Yesterday QantasLink announced they will commence 11 weekly flights from Sydney to Brisbane’s West Wellcamp Airport in Toowoomba. This is big news for country folk and city dwellers alike. Did you know that Toowoomba is Australia’s second largest inland city after Canberra? Just about everyone knows someone from Toowoomba; it’s a Queensland city that knows no bounds.
Whatever your Toowoomba connection is, you’ll be pleased to hear you can get to this little dormant volcanic tabletop mountain city a whole lot quicker come 17 November 2014 when the flights commence. The ‘Toowoomba-centric’ schedule will offer two daily services during weekdays and daily service on weekends.
‘T-Bar’ (as it’s fondly referred by locals) is a city that celebrates its green spaces and lives up to its other moniker as ‘The Garden City’ – so much so it hosts an annual Carnival of Flowers festival. Each spring the big country town comes to life as the Queens Park Gardens become a colourful carpet of brightly scented blooms. During the festival, the park hosts a range of activities from gourmet regional cuisine offerings and boutique wine tastings to live music and twilight tours.
The city is home to 150 public parks and gardens. For family fun, head to Picnic Point lookout, its great playground facilities and impressive views out over the Great Dividing Range are always a hit. Pack a picnic lunch or grab a bite to eat at the onsite cafe. Another popular park is Toowoomba’s Japanese Garden, which happens to be the largest traditionally designed Japanese stroll garden in Australia.
If you prefer to follow your tastebuds around the region, head straight for Bunnyconnellen, a gourmet food emporium and property located 45 minutes north of Toowoomba in Crows Nest. Boasting a cellar door and olive grove you can wander the gardens and sample the delights. The property also hosts gourmet events and yoga classes.
Country drives in the area are a great way to explore the region. Take a day trip out to the Bunya Mountains, Crows Nest National Park or Ravensbourne National Park to really get a sense of country life in South East Queensland.
Back in Toowoomba, the nightlife doesn't disappoint with many a popular country pub to enjoy a meal and night out at. The Spotted Cow is a local institution and offers up excellent gastro-pub meals with its Prime Cut steaks coming highly recommended. For fancier fare, Gip’s Restaurant serves modern Australian cuisine in a tranquil garden setting. The heritage listed art-deco Empire Theatre hosts a range of leading national and international performers. Get along to see a live gig, ballet or comedy show in the remarkably lavish theatre.
Qantaslink’s Wellcamp launch fares start at $99 one way until 12 September for travel from the route’s launch through to 30 June 2015. Qantas is also offering special fares connecting via Sydney to Wellcamp from Melbourne, Adelaide, Hobart and Perth.