Toowoomba is a great city to shop ’til you drop, dine late and discover the best things in life. It is a treasure-trove of tradition and culture.
Crowning the edge of the Great Dividing Range 800 metres above sea level, Toowoomba is renowned for its architecture and open spaces that overlook the Lockyer Valley. One of city’s famous vantage points is Picnic Point, from where you can explore the graded walks along the range escarpment, or sit back, relax and take in the view.
Toowoomba really is Queensland’s Garden City, with more than 150 public parks and gardens. In spring the gardens are an extravaganza of colour, and the city celebrates with its Carnival of Flowers, held each year in the last full week of September.
From mid-January to mid-February the city is again ablaze with floral colour. From March to May mellow tints of red and gold mark the Autumn Showing, when you can enjoy a carriage ride through Queens Park amongst the blanket of fallen oak and willow leaves.
Toowoomba’s history has been preserved in its buildings. The magnificently restored art deco Empire Theatre attracts regular performances. A well signposted drive for visitors will take you past the city’s finest architecture, including City Hall, the National Trust Royal Bull’s Head Inn and ‘Heritage Street’, Russell Street. A visit to the Cobb & Co Museum is a must as it houses Australia’s largest collection of horse-drawn vehicles.
Garden-lovers will be kept busy exploring the city’s internationally themed gardens – the University of Southern Queensland’s Japanese Gardens, the Wetlands of the World and the New Zealand-themed park at Lake Annand. If you favour a stroll among the flowers, visit the meticulously tended Botanic Gardens at Queens Park. Take time out to smell the flowers in Laurel Bank Park.
Visit the garden city
The Garden City is an appropriate description for Toowoomba on Queensland’s Darling Downs.
The city has 1,044 hectares of parkland including Redwood and Jubilee parks on a natural bushland escarpment and the centrally located Queens Park with its mature trees and playing fields.
The beautiful Botanical Gardens, with their perfectly manicured lawns and vibrant garden beds, bring a divine serenity to the heart of Toowoomba. The gardens are a central highlight of the city’s annual Carnival of Flowers, held every September.
Architecture and history complement the beauty of the city’s parks and gardens. Toowoomba has an elegant and gracious city centre with many handsome old buildings, and wide streets.
Stroll the streets and you’ll uncover many National Trust-preserved sites such as the Italianate-style post office (1878) with its original clock tower, and the nearby courthouse, also built in the 1870s in the classic Revival style.
Worth a visit is the Cobb & Co Museum, which traces the history of horsedrawn transportation in Australia. Among the 30 vehicles featured are old timber wagons, spring wagons, and bullock drays, Cobb & Co coaches and the elegant Victorian landau used by the then Duke of Edinburgh when he visited the colony in 1876.
Activites and Experiences at Toowoomba
- Art and Craft making Visit the Country Fabrics and Quilters Store at 600 Ruthven Street. They host an annual Quilt Festival in September. Heirloom Creations is located at 208 James Street and a number of other art and craft groups and stores can be found around the city.
- Trail bike riding Ride the BMX tracks in Redwood Park. A brochure is available at the Visitor Information Centre to help you navigate the ‘Bridal Trail’ and the ‘Grass Tree Track.’
- Birdwatching The Toowoomba Bicentennial Waterbird Habitat is a diverse wetland within the city which attracts a variety of waterbirds. Bring your binoculars and observe the birdlife from the observation platforms, floating islands and the custom built bird hide. Bird species seen include the Sacred and Straw-necked Ibis, Great Cormorant, Grey Teal, Great Egret, Maned Duck, Australian Pelican, Plumed Whistling Duck, Pacific Black Duck, Royal Spoonbill, Australian Grebe, Little Pied Cormorant, Little Black Cormorant, White-faced Heron, Buff-branded Rail, Darter, Cattle Egreat, Black-winged Stilt, Pacific Heron and the Black-fronted Plover. Access via Alderley or Mackenzie Streets.
- Bushwalking Toowoomba’s Escarpment Parks are an unspoilt retreat for bushwalkers. They offer spectacular views, diverse flora and fauna and well maintained walking-tracks. Picnic Point Park has a large network of long and short tracks with signage outlining the routes. Brochures with maps are available from the Visitor Information Centre which will help direct you to areas suitable for bushwalking.
- City Sightseeing The best way to see Toowoomba’s significant attractions is on Toowoomba’s Tourist Drive 1 ‘See Toowoomba At It’s Best’ brochure. The drive is approximately 90 minutes and is available from the Visitor Information Centre.
- Rock Climbing Have a rush of adrenalin at Toowoomba’s Indoor Rock Climbing Centre. ‘Adrenalin’ is located in the Central Business District, at 131 Margaret Street.
- Cycling Toowoomba has an extensive network of bikeways. Some of the most popular scenic bikeways follow West and East Creeks. East Creek bikeway goes through the Waterbird Habitat and past Lake Annand. Bikeways also access strategic locations such as schools and shopping centres. Bike Line at 2 Prescott Street offers bike hire and also organised tours, including coffee rides and wine rides. Wicked Wheels Indoor features half pipes, a wave roller, box jumps and wall ramps for boards, blades and bikes. Wicked Wheels is run by Bike Line. A BMX track is located on Bridge Street. Pick up a ‘Wheel Thing’ brochure from the Visitor Information Centre. Bikes are prohibited from riding in Picnic Point Park.
- Driving Five tourist drives beginning and ending in Toowoomba are outlined in the Great Country Drives of the Darling Downs Guide. The drives include half and full day drives travelling to the north, south and west of Toowoomba, encompassing points of interest along the way. Call Toowoomba and Golden West Regional Tourist Association on 07 4632 1988 for a copy.
- Exercising The East Creek Circuit Training on Kitchener Street adjacent to the Visitor Information Centre is a free way to gain some motivation to stay active during your visit to Toowoomba. Toowoomba boasts a number of modern gyms with excellent equipment. The University of Southern Queensland’s ‘USQ Works’ is located on Baker Street in the south west corner of the City. The Council run Milne Bay Aquatic Centre on the corner of Herries and Victoria Streets also has a gym with modern facilities.
- Golfing Toowoomba has three golf courses: the Toowoomba Golf Club; the City Golf Club and the Eustondale Golf Club. The Toowoomba Golf Club has 18 holes and is located on Rowbotham Street. While it’s not a public Golf Club, visitors are welcome. Facilities include buggy hire, a bar, snack bar, EFTPOS, poker machines, Pro Shop, pull buggy hire, driving range, practice putting green, practice bunker and motorised carts. The City Golf Club is located at the junction of South and Water Streets. The course is an 18 hole championship course designed by Ross Watson. It features bent grass greens and kikuyu fairways. Facilities include: a bar; snackbar; restaurant; conference facilities; EFTPOS; poker machines; club keno; pro shop; club hire; pull buggy hire; practice putting green and chipping green; practice bunker; motorised carts and club TAB. The Eustondale Course has 9 holes.
- Motor racing
- Art Painting
- Scenic Flight
- Sports Participate
- Sports Viewing
- Train Ride
- Wine Tasting
- Accommodation Choose from a huge range of motels, hotels, bed and breakfasts, caravan parks and self contained cottages.
- Airport Toowoomba’s airfield is serviced only with chartered flights. MacAir however flies into Oakey regularly (15 minutes drive away).
- Automatic Teller Machine
- Banking Facilities
- Bottled Gas
- Cinema/Theatre There are two Birch Carroll & Coyle Cinemas in Toowoomba. Both located on Margaret Street, one is at the Neil Street intersection and the other is in Grand Central Shopping Centre.
- Licensed Club
- Service Club
- Coach Stop McCafferty’s Bus Terminal is located near the city centre on the corner of Neil and Russell Streets.
- Convention Centre
- Currency Exchange
- Electronic Funds Transfer at Point Of Sale
- Golf The City Golf Club and Middle Ridge Golf Clubs.
- Public Bar
- Dog Kennels/Catteries
- Mechanical Services
- Medical Facilities
- Police Located on Neil Street in the city centre.
- Post Office
- Public Telephone
- Rail Terminal
- Sporting Facilities
- Swimming Pool
- Takeaway Food
- Tennis Court
- Visitor Centres The Toowoomba Visitor Information centre is open seven days from 9.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. It is located on the corner of James Street (Warrego Highway) and Kitchener Street. The City Info Centre is located on Ruthven Street in the city centre.
- Places of Worship
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
- The Arts
- Caravan and Camping
- Flora and Fauna Toowoomba boasts over 150 city parks and gardens, including: Queens Park; Laurel Bank Park; Picnic Point Park; the State Rose Garden in Newtown Park; the Japanese Garden at the University of Southern Queensland and Boyce Garden open during the Carnival of Flowers in the last full week of September. Toowoomba’s floral display is magnificent for it’s famous Carnival of Flowers in September. During the Carnival visitors are welcome to wander around the home gardens throughout the city entered in the yearly competition. Toowoomba’s floral display is again a sight to see in Summer when the City’s gardens full with the colours of Summer Blooms. Nursery shopping is popular in Toowoomba, with stocks particularly good for spring plantings during the Autumn months.
- Health and Fitness
- Industry/Mining, Agriculture
- RTN, QH and National Distributors (TQ)
Nearest Airport: Toowoomba
Accommodation In Toowoomba
Discover some of the accommodation in and around Toowoomba
- A-Raceview Motor Inn
- Alderwood Bed & Breakfast
- Allan Cunningham Motel
- Ambassador on Ruthven Motor Inn
- Anglers, The
- Apollo Lodge
- Applegum Inn
- Bridge Street Bed and Breakfast
- Bridge Street Motor Inn
- City Motor Inn
- Clifford Park Holiday Motor Inn
- Comfort Inn The Park
- Cotswold Motor Inn
- Country Gardens Motor Inn
- Damia Cottage
- Eastgate On The Range
- Ellengrove Apartments
- Garden City Caravan Park
- Garden City Motor Inn
- Great Divide Motor Inn
- Jacaranda Grove Bed & Breakfast
- James Cottage Bed and Breakfast
- Jeffery’s Rainforest Motel
- Jolly Swagman Caravan Park
- Lauriston House Bed and Breakfast
- Quality Hotel Burke & Wills
- Riviera on Ruthven Motel
- Ruthven Street Motor Inn
- St Andrew’s Place
- Toowoomba Motel and Events Centre
- Tuscany on Tor Motor Inn
- Vacy Hall Historic Guesthouse
- Villa Nova Motel
- Westaway Homestay
- Worsley on Margaret