The 18 BEST Lamington National Park Walks, Queensland

Your ultimate guide to the best Lamington National Park walks in one of the most beautiful parks in Queensland. 

Lamington National Park is one place you cannot miss if you visit the Gold Coast. People come here for its natural lush beauty and spectacular views. 

With 20,600 hectares (51,000 acres) of stunning rainforests, there is so much to see.

While exploring the park, you’ll find ancient trees that are thousands of years old, amazing birdlife, large flowing waterfalls, many walking tracks, and rugged mountains with lookouts over the whole area. 

Lamington National Park lies on the Queensland and New South Wales border. The park has a diversity of valleys and mountain ranges with peaks rising more than 1,100m in height. 

It is located on the Lamington Plateau of the McPherson Range. To the south of the park is the Scenic Rim Region.

The park is also part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area.

The main Lamington National Park road is easy to access as it is only 85 km from the Gold Coast and 110 km from Brisbane.

It’s only a short drive from the big cities, but when you step into the park you’ll feel like you are in another world.

Read Next: Check out our guide for the best things to do in Brisbane!

Lamington National Park

Lamington National Park is divided up into two sections; Green Mountains and Binna Burra.

The Green Mountains section is the upper area of the Lamington National Park and is located on the western side of the Lamington Plateau, McPherson Range.

The Binna Burra section is the lower section of the Lamington National Park. It is the Scenic Rim Region and is located on the border of NSW. 

Before you go walking, make sure you download the maps for both sections here:

Lamington National Park Hikes Queensland
Enjoy the serenity of nature in this lush national park!

Lamington National Park Walks

There are so many amazing walking tracks in Lamington National Park where you can see the best sights of the park.

From the blue pool to the wishing tree to the Antarctic beech forest, and more. You can find all these mysterious sights on the walks listed in this article. 

We have made a list so you can choose the best ones for your visit to this beautiful park.

READ MORE: See our full comprehensive guide to the best Gold Coast hikes!

Green Mountains Sections

This section will list all the walks in the Green Mountains sections which can be done in one day. 

Centenary Track

  • Distance – 1.8km return
  • Duration – 30 mins – 1 hour
  • Difficulty – easy
  • Start / Finish Points – O’Reilly’s carpark, Green Mountains section

This is the perfect, easy walking trail to get you started in the park. The standard out-and-back trail is quick and flat and is suitable for people of all ages and skill levels, including those in wheelchairs. 

There are benches scattered along the trail which are perfect for birdwatching, as there are lots of colorful birds that make their home in the rainforest canopy. 

Take all the little side trails (about 200m in each case) and lose yourself in the tropical rainforest before heading back to the car park.

The track passes through tall hoop pine at the entrance and slowly descends through the subtropical rainforest for 900 m to join the trailhead of the Python Rock and Morans Falls tracks.

This is a great starting point for other hikes, and it’s a nice introduction to the forest. 

CHECK IT OUT: Design your ultimate Gold Coast itinerary with our comprehensive travel guide here!

Rainforest Return

Similar to the Centenary Track, this walking track is easy and short, so it’s suitable for people of all ages. 

In addition to the usual birdlife and impressive tree forests that you’ll find throughout the park, this track is known for its fascinating geological history. 

Along this walking path, you can see boulders and rocks that are millions of years old, some that have survived the Ice Age and through lava flows of volcanic eras. 

Wishing Tree Track

  • Distance – 2.4 km return
  • Duration – 1 hour
  • Difficulty – easy
  • Start / Finish Points – O’Reilly’s carpark

This short and easy walking track is a bit hidden out of the way, but it’s worth finding. 

The trail begins up the hill from the carpark, past the bird feeding area, and down the side road.

There are signs on the trail so you should have no problem. If you go in the early morning the birdwatching is fantastic. 

Follow the track and pass over a small suspension bridge, through the open forest, past glow worm gully, and over to the Wishing Tree.

The tree is gigantic, and its roots are raised above the ground and spread out so you can walk underneath it. 

Python Rock Track

  • Distance – 3.4 km
  • Duration – 1.5 – 2 hours
  • Difficulty – easy
  • Start / Finish Points – O’Reilly’s car park, Green Mountains section

Step into the green wonderland of the World Heritage rainforest on this amazing trail.

The views from Python Rock lookout will take your breath away—Morans Falls, Castle Crag, and the Lost World stretch out before you. 

Marvel at the result of millions of years of erosion that created the valley and intricate escarpments, and try your hand at capturing a photo that does it justice. 

Come prepared for a post-walk nosh-up as the Green Mountains picnic area boasts electric barbecues and tables where you can easily laze away the rest of the day

The sealed track to Python Rock has even grades, suitable for older people and those confined to wheelchairs. Reach the trailhead via the Centenary Track. 

For more ideas in the area, check out these amazing day trips from Brisbane.

Morans Falls Track

  • Distance – 4.5 km return
  • Duration – 1.5 hours
  • Difficulty – Moderate
  • Start / Finish Points – O’Reilly’s car park, Green Mountains section

This stunning track branches off from the Python Rock Trailhead, so combine the tracks into one epic adventure if you wish. 

Head through subtropical rainforest to the powerful Morans Falls for a spectacular view of the falls and Morans Clearing lookout for views over the Albert River. 

The track descends 140 metres through a sub-tropical rainforest of booyongs, figs, and brush box to Morans Falls Lookout.

From the top of Morans Falls, you can look out over the entire valley. It’s the perfect spot for sunrise or sunset as the natural colors light up the landscape.

Morans Falls Lookout At Lamington National Park Walks
Views from the top of Morans Falls

Box Forest Circuit

  • Distance – 10.9km circuit
  • Duration – 4 hours
  • Difficulty – moderate/hard
  • Start / Finish Points – Green Mountains Carpark, the trailhead starts on the Border Track

Branching off from the iconic Border Track (which we’ll mention in the longer walks section of this article), the Box Forest Circuit is a challenging but enjoyable hike in the park. 

This trail weaves through the temperate forest, passing brush box trees and ancient Antarctic beech trees. These trees are some of the oldest on Australia’s mainland. 

Another highlight of the trail is the waterfalls! There are some gorgeous waterfalls on this track, including Tullerigumai Falls (Also called Box Log Falls) and Elabana Falls.

Many people choose to just walk to Elabana Falls, have a picnic at Picnic Rock, and then return the way they came. 

If you want to complete the entire Box Forest Circuit, you’ll also pass Darragumai Falls and Yanbacoochie Falls. 

West Canungra Creek Circuit

  • Distance – 13.9km circuit
  • Duration – 5.5 hours
  • Difficulty – moderate/hard
  • Start / Finish Points – Green Mountains day car park


This walk also branches off from the Border Track, so follow the trail about 600m before turning off for the West Canungra Creek Circuit. 

Once you make it onto the circuit, enjoy hiking along the calm, crystal clear waters of West Canungra Creek.

You’ll pass waterfalls like Darraboola Falls, and the stunning and serene Yerralahla (blue pool). 

The trail involves a few creek crossings, where you’ll have to do some rock hopping to get across.

Avoid this trail after heavy rain, as the creek can get too high and the creek crossings can be more difficult. 

But the creek is pretty shallow and mellow so the river crossings shouldn’t be too much trouble in dry weather.

Just wear good hiking shoes and maybe bring an extra pair of socks just in case you lose your footing! 

Also keep an eye out for the orange directional arrows so you don’t lose your way. 

Toolona Creek Circuit

  • Distance – 17.4km circuit
  • Duration – 6 hours
  • Difficulty – Moderate
  • Start / Finish Points – Green Mountain Car Park

This is a great hike to try if you want to see some waterfalls, get a good workout, and spend the entire day in nature. It’s quite a long hike, but it’s worth it. 

As with a few other hikes in the Green Mountains section, you have to hike along the Border Track to access the trailhead.

After 1.7km on the Border Track, near Picnic Rock you’ll reach the trailhead for Toolona Creek Circuit. 

The trail snakes through Toolona Gorge, and you’ll pass amazing waterfalls like Toolona Falls and Chalahn Falls.

Because you’re hiking through a deep gorge and near a creek, the environment is very moist and shady.

This allows the lush rainforest to flourish, so keep an eye out for cool plants, flowers, and wildlife. 

Eventually emerging from the gorge, you’ll find yourself at Wanungara Lookout where you can see all the way to the Limpinwood Valley and Mount Warning.

Heading north next? Check out this Brisbane to Cairns road trip itinerary!

Binna Burra Sections

Here are some of the best day walks in the Binna Burra section of Lamington National Park. 

Binna Burra Queensland
An aerial view of some rivers and rock pools in Binna Burra

Rainforest Circuit

  • Distance – 1.2km circuit
  • Duration – 30 minutes
  • Difficulty – easy
  • Start / Finish Points – Binna Burra trailhead at the Binna Burra day-use area

This short, easy stroll through the rainforest is the perfect walk to begin your exploration of this side of the national park. 

The trail is overflowing with songbirds and gigantic trees like strangler figs. Take the kids, the grandparents, and the entire family here to wander along the gentle walking path and absorb the sights, sounds, and smells of nature. 

The Rainforest Circuit begins just 500m down the Border Track. 

Tullawallal Circuit

  • Distance – 5km circuit
  • Duration – 1.5 hours
  • Difficulty – Easy/Moderate
  • Start / Finish Points – Binna Burra day use area

Follow the Border Track for 1.9km then branch onto the Tullawallal Circuit and step into a cool world of filtered green light. 

You’ll feel as though you’ve travelled back in time as you discover the remnants of ancient Gondwanan forests that once covered the continent.

This pocket of ancient Antarctic beech trees is the northernmost location of these trees in Australia, and one of the most accessible! 

This is a relatively easy trail, so it’s great for the whole family. Settle in with a picnic in one of the Binna Burra day-use areas to complete a perfect day in the hills.

Caves Circuit

  • Distance – 7km return
  • Duration – 2 hours
  • Difficulty – Moderate/Hard
  • Start / Finish Points – Binna Burra lower day use area on Binna Burra road

Another interesting hike in this section of Lamington National Park is the Caves Circuit.

Walk along the winding path through towering Eucalyptus trees filled with wildlife like birds, lizards, and koalas. 

Enjoy panoramic views of the Coomera Valley on the lookout points along the track. 

The trail is named “Caves Circuit” after the Kweebani Cave, the highlight of the trail. Kweebani Cave is named after the Yugambeh people who used to live in the area and cook their meals in the cave. 

There are a few steep steps on the track, and there are lots of rocks and cliff faces. Always be wary of your surroundings and be careful of any loose rocks on the trail, or any surprise rock fallings from the cliffs. 

Gwongoorool Track

  • Distance – 6km return
  • Duration – 2 hours
  • Difficulty – Moderate
  • Start / Finish Points – Binna Burra lower day-use area

This track begins with a steep descent down stone steps and ends at Gwongoorool Pool.

If it’s a hot summer day, a dip in the natural rainforest pool can feel like heaven. The water is quite cold, even though you’re in sunny Queensland. 

If you do swim in the pool, just respect the wildlife around you. There are many tree frogs, fish, lizards, and eels in the water.

Most of these animals will keep to themselves and avoid people if they choose to swim in the water, but just be careful anyways. 

Even if you don’t want to brave the cold, fresh water and go for a dip, you can still enjoy a picnic or a nice relaxing nap in the shade next to this beautiful, magical forest pool. Return back the way you came. 

Coomera Circuit

  • Distance – 17.4 km circuit
  • Duration – 7 hours
  • Difficulty – Moderate/Hard
  • Start / Finish Points – Binna Burra day use area

Start hiking along the Border Track for 1.9km and then turn off for the Coomera Circuit.

This lengthy hike has all the natural beauty of the other Lamington National Park walks, but the highlight of this one is the spectacular waterfall and lookout. 

Coomera Falls is a powerful waterfall, formed by the Coomera River tumbling over the cliffs and plunging down 64 meters into the Coomera Gorge. 

The Coomera Falls Lookout has the best views of the waterfall and the surrounding valleys.

This track has a few river crossings, so avoid doing this hike after heavy rainfall when it’s slippery and muddy. 

Coomera Circuit Waterfall
You’ll also pass lots of smaller waterfalls along the Coomera Circuit.

Mount Merino 

  • Distance – 21.6km return
  • Duration – 8 hours
  • Difficulty – Moderate
  • Start / Finish Points – Binna Burra day use area 

For a full-day epic adventure in this section of the park, hike Mount Merino. With a summit at 1,160 meters above sea level, the mountain peak offers incredible views of the surrounding mountain ranges, hills, and valleys of Queensland and New South Wales. 

The trail is not recommended in any sort of bad weather, however. Heavy clouds and fog make the views at the top hard to see, and any rain can cause the track to become muddy, slippery, and difficult. 

But if the weather agrees with you, this is a fun and enjoyable walk. It is a long track, but it isn’t too steep so most people with moderate fitness levels should be able to do it. 

Many people complete this hike in conjunction with the Coomera Circuit because the trails intersect.

There are many waterfalls and lookouts along the trail, but the Chakoonya Lookout is one of the most praised spots. 

Ships Stern Circuit

  • Distance – 21km circuit
  • Duration – 8 hours
  • Difficulty – Moderate/Hard
  • Start / Finish Points – Saddle Trailhead opposite the road to Binna Burra Lodge

Easily one of the best walks in the park, this full-day trek passes all the goodness of Lamington National Park. 

Waterfalls, streams, gigantic trees, incredible lookouts, cliffs, mountains, valleys, this circuit has it all.

Common trees to see here are flooded gums, scribbly gums, red cedars, and eucalyptus, piccabeen palms. 

You’ll cross over Nixon Creek and hike through Hidden Valley, passing waterfalls and lookout spots along the way. 

There are numerous other trails you can add on to this one if you like. Visit Upper Ballunjui Falls via a 2.6km return side trail, or intersect with the Daves Creek Circuit and continue hiking that way. 

If you’re coming from the south, check out this Sydney to Brisbane road trip itinerary!


Bellbird Track

  • Distance – 10km return
  • Duration – 4 hours
  • Difficulty – Moderate
  • Start / Finish Points – Saddle Trailhead opposite the road to Binna Burra Lodge

The Bellbird Track branches off from the Ships Stern Circuit. If you’re not up for tackling the entire 21km Ships Stern Circuit, head off on the Bellbird Track for a shorter, more leisurely stroll through the rainforest. 

However, at 10km long, this walk is still a challenge and you’ll get a good dose of wilderness.

The Koolanbilba Lookout, Bellbird Lookout, and Yangahla Lookouts offer amazing views, and there are lots of rugged cliff faces and fields of wildflowers to admire. 

The scenic vistas overlooking the Numinbah Valley are plentiful along this trail, so it’s a great option for a half-day hike in the park. 

Numinbah Valley Views
You’ll get to enjoy stunning views over the Numinbah Valley while hiking in Lamington National Park.

Longer Walks in Lamington National Park

There are two main treks in and around the area that are great for experienced hikers who want to really see all the beauty of the park in one epic walk. 

The Border Track is a longer walk, but it can still be completed in one day. The Gold Coast Hinterland Walk is the longest walk which can take up to 3 days to complete. 

The Border Track

  • Distance – 21.4 km
  • Duration – 8 hours
  • Difficulty – moderate/hard
  • Start / Finish Points – Either the Green Mountains carpark or the Binna Burra day-use area

The Border Track connects the Green Mountains and Binna Burra sections of Lamington National Park. It is the true heart of the park and if there’s one trail you want to tackle so you can see everything, it’s this one. 

You may have noticed that many of the shorter hikes in this article branch off of the Border Track. This is the main hiking tail in the national park, so you can choose to hike it however you want. 

Hike it all in one day and stick to the main trail, or take a few days and head down all the smaller trails that branch off from the Border Track. 

Either way, the Border Track is the epitome of natural beauty in Lamington National Park. 

Regular bus transfers run every Saturday departing at 7:45 am ($33 per adult) from O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat to Binna Burra so you walk the 21.4km track back to O’Reilly’s at your own pace (self-guided).

Read our ultimate Australia travel guide here!

Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk  

  • Distance – Up to 54 km one way
  • Duration – Up to 3 days
  • Difficulty – Medium
  • Start / Finish Points – O’Reilly’s, Lamington National Park to Settlement Campground, Springbrook National Park.

For the ultimate challenge, the Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk is the walk for you. 

Starting near O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, this walk is lightly trafficked as most people opt for one of the shorter day hikes in the park. 

This incredible, multi-day hike begins in the Green Mountains section of Lamington National Park and finishes at Springbrook National Park. You’ll get to explore some of the best national parks in southeast Queensland while admiring many amazing views on the way. 

You’ll hike Mount Merino, descend down to the Nerang River, and cross into the Numimbah Valley.

Then you’ll climb into the Springbrook Range and into Little Nerang Creek Valley.

If you want, there is a camp called The Settlement which you can book at the end of the hike if you want.

Make sure you take water purification tablets as there is non-treated water at the camps. There are creeks to fill up on the way also.

Accommodation in Lamington National Park

Whether you’re doing a Lamington National Park road trip, you’re taking on a multi-day trek, or you’re just here for the day chasing waterfalls, the park has some good amenities to suit any traveler. 

There are campgrounds and guesthouses available for accommodation. Book accommodations ahead of time so there is no disappointment as it gets busy, especially in summer. Here are our top recommendations!

Campgrounds

O’Reilly’s Campground: Has all the amenities you could need, including a communal kitchen, powered and unpowered sites, safari tents, and a fire pit. Rates range from $27 for a mid-week campsite to $160 for a peak-season safari tent, and you can book online

Bush Camping: Those looking for the ultimate adventure can go bush camping at one of the remote, designated areas. Visit the national park site for all the info about locations and safety for bush camping. 

Hotels and Guesthouses

Binna Burra Lodges: For a luxurious and comfortable stay, check out these eco-friendly apartments up in the hills of the rainforest. Enjoy stunning views and delicious food from the cafe which is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. You can stay at the spectacular Binna Burra Sky Lodges which has stunning views. There are multiple bedrooms available and everything you need.

Or you can stay in one of their tiny homes which are right on the edge of the beautiful Bellbird cliffs and have the most stunning views of the nearby mountains. The sunrises here were so beautiful. What an amazing way to greet the day, with a coffee in hand. Definitely worth waking up for. Everything you need is in the tiny home accommodation.

O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat: At O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, there are some amazing lodging options. Sleep in cozy cabins overlooking the mountains, and enjoy the pool, hot tub, fireplace, kitchen, library, kids room, and more. 

Canungra Valley Cottage: This is a lovely place to stay for a private getaway in the park. Canungra Valley Cottage is a bit pricey, but you can enjoy your own one-bedroom villa on a charming property with a terrace and a garden. 

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Alesha and Jarryd

Alesha and Jarryd

Hey! We are Alesha and Jarryd, the award-winning writers and professional photographers behind this blog. We have been travelling the world together since 2008, with a passion for adventure travel and sustainable tourism. Through our stories and images we promote exciting off-the-beaten-path destinations and fascinating cultures as we go. As one of the world's leading travel journalists, our content and adventures have been featured by National Geographic, Lonely Planet, CNN, BBC, Forbes, Business Insider, Washington Post, Yahoo!, BuzzFeed, Channel 7, Channel 10, ABC, The Guardian, and plenty other publications. Follow our journey in real time on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.

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