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Oceania > Australia > Queensland > Central Queensland > Bundaberg


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Bundaberg, colloquially known as Bundy, is in Queensland, Australia, south of Rockhampton and north of Hervey Bay.


Aerial view of Bundaberg, showing the Burnett River and Bourbong St

Bundaberg is closely linked to the sugar cane industry. The area is surrounded by cane fields, and the small railway lines used to transport the harvested cane to the mills. The closeness to the cane mills is the reason for the siting of the rum, ginger beer, and sugar industries associated with Bundaberg.

The town itself is set back around 10km from the ocean and the ocean beaches, along the river. Bourbong street is the oddly named main street (originally named Bourbon Street, but historically misspelled). Parts are also known as the Isis Highway.

The town of Bargara is essentially the beachside suburb of Bundaberg. Home to many modern apartments, accommodation, and resorts with ocean views. It is close to Bundaberg but has a very different feel to the town centre. It has a small shopping and restaurant strip of its own, and an esplanade with barbecues and picnic tables.

The Burnett River runs through and divides the town. It is crossed by two road bridges and a railway bridge.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Bundaberg is approximately 4 and half hours drive by car north of Brisbane.

By bus[edit]

Buses do the journey in around 6 hours.

By train[edit]

Queensland Rail [1] services Bundaberg with the tilt train (4 1/2 hours). The Spirit of the Outback services (6 1/2 hours) also passes through the town. Adult fare $62.70 one way.

By plane[edit]

Bundaberg Airport (BDB) has four flights a day by QantasLink [2]] from Brisbane (check for specials). The airport is around 4 km west of the city centre. Car hire is available in the terminal, Avis, Budget, Hertz and Thrifty. Europcar is not in the terminal, but is at the far end of the car park. There is a cafe and an ATM in the terminal building.

Get around[edit]

Duffy's buses [3] run mainly school buses, although there are some public routes. In particular buses run between Bargara and the Bundaberg town centre every hour or so on weekdays and every couple of hours on a Saturday.

You really need a car to get anywhere outside the city centre. A number of Backpacker hostels run shuttle minibuses for seasonal workers to local farms early in the morning and back again in the afternoon.


  • 1 The Bundaberg Barrel, 147 Bargara Rd, +61 7 4154-5480. Is the home of Bundaberg Ginger Beer (and other brewed soft drinks). There is a shop and tasting free to access, and a interactive museum display at a small cost. The museum can take an hour or so, with some interactive computer exhibits, some historical information, and a small "hologramatic" presentation humorously telling the story of brewed soft drinks (end the evil Johann Jacob Schweppe who inserted bubbles into soft drink, rather than brewing them!).
  • 2 Bundaberg Rum Distillery, Whittred St, +61 7 4131-2999. Where the amber fluid has been produced since 1888. There are two tours; The intereactive Bundy Story uses touch panels and visual displays to show 120 years of rum making. The Bondstore Experience adds a guided tour around the distillery where you can see, smell and taste the product being made. Covered footwear required. Tours run on the hour M-F 10AM-3PM, 10AM-2PM, Sa/Su and public holidays. Tours $15-25; Family:$62.50; Children under 3 free.
  • 3 Hinkler Hall of Aviation, +61 7 4130-4400. located in the Botanic Gardens, is a modern museum celebrating the history of early aviation and the role of Bert Hinkler, a pioneer aviator born in Bundaberg who, in 1928, became the first to fly solo from England to Australia, and, in 1931, the first to fly solo across the South Atlantic. Adjacent to the museum (and included in its admission price) is Hinkler's house from the Thornhill Estate, Sholing, in Southampton, England, which was rescued from destruction in 1983, dismantled and shipped brick by brick to Bundaberg and reconstructed.
  • Also in the Botanic Gardens [4] is a restored steam train which runs Sundays and public holidays. Rides cost a nominal fee and do two laps of the Botanic Gardens pond. The engine is a restored steam cane train.
  • Turtles. Return each year around December to Mon Repos to lay their eggs at night. In around February, and in December you can see the little hatchlings struggle their way into the ocean against the waves. The beach is part of a National Park, and you must be accompanied by a ranger to see the turtles. Laying and hatching is at night.
  • Tropical Fish at the Basin, Bargara. Tropical fish can be seen at the Basin, and the southern end of The Esplanade. It is possible to take bread and feed them. There is no admission charge, bring your own snorkel and mask.
  • Mystery Craters (are about 20km from Bundaberg on the road to Gin Gin). The craters themselves are set in an area that resembles a large suburban backyard. There are around 30 craters, between a few centimetres and a few metre radius. There is an old machinery shed containing old dusty lawn mowers. For some reason there is a 3 metre tall dinosaur statue. There is a fee for admission.


  • Walk along Bourbong Street and look at some of the city's old buildings.
  • Swim at Bargara beach
  • See the view from The Hummock, take the Bargara road, and follow the signs. A 100-meter-tall hill on the outskirts of Bundaberg for a good view of the city and out to the ocean. On a clear day, you can see the tip of Fraser Island


Seasonal work can be obtained picking tomatoes and other fruits and vegetables. Check with the backpacker hostels for more info. To work legally, you require a valid work visa (not a tourist visa) and you should provide the employer with a tax file number if you do not want them to deduct 48 % tax from your wages (normal non-residential tax rate 29 %). It may be possible to work without a valid visa (cash-in-hand), though occasionally inspectors do checks on farms and at hostels, which could possibly result in severe consequences.


Bourbong Street, the main drag through town, is partly a shared pedestrian zone with a variety of shops, banks, travel agents and the main post office. There are two other major shopping centres: Hinkler Place, a few blocks to the south on the corner of Maryborough and Electra Sts, and the larger Sugarland in the west (Cnr Takalvan and Heidke Sts), both of which contain most of the major Australian chains between them.


  • 1 Kacy's (Bargara Beach Motel), 63 Esplanade (Cnr Bauer & Esplanade at Bargara Beach), +61 7 4130-1100. Fine cooking Italian style on a pleasant terrace across the road from the beach. With a chance you could see possums in the trees from your table. mains around $23 kids meals $10.

The Hungry Tum along Bourbong Street in downtown is well known for its signature drink, pink lemonade. Its is a take-away place underneath the City Centre Backpackers, on the western side of downtown.



There is a variety of accommodation styles available in Bundaberg. West of the Bundaberg Railway Station there are a number of well equipped motels. In amongst these motels is a variety of food outlets ranging from cafe style food, take away, and restaurants. There are around several backpackers hostels to choose from. One is opposite the bus depot. Two others are opposite the train station. Most of these can arrange farm work and will even provide transport to the farms in the morning and back in the afternoon. For those who wish to camp, caravan and camping parks are located throughout the city.

Bargara beach offers a choice of newer apartment style accommodation closer to the beach.

In town[edit]

  • Dingo Blue Backpackers. Nice place, good if you want find "to smoke"
  • Bundaberg Backpackers. Good building and good facilities with free computer with internet, tv room and barbecue outside. anyway tha management is not so good. transposto to work included in the price 190$/week.
  • Federal Backpackers. the thing that makes this hostel great is the social life: the house is quite dirty but this, thanks to the hard life of farm working makes poeple more friendly. great to have fun: there's a bottle shop in the same building with an outside garden run by the same manager. good hostel to find job, provide transport to work for 3$ go and 3$ back. the managers are quiet, not bad. the negative face of this is place is the cleaness: it's really dirty, but people who stay here don't care so much normally cause they're happy of the people living inside from 23$/night 148$/week.
  • 1 Coral Villa Motel in Bundaberg, 56 Takalvan Street, QLD 4670, +61 7 4152-4999, toll-free: 1800 644 014, fax: +61 7 4152 4541. Has accommodation in a garden setting which includes an 18 meter swimming pool and guest BBQ area. Motel style units and self-contained units with kitchenettes.
  • 2 Cane Village Holiday Park, 94 Twyford Street (West of downtown on the Isis Highway), +61 7 4155-1022.

Bargara Beach[edit]

Go next[edit]

  • Lady Musgrave Island : visit the island and then enjoy scuba diving in the atoll.
  • Lady Elliot Island. Direct flights from Bundaberg airport.
  • Maryborough is one hour's drive south along the highway.
  • Town of 1770 - the Historic Birth Place of Queensland, Town of 1770, so named after the year that Captain Cook first landed in Queensland. It is about 2 hours drive north or Hervey Bay around an hours drive to the south.
This city travel guide to Bundaberg is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.