Discover Bundaberg

Every November to February Loggerhead, Flatback and Green turtles come ashore to lay their eggs.

Visions of a farming centre with a relaxed pace dominate popular opinion, however in reality the city thrives with a number of exciting settings in which to sample Queensland’s celebrated lifestyle. 

Located four hours north of Brisbane, the country city is aligned with the southern tip of the Great Barrier Reef and consequently offers easy access to the natural wonder. The world's largest living marine formation, the Great Barrier Reef is an awe-inspiring creation that begs to be explored. 

The Reef is best encountered from Bundaberg at Lady Elliot and Lady Musgrave Islands on a reef walk, snorkel or dive expedition.  

The Great Barrier Reef is not the region’s only shining marine star, Bundaberg is also renowned for being Australia’s premier location for observing nesting sea turtles. 

An easy 14 kilometre drive from the city centre, Mon Repos Beach is home to mainland East Coast Australia's largest turtle rookery. Every November to February Loggerhead, Flatback and Green turtles come ashore to lay their eggs. Six to eight weeks later, like a scene from a documentary film, tiny hatchlings emerge and make a mad dash to the ocean. Access to the beach is limited during the season, and rangers conduct guided walks most nights. 

Mon Repos Beach is just one of many picturesque beaches that fringe Bundaberg. The region is home to almost 100 kilometres of pristine coastline, at which visitors can make the most of the area’s idyllic year-round climate. 

Bundaberg’s closest beach, Bargara is a great family destination. Kelly's Beach is popular with swimmers, surfers and boaties. A basalt rock wall protects The Basin to ensure calm conditions. Elliott Heads is a popular spot for sail boarding and jet-skiing. Moore Park offers 16 kilometres of sandy beach great for long strolls. Volcanic rocks, remnants of The Hummock, can be found between the beaches providing exceptional fishing and dive opportunities.  

The Hummock’s former presence also has a notable impact on Bundaberg’s farming trade. The region’s rich red volcanic soils produce fantastic fresh produce. Bundaberg is celebrated as the tomato capital of Australia, and is also famous for producing excellent summer treats like lychees, melons and sweet pineapples. The riches of the region are best explored at hinterland wineries, farm-gate sales and local markets. 

While the area is renowned for fruit, vegetable and beef farming, its real shining star is sugar production. Bundaberg is the only place in Australia where the entire sugar manufacturing process takes place, from growing and milling right through to refining and distilling. The waste molasses created by the process was in fact the reason the city’s most famous export, Bundaberg Rum, was first produced. In true Queensland fashion, Bundaberg is now more famous for its rum than for its sugar.

Words by Alice Nash - Published 28 October 2013
Quick Facts 
Population Approx. 71,000
Area 6,449 km²
Time Zone UTC+10
Languages English (official)
Currency Australian dollar (AU$)
Electricity 230V 50Hz
Share this article 
facebook Twitter Pinterest Google
Related Articles 
Eat and drink
Crush Festival Bundaberg
Alana Lowes, The Flying Foodie has taste tested the upcoming Crush Festival in Bundaberg and selected her favourite gourmet events.
Read more