Binna Burra unveils new Bushwalker’s Precinct

WORDS: Leighton Pitcher PHOTOGRAPHY Supplied - Binna Burra Lodge

Binna Burra’s new Bushwalker’s Precinct is more than a great way to spend the day – it’s a celebration of the history and culture of bushwalking.

THE new Bushwalker’s Precinct at Binna Burra is a celebration of one of the most popular recreational pastimes in Australia.

The precinct includes the refurbished Bushwalker’s Bar, Bushwalker’s Bunkhouse, Heritage Reading Room and the Australian Bushwalking Chronology, from 1888 to 2021.

“We want to celebrate the history and culture of bushwalking right across Australia,”  Binna Burra Lodge chair and National Parks Association of Queensland councillor Steve Noakes says. “Formation of both the National Parks Association and Binna Burra Lodge had its roots with bushwalking into the National Parks and other protected areas of Queensland.’

Bushwalking Queensland describes bushwalking as an Australian term for recreational walking in bushland or other natural areas. It is usually done within National Parks or other protected areas, either on designated tracks or completely off track. Alternative terminology for bushwalking includes hiking, tramping, hill walking, rambling and trekking.

The State organisation for organised bushwalking advises that bushwalking should not be undertaken without some forethought. “It is essential that bushwalkers properly prepare themselves with suitable clothing, equipment, food and water to ensure a safe and enjoyable bushwalk,” it advises.

Dr Melissa Harper, an Honorary Research Fellow at the School of Communication and Arts at the University of Queensland, has written what has been described by Patti Miller as a ‘sure-footed and witty’ book titled The Ways of the Bushwalker. On foot in Australia (2020). The book, on sale at the Binna Burra Tea House, is an absorbing exploration of the story of bushwalking in Australia.

“It’s a well-researched history, not just of walking, but of our changing relationship to the natural environment, of coming to know its unique beauty and its power to both inspire and restore the body and spirit. A compelling read for anyone who loves the Australian bush,” Dr Harper says.

Now more than ever, bushwalking is good for the soul. It impacts people in many different ways. After the 2019 bushfires that devastated Binna Burra Lodge, Mary-Rose MacColl’s ‘Obituary for Binna Burra’ published in the Guardian recalled: “I do not come from a hiking family – we never once visited a national park – but that first experience began for me a lifelong love affair with this national park in particular and national parks more generally. And what a gift it has been. Like a mother, the rainforest at Binna Burra takes you in its arms. In one way or another, I have been in those arms ever since.”

The new Bushwalker’s Precinct at Binna Burra also features a large wall map highlighting all the trails and key points of interest to be discovered on the Binna Burra side of Lamington National Park. The Bushwalker’s Bunkhouse accommodation is the perfect option for rest and recuperation before or after a hike through Lamington National Park.

The Bunkhouse accommodation includes USB charging ports, air-tight storage containers, vinyl floors, large opening slat windows, nearby access to bathroom facilities and shared fire pits and linen hire or BYO linen.

Visit www.binnaburralodge.com.au/book-online to book.