The Geological Wonders Trail provides spectacular and interesting insights into the formation of the Atherton Tablelands over millions of years.
Start: Lake Barrine, Yungaburra
Duration: 2 – 4 days
This popular park features a deep crater lake surrounded by cool lush rainforest. Lake Barrine, part of Crater Lakes National Park, is a maar—a crater lake formed by two massive volcanic explosions.
Location: Lake Barrine Road, Yungaburra
Lake Eacham is a clear, blue lake surrounded by lush rainforest. Walking tracks through the rainforest provide secluded forest-fringed views of the lake and excellent opportunities for viewing wildlife. In geological terms, the lake is a maar—a volcanic crater formed by massive explosions from the superheating of groundwater. The crater has filled with water, forming a lake 65m deep.
Hallorans Hills Conservation Park protects eucalypt forest and a remnant of the endangered mabi forest on an extinct volcanic cone. The cone is part of the legacy of the tableland’s fiery geological past.
The Seven Sisters are a series of seven volcanic mounds on the Atherton Tablelands between Yungaburra and the township of Atherton. These volcanic cones were created by explosive eruptions. As air vents opened, volcanic ash and scoria (light weight volcanic rocks with gas bubbles) hurled into the air, falling to build up cones around them.
Best viewed from Halloran’s Hill lookout, Atherton
Recognised as one of Australia’s most unusual attractions, this world class natural history museum gives visitors a very exciting glimpse at what happened millions of years ago beneath our earth’s crust.
Location: 69 Main Street, Atherton
The Hypipamee crater is referred to as a volcanic pipe. The pipe was opened upward through surface rocks by gas produced from molten rock below and as a result of tremendous pressure, the vent exploded sending volcanic bombs far across the landscape. It has a diameter of 61 metres at the water level which is 58 metres below the platform. Even 85 metres below the water surface, the pipe hasn’t lost any of its dimensions.
The Malanda Falls Visitor Centre is also an environmental education centre, with interpretive interactive displays on the cultural and natural history of the unique Atherton Tablelands volcanic region and its wildlife.
Location: 132 Malanda-Atherton Road, Malanda
Bromfield Swamp is a shallow crater of an extinct volcano and forms part of the headwaters of the North Johnstone River.
Location: Upper Barron Road, Malanda
Visitors can explore Donna, Trezkinn and Royal Arch caves on ranger-guided cave tours, which run daily except Christmas Day.
Tickets must be purchased in advance from Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service staff based at The Hub in the Chillagoe township.
Innot Hot Springs is a series of natural geo thermal mineral springs located between Ravenshoe and Mt Garnet on the Kennedy Highway. The hot springs of Nettle Creek have long been established as rejuvenating and healing. Throughout the sandy creek bed bubbles hot water and many locals and visitors come here to sit in the shallows of the creek and enjoy the healing properties.
Undara is as ancient and alluring as the continent itself, the Undara Lava Tubes stand as silent sentinels to our pre-history. Here you can walk in the path of a volcano and sleep cocooned in an antique railway carriage as your dreams connect you with the essence of this timeless land.
Location: Undara Lava Tubes, Mount Surprise
Continue your Geological Wonders Trails with more lava tubes, gems and gorges.