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Ravensbourne - Ravensbourne National Park

Address: Esk-Hampton Road, Ravensbourne QLD

This is a National Park, maintained by the Queensland Government Department of Environment and Science.

Ravensbourne National Park is situated on a spur of the Great Dividing Range between Toowoomba and Esk. It has short walks and spectacular views from Gus Beutel’s Lookout. Discover towering trees, palm groves, trickling streams and amazing birdlife in the best remaining example of the rainforest that originally covered this part of the Great Dividing Range.

Local Aboriginal people and those travelling to the bunya feasts in the Bunya Mountains used the area extensively. Rainforest hardwoods, red cedar Toona ciliata and other timbers were felled from about the 1860s.

Piccabeen palms, ferns, elkhorns and fungi thrive in the cool, moist remnants of rainforest and wet eucalypt forest along the edge of the Great Dividing Range. Evidence suggests the rainforest is slowly overtaking the open forest. Gullies with trickling streams are moist and inviting, while exposed ridges are warm and dry.

At least 110 species of birds visit or live in this park including the black-breasted button-quail (which is threatened with extinction) fruit doves and six species of owls. Visitors might see satin bowerbirds, pigeons or red-backed fairy-wrens. Listen for the calls of the green catbird, noisy pitta, eastern whipbird or wompoo fruit-dove that are often heard but rarely seen. Flocks of topknot pigeons feed in the piccabeen palms and large fig at the Cedar Block day-use area, while eastern yellow robins, white-browed scrubwrens and grey fantails are common visitors to the Blackbean day-use area.

On the edge of the Cedar Block circuit track, look for circular hollows on the rainforest floor made by the black-breasted button-quail Turnix melanogaster as it spins around while feeding. Spectacular red-tailed black-cockatoos and glossy black-cockatoos feed on casuarina seeds in the open forest in winter.

Please leave your pets at home.

From Toowoomba proceed north to Hampton and turn right to take the Esk-Hampton Road. After about 17 km, turn right following the sign to Ravensbourne National Park.

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Ravensbourne National Park has two day-use areas. Both have parking, shelter sheds, picnic tables, pit toilets, drinking water and wood barbecues.

Blackbean day-use area at the entrance to the park is small, shaded and cool in summer.

Cedar Block day-use area is at the top of the range adjacent to Gus Buetel’s Lookout. It is a large, open, grassy area suitable for large groups.

Bring your own drinking water, or boil or treat the water supplied in the park before drinking. Firewood is not provided, so bring your own clean, milled wood or a fuel stove - do not collect wood from the national park. No bins are provided so please take rubbish away for appropriate disposal when you leave.

Two men, a lady and a young girl enjoying a picnic on the open grass at the Cedar Block day-use area. Group sitting on a picnic rug smiling and laughing.

Cedar Block Circuit

Best for: Bushwalking

Classification: Grade 3

Distance: 500m circuit

Walking time: 15 minutes

Description: This short self-guided walk starts at the bottom of the Cedar Block day-use area. Wayside signs interpret the rainforest and how it was used by Aboriginal people and by timber-getters.

Rainforest Circuit

Best for: Bushwalking

Classification: Grade 3

Distance: 1,700m loop

Walking time: 40 minutes

Description: Large Sydney blue gums (Eucalyptus saligna) emerge through the rainforest canopy. In the understory there are many attractive ground ferns, epiphytic ferns and vines. Along the higher section of this walking track, the remains of an Aboriginal yam-digging site can be seen.

Palm Creek Circuit

Best for: Bushwalking

Classification: Grade 3

Distance: 3,600m loop

Walking time: Approximately 1 hour 15 minutes

Description: This track leaves the Rainforest Circuit and crosses Palm Creek - named after the Ppiccabeen palms (Archontophoenix cunninghamiana) covering its steep banks. Look in the canopy for epiphytes growing on taller trees and birds feasting on palm tree fruits. A short side track leads along a eucalypt forest ridge to a small sandstone overhang.

Buaraba Creek Walk

Best for: Bushwalking

Classification: Grade 4

Distance: 6,200m return

Walking time: 2 hours

Description: This pleasant walk starts in the rainforest, passes through eucalypt forest, and ends with a short descent into the cool and shady Buaraba Creek. Return along the same track. Please take drinking water.


 Useful link:

Ravensbourne National Park walking trails map


Car parking
Picnic tables
Bush walking


Map link (Opens in new window)