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Eungella, Queensland

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An hour west of Mackay, in the rainforest-clad mountains lies Eungella National Park and the township of Eungella, at the head of the Pioneer Valley. Australia's longest, oldest stretch of sub-tropical rainforest, ranging over 51,700 hectares, the park draws its name from an Aboriginal word meaning 'Land of the Clouds'. Thousands of years of isolation have allowed the rainforest to nurture an abundance of native life such as the platypus, and is one of the very few places in Australia to spot this shy creature in its natural environment. Be at Broken River's platypus viewing platform at sunrise and sunset for a chance to spot this furry creature. 22 kilometres of existing bushwalking tracks, plus the Mackay Highlands Great Walk, offer increasing access with varying degrees of difficulty and breathtaking views. Eungella has a rich cultural history of gold mining, timber, dairying and tourism. Much of Eungella's history can be discovered on information boards along the Sky Window walking track, which has wheelchair access. More than 200 bird species have been recorded throughout Eungella National Park, including the Eungella Honeyeater. It is also home to the Gastric Brooding Frog and the Orange-sided Skink plus many other rare natives.

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