Off the beaten track…

This week I have had to resort to using a post which I have written for Australia & New Zealand magazine

I’m not simply slacking off, it’s just that I have two of my three children at home with various school-related ailments, so I could write a post on ‘how to apply anti-fungal ointment to the scaly epiderm of a female impetigo sufferer without the need for restraint?’

But I have decided it would be best all round to write the other post – as it is probably more relevant for a website about moving to Australia.


Off the Beaten Track…


The Sunshine Coast is renowned for its fantastic beaches and its simple laid-back way of life – but that’s not all it has to offer.  So taking the time to find some other hidden jewels really is worth the one hour drive north of Brisbane.

Along the Bruce Highway, swing a left at the Glasshouse Mountains Tourist Drive (#24) – known also as the Steve Irwin Way – not only is the Crocodile Hunter’s Zoo along this road, but the most jaw-dropping collection of volcanic mountains you could possibly imagine.

But the best position to view these mountains at their full glory lies a little further ahead at the quaint township of Maleny.

At Landsborough turn left again at Tourist drive #23 and up the hill to Maleny on the Landsborough to Maleny Road. Turn left onto Mountain View Road at Cairncross Corner, just before Maleny.

Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve is just along on the right.

Plenty of parking is available and once you’ve got out and stretched your legs – go and behold the beauty of the Glasshouse Mountains… utterly spectacular.

This isn’t the only reason why I have hiked you up here – there is also a reserve set in 52 hectares of sub-tropical rainforest where you can meet the wildlife and explore a small remnance that once covered the southern end of the Blackhall Range.

Just make sure you are wearing covered in shoes (not sandalls or thongs) as both times I have visited I have had the pleasure of transporting a shiny black leech around between my toes.  They don’t particularly hurt – its just that I could do without the pricking sensation that they like to administer – plus when you eventually prise them off, they suddenly extend to approximately six times their original size and lunge at your face.  Very unnerving.

Still, once you have finished your walk and breathed in the oxygen-rich air – you can stop for a bite to eat at the adjoining cafe.  They offer fabulous morning and afternoon teas and also light meals while you relax and enjoy the magnificent vantage point.

All in all, Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve is an educational day out with a difference.

And if that wasn’t enough excitement for you, you could always all in on Terri, Bob and Bindi on the way back – but that’s another story….

For more information on Mary Cairncross Park visit:


……. and next week I’ll coach you on how to stay focused on writing blogs, while sickly children dangle from your mouse-wire and sneeze a gentle haze of swine flu particles on your computer screen.

Have a good week. x

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2 thoughts on “Off the beaten track…

  1. It sounds great, apart from the leeches of course. Did you read about how we got attacked by them in the Hinterland? Yuck!

    When I visit this reserve I’ll wear some of those wellies that fishermen use that come right up to your armpits. That should keep them at bay. Not a good look but definitely preferable to having my blood sucked by leeches.

    I hope you manage to get those kiddies back to school where they belong soon:) Keep up the fab writing!

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