Bundaberg's Sugar Cane Fields
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9 of the Best Things to Do in Bundaberg

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As our road trip along Queensland’s coast continues, we set out to discover the best things to do in Bundaberg, Queensland, an iconic coastal town.

Welcome to Bundy, Queensland’s sugar cane capital, beverage specialists, and the southern gateway to the Great Barrier Reef. As you drive north along the coast, Bundaberg marks a change in the scenery. The scrub covered sand dunes of the Fraser Coast are replaced with flat fields of red dirt covered with tall green sugar cane that run all the way to the still turquoise of the Coral Sea.

This is the end of Queensland’s epic surf beaches and the beginning of another epic, The Great Barrier Reef. The protected waters here inspire a slower lifestyle. A beacon to retirees and grey nomads who flock here in droves. But there’s something in Bundaberg for everyone. Caravaning, coastal escapes, untouched national parks, hinterland getaways, diving, and fishing adventures. Here are a few of the best things to do in Bundaberg to get you started.

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Things to Do in Bundaberg, an Iconic Queensland Town

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The Bunda people are indigenous to this region, giving the city it’s anglicized name Bundaberg. That name, has in turn been Australianized to Bundy over the years. Bundaberg is a regional center, 10km inland from the coast, situated along the Burnett River.

There are plenty of things to do in Bundaberg, Queensland. The town is the perfect place to take in the arts and history of the wider region, relax in the town’s sunny green spaces, or sample some of the beverages that have helped put Bundaberg on the map.

1. Admire the Bundaberg Regional Art Gallery

Sadly closed due to COVID when we popped by, the free gallery has regularly rotating exhibitions and features, local, national and international art.

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2. Stroll Along the Burnett River Boardwalk

The view of the Burnett river from the Burnett River Walk. One of the best free things to do in Bundaberg

Keeping up with Queensland tradition, the local government has reclaimed the banks along the Burnett River turning it into a walking trail for all to enjoy. The walk, which runs between Alexandra Park and the River Side Parklands, is definitely one of the cheapest things to do in Bundaberg. Stroll along this short riverside walk for great views of the Burnett Bridge and sailboats making their journey to the sea. Take lunch and picnic in one of the parks and green spaces along the trail or stop in at the River Cruz Cafe.

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3. Discover Nature and History in the Bundaberg Botanical Gardens

Looking for more free things to do in Bundaberg? Head over to the Bundaberg Botanical Gardens. Located on the north side of the river, this twenty-seven-hectare garden is home to a wide variety of trees and plants. Explore the Chinese and Japanese gardens, meander through bamboo forests and fern gardens, or head over to the rare fruit tree orchard. With over 10,000 varieties of trees and plants, there is plenty to explore in the Bundaberg Botanical Gardens.

The Bundaberg Botanical Gardens is also home to a number of local attractions. The Hinkler Hall of Aviation, Fairymead House Sugar Museum, Bundaberg and District Historical Museum, and the Australian Sugar Cane Railway can all be found in the gardens. With so many attractions to visit in the Bundaberg Botanical Gardens, you can easily spend several hours here.

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4. Have a Bundy or One of Bundaberg’s Other Brewed Beverages

Kalki Moon Distillery is one of the more interesting new places to visit in Bundaberg.

A warm coastal climate and easy access to locally produced ingredients like sugar cane, it’s no wonder that Bundaberg is home to so many world-famous and world-class beverages.

Internationally distributed Bundaberg Brewed Ginger Beer and Australia’s favorite rum, Bundy, may be the most well-known but some newcomers on the scene are proving just as tempting.

One of the best things to do in Bundaberg is not only to enjoy these local legends but get an insight into how they are produced.

Bundaberg Brewed Drinks

A family-owned business, Bundaberg Brewed Drinks, has been faithfully producing Australia’s favorite ginger beer for fifty years. Over that time, they have added a range of brewed soft drinks to their repertoire and their products can now be found in over thirty countries.

You can take a look at the brewing and bottling process, sample the range, and take home a six-pack of your favorite flavors by taking a short self-guided tour at the purpose-built ‘Bundaberg Barrel’.

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Bundaberg Rum Distillery

Rum belongs here, on the warm sub-tropical Queensland coast, surrounded by fields of sugar cane. So it makes sense that a Rum distillery would find its home here. And it did, in 1888. Since then, Bundaberg Rum has become Australia’s favorite rum and is now enjoyed around the world.

It’s only fitting that you should try Bundaberg’s eponymous spirit, perhaps with a bottle of brewed ginger beer while you are here.

For one of the most iconic things to do in Bundaberg, drop into the distillery to visit the Bundaberg Rum museum, take a distillery tour, or even blend your own rum! Check their website to book.

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Kalki Moon Distilling and Brewing

Founded in 2017, Kalki Moon Distilling and Brewing is Bundaberg’s first gin maker. Distilling gin, vodka, and some unique liquors, Kalki Moon is riding gin’s resurgence with their artisanal range.

Kalki offers free tours of their distillery and free tastings of any two of their products.

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Bargara Brewery and The Brewhouse

Bargara Brewery Brew Hous is one of the best places to visit in the town of Bundaberg

The Bargara Brewery was founded in the nearby beach town of Bargara in 2014. The Brewery has since found a home in ‘downtown’ Bundaberg.

You can drop into the brewery where they have an onsite bar and restaurant called The Brewhouse. Here you can enjoy an array of their delicious, freshly brewed beers in the middle of the functioning brewery.

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Things to Do Around Bundaberg

5. Take in Bundaberg’s Beautiful Beaches

Elliot Heads

Elliot Heads is one of the Bundaberg Regions best beaches
Visiting the beautiful beach of Elliot Heads is one of the best free things to do in Bundaberg!

Arguably the region’s prettiest beach, Elliot Heads is where the Elliot River meets the sea. The calm waters are perfect for swimming and fishing. At low tide, you can walk across the sandy flats of the river mouth to the rock pools. The park on the headland is a great place for a picnic or barbecue. It also has a popular caravan park right on the beach.

Bargara

Bundaberg’s closest beach is developing a reputation as a holiday and retirement destination. Popular cafes and restaurants line the small downtown. Fabulous parks and green spaces run the length of the foreshore.

Bagara is also home to Nielson’s Beach, the only surf beach in the area. There was no surf when we were there, but the locals swear it happens on occasion.

Innes Park

Without restaurants, bars, cafes or even a caravan park, Innes Park offers a tranquil atmosphere. Walk the rocky beaches and headlands to discover rock pools and tidal estuaries.

Woodgate

Enclosed by the Burrum Coast National Park, this picturesque and tiny beach town feels like a place forgotten in time. Enjoy the quiet beach, take the banksia track trail through coastal woodland, explore the Burrum Coast National Park or drop into the bowls club for fish and chips.

Moore Park

The scenic and expansive Moore Park Beach stretches from the estuarine mouth of the Kolan river south to Burnett heads. Swimming, fishing and relaxing on the beach are popular activities here.

7. Pick-up Fresh Produce from the Alloway Farm Market

Alloway Farm Markets, one of the best things to do in Bundaberg

You may have noticed that Bundaberg is surrounded by fertile farmland. One of the best things to do in Bundaberg is to sample the local produce.

Drop into the charming Alloway Farm Market for the best locally grown and produced food. Grab a freshly roasted coffee from the onsite cafe while you do your grocery shopping for the week. Fresh local fruit and veggies are on display alongside, deli products like relishes and jams, coffee beans, free range eggs, specialty ice cream, meats, bunches of fresh flowers, herbs and plants to name a few.

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8. See the Turtles Hatching in Mon Repos

If you are visiting between November and March, a trip out to Mon Repos to see the turtles is one of the most unique things to do in Bundaberg and in Queensland. The Turtle Conservatory in Mon Repos is the largest turtle rookery and nesting site on the east coast of Australia.

Between November and January, you can take a tour to see the turtles nesting. Between January and March, hatchlings make their big break for the sea.

Outside of these times you can drop into the Turtle Tales Mon Repos Turtle Centre to see the immersive theatre and interactive displays and learn about the turtles.

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9. Camp on the Dunes in Burrum Coast National Park, Kinkuna Section

Kinkuna, one of our favorite things to do near Bundaberg is camp here.

It doesn’t get more picturesque than Kinkuna, part of Burrum National Park. With access restricted to 4WD this beachfront national park has few people and kilometers of untouched sandy beach. With camping sites hidden behind the dunes, the beach remains unspoiled and pristine minus the occasional 4WD headed up the beach looking for the perfect campsite or spot to drop a fishing line.

Camping at Kinkuna is one of our absolute favorite things to do in Bundaberg. Access from the northern end of the beach is easier than battling the soft sand at the southern end.

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Where to Stay In and Around Bundaberg

Caravaning, Camping and Van Life

Hinkler Lions Park

You can stay for free overnight at the lions park located just outside of Bundaberg. With 24 hour toilets, this is the perfect free place to camp It’s a great place to stay while you work your way through your list of things to do in Bundaberg, especially if you are on a budget. One restriction is that to stay here you need a fully self-contained vehicle or caravan.

Elliot Heads Holiday Park

If you don’t mind paying to stay, Elliot Heads surely offers one of the better locations for caravans. Right on the headland just fifty meters from the beach, the location is unbeatable. The only downside is the price at approximately $38 for a powered site and the fact that you will be there with 50 of your new best mates.

Bagara Caravan Park

Bagara Beach Caravan Park is another option for those looking to be by the sea but who would also like to have more amenities nearby.

Kinkuna National Park

A landcruiser troopcarrier under the trees while camped at Burrum Coast National Park, Kinkuna Section, one of the best places to stay near Bundaberg
Camped in Burrum Coast National Park

If you have a four-wheel-drive you may want to consider Burrum Coast National Park, Kinkuna Section camping. Camping here is easily one of the best things to do in Bundaberg. Camp sites costs just $6.75 per person per night. There is some 4g mobile reception with Telstra.

Hotels and B&Bs

Bunk Inn

Bunk Inn is a real backpacker hostel with friendly and accommodating staff, clean comfortable accommodation and a good atmosphere. This, along with its convenient Bundaberg location, make it an easy decision for backpackers and budget travelers. Dorm beds start from $35 per night.

Blue Grass BnB

In a town dominated by sterile hotel motels, the warm welcome, comfortable rooms, and daily breakfast all make Blue Grass feel like a home away from home. Double rooms start from $105 per night.

Dunelm House

Dunelm is a true bed and breakfast, occupying a traditional Queenslander in Bargara. Charming hosts, cooked breakfast, and clean comfortable rooms all just five minutes from Bargara beach make this the perfect base to explore Bundaberg and its surrounds. Rooms start from $120 per night.

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There you have it, our round up of the top things to do in Bundaberg and the surrounding area. What did you think? Did we miss any? Let us know in the comments below.

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Looking for more to do on Queensland’s Central Coast? Why not check out 22 Amazing Things to Do in Rockhampton?

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