There’s limited Telstra mobile phone coverage at Cobbold Village, around the Bar / Coffee shop plus the front deck at Reception using your own phone and data. We’re on a Booster from the Telstra Tower at Forsayth, 45km away, so service can be intermittent.
For everyone else, there are no phone calls or SMS messages. Enjoy the digital detox and tell your loved ones beforehand the dates you’re away for your amazing adventure.
At Cobbold Village we offer our guests limited complimentary Wi-Fi internet access which is available around the Bar, Pool and Reception areas.
Due to our remote location, there is no fast connectivity or speeds. To ensure all guests can access the service, we limit each connection to 512KBPS, and during busy times this may be further reduced.
We ask that you refrain from using high bandwidth services and applications while you’re here (perhaps enjoy a Digital Detox instead!). Thanks for your understanding.
If you’re enjoying relaxed bush camping (aka – unpowered camp sites), you’re able to charge your phones in our camp kitchen.
If you have a Telstra phone, you can access internet through your phone data (remember, we have limited coverage here).
You may get coverage if you have a satellite dish & satellite finder (or make friends with someone who has!). Otherwise, we do sometimes screen ‘important’ sporting fixtures on the big screen at MacDonalds Deck.
It’s intermittent – you might get radio coverage on a.m. bandwidth to listen to this week’s footy match, otherwise catch up at MacDonalds Bar and discuss who you think will win.
There are no newspaper deliveries here, so make your own news! Gather around your campfire, or the nightly communal campfire on the dam wall – and solve the problems of the world while toasting marshmallows or enjoying a nightcap.
Pets are welcome at Cobbold Village if you’re caravanning or camping in your own rig, however pets are not permitted in accommodation / cabins.
No animals allowed on tours. It is your responsibility to ensure your pet is kept safe within your caravan / site while you’re on the gorge tour, and your pet is not a nuisance to others. Some guests choose to do separate tours so one person can remain with their fur-babies (if required).
All pet owners, whether you have expressly agreed or not, assume liability regarding your pet being on our premises and indemnify us against all and any damages, all or any claim or other suits that may arise as a result of your pet being anywhere in Cobbold Village or the surrounding cattle station.
Cobbold Village doesn’t provide pet sitting facilities while you’re on tour, some guests choose to do separate tours so one person can remain with their fur-babies (if required).
Day Visitors are advised not to bring their pets with them to Cobbold Village while they tour the gorge, as their fur-babies would need to remain in their vehicle, which is not recommended.
There’s loads of wildlife at Cobbold Gorge and around Cobbold Village, check out our wildlife page to learn more about who you might spot while you’re here.
Wildlife conservation is important, and they’re called wildlife for a reason – so please help us keep the animals and birds wild and healthy by not feeding them – as it encourages bad behaviour in them (expecting food) and can make them sick. Also ensure your food is well covered and rubbish securely stored in rubbish bins provided. No animals or plants are to be taken from the area.
At certain times of year (depending on water level and fish!) you can fish at the Village dam. Fishing and netting are not permitted at Cobbold Gorge.
However, if you’re up for a fishing experience with a difference, consider our Heli-fishing adventure (maximum three guests). On your heli-fishing charter, you’ll fly to Fish Hole, an almost untouched fishing hole at the base of the Newcastle Ranges, with the chance to catch Black Bream (Sooty Grunter) and Sleepy Cod as well as other varieties of fish, while enjoying lunch and beer (food and drink provided).
Now that’s a great fishing tale to tell!
Note – Heli fishing doesn’t operate all year round, so simply email email@example.com the friendly team at Reception regarding availability.
Cobbold Gorge is roughly six hours drive from either Cairns or Townsville, although we recommend you allow more time to include stops along your way to make the most of your road trip.
For full deets on the road trip to Cobbold Gorge, check out our getting here page. Safe travels!
There is no fuel for sale at Cobbold Village, so we recommend you top up at Forsayth (43km away) on the way through.
How long is a piece of string? It’s quite a subjective thing regarding the road and you’ll always hear differing views. We recommend guests allow an hour to drive in (which is generous). Here’s the drum:
So? It really depends on what you’re used to and what you’re comfortable with, and no matter what you decide, always ensure you drive to conditions, plus you can check with local roadhouses on your way through.
As road conditions are subject to change, we recommend you check either with Etheridge Shire Council for the latest road updates or contact us for an update.
Our accommodation and camping are located at Cobbold Village – so that’s where you’re headed. Access to Cobbold Gorge is by guided tour only as it’s a protected Nature Refuge. When you do set out on your fabulous Cobbold Gorge Tour – we’ll transport you there and back from Cobbold Village, so sit back and relax, leave the driving up to us!
You need to decide what you’re comfortable with, however if you choose not to take the road in, there’s no need to miss out on your amazing outback Queensland adventure! Simply come into Cobbold Gorge as a Day Visitor – either on a Day Visitor Gorge Tour and self-drive your own vehicle, or let us do the driving for you and come in as a Day Visitor Gorge Tour ex Forsayth where we’ll bus you in, feed you lunch, take you on your Gorge Tour and then back to Forsayth (Tuesdays & Thursday only).
Either way – you’ll still get to tick Cobbold Gorge off your Bucket List. Perfect!
There is no public bus service to Cobbold Village, so one of the best ways to experience Cobbold Gorge is to book a tour with one of the Tour Companies that visit the Gulf Savannah and include Cobbold Gorge in their itinerary. Check out our Getting Here page and choose your perfect outback Queensland adventure.
There are no commercial flights into Cobbold Gorge, however if you’re on a tight timeline and have your own aircraft (or charter one) – you may decide to fly, landing at Forsayth on the sealed 1.5km all-weather airstrip, approximately 43km from Cobbold Village.
Co-ordinates are S18 35 E143 34 and AvGas can be arranged with advance notice. We’re also able to arrange airport transfers to and from Cobbold Village. Simply contact us with your details.
If you’re travelling up to Far North Queensland for a well-deserved holiday, you still have the opportunity to experience stunning Cobbold Gorge and tick it off your Bucket List. You could hire a vehicle and self-drive (see FAQ on Hire Cars, or book with a Tour Company that includes Cobbold Gorge on their itinerary). Either way, you’ll have an amazing time.
There are several Tour Companies offering trips to outback Queensland and the Gulf Savannah, each with different itineraries. These tours are not operated by us, however they do include a trip out to our iconic Cobbold Gorge. Check out our Getting Here page to find the right tour for you!
If you plan to hire a car to drive to Cobbold Gorge – we recommend you check with the individual hire car company beforehand to understand their policies regarding driving on ‘formed gravel road’, as the policies may differ from one company to the next.
Depending on where you’re coming from, you’ll encounter dirt road (see our info on Getting Here). If you’re travelling from Cairns, there is an additional approx. 8km of gravel between Georgetown and Forsayth, and one of the routes from Townsville (via Einasleigh) includes approx. 76km of gravel between The Lynd and Einasleigh. Then, of the 45km from Forsayth to the front gate of Cobbold Village – the last 43km is a public, gazetted formed gravel (dirt) road managed by Etheridge Shire Council.
Most conventional vehicles will handle the journey to Cobbold Gorge with ease, including those towing caravans, plus we have two-wheel drive vehicles and non-off-road caravans come in, however your Hire Car company may specify that you require a 4WD for the trip – so always double-check with the rental company first, before making your booking.
It’s not possible to travel all the way to Cobbold Gorge by train, however you’re still in luck, as there are several Tour Companies offering extended trips to outback Queensland with unique itineraries, some of which include train travel on the wonderful Savannahlander train. Check out their schedule and book your perfect trip.
A good road trip always includes stops along the way, and there are some iconic destinations along the Savannah Way that you should include in your itinerary. It’s also a great idea to allow enough time to check out local attractions, and to support local businesses on the way through – as half the fun on any adventure is the journey itself with the reward of a stunning destination as a part of that.
You need to come and ‘play’ at Cobbold Gorge during our ‘dry’ season because that’s when we’re open – from 1 April (or Easter if earlier) to 31 October, and that’s when you’ll (*mostly) get the best weather.
(* a little proviso here – we can’t actually guarantee the weather, but it is mostly dry and sunny this time).
We’re closed during the ‘wet’ season (from November through to March).
Check out our ‘Weather’ news for a bit more info.
If you’re about to set off on your Road Trip and curious about our current weather, then simply Google Forsayth, Queensland weather and head to the BOM site (Bureau of Meteorology) for their Seven-day Forecast!
There is no fuel for sale at Cobbold Village, so we recommend you top up at Forsayth (43km away) on the way through.
We can help you out with basic mechanical repairs in an emergency, simply pop in and check with one of our friendly Reception staff.
It’s possible to get your Gas bottle refilled at Cobbold Village (as long as the bottle is ‘in date’), however we don’t offer Gas bottle exchange.
If you really need to get your clothes clean while on holidays – then you’ve chosen a lovely place to be doing your washing! There’s a Camp Laundry at the Main campground, plus we sell sachets of laundry detergent at Corbett’s Store. You’ll need some gold coins to get the washing machine started (if you need change, pop in and see the fabulous staff in Reception). Same applies to the dryer (more gold coins), however with our gorgeous outback sunshine – hang it on the line and it will be dry in no time!
Cobbold Village now has Dump Points available for your use. There are also Dump Points at Forsayth, Georgetown and Mount Surprise.
Our tap water at Cobbold Village is sourced from the Robertson River. It’s safe to drink (we do), however you might choose to boil it before consumption, otherwise bottled water and ice can be purchased from the Bistro if preferred.
As you’re in drought prone outback Queensland, we ask you to be mindful of water usage – it’s a precious commodity around here, so please don’t waste it.
All Powered campsites at Cobbold Village have their own tap on each site (plus their own power), while Unpowered campsites can make use of the taps in the Camp Kitchen and BBQ areas.
Generators are not permitted at Cobbold Village.
If you’re ready to test your bush cooking skills – there are camp cooking facilities at various places around Cobbold Village, including several free gas BBQ areas which include large sinks for washing up, tables with bench seating, there’s a small Camp Kitchen (with communal fridge) at the main Amenities block, plus of course, the campfire rings throughout the campground.
BYO pots, pans, utensils & ingredients and whip up a storm. Happy cooking!
Isn’t a campfire all part of your bush experience?! To help you out, all Powered sites, plus Self-Contained Unpowered caravan sites have individual firepits on each site. All other Unpowered campsites share several communal firepits throughout the Unpowered camp area. To protect the camp areas, all fires must be contained in designated fire rings only and must not be moved.
Please note – you’ll need to BYO firewood, and you’re welcome to source timber from the surrounding bush outside the campgrounds alongside the main road between Forsayth and Cobbold Village.
In addition, we light a communal campfire on the dam wall each night where you can gather round to enjoy the ambience, make new friends and appreciate our stunning outback skies, so even if you’re not camping (and enjoying our comfy accommodation instead) – you’ll still get to experience the joys of a campfire.
News Flash – you can buy your all-important marshmallows at Corbett’s Store!
Cobbold Gorge does not sell firewood, so you’ll need to BYO firewood. You’re welcome to source timber from the surrounding bush outside the campgrounds alongside the main road between Forsayth and Cobbold Village.
Our fabulous MacDonalds fully licensed Bar & Bistro has you covered for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, barista coffee and everything else in between! Located opposite Reception with views to the amazing Infinity Pool with swim up pool bar and the dam beyond – it’s the perfect place to relax and enjoy and not worry about food prep or the dishes afterwards!
We do require bookings for dinner and breakfast, so please email us with your request (including dates, number of adults & kids plus any special dietary requirements) – and we’ll make a reservation to secure your place! (Note – for lunch, snacks or drinks, no booking is required).
You may decide to opt in for our Meal Deal which includes a three-course dinner plus cooked or continental brekkie with barista coffee.
Otherwise, if you’d just like to reserve a place at the dinner or breakfast table, you can always PAYG (Pay as you go) – simply let us know dates, that you’d prefer PAYG, number of adults & kids plus any special dietary requirements and we’ll reserve your table.
It’s your holiday too, so check out our Dine page for inspiration and planning (after all, who wants to cook on holidays?)
It’s not possible to BYO drinks, as our MacDonalds Bar & Bistro is fully licensed – so you’ll have a selection of wines, beers and spirits, plus of course our fabulous Cobbold Cocktails to choose from. Cheers!
You’re in luck, even in the Gulf Savannah, at Cobbold Gorge you can get your daily caffeine hit with our barista coffee at MacDonalds Licensed Bar & Bistro. Phew!
Our Corbett’s Store (located at Reception) carries a small range of basic grocery items, plus assorted items such as sunblock, toiletries, marshmallows for your campfire, long-life milk and more. If you need to stock up on groceries, we recommend you call into Forsayth on the way through as they carry a larger range of groceries plus some fruit and veg.
There is no fresh bread at Cobbold Village (we sometimes have frozen bread available from the Bistro), otherwise, stop in at Forsayth or Georgetown on the way through.
We sell bagged ice at the Bistro (along with ice creams and a small selection of chocolate bars).
You’re coming all the way out here to see Cobbold Gorge – so you really don’t want to miss out on actually seeing it.
Access to Cobbold Gorge is by guided tour only as it’s a protected Nature Refuge, and our tours can fill up pretty quickly, especially during school holidays, during the winter months, long weekends, during the week, and so on … and once they’re fully booked … they’re fully booked.
The best way to avoid disappointment – is to book your tours the same time you make your accommodation booking.
That way you do get to experience amazing Cobbold Gorge and tick it off your Bucket List. Yay!
The Gorge Tour is pretty amazing, and we have all manner of ages participating, from young kids through to guests in their 80’s! To help with your planning, the guided three-hour Cobbold Gorge Tour comprises the following:
45-minute boat cruise up and down gorge
NOTE – it’s not possible to just do part of the walk.
Some guests choose not to do the walk component – if you just do the boat, you’ll wait back at the Shelter (under cover with chairs) while the rest of your group walk (simply chat to your guide when you join the tour).
As far as amenities go – there are toilets located just outside Reception – for before you set off on your tour (don’t be late!), and also at the Shelter (where the bus is parked). There are no services available during the walk or the boat tour.
Remember to wear covered shoes (it’s a bush walk), hat and sunblock, possibly long sleeves (extra sun protection on the boat cruise) plus bring plenty of drinking water. Some guests who are concerned about the walk may choose to bring their own hiking poles.
And of course, bring your camera for some fabulous pics!
We do have all ages on our Gorge Tour, and sometimes guests bring their own hiking poles for added confidence, however if you’re only able to walk short distances – you may choose to do the boat cruise portion of the Gorge Tour only and sit out the walk if necessary (it’s still the same price).
If you just did the boat, you’d wait back at the shelter (under cover, with chairs and toilet), while the rest of your group did the walk (simply chat to your guide when you join the tour).
Check out ‘What’s involved in the three-hour Cobbold Gorge Tour?’ FAQ for more info.
We appreciate some of you are concerned about heights – however the bridge is only a (very short!) 11 metres across, and it’s not possible to just do part of the walk (see ‘What’s involved in the three-hour Cobbold Gorge Tour?’ FAQ for more info).
If you just did the boat, you’d wait back at the shelter (under cover, with chairs and toilet), while the rest of the group did the walk (simply chat to your guide when you join the tour – you can decide on the day).
However … we’ve had other guests who were worried about heights – and they did the walk and crossed the glass bridge and were extremely proud of themselves, and so glad that they did. You got this!
Guests do take their infants and young kids on the gorge tour all the time, however it’s important to understand it’s not possible to use prams or strollers on the tour, so you’ll need to bring your own baby carrier / sling (whatever works best for you).
Also ensure you bring whatever snacks / treats you need for the children on a three-hour tour (plus of course – water, sunblock, covered shoes & hat). You’ll all have an awesome time!
Check out ‘What’s involved in the three-hour Cobbold Gorge Tour?’ FAQ for more info.
The Cobbold Gorge tour is not suitable for wheelchairs (or prams), as the terrain includes dirt tracks, a ladder (approximately 10 steps), some narrow paths plus walking across sandstone escarpment at the top of the gorge. Check out ‘What’s involved in the three-hour Cobbold Gorge Tour?’ FAQ for more info.
Another option to experience the gorge might be on a scenic helicopter flight (pending ability to get in and out of the helicopter).
For safety reasons and to protect the narrow gorge and its walls from boards bumping into them – kids 12 and under are not permitted to SUP, and we have a strict policy of one person per board. We recommend the minimum age to join our SUP tour is 13 years. We provide life jackets and helmets for all participants. Check out the full SUP Tour deets here.
Access to Cobbold Gorge is strictly by guided tour only, as it’s part of a protected Nature Refuge.
Can I take my kids on the helicopter flights? (and what about ‘not so young’ people?)
Being in a helicopter is such an amazing experience, and the scenic heli flights from Cobbold Village are pretty special. Suitable for young and old (plus those in between) – you’ll have an awesome time and really get to appreciate the vastness of the Queensland outback and our stunning Cobbold Gorge from above.
The helicopters take a maximum of three guests per flight, plus there are weight limits (individual and total weight). Our headsets will fit kids as young as four and five years old, so if you’re a family of four – you’ll just go on two separate flights an adult and child on each. As the flights are the same price for adults and kids, this won’t make an impact on what you pay.
If you’re ‘not so young’ anymore – a heli flight might be the perfect experience of the gorge and the outback for you too. We’ll help you step in and out of the heli, and you just need to buckle up and enjoy the flight. Easy!
There are plenty of heli options for everyone. Check here for scenic heli flight deets.
Then hop on board for an awesome outback adventure!
You’re not permitted to go to the gorge by yourself. Access to Cobbold Gorge is strictly by guided tour only, as it’s part of a protected Nature Refuge.
Cobbold Village is located on a working cattle station and there are four walks that depart from the Village, so you can choose your own adventure, as the difficulty of each track varies (see below), and you might even decide to join a few of the walks together. They’re ‘colour-coded’ and it’s worth taking a pic of the Walking Notes and Map with you for reference if needed. Spot wildlife, scarper up to Russell’s lookout for sunrise, or just take it easy and soak up the amazing outback.
Three of the four walking tracks from Cobbold Village are suitable for mountain bikes. These tracks range in distance from 2.5km to 5km, and you can link a few together for a longer ride. Remember to bring your mountain bike, your bike helmet and appropriate clothing, plus always ride at walking pace only around Cobbold Village. Happy trails!
Access to Cobbold Gorge is strictly by guided tour only, as it’s part of a protected Nature Refuge, and it’s important not to disturb the wildlife or introduce sunblock or other chemicals into the water. There’s a fabulous Infinity Pool for you to enjoy instead.
What’s the saying? ‘It’s lovely once you’re in’! A trip to Cobbold Gorge isn’t complete without enjoying this magnificent pool, and it really is lovely once you’re in (no it’s not heated). Complete with swim up pool bar for the Big Kids, you’re really getting the best of both worlds with a fancy pool and bar in an iconic outback location. Cocktails anyone?
If you’re after some fun activities, you can go kayaking on the dam at Cobbold Village (dependent on dam water levels of course). We have several kayaks available for guest use (first in, best dressed), so if you don’t want to lug your own kayak with you – leave it at home!
And if you plan to do the SUP Tour – you’ll be using our SUP boards, as we’re not geared up to transport additional equipment on the bus trip down to Cobbold Gorge – we only have room for guests!
We-eeell … golf of sorts. There is no golf course at Cobbold Gorge, however we do offer Aqua Golf with kayaking – where you get to test your golfing skills from the dam wall – into the dam! Then kayak out to retrieve your floating golf balls. Simply make sure you refrain from hitting balls when someone else is out in the boat and all will be well. There’s a $5 deposit per ball which is refunded when the ball is returned. The kayaks are free of charge and life jackets are available.
So if you’ve been missing teeing off during your road trip – here’s your chance!
Golf anyone? We’d call it Hit & Giggle!
Whether you’re a ‘birder’ or not, you’ll still delight at the fabulous variety of birds around Cobbold Gorge and on the walks you take from Cobbold Village.
We have Bird Lists available from Reception to help you understand which ones you’ve just spotted! Get the lowdown on all things ‘birdy’ here.
Cobbold Gorge Nature Refuge, Cobbold Village and Howlong Station are privately owned property. Due to CASA regulations and safety aspects (we operate helicopter flights from Cobbold Village), the flying of remotely piloted aircraft (Drones) over these areas is strictly prohibited.
Drone no fly zone.
You have a few different options here. Interestingly, the best vantage point for sunset at Cobbold Village is just outside the second Laundry at the back of Reception! Get your washing down while you enjoy the light show!
Otherwise – head to Quartz Blow Lookout where you’ll experience an outback sunset with a difference when you’re perched on top of this striking rocky outcrop protruding from the ground in a secluded part of the property. Pack a picnic of wine and nibbles to enjoy and remember to wear rubber-soled shoes as the quartz can be slippery. Visit the Bistro before 4pm if you’d like to purchase a cheese platter and wine to take with you.
Accessible by 4WD only, getting there is simple. Depart Cobbold Village towards Forsayth for approximately 4-5km and turn left at the Quartz Blow sign. Follow this track for 3-4km until you reach the Quartz Blow, the road turns back on itself so you can’t miss it. With 360-degree views of the surrounding area – it’s pretty special. Always remember to take your rubbish back out with you.
Alternatively, you might decide to book a Sunset Helicopter Flight complete with wine and cheese platter and sit on the escarpment and marvel at our amazing Gulf Savannah skies. Now that’s a romantic and wonderful way to celebrate the end of another spectacular day in outback Queensland!
You’re in luck and what a great outing this is! The Agate Creek fossicking area is world-renowned for agates of superb colours and patterns. Thunder eggs may also be found in the area.
Agates occur as banded gemstones of finely-grained microcrystalline quartz. The lovely colourful patterns and banding make this translucent gemstone very unique. Agates can have many distinctive styles and patterns, but each Agate is unique in its own habit, with no two Agates being the same.
The fossicking area is about 30km from Cobbold Village by gravel road, which is suitable for conventional vehicles, but may be impassable in the wet season. You’ll need a Queensland fossicking licence is required before entering the Agate Creek Fossicking area, which can be purchased online (do it before you come out to Cobbold) and a map is available from Reception.
Remember to pack a picnic lunch, snacks, plenty of drinking water and wear covered walking shoes, hat, sunblock, plus take a bucket for your find. Happy fossicking!
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