The Tweed Valley, Northern Rivers, NSW
Silk Pavilions is nestled in the Tweed Valley about 50km south of the Gold Coast. This area is the most
bio-diverse region of Australia, contains the largest sub-tropical rainforest remnant in the world, and the
biggest extinct shield volcano in the world.
The Summer mean temperature range is 18 to 30 Celsius (64 to 86F), and winter being a marvellous experience
with mean temperatures ranging from 7 to 22 C (45 to 72F). This means log fires at night and t-shirts and
shorts during the day.
With its pristine beaches (and the added advantage of no stinging jellyfish in summer like the Queensland beaches),
rivers and creeks meandering through lush green valleys and towering rainforests, the Tweed Shire is spectacularly beautiful.
The Tweed Valley is an area of such vast natural beauty that you should be sure to plan to stay for more than just a
few days in order to see as much as possible.
- Home to 5 world heritage listed national parks
- The world’s largest extinct shield volcano above water
- Highest level of bio-diversity in Australia
- A range of activities from golf and horse riding to micro light and light plane flights, kayaking, bush walking, bird watching
- Arts and crafts with regular markets across the shire
- Art gallery home to the world’s richest portrait prize
Border Ranges National Park
An easy day trip from Silk Pavilions, this 30,000 hectare National Park takes in the NSW/Queensland border and is 85 km from east to west. The park is divided into three sections: Tweed Range, central and western. The central section is accessed from Kyogle and can be used as a scenic route to Brisbane via Rathdowney and the wild western section is advisable only for well-prepared intrepid visitors, but the eastern Tweed Range section offers the easiest access and the most varied experience.
Some steep grades are NOT suitable for caravans or buses, and drivers must take care in wet weather.
The three or four day caldera rim walk is only for dedicated, fit and properly equipped walkers and covers a wide variety of tracks.
Family outings and tours for relaxation would be better served by taking the Tweed Range Scenic Drive, 64 km from park entry to exit, which has picnic and overnight camping areas in the most scenic spots.
A comfortable drive will take between four and five hours, taking frequent stops for picnics, to enjoy the breathtaking views or to take short walks, but the best way to take advantage of all this national treasure has to offer is to take it slowly, take longer walks along the tracks and longer breaks.
Mt Warning in the Tweed Coast Hinterland, Far North Coast of NSW, Australia
Mt Warning accommodation north east coast NSW Australia towering over Murwillumbah and the Tweed Valley in far north-eastern New South Wales, is Mount Warning, the central core of the Southern Hemisphere’s largest extinct shield volcano.
Named “Wollumbin”, meaning “cloud catcher”, by the Bundjalung people who inhabited the region before European settlement, it is the first place on Australia’s mainland to be touched by the morning sun. A climb to the summit to watch the dawn of a new day is a must for the adventurous.
Designated as one of the 8 iconic sites across Australia, the Mt Warning or “Wollumbin” Caldera was appointed “Australia’s Green Caudron” on June 15th, 2008 when Australia’s Official Landscapes Program was officially launched by the Minister for Tourism. The National Landscapes Program is a tourism initiative for people interested in immersing themselves in the “real” culture and surroundings of a given destination.
Mt Warning (2210ha) is reached by leaving Silk Pavilions down Mt. Burrell Road and turn right into the Kyogle Road. Continue 17 kilometres to UKI a wonderful old village. Continue straight until you come to the Mount Warning Road and proceed a further six kilometres to the Breakfast Creek picnic area at the Park entrance.
From Breakfast Creek, at Mt Warning National Park entrance, the main walking track ascends through superb rainforest with strategic rest spots giving a variety of scenic views of the surrounding valley.
The reward at the summit (1157m) is a 360° panorama of the enormous eroded bowl of the caldera landform and rim.
Rainforest topping the sheer cliffs of its 1,000m high rim is preserved in National Parks. Lamington National Park in Queensland is to the north, while to the west and south respectively are the Border Ranges and the Nightcap National Park – both NSW World Heritage areas.
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Allow at least two hours to climb and two hours to return for the 8.8km walk; good non-slip footwear is essential. There are resting points along the way.
The short (15min) Lyrebird Walk leads to an elevated platform in the palms where you can sit and experience the serenity and mystique of the rainforest.
Walkers are advised to keep to the formed tracks, as it is very easy to become lost in the rainforest. Short cutting the tracks can cause severe erosion in this precipitous park.
History and preservation
20 million years ago Mount Warning was the central vent of a large shield volcano with an area of over 4,000 square kilometres. It reached from Coraki in the south to Beenleigh in the north; westward to Kyogle and to the east its remnants occur as reefs in the Pacific Ocean. It originally reached nearly twice its present height.
Erosion over the millennia produced a unique and curious landform – the erosion caldera, which we today call the Tweed Valley. Mount Warning was the ancient volcano’s magma chamber. Being composed of harder rocks which cooled underground, this massif resisted the forces which carved the surrounding erosion caldera down to bedrock. It stands as the dominant feature in the district’s landscape, and catches the first rays of the rising sun on the continent.
Mount Warning had deep significance for the Aboriginal inhabitants of the area. They called it ‘Wollumbin’, which means ‘cloud-catcher’ or ‘weather-maker’. The mountain first made its appearance in recorded history when Captain Cook named it to warn future mariners of the offshore reefs he encountered on 16th May 1770.
Reserved for public recreation in 1928, Mount Warning was dedicated as a National Park in 1966.
Thousands of visitors enjoy the views from the summit each year. The impact of such visitation on the small summit area necessitates the ban on camping.
There are no toilets or garbage bins on the mountain after Breakfast Creek, factors which should be taken in consideration BEFORE you start walking.
Flora and Fauna
Lush palms and forest giants of the subtropical rainforest occur on the lower slopes. Among the multitude of tree species are the Giant Stinging Trees, Figs, Booyongs, Carabeens and Flame Trees. Higher on the slopes the forest changes to temperate rainforest. Here the dominants are Coachwood, Corkwood, Brush Box, Mountain Walnut and Mountain Wattle. The summit itself is a small area of heath shrubland.
Rainforest animals are diverse and mostly nocturnal, but the Pademelon Wallaby is often seen by day.
Birds likely to be seen or heard include the Paradise Riflebird, Regent and Satin Bower Birds, the Cat Bird, the Scrub Turkey and various fruit eating Pigeons. Rare and endangered birds include the Wompoo Pigeon, Albert’s Lyrebird, Rufous Scrub Bird and Marbled Frogmouth.