We love to think that Australia has an obsession with big things; after all, Australia is a VERY BIG country and Outback Queensland has many BIG things to fill it! Grab your selfie stick and hit the wide open roads as you tick off these iconic attractions on your #OutbackQueensland bucket list.
Australia’s Biggest Dinosaur
Leave those big Queensland beaches for another day, as you adventure to the ‘furtherest town from the sea’! Located in the small town of Eromanga, the Eromanga Natural History Museum is home to ‘Cooper’, a 95-98 million year old titanosaur who is the nation’s largest dinosaur! The experts tell us that ‘Cooper’ once stood 30 metres long and 6 and a half metres high, putting him in the top 10 dinosaurs in the world! BUT….. it doesn’t stop there; as the museum also showcases some of the world’s largest megafauna not far from the big wire dinosaur in Knotosaurus Park!
Big Red Sand Dune
Nearest Town: Birdsville
Standing at over 40 metres tall, ‘Big Red’ lies on the eastern edge of the Simpson Desert and is claimed to be the deserts biggest sand dune! As a four wheel drivers dream location and a destination in itself; it is every ‘big things’ enthusiast’s perfect photo opportunity. As we all know that catching a sunset from the top of Big Red is an experience not to be missed, you’ll be chuffed to know its just 37 kilometres from the iconic town of Birdsville in the Diamantina Shire. For those who like big eventures, the Big Red Bash is the perfect outback event! Not only does it hold the title of the world’s most remote music festival, but was voted as Australia’s Favourite Event in 2016! Tell your mates all about it, as you’ll be guaranteed nothing but a great BIG amazing time!
The Big Ram
While he may not be as soft as your average merino, the Big Ram’s presence on Shamrock Street symbolises the significant wool and sheep industry of the Blackall-Tambo region. Located just down the road from the only remaining steam operated wool washing plant in Australia (i.e. The Blackall Woolscur), the Big Ram also reminds travellers of ‘Queensland’s Sheep Belt’ that carves its way through the centre of the state….. Want to know more? Ask for a tour with local ‘Outback Mate hero’ Stewart Benson at the Blackall Visitor Information Centre right next door!
The Burke and Wills Dig Tree
Nearest Town: Thargomindah
Although the Dig Tree is not the biggest tree you will see here in Outback Queensland, it is certainly big in Australian history. Believed to be between 200-250 years old, the heritage listed coolabah tree located near Thargomindah is an Australian icon and an ongoing reminder of Australia’s pioneering history. Playing a vital role in the Burke and Wills expedition from Melbourne to the Gulf in 1860-1861, this tree and its nearby ‘face’ can be explored alongside a long haul tour with our mates from Outback Aussie Tours, Travel West or Adventure Australia Australia Trek & Tours!
Banana the Bullock
With a town name like Banana, you would assume the town to be fielded with big delicious yellow fruit bearing palms! HOWEVER there is not a single banana tree in sight of this location and a big yellow bullock with this exact name instead. Named after his yellow coloured ‘hide’, the bullock was a favourite of the local stockmen in the 1860’s and now proudly stands in the centre of town. For those who are first time Banana travellers, you’ll be glad to know you can reach all the wonders of the region in next to no time; as Banana is a key junction point between the Dawson and Leichhardt highways!
The Big Stockman
When adventuring across the road from the Qantas Founders Museum, you’ll be greeted by the Big Stockman located at the front of The Australian Stockman’s Hall of Fame. Once a selfie or two with this guy, head on into the museum that has nothing short of great big stories to tell! The exhibits comprise a combination of historical artefacts, images, audiovisual presentations and open displays, which all foster an interpretive and fascinating story of the outback. This is not to mention that the ‘Outback Stockman’s Show’ presented by John Hawkes, (or ‘Hawksey’ as the locals know him) is a must do on anyone’s itinerary! Set under the great big new Outback Entertainment Centre, you’ll be fascinated by Hawkey’s well trained horse tricks, sheep shearing, cattle dog demonstrations and his big friendly white bull.
The Big Easel
Emerald’s big easel is not only a tribute to Van Gogh’s sunflowers painting, but also represents the regions major sunflower plantation and annual sunflower festival. The easel stands at a whopping 25 metres tall and definatley can’t be missed whilst travelling through the centre of town! The painting itself weighs 4.5 tonnes and is the largest painting in the southern hemisphere! If you don’t manage to spot the big easel, just head to Clermont Street and you’ll encounter its big presence right next to the Central Highlands Visitor Information Centre.
The Big Ring
Where else in Outback Queensland could you find a big ring, but then the appropriately named town of Sapphire. Originating in another ‘gem’ of a town – Rubyvale, this big round structure actually took over three months to build and was relocated to its new home of Sapphire outside Pat’s Gems in 1981. Since the late 1800’s, many fortunes have been made and treasures have been found! So if you’re lucky enough to find something special in the famous fossicking fields, why not put a BIG ring on it? 😉
The Big Bottle Tree
Standing at 6 metres high, with a width of 9.51 metres and a crown of 20 metres, this big natural beauty can be found close to the Big Rig Visitor Information Centre. The tree survived a transplant from a local property back in 1927 to its current location at the end of Edwardes Street. Dating back to approximately the 19th century, the tree has now reached maturity and is one of many flora lining the streets of this iconic Queensland town. But don’t think it doesn’t aspire to get bigger; as the tree’s trunk is still growing at an approximate rate of one centimetre per year! Ensure a photo or two with your mates when travelling along the Warrego Way, as a trip to Roma could not be complete without it!
The Big Meat Ant
Meat ants are described as “the most abundant, conspicuous and ecologically important group of ants in the nation”; and this guy right here is million times the regular size! As one of many great points of interest along the Matilda Way, the ‘Meat Ant Country’ (i.e. Augathella) welcomed its’ installation in 2011! Just like the big prawn or Big Banana, it is an interesting ‘big thing’ that represents the local ‘Mighty Augathella Meat Ants’ football team who were fearless in their attack against any opponANT 😉
Photo credit: @TilmaonTour & @theadventuresofalanandgeoff
The Pliosaur at Kronosaurus Korner
The Kronosaurus Korner in Richmond not only houses a fascinating collection of awe-inspiring marine reptile fossils, but welcomes travellers from all over the world to visit its iconic blue pliosaur ‘Penny’. With a recent new coat of blue paint, big smile and 100 ‘teeth’, Penny is any photographers go-to-attraction before entering what is known as one of the worlds most ‘finest fossil institutes’. For those who are still pondering at the thought of sea creatures swimming through the Outback…you’ll be intrigued to know that this area was once a BIG inland sea millions and millions of years ago!
The Cunnamulla Fella
While there’s an abundance of songs dedicated to life in many iconic Outback towns and attractions, the Cunnamulla Fella popularised by Slim Dusty, is one of the most well-known. Paying tribute to the regions pastoral heritage and stockmen of the time, the Cunnamulla Fella has gazed over the south-west town since 2003 and is a popular point of interest for any aspiring photographer! If you’re visiting Cunnamulla for the first time, why not ask the locals about the Artesian Time Tunnel, Heritage Trail, Bowra Sanctuary or even the towns secret sandboarding location….
Do you know some other big things in Outback Queensland?
Let us know!
Written by Sally J. Bird & Carlie R. Mitchell