There’s a lot to love about the outback, especially when it’s got a town like Longreach at its heart.
Sitting smack bang in the middle of the state, this is one outback town with a knack for entertainment.
From dinner and a show to galloping through town on a horse-drawn carriage, it’s the furthest thing from a sleepy country town.
Saddle up for an action-packed 48 hours with this itinerary:
1pm: Reach your destination
Eager to see the outback from the air? Take off from Brisbane on a three-hour flight with Qantas, touching down in Longreach.
If you’re burning rubber along the highway, here’s the number of kilometres you can expect to rack up:
- From Brisbane: 1,180km
- From Rockhampton: 685km
- From Townsville: 775km
- From Mount Isa: 650km
Those interested in the scenic route can jump aboard Queensland Rail’s Spirit of the Outback. Departing Brisbane, the train winds it’s way up the coast of Queensland before tracking west through the outback towns of Emerald and Barcaldine and arriving in the end destination of Longreach.
2.00pm: Check into your home away from home
Offering all the comforts of home, the Albert Park Motor Inn has your stay in Longreach covered.
All 56 units provide air-conditioning, kitchenettes and WIFI. All are set on the ground level, perfect for accessible stays.
Set amongst bushland grounds on the outskirts of town, this motel also offers an onsite restaurant and bar, pool and spa to dial up the relaxation.
2.30pm: Start with a lesson or two
With only 48 hours up your sleeve, there’s no time to waste.
Begin with a guided tour of the School of Distance Education Centre, where you’ll learn how the rural communities receive their schooling from their remote locations. Note: tours only run during school terms.
Next, switch modern technology for old school farming tools at the Australian Stockman’s Hall of Fame. Here you can explore the five galleries within the museum that are dedicated to some of Australia’s bravest agriculturists.
7pm: Dinner and a show
Sit down to Smithy’s Outback Dinner and Live Show for a night of good food and good company.
Dine under the stars on the banks of the Thomson River with camp-oven inspired cuisine before kicking back with a cold bevvo to enjoy the songs and stories of the performers.
9am: Welcome your breakfast
Step out to the Welcome Home Café and Tearoom for a morning treat of pastries and cakes with your coffee.
Sporting a saloon style, slide into outback life like a local and kick back with a cuppa on one of the antique couches.
10am: Take off
No, don’t leave! Simply take a tour of the QANTAS Founders Museum, where you can do just about anything in a plane but fly.
Step inside a cockpit, experience the feeling with a F35 flight simulator, and even walk along the wing of a Boeing 747.
Learn about the history of the quintessential Australian airline and the evolution of its aircrafts with a tour of the fleet of its early planes.
1pm: See the sites
Swap the morning’s air travel with a horse-drawn carriage with an Outback Pioneers Cobb & Co Stagecoach ride.
Be guided by five stock horses along the original Longreach-Windorah mail route in a 45-minute ride. In true old-fashioned style, the restored carriages are just that – restored – so saddle up for a bumpy ride!
After the tour, continue your journey through the dust and dirt of Longreach’s outskirts with a 55km drive to Starlight’s Lookout. With unsealed and undulating roads leading the way, this one’s a strictly 4×4 only adventure.
It’s only a 10-20 minute hike to the top (depending on how many times you stop for photos) but it feels worlds away from the bottom when you catch a glimpse of the vast landscapes beyond.
7pm: Dinner at Harry’s
Treat yourself to a scrumptious dinner at Harry’s Restaurant, the onsite dining experience at Longreach Motor Inn.
Named after local legend and performer, Harry Redford, the award-winning restaurant has a dinner menu of mouth-watering mains, with everything from barramundi served in red Thai curry sauce to a classic eye-fillet with a side of chips and salad.
9am: Relax by the Thomson
Spend the morning strolling along the banks of the Thomson River, a short 4.5km drive north-west of town.
As the locals’ prime hangout spot, there’s plenty to see and do, from casting a line and camping, to bird watching and taking to one of the walking tracks.
12pm: Say sayonara to Longreach
Fallen in love with the heart of the Outback? Extend your stay and keep checking off this list of things to do in Longreach.
If you’re road-tripping it home, stretch your outback adventure by taking the scenic route.