Outback Pubs and Opals Tour 2023

All aboard our iconic Aussie Outback Pubs Adventure! Travel to the fascinating Lightning Ridge, visit unique Aussie pubs, meet local characters and immerse yourself in the true outback experience.

8 Day Tour

Monday 15 May - Monday 22 May 2023

Tour Cost (GST inclusive):
$3,320 per person twin share
$605 single supplement

Bookings for this tour have now closed.
Contact us for upcoming tour dates.

Inclusions

  • Luxury Coach Travel in our Business Class Coach
  • Guided town tour of Lightning Ridge
  • Lunch at Nindigully Pub
  • Cruis on Balonne River with Sandytown River Cruises
  • Lunch at Eulo Queen Hotel
  • Guided town tour of Thargomindah
  • Talk and lunch at Noccundra Hotel
  • Morning Tea at Toompine Pub
  • Hotel Corones Stories & Scones Tour
  • Charleville Bilby Experience
  • Charleville Cosmos Centre 
  • 7 nights accommodation
  • 7 cooked breakfasts, 7 two course dinners, 6 lunches

Tour Itinerary

Day 1: (D)

Brisbane to Moree

Mon 15 May 23

Welcome to our Outback Pubs and Opals Adventure. This tour is not about the destination, but the journey as we travel to some iconic Australian pubs including Hotel Corones, Noccundra Hotel and the Eulo Queen Hotel. We have a travel day ahead so chat to your fellow travellers or watch the scenery roll by your window as we arrive in Moree for our welcome dinner.

Day 2: (BLD)

Moree to Lightning Ridge

Tue 16 May 23

We spend the morning on the coach as we travel to Lightning Ridge. With its stark and scarred landscape this town has a peculiar fascination for visitors. Famous for magnificent opals, the town is home to the unique black opal, a rare and luminous gem mined from the surrounding plains. It is the only place in Australia (and one of the few places in the world) where the highly prized opal is found. On arrival we enjoy lunch at the Lightning Ridge Outback Resort before meeting our local guide for a town tour to see the Bore Baths. We finish our day at Down to Earth Opals.

Day 3: (BLD)

Lightning Ridge to St George

Wed 17 May 23

We farewell “the Ridge” this morning and travel north along Castlereagh Highway to the little town of Hebel. Hebel was once known as Kelly’s Point because it is believed that Ned Kelly’s brother Dan and fellow Kelly gang member Steve Hart lived here under an alias. Here we visit the Hebel Hotel & General Store. We continue through Dirranbandi, in the heart of cotton country before continuing on to Thallon. Painted on the town’s towering grain silos are icons of the district. Joel Fergie and Travis Vinson’s “The Watering Hole” is a striking image and we’ll take a moment to take it all in before continuing to the Nindigully Pub for lunch. “The Gully” is Queensland’s oldest hotel located in its original condition and position on the banks of the Moonie River. The pub license was issued in 1864 after operating as a shearer’s accommodation for the Nindigully Station. From the late 1800s the pub was a Cobb and Co Coach change over station before becoming what it is today. Our afternoon’s journey takes us to St George, located on the banks of the Balonne River, where we join Sandytown River Cruises for an enjoyable tour along the river, taking in the beautiful river gums, birdlife and landscape.

Day 4: (BLD)

St George to Thargomindah

Thu 18 May 23

This morning we express through Bollon and Cunnamulla to Eulo where the pub is named after colourful character, Isobel Gray, notoriously known as the “Eulo-Queen”, due to her business ventures in town and her fine taste in jewellery. We have lunch at the Eulo Queen Hotel before continuing through to Thargomindah, situated on the Bulloo River in Channel Country. Thargomindah’s traditional source of industry is sheep and wool but in recent times, petroleum/oil and gas have made up a large part of the region’s economy.

Day 5: (BLD)

Thargomindah

Fri 19 May 23

As we drive around town with a local guide, look out for the old mud brick hospital and the artesian hydro power plant, thought to be the oldest working unit in Australia. We also take a tour of the old jail and historical Leahy House. For lunch, we head out to the historic Noccundra Hotel, the only original surviving building in town. The hotel was built from locally quarried sandstone and transported to Noccundra by camel train. Tonight, we are in for a special treat as we join our guide for a spectacular outback sunset with nibbles and drinks before a slow cooked Camp Oven Dinner and damper under the stars at Explorers Caravan Park.

Day 6: (BLD)

Thargomindah to Charleville

Sat 20 May 23

Our morning stop will be at a “pub without a town”. Toompine was once a thriving community serviced by Cobb & Co’s regular coach service. As with many outback pubs, Toompine is a great place to have a drink or two and a good yarn. We continue to The Lake, located just outside of Quilpie, a 2,500-acre property running Merino sheep, beef cattle and Kalahari red goats. Taking pride of place on the property is Lake Houdraman, a beautiful expanse of water set amongst shady gum trees. We enjoy lunch here before continuing to Charleville for our overnight stay. Tonight, we are in for a treat at Charleville’s best-known attraction, the Cosmos Centre. The centre is an audio-visual extravaganza featuring hi-tech interactive displays that will take us on an astronomical journey through the ages, unravelling many mysteries of our night sky. We enjoy drinks and nibbles at the centre whilst enjoying the open-air observatory and viewing of the outback night sky.

Day 7: (BD)

Charleville to Roma

Sun 21 May 23

Our first stop is the Charleville Bilby Experience, where we will see the unique little creatures and one of the keepers will reveal Australia’s native animal extinction crisis and inform us about the breeding program. If you love a great story, then our next stop will reveal one for you. Arriving in Australia penniless, pioneer Harry (Poppa) Corones, went on to build an empire and make Australian history several times throughout his life. We hear his amazing story while enjoying homemade scones at the iconic Hotel Corones. We make our way through Mitchell before arriving in Roma for our final night on tour together.

Day 8: (BL)

Roma to Brisbane

Mon 22 May 23

This morning we travel through Miles and Chinchilla before arriving in Toowoomba, where we enjoy a light lunch at the Picnic Point Lookout Café. Perched on the edge of the Great Dividing Range, the lookout and gardens provide amazing views of the Lockyer Valley and Tabletop Mountain. We arrive home after a fantastic tour discovering some of Queensland’s Iconic Outback Pubs.