With our four teens scattered across the country, our visit to Charlie Moreland Campground was a chance for them all to get outdoors, reconnect with each other – and be spoilt with home baking and camp cooking. Our share-housing eldest was so grateful to see a bursting fridge and cupboard – not to mention the Engle! When we drove through Kenilworth, we stopped into the bakery and picked up even more sustenance. We didn’t try the mega sized donuts, but did add an impressive looking high top loaf to the supplies.
The campground was chosen for the maiden trip for our new caravan. It does include 5km of dirt road, and a causeway through water, to reach the campgrounds, but it is still accessible to conventional vehicles. Set in Imbil State Forest, part of the beautiful Sunshine Coast Hinterland, thankfully it was only 12km back into Kenilworth, for the many things you realise you don’t have on that first trip away! Unimportant things like gas and an axe … thankfully one of those teens was a P driver, she enjoyed the novelty of driving through fresh water, as opposed to our salty washouts on the coast.
There were ample grassy, shaded campsites, all an easy walk to the facilities (toilets, BBQS, picnic tables) and better still, Little Yabba Creek winds around the clearing. We found two main waterholes, one with a sandy “beach” and the other a waterpark after the rains we’d had. The track led to a small bridge, and our crew had loads of fun letting go of the bridge and fighting the current to return. You could easily paddle between the two.
Another reason we would definitely return (besides the wonderful fact there was no mobile reception), is that it is also home to cute Rufous Bettongs. Nocturnal creatures, these kangaroo mini-lookalikes were plentiful.
We filled our days with swims, books and badminton – but the park was also centrally located for our other expeditions:
You can also camp here at No.4 Campground for 4WD caravans and motorhomes, another gorgeous creek and water holes plus a bit more of a 4WD track (or hike) took us to beautiful Booloumba Falls.
With its quirky bakery, friendly library, informative visitor centre, op shop and boutiques, this village deserves a stop. Our family had fun on the flying fox and pedaling in the air at the playground, but love the tastings at the Cheese Factory across the road even more. Especially the chocolate mousse, which they just took out grand prize for at the Ekka.
Fig Tree Walk
Stop here on the way to Kenilworth, park at Little Yabba Picnic Area – another camping spot! Cross the bridge, the walk is wheelchair accessible, and won’t wear anyone out as it is less then 1km return. You’ll see an immense Moreton Bay fig – and signs say it is a great for bird watching.
Mapleton and Montville
Drive up the Obi Obi Road to Mapleton Falls lookout, there is a picnic area and walks, we stopped to admire the valley and waterfall. Driving a bit further along the range to Montville brought us to our family favourite, Kondalilla Falls. After a brisk trek, we were ready for another swim under a waterfall. And where there are jumping rocks, our kids are happy – even better with water added in. On return you have an option to visit the lookout – via a daunting set of stairs – one glimpse and you know that what goes down must come up! But the stair workout was worth it, to see the full majesty of Kondalilla. A magical spot, rated by the kids as their pick of the week.
Add in another op shop at Mapleton (we bought too many books). After a picnic and play at Russell Family Park in Montville, and collecting some fresh produce from the roadside stalls, we returned back to our cosy caravan and BBQ dinner, campfire, marshmellows…. bliss!
We’d give this place a big thumbs up. Oh, we did learn something on this trip – don’t leave the bread on the tablecloth while you walk to the creek! There wasn’t much left after the birds were at it. Oh well, another trip over the causeway….