DIG the Tropic is a new self-drive trail that enables visitors to experience a living museum while driving from Queensland’s outback to the reef.
Travel the Geo-Tourism Trail to discover dinosaurs, view remnants of an inland sea, explore ancient lands, and fossick for gems. The only known trail of its kind in the world, it is ideal for fossickers, camping enthusiasts, birdwatchers, bushwalkers and photographers.
Following the Tropic of Capricorn, you can experience a living museum created by ancient events, visiting sites as varied as gemfields, caves and the Great Barrier Reef.
Here are some of the things you can do along the trail:
Unearth treasures - Fossick for sapphires at the largest sapphire gemfields in the southern hemisphere (45 minutes west of Emerald). Take a guided tour of a walk-in underground mine or fossick with a bucket of sapphire “wash”.
Visit a once-rumbling volcano, Mt Hay (just outside of Rockhampton), a great place to make a real discovery of your very own - thundereggs. You might catch gold fever in Mount Morgan as you follow the trail.
Explore ancient caves - Discover a new meaning to the land down under. Allow experts to guide you through the labyrinth of historical changes, weaving and winding your way through a surreal geo environment with experiences including discovering precious gems on an underground tour at Rubyvale, exploring at Capricorn Caves and seeing bats at Mt Etna National Park.
Discover prehistoric plants - The Dig the Tropic trail sweeps through a host of geological wonders. About 70km north of Rockhampton and 40km from Yeppoon is the spectacular Byfield National Park, home to plants found nowhere else, such as the Byfield fern and Byfield grevillea. Visit Nob Creek Pottery where you can buy local handcrafted pieces. The ancient Byfield fern is featured on some of their pieces.
Dive into the past - Before the existence of Australia as we now know it, there existed another world. Gondwanaland was home to creatures we could hardly imagine, including some pretty impressive aquatic dinosaurs.