Just a 20-30-minute drive from Noosa Heads is the lush Noosa hinterland, a patchwork of tranquil lakes, forests and striking volcanic formations dotted throughout with friendly country towns.
The Noosa hinterland extends from Doonan, just 10 minutes from Noosaville, through to Eumundi, Cooroy, Pomona, Kin Kin and Cooran. The green, rolling valleys are dotted with cafes, galleries, farm gates, day spas, historic pubs and boutique vineyards, and the ever-changing landscape with stunning mountain-top vistas and walking and bike trails invites exploration.
THINGS TO DO
For a quiet, hinterland escape, why not book a bed in an historic hotel, cosy B&B, country cottage, health retreat or pitch a tent in a lakeside camping ground?
The historic town of Cooroy is a busy creative centre with plenty to see and do. Enjoy hinterland hospitality at a cafe, restaurant or club, and browse the diverse range of shops, from fashion and homewares to gifts, books, antiques and second-hand bargains. The restored Butter Factory Arts Centre in the historic Cooroy Butter Factory showcases local and national artists and is part of the new Cooroy Mill Place, a community and tourism hub featuring a state-of-the-art library and an interpretive walk through restored boilers and kilns. Walking, biking, horse-riding and bird trails traverse the area around Cooroy, and on the way, explore the Noosa Botanic Gardens with its magnificent amphitheatre on the shores of Lake Macdonald.
Pomona, named after the Roman goddess of fruit and orchards is at the foot of Mt Cooroora – follow the footsteps of competitors in the gruelling King of the Mountain race for incredible panoramic views. Pick up a map at the Pomona Visitor Information Centre and take the Pomona Heritage Walk – an easy wander past historic buildings, and enjoy the unique shops or stop for a coffee break. Call in to the Noosa Shire Museum with displays depicting the history of Pomona, the former Noosa Shire and the area’s original inhabitants, the Gubbi Gubbi people. The historic Majestic Theatre at Pomona is the oldest continuously running silent movie cinema in the world, and has been restored by the community.
Kin Kin is a small town renowned for its great food, art and scenery. Visit a friendly country pub or step out on the Noosa Trail Network, a series of tracks and trails over mixed terrain for walkers, and horse and mountain bike riders that starts in Kin Kin.
The trail continues in Cooran, just off the Bruce Highway, a pretty town surrounded by a lush valley, walking tracks and swimming holes. The Cooran Tablelands Lookout offers magnificent coastal views.
Closer to Noosa is Doonan, bordered by Tewantin National Park and the beautiful, reflective waters of Lake Weyba – perfect for drifting along in a kayak and ideal for birdwatching and photography. Doonan is a mix of rural and residential areas where many roads have beautiful panoramic views to the coastline, and it is home to a country club, day spa and shops.
Eumundi is a charming town known for its amazing art galleries, pubs, cafes, boutique shops and the world-famous Original Eumundi Markets. No matter what day you visit Eumundi, spend time strolling along historic Memorial Drive under the shade of the magnificent memorial fig trees, visit art galleries, book a Brewery Tasting Tour, or pick up a historical walk booklet at the Discover Eumundi Heritage and Visitor Centre and learn more about the many historic buildings constructed between 1890 and 1930. While away some time in a bookshop, or the kids will love exploring the magnificent trees and swings of Dick Caplick Park.
- Pomona hosts country markets every second and fourth Saturday of the month, with more than 50 stalls selling collectibles, crafts, books, plants, organic fruit and vegetables and clothing
- See a silent or classic movie in a historic theatre
- Walk, cycle or ride a horse on the Noosa trails and see amazing birdlife and other wildlife along the way
- Stop for a cold drink and hearty meal at a country pub
- Have a lakefront picnic at Noosa Botanic Gardens and wander through the glorious gardens
- Drift through the Noosa Everglades on a guided or self-guided boat, kayak or canoe trip
- Visit the local breweries