If you’re looking for a peaceful retreat from the city, head down to the serene Lower Ballanjui Falls in Lamington National Park. You won’t regret it.
- Spectacular lookout points
- Quiet and interesting trail
- Close to Brisbane and the Gold Coast
Located between Brisbane and the Gold Coast is the lush green natural wonderland of the national park’s Binna Burra section. There are many trails in this part of the park, but my most recent trail discovery was to Lower Ballanjui Falls.
Ballanjui Falls runs off the 18km Ship’s Stern Circuit, which starts opposite the entrance to the Binna Burra Mountain Lodge.
I started the hike early at 7am, when the air was still crisp, the carpark was empty, and there were only a few campers milling about.
The hike to Ballunjui Falls is an easy 11 kilometres return. The trail is a steady descent down a mountain side and features a couple of open lookouts.
The first lookout – and my new favourite in the park – is the Koolanbilba Lookout. The lookout gives expansive views over the Numinbah Valley. Points of interest include Egg Rock, Turtle Rock, Ship’s Stern and Hinze Dam.
It’s an interesting trail which starts off fairly open along the cliffside, and offers glimpses of the surrounding valley through the eucalypt trees. After reaching the Yangahla Lookout, the descent begins into the dense rainforest.
You’ll then walk through rock clefts, do some rock hopping, weave under and through vines, and clamber over giant tree roots before reaching Nixon Creek. The hike trails off to the right from the Ship’s Stern Circuit once you hit the creek, and you follow the creek down until you reach the falls.
There’s a good chance you’ll be the only one on the trail like I was, and have the waterfall all to yourself.
Beware of all the spiderwebs and leeches at the waterfall, and you might even spot some yabbies creek side.
- Insect repellent
- Water and snacks
- Good grippy hiking shoes (the rocks are very slippery)
How to Get There
From Brisbane, head down the Pacific Motorway and take Exit 69 (Nerang) and follow the signs to Hinze Dam. Once on Nerang-Murwillumbah Road, take the right-hand turnoff to Binna Burra and follow this road up to the park. The journey will take about 90 minutes. The track starts opposite the Binna Burra Mountain Lodge driveway entrance.