Updated: Aug 4
Located in the heart of Lamington National Park, O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat is a hidden gem that offers a perfect escape from the bustling cities of Brisbane and Gold Coast. The retreat is nestled in the beautiful rainforest and surrounded by lush greenery, cascading waterfalls, and stunning mountain views. Lamington National Park is home to over 160 km of walking trails that wind through ancient trees, sub-tropical rainforests, and grassy plains. This enchanting natural wonderland is a paradise for hikers, birdwatchers, and nature lovers, with over 200 species of birds and an abundance of wildlife to be discovered.
O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat is a family-owned eco-resort that has been welcoming visitors to Lamington National Park since 1926. It offers a range of accommodation options, from cozy rooms to luxurious villas, all designed to blend in with the natural surroundings. The retreat features a variety of activities, including bird feeding, hiking, vineyard tours, and treetop walks, making it a perfect destination for nature enthusiasts of all ages.
Whether you're seeking adventure or just looking to unwind in nature, O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat has something for everyone. The retreat is a perfect base for exploring Lamington National Park, with its magnificent views and diverse geography.
Our Day Trip
The area is renowned for its challenging drive. You'll wind your way up the mountain from Canungra on a narrow road that accommodates only one vehicle, with traffic moving in both directions. However, the stunning hinterland surrounding the area makes the drive worth the effort!
Our day trip started with a delicious breakfast at O'Reilly's Mountain Cafe and gift shop. I had an omelette, and Rasmus had a nice brekky burger (a very Aussie thing - a burger bun with eggs and ham). Fair warning though, the food at the cafe is pricey. We also brought some snacks for the day.
At the gift shop, you can purchase a tray of bird seed for $5 and feed the lovely rainforest parrots. We loved seeing the Crimson Rosellas, Rainbow Lorikeets, and King Parrots. Although we have parrots in our own backyard, Rasmus was surprised to find that the ones we have are just as cool!
Next, we strolled through the Treetop Walk, which offered stunning views of the rainforest canopy. The walkway is suspended 15 meters above the ground and spans 180 meters through the treetops. If you're afraid of heights, you might struggle a bit on the narrow sections.
For those who love a little hiking action, the Python Rock Lookout hike is a must-do. The one-hour hike takes you through the lush rainforest, up steep hills and rocky terrain, and eventually leads to a breathtaking lookout with panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. The hike is challenging but definitely worth it.
After working up an appetite, we headed to the retreat's restaurant for lunch, where we shared a few sandwiches and took a nap in the sun. With so much to do, don't forget to bring plenty of water.
The afternoon was spent on an e-bike tour, where we were able to explore the mountain roads with some help from our motor. We highly recommend the e-bikes as they are made for off-roading and provided that extra boost for us to reach some of the best lookouts in the area in under three hours – including Moonlight Crag, Hunters Lookout, Balancing Rock, and the famous Morans Falls.
After the bike tour, we stopped by the Rainforest Bar to treat ourselves to some wine from their vineyard, the Canungra Valley Vineyards. We sat on the porch deck and watched the sun set over the mountains.
Overall, our day trip to O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat was a perfect escape from the city. We were able to experience the beauty of the rainforest, get up close and personal with some of Australia's most beautiful birds, and enjoy some delicious food and wine. If you're looking for a quick and easy escape, O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat is definitely worth a visit! #Queensland #Brisbane #Rainforest #OReillys #GoldCoast