a hole in the top! It’s a great sight to see and even has glow worms at night! You can read all about the Natural Bridge Circuit here and Where to Find Glow Worms on the Gold Coast here.
A more challenging but really spectacular walk is the Twin Falls Circuit, which takes you down into the depths of the rainforest, through rock clefts and behind two waterfalls! This walk is well worth the time and effort, and you can read full details of the Twin Falls Circuit here.
NOTE: Due to the steep cliffs and slippery rocks in this area, children must be supervised closely at all times. Remember insect repellent, good walking shoes (to protect feet and also because leeches often occur in this area), hats, sunscreen and plenty of water and snacks. Check the weather and the information board at the Information Centre, and read up about the route here before heading out.
Springbrook National Park is home to some amazing wildlife. There are more than 100 species of birds, including beautiful crimson rosellas, regent bowerbirds and the elusive Albert’s lyrebird. Pademelons are a wonderful sight, often pottering around picnic areas or on grass verges from late afternoon (please take care while driving). There are nocturnal possums and gliders, and even the vulnerable spotted-tail quoll. In the creeks, look out for frogs, eels, crayfish and platypus, and beautiful dragonflies darting above the water. There are also echidnas and bandicoots, as well as many reptiles to spot, such as skinks, lace monitors and carpet pythons.
You can find out more about the flora and fauna of Springbrook here.
Eating at Springbrook
There are many beautiful picnic areas to enjoy at Springbrook National Park with kids, all of which have toilets and sheltered picnic areas. You can find them all marked on this map.
You can read our full review of Apple Tree Park Picnic Ground here.
There are also some lovely local eateries in Springbrook, including:
- Puddleducks Cafe
- Scuttlebug Licensed Cafe
- Dancing Waters Cafe
- Rosella’s Cafe
Plus no visit to Springbrook would be complete without calling in to The Fudge Shop for some delectable fudgey treats!
Staying in Springbrook National Park with kids
Springbrook is perfect for a long weekend away. There is a range of accommodation options to choose from, from camping in National Park camping ground or staying in a farm cottage, to relaxing in a luxury rainforest retreat. We love the unique experience of staying in cute little cabins deep in the rainforest, where you can be amongst all the sights and sounds of nature, while enjoying log fires and spa baths!
You can find out about the range of Places to Stay in Springbrook at explorespringbrook.com.
Things to know before you go
Being high up on a plateau, Springbrook can be cool, often 5 degrees or more cooler than Brisbane. It can also be quite rainy, which adds to the mystical misty mountain feel. Remember to pack some warm clothes and raincoats.
With sheer cliffs, rocky creeks and thousands of hectares of bushland, this is no theme park but a real natural wilderness in which children must be supervised closely.
Dogs are not permitted in Springbrook National Park.
For more great ideas of things to see and do in Springbrook National Park with kids, check out Best of All Lookout, Apple Tree Park, Twin Falls Circuit, Natural Bridge Circuit and Where to Find Glow Worms on the Gold Coast.