Rathdowney Tourist Information

Visitor Information for Rathdowney in the Scenic Rim

Aerial photo of the Kooralbyn Valley Scenic Rim

Just a short 45-minute drive from the Gold Coast sits the lovely town of Rathdowney, nestled between rolling hills and beautiful farmland. Rathdowney is full of stories from the past and surrounded by lush green scenery.

It's a special place that combines history and adventure, making it an ideal getaway for anyone.

Dive into its fascinating history, get lost in its peaceful natural beauty, and start an unforgettable journey right in the heart of the Scenic Rim.


Map of Rathdowney

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A Brief History of Rathdowney

Long before European settlement, the Mununjali people inhabited the land that would become Rathdowney. In 1828, Patrick Logan, commandant of the Moreton Bay penal colony, became the first European to explore the area.

By 1842, the land was open for settlement, attracting the likes of Thomas Lodge Murray-Prior who established Rathdowney Station in 1876.

The town took its name from the station and initially thrived on timber clearing. Over time, agriculture, particularly cattle grazing and dairy farming, became the mainstays of the local economy.

Religious institutions also played a significant role in the town's history, with the foundations for St David's Anglican Church laid in 1929 and St Joseph's Catholic Church opening its doors that same year. Notably, Palen Creek Methodist Church was relocated to Rathdowney in 1957 and served the community until 2014.

Today, Rathdowney's rich past is evident in its heritage-listed sites like St David's and St Joseph's churches, offering a glimpse into the town's unique journey through time.


Local Amenities

Step back in time at the Rathdowney Information Centre and Historical Museum, where you can explore the town's rich history, from its indigenous roots to the days of timber and dairy farming. Don't miss the relocated Glenapp railway siding, a testament to the town's past connection to the wider world.

While the town may be small, it boasts a variety of amenities, including a newsagency with groceries and takeaway food, a hotel-motel, a caravan park, a service station, a butcher, and a primary school.

Additionally, you'll find a memorial hall, churches, a library, a police station, a voluntary fire brigade, an ambulance service, and a swimming pool.

Foodies will delight in the diverse culinary options, from the local snack store to the historic "Rathy Pub" and a range of other dining venues offering unique styles and flavours.


Rathdowney Local Attractions

✓ Scenic Rim Adventure Park
 Captain Logan Lookout Park
 Rathlogan Grove Olive Farm and Shed Cafe
 Yarriba Dreaming Indigenous Experiences
✓ Rathdowney Historical Museum and Visitor Information Centre
 Barney Creek Vineyard and Cottages
 Oaky Creek Farm and Harvest Cafe


Fishing and Local Sports

Anglers flock to the town each Easter for the Rathdowney Hotel Social Fishing Club's Carpbusting Competition.

For the active traveller, Rathdowney offers a range of activities, from lawn bowls and equestrian pursuits to team sports like rugby league, soccer, and cricket which you can spectate on local fields.


The Great Outdoors

Rathdowney offers an abundance of adventures. Hike through stunning national parks like Lamington National Park, with its cascading waterfalls and lush rainforests, or Mount Barney National Park, perfect for experienced hikers.

For a leisurely stroll, head to Mount Maroon and admire the breathtaking views.

For a more tranquil activity, pack a picnic and soak up the sun at beautiful Tilley's Park, or find your peaceful haven in one of the many serene reserves like Yellow Pinch, Flanagan's, or Bigriggan. For breathtaking views, enjoy a picnic by the picturesque Maroon Dam.


Fresh Food

Beyond the tourist trail, embark on a unique experience at the Rathdowney Olive Groves and host farms. Learn about olive oil production, explore the agricultural heartland, and savour fresh, local produce.


Festivals and Markets

For several years, Rathdowney has also hosted a Heritage Festival and the Heritage Farmers Market where you can experience traditional crafts, lively entertainment, and delicious local fare.


Visit Rathdowney

Rathdowney offers a perfect blend of adventure, relaxation, and historical charm for everyone. So come and discover its magic.


Cottage Accommodation near Rathdowney 

Whether you're a seasoned traveller seeking adventure or a family seeking a relaxing escape, the rural paradise of Rathdowney offers one of many memorable experiences available in the Scenic Rim.

Milford Country Cottages is located 45km away from Rathdowney which is about a 35-minute drive via Boonah Rathdowney Rd & State Route 93 - View Google Map.

Book your stay at one of our two authentic scenic rim cottages by contacting your hosts John & Lyn McLean on 0434 621 902 or click here to book online.




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