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Southwood National Park

Spotted gum and cypress pine after a storm, Southwood National Park. Photo: Robert Ashdown, Queensland GovernmentSpotted gum and cypress pine after a storm, Southwood National Park. Photo: Robert Ashdown, Queensland Government

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Facilities and activities

What's special

Brigalow-belah forest remnants are conserved in this park on the western Darling Downs. Few intact examples of this vegetation type remain on the Downs. Cypress pine, poplar box, wilga bush, false sandalwood, western teatree and other plant species common throughout the semi-arid lands also grow in the park.

Southwood’s scrubby forests are a refuge for wildlife. More than 92 species of birds have been seen in the park, with the wonga pigeon close to the inland limit of its range here. Large depressions known as gilgais are scattered through the park. These are formed by constant wetting and drying of the heavy clay soils.

This is the traditional land of the Bigambul people. Explorers Allan Cunningham and Thomas Mitchell passed this way but the surrounding area was slow to attract settlers. Formerly known as ’Wild Horse Paradise‘, Southwood became a national park in 1970.

Exploring Southwood

Break your journey between Toowoomba and Quilpie at Southwood. Have a bush picnic in the peaceful natural surroundings. Take drinking water. Remove your rubbish. Be careful with open fires.

Take your binoculars and go birdwatching. Glossy black-cockatoos feed on the seed-filled cones of the belah trees. Go spotlighting at night to see sugar or feathertail gliders. Camping is not allowed.

Walking

The park has no walking tracks but you can explore the forest along the roads with care.

Getting there

Southwood is about four hours’ drive west of Brisbane or 130km south-west of Dalby on the Moonie Highway. Four-wheel-drive is recommended on Fabians Road which dissects the park. Roads become boggy when wet.

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Last updated
29 August 2017