Canoeing in the Everglades

A uniquely Noosan thing to do is to go canoeing in the Noosa Everglades - in the Cooloola National Park. It’s a really beautiful part of the world and rarely visited by the tourist hordes. Brian Mays (your author’s old school teacher) runs the Elanda Point Canoe Company which hires out canoes. Their phone number is 07 5485 3165, email elanda@spiderweb.com.au and website www.elanda.com.au. You can do a day trip to Harry’s Hut, or if you’re keen go further up the Noosa River, spend a couple of days and camp.


Noosa really took off when those wandering surfies of the late 60’s / early 70’s “discovered” its protected bays.  When there’s big swell Noosa National Park can be awesome.  Crowded these days but awesome.  Tea Tree Bay, a ten minute walk into the park, is one of the most beautiful spots on the East Coast to surf.  Further around at Granite the surf is a bit more hard core.  Much of the time, though, surf at Noosa can be pretty small and too often non-existent.  In which case you’ll need to drive around to the open beaches to the south.  Sunshine is the nearest. 

 If you’ve yet to experience “the stoke” of surfing, treat yourself to a lesson.  You can usually find the Wavesense Surf Coaching just past the first rock wall at Main Beach, or contact Katrina and the crew on 1 800 249 076, wavesense@surfbetter.com or www.surfbetter.com.  (This beach is also a safe place for new surfers on their own to give it a go.)  If you want to hire a board, or ogle at new ones, check out the Noosa Longboards shop at the southern end of Hastings Street.  Their website is www.noosalongboards.com.

Ti Tree on a good day for Sunshine Beach

1st & 2nd points from top of Noosa Hill

Noosa National Park Walks

 A trip to Noosa isn’t complete without a walk into the Noosa National Park.  Sometimes in the car park area you’ll spot the odd koala high in one of the gum trees.  There’s also a tree favoured by our dozey, furry friends on the walking track - about 3 minutes in from the car park.  You’ll know where by the tourists looking up.  But ask yourself:  is it real or did some purile locals plant a stuffed one there?

There’s a good lookout above ‘Boiling Pot’ - 5 minutes walk in.  Tea Tree Bay is stunning and about 15 minutes walk.  It’s a good place for a swim - away from the hordes at Main Beach.  If you walk further, you’ll get to Granite Bay (30 minutes all up) and then Alexandra Bay (45 minutes).  Alexandra, or ‘A’  Bay, is a big, open beach.  Togs are optional at secluded A Bay.  (If you’re lucky you’ll be there the day of the nude olympics.) 

Coming back you can take the track which goes inland and includes some rainforest toward the end.  (Allow an hour or so this way.)  It’s worth taking lunch and making a day of the A Bay walk.  Don’t miss Hell’s Gates on the way in. 

Other walks

 If you’re keen, you should also check out the booklet ‘Noosa’s Natural Heritage: a walkers guide to tracks and trails’.  it shows other interesting walks further afield.  It’s available through the Noosa Enterprise Group (located at Suite 3, Sunshine Beach Road, Noosa Junction and on telephone 07 5474 9377) or the Noosa Parks Association (on telephone 07 5474 2486.)  The Noosa National Parks office can be contacted on 07 5447 3243.   

Road to Noosa lookout

Pub, Lake and Views

There’s a great old pub at Boreen Point (called The Apollonian.) It’s a classic old Queensland style one about 30 minutes drive from Noosa (through Tewantin.) You can make a good afternoon of it by heading out to the pub for lunch and a shandy or two. While you’re in laid back Boreen Point, check out Lake Cootharaba. On weekends there’s often big sailing regattas there. And on the way back, head up to Mount Tinbeerwah (on the road from Tewantin to Cooroy) for sunset. There’s a brilliant lookout which will give you a vista on the Cooloola National Park and its waterways, Noosa off in the distance and the farming hamlets inland. (You’ll get an idea what a beautiful area this is.) The Boreen Point pub is also a good reward for a hard days paddle in the Everglades.