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Ever since our first Outback Queensland road trip, it’s been our dream to do the Australian Dinosaur TrailDinosaurs in Queensland are pretty epic, with Australia’s largest dinosaur being found in the outback town of Eromanga.  However, the famous dinosaur trail Queensland has, which most people are aware of, is spread out across the towns of Winton, Richmond and Hughenden.

With Winton being about a 14-15 hour drive from Brisbane and Richmond and Hughenden being around 17 hours away, we thought as well as covering this popular outback Queensland dinosaur trail; we’d make it worth our while and stop at various other outback towns along the way.

Our trip was just over two weeks long and included other iconic Queensland outback towns such as Longreach and Barcaldine.  We also went further north to visit Cobbold Gorge and the Undara Lava Tubes.

This was an epic trip and one I’d highly recommend to other families.  

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Australian Dinosaur Trail Queensland 

If Australia’s dinosaur trail is something your family’s interested in, then this guide will be a great place to start.  In this Qld dinosaur trail guide, I’ll cover our road trip day by day to help you put together your own itinerary, as well as information on the all inclusive Australian Dinosaur trail pass and all you need to know about each individual dinosaur attraction. 

This guide won’t go into loads of details about each of the towns we visited – however, it will link to separate articles on each town where you can find more information.

The Dinosaur Trail Qld Map

Before we get started, below is a map that shows the location of the attractions on the Australian Dinosaur Trail and shows the various places we visited throughout our road trip.

Australian Dinosaur Trail Queensland Itinerary

To reach the locations covered by the Dinosaur Trail Queensland offers, you will pass through various towns which are well worth a stop for a day or two.  So in this section, I’ll cover our full road trip itinerary – not just those stops on the DInosaur trail map.

In this section, I will be relatively brief and link to more detailed articles where applicable.  This section simply provides you with a detailed itinerary, so you don’t need to worry about planning your own trip day by day.

We live in Brisbane, but you may live further than that, closer or somewhere completely different.  That’s ok – just start on whichever day covers a town you’ll be passing through and go from there.

Throughout this itinerary, if I think we could have done something better – I’ll mention this so you can learn from our mistakes.

Day 1: Brisbane to Augathella (Drive 8 hours / 735kms)

We left home just before 8 am and arrived in Augathella at 5 pm.  We drove pretty much all day, except for a quick lunch in Miles and a few toilet breaks.

We stayed at Augathella Palms Motel – a nice little place right behind the Ellengowan Hotel, where we had dinner.

If you have two people driving (it was just me, Andy flew out to meet us later in Longreach), and your kids can handle being in the car for longer periods, I’d recommend leaving home an hour earlier and making it to Tambo for the night.

Accommodation: Augathella Palms Motel – $131

Day 2: Augathella to Barcaldine via Tambo (Drive 3.5 hours / 326 km)

We left Augathella around 8.30 am and drove around an hour to Tambo.  Unfortunately, it was a Saturday when we arrived in Tambo and pretty much everything was closed; mind you the main tourist attractions are walks and buildings, so you don’t really need to worry about opening hours.  This is how we spent our morning in Tambo:

  • We had a little stroll around the Tambo dam, a beautiful spot, particularly if you’re looking for somewhere to have lunch or morning tea
  • We then went into the centre of town and checked out some of the old buildings, including the old courthouse, post and telegraph museums (from the outside only as they were all closed being the weekend). 
  • Next, we visited Tambo Teddies – the most popular place to visit in Tambo.

Click here for our full guide on visiting Tambo.

Then it was a 2 hour drive onto Barcaldine.  Although we were quite hungry on route, so stopped in Blackall for lunch – Blackall is about 1 hour from Tambo, so a great way to break up the drive to Barcaldine.

In Barcaldine, being the weekend, we once again found many things closed, so we opted to look at things without designated opening times, such as the Tree of Knowledge, a few of the old historical buildings around town, the Barcaldine Recreational Park and the Historical Museum.  

Click here for our full guide on visiting Barcaldine.

We stayed at the Barcaldine Country Motor Inn, which I highly recommend.  We had a very spacious two bedroom villa with a fully self contained kitchen.  The property also has a lovely pool which was very much appreciated given the 37 degrees.

Accommodation: Barcaldine Country Motor Inn – $165

Day 3: Barcaldine to Winton (Drive 3 hours / 287 km)

We started the morning by exploring the Barcaldine Australian Workers Heritage Centre – a fabulous little museum dedicated to the various occupations of Aussie workers.  We spent around 90 minutes here.

It was then on to Winton – a 3 hour drive away. However, we stopped in Longreach for lunch.  Now generally, I’d recommend you drive to Longreach from Barcaldine – but we needed to do a bit of backtracking to Longreach, as Myla was flying out of Longreach to be with her father (if you’re not aware, we’re a blended family and now Myla is old enough we’ve allowed her to fly back, so she spends half her holidays with us and half her holidays with her Dad).  So for everyone else, I recommend you scroll down and continue with the Longreach part of the itinerary and drive on to Winton afterwards.

We checked into Matilda Motel, which would be our base for the next three nights while exploring Winton.  It’s certainly nothing flash, but it came with all we needed for our stay.  A good point for families to note is that while the Motel doesn’t have a pool, it’s right behind the Winton Aquatic Centre, which has a fabulous water playground for kids and a few swimming pools.

We then took a little stroll down the main street, but with most things closed (again, it was Sunday) except a few pubs, we just stopped in for a drink at the Northern Gregory Hotel before turning in for the evening.

Click here for our full guide on visiting Winton.

Accommodation: Winton Matilda Motel – $243 per night

Day 4: Winton

Finally, our first day of not driving anywhere!  You may choose to take it a bit slower to get to this point, but we were trying to do our trip within two weeks, so we chose to get to this part of Queensland as quickly as possible.

This is how we spent our first full day in Winton:

  • The first stop was the Australian Age of Dinosaurs.  Our visit was booked for 9 am and we spent around 3.5 hours here.
  • Next up, we drove into town and did the following:
    • Visited the Waltzing Matilda Centre – allow around 90 minutes here
    • Opal Walk – we spent about 30 minutes here – although Myla is obsessed with opals, others might not be that interested.
    • We had hoped to visit the Royal Open Theatre museum, but it was closed.
    • Corfield and Fitzmaurice Building which has a small museum with more dinosaur fossils – we spent around 30 minutes here.
    • Machinery Musuem – we only spent a short while here – but for those who love their trucks, I’d recommend at least an hour or more.
    • Musical Fence – we just stopped in for a look, but kids with lots of energy may enjoy playing the musical instruments for a while.
    • Arnos Wall – we just stopped in for a look.

After our day of sightseeing, it was time to hit the pool.  We spent a few hours here.  Then returned to our room and had showers before heading out to the North Gregory Hotel for dinner.  Highly recommend having dinner here.

Accommodation: Winton Outback Motel – $243 per night

Day 5: Winton

On the morning of day 5, we headed out to the Dinosaur Stampede National Monument at Lark Quarry Conservation Park.  It took us around 90 minutes to get there.  We were a little early for our 11 am tour and so we did the short circuit, which has brilliant views across the region.  The tour took 45 minutes and we returned to Winton afterwards. 

In hindsight, it might have been a good opportunity to return to Longreach this afternoon. However, as we had seen all we wanted to see in Winton, we decided to spend the afternoon relaxing at the pool again.  We also returned to the North Gregory Hotel for dinner as we enjoyed the previous night so much.

Accommodation: Winton Outback Motel – $243 per night

Day 6: Winton to Longreach (Drive 2 hours / 179kms)

We were on the road super early on day 6 as we had a 9 am Shcool of Distance Education tour in Longreach.  Afterwards, we had an 11 am booking for the Stockman Hall of Fame.  There’s quite a lot to do at the Stockman Hall of Fame, so we spent around 3 hours here as well as had lunch at their cafe.

Afterwards, we bought some supplies for dinner at the supermarket and then checked into Saltbush Retreat, where we spent the night.  For the rest of the afternoon, we relaxed a little before spending some time in the pool.

Click here for our full guide on visiting Longreach.

Accommodation: Saltbush Retreat – $210 per night

Day 7: Longreach

Day 7 of our trip was probably the busiest of the entire two week journey.  There is just so much to do in Longreach and many things are only available on certain days.  I’d recommend spending at least a week there for a more cruiser time in Longreach.  We only had fours day, so we had a lot to cover in that time.

  • The morning started with the Cobb and Co Stageshow Experience at 8.30 am.  This entire tour went for 4 hours and included morning tea and we opted for the optional lunch.
  • Next, we checked into Mitchell Grass Retreat.  There was a mishap with our initial accommodation, so they moved us to this property – which was amazing!!!!  I don’t recommend changing accommodation while in Longreach if you don’t need to.
  • We then headed over to the Qantas Musuem for our Wing Walk Tour at 2.30 pm.  This tour went for 1 hour.  Afterwards, we spent around an hour or so looking through the museum. 
  • Then it was back to our accommodation for a quick shower and off to the Starlight River Cruise & Dinner.  We were back at our accommodation by about 9 pm.

Accommodation: Mitchell Grass Retreat – $385 per night – although we didn’t pay this rate, as we were supposed to be staying at Saltbush the entire time.

Day 8: Longreach

Another early start today, we had to be in town by 7.45 am for the Nogo Station Experience.  This tour included lunch and we were back in town by about 12 pm.

Next, we headed back to the Qantas Musuem for the Airpark Tour at 1 pm.  As you can see, we did both the Wing Tour and the Airpark Tour – it’s probably not necessary to do both tours.  If you want to do just one tour, I’d recommend the Airpark Tour as you get to see inside all the planes.  With the Wing Tour, you see some more exclusive parts of the 747, such as the cockpit, cargo area and, of course, the walk on the wing.

We then returned to our accommodation for a nice relaxing afternoon by the pool.

Accommodation: Mitchell Grass Retreat – $385 per night – although we didn’t pay this rate, as we were supposed to be staying at Saltbush the entire time.

Day 9: Longreach

We had planned on returning to the Qantas Musuem this day to wander through the museum more.  However, we felt we had seen all we had wanted to on our previous visit.  Plus, after a busy week, we thought we needed some downtime.  This was also the day Myla was flying out to Brisbane and Andy was flying into Longreach – so we had to spend some time at the airport.

For other families, this would be a good opportunity to relax or move one of the other attractions from above to this day to space out the trip a little more.  Although if you’re short on time, perhaps this is a good day to move on to the next town.

We once again spent the remainder of the day relaxing by the pool.

Accommodation: Mitchell Grass Retreat – $385 per night – although we didn’t pay this rate, as we were supposed to be staying at Saltbush the entire time.:

Day 10: Longreach to Hughenden via Muttaburra (Drive 4 hours / 327 km)

Day 10, and it was time to move on from Longreach to Hughenden.  Along the way, we stopped in Muttaburra, which is also home to dinosaurs.  Now, if you go Longreach and then Winton (the way I’d recommend you do the trip), it doesn’t make sense to go to Hughenden via Muttaburra.  But what you could do is stop into Muttaburra on the way home (that’s assuming you’re only doing the dinosaur part of this trip and not going on to Cobbold and Undara as we did). Then, if you decide to go onto Cobbold and Undara as we did, it would make sense to either skip Muttaburra or follow our itinerary exactly and do Winton first, then backtracking to Longreach.

Muttaburra is only a 90 minute drive from Longreach and this is when you’ll start to see a lot more gravel roads.  Most roads are single lane too.

In Muttaburra, we checked out the following:

  • Muttaburrasaurus Interpretation Centre – allow around 15-30 minutes
  • Centre of Qld Monument – quick photo opportunity here
  • Dr Arratta Memorial Musuem – this was closed; it’s only open by appointment
  • Cassimatis General Store and Cottage – this was closed; it’s only open by appointment
  • All Saints Church
  • Union Camp & Union Hole
  • Sculptures around town

It was lunchtime in town, so we stopped at the pub for a meat pie.

Then it was another 2.5 hours drive to Hughenden.  Once in town, we checked into the Royal Hotel and spent the after relaxing, having a swim in the pool and a few drinks at the pub.

Click here for our full guide on visiting Muttaburra.

Accommodation: The Royal Hotel – $173 per night

Day 11: Hughenden to Richmond (Drive 2.5 hours – return journey / 230 km)

We decided it wasn’t worth staying in both Richmond and Hughenden, so we based ourselves in Hughenden and went to Richmond for the day.  Whether you stay in Richmond or Hughenden really doesn’t matter.  We chose Hughenden because I really wanted to do Mount Walker at sunset.

I’d even say that if you’re short on time, you could actually visit both the museums in Richmond and Hughenden on the same day – probably for families with slightly older children, it might be a bit much for smaller children.  But provided you were at the Kronosaurus Korner at opening time, you’d have plenty of time to explore the museum, head back to Hughenden and spend the afternoon at the Flinders Discovery Centre.

This is how our day went:

  • We got up early for the 1.25 hour drive to Richmond
  • We visited the Kronosaurus Korner – we spent around 90 minutes here. However, it’s actually not very interactive, so 90 minutes might be too much for the little ones.
  • We walked around town, checking out some of the old buildings, including the Cambridge Downs Heritage Display Centre.
  • Then we went down to the Richmond Water Park just for a look.  If you had young kids though, it would be well worth factoring in spending some time here.  Good place to have a BBQ lunch too.
  • Then drove the 1.25 hrs back to Hughenden.

Click here for our full guide on visiting Richmond.

We were back in Hughenden in time for lunch at the pub in the centre of town.  We then went to the Flinders Discovery Centre.  It was closed for renovation unfortunately while we were there, but they let us in to have a sneak peek.  As we had tickets to the museum, they took us on an hour bus trip around Hughenden instead.

If you were still looking for something to do in the afternoon, I’d recommend taking the kids down to the lake for a swim. Instead, we spent the afternoon doing laundry and having another swim in the hotel pool.

Just before sunset, we headed up to Mount Walker.  The views from here are amazing and the sunset was spectacular.  If you’re interested in this, I’d recommend having a BBQ for dinner here.  There are BBQ facilities, picnic tables and toilets, so it’s a great spot to feed the kids.  You can drive right to the top, metres away from the lookout, so no walking is involved for anyone with tired legs.

Click here for our full guide on visiting Hughenden.

Accommodation: The Royal Hotel – $173 per night

Day 12: Hughenden to Mt Surprise via Porcupine Gorge (4.5 hours / 417 km)

Flinders Discovery Centre - Hughenden

We had put aside one day for Richmond and another day for Hughenden, but we soon realised the additional day wasn’t necessary.  So we decided to leave Hughenden and get an early start on our drive to North Queensland. 

If we had more time though, I would have liked to make a day trip to Porcupine Gorge and do the walk down the bottom.  There you can have a swim before returning to the top of the gorge and use the BBQs or bring along a picnic for lunch. Unfortunately, we weren’t prepared for the walk, so we just stopped at the different lookouts and had a look.  The gorge is pretty spectacular and well worth the detour to have a look.

Now, if you’re not heading to North Queensland, this is the official end to the dinosaur trail, and it’s time to start heading home.  You can do this over 2 – 3 days, depending on your appetite for driving.  If you’re happy to do it in 2 days, I’d recommend stopping in Augathella (7.5 hours), then it’s around 8.5 hours to drive home to Brisbane.  If you’d like to take 3 days to drive home, try Blackall (5.25 hours), then Roma (5 hours), and then it’s around another 5 hours to Brisbane.

We of course were heading further north though and drove to Mt Surprise where we checked into a room at the Tourist Park.  

Accommodation: Mt Surprise Tourist Park – $110 per night

Day 13: Mt Suprise to Cobbold Gorge (Drive 3 hours / 177 km)

From Mount Suprise to Cobbold Gorge, it’s only about a 2.5 to 3 hours drive, depending on the road conditions. So we had a bit of a sleep in and arrived at Cobbold Gorge just before lunchtime.  Lucky for us, our room was ready even though we were early.  So we checked in, then had lunch and spent the afternoon in the gorgeous infinity swimming pool and even had a few drinks at the swim up pool bar.

Click here for our full guide on visiting Cobbold Gorge.

Accommodation: Cobbold Gorge – $170 per night

Day 14: Cobbold Gorge

Today was all about exploring Cobbold Gorge. First, we did the 10 am Cobbold Gorge Tour which was fabulous and included a walk around the gorge, across the glass bridge and then a cruise up the gorge.

During the day was more swimming in the pool and yes, even a few more drinks at the swim up pool bar.  We then had a heli sunset picnic tour which I had arranged for Andy as a surprise for our anniversary.  A little bit pricey – but if you can manage the splurge, it’s absolutely worth it to have drinks while watching the sunset over the gorge without a single person around.

Accommodation: Cobbold Gorge – $170 per night

Day 15: Cobbold Gorge to Undara (Drive 3 hours / 229 km)

After breakfast, it was time to leave the gorgeous Cobbold Gorge (I would have loved one more day here if we had more time) for Undara.  We arrived in Undara in time for lunch and then it was time for our first cave tour, which was at 1 pm.

The cave tour finished at 3 pm, at which time our room was ready and so we could check in.  After a short break in our room and a quick swim in the pool, it was time for the sunset tour at 5.30 pm.

The sunset tour got us back to the Undara Village at around 7.30 pm, in time for a late dinner.

Click here for our full guide on visiting Undara.

Accommodation: Undara Experience – $209 per night

Day 16: Undara

We started the morning with a bush breakfast which entailed a short walk through the bush, where the Undara staff cooked breakfast on a BBQ and made billy tea and coffee.  We then returned to our room for a rest before doing our next cave tour at 10.30 am.  The tour got us back at lunchtime, so we had some lunch. 

We had planned on doing one of the walking trails in the afternoon, but unfortunately, I wasn’t feeling the best, so I rested for the rest of the afternoon.  If you didn’t want to do any of the walks, this would be a great chance for the kids to have another swim in the pool, or if you were really short on time, you could check out and make your way to your next destination.

We had our last dinner at Undara before retiring early due to our early start the following day.

Accommodation: Undara Experience – $209 per night

Day 17: Undara to Injune (Drive 12 hours / 1454 km)

We left super early, around 6 am at first light.  We wanted to put in a huge day driving as we hoped to arrive home the following day.  Andy and I took turns driving, swapping over every 3 hours or so.  We only stopped for fuel, food or toilet breaks.  At around 6 pm, we stopped for the day and checked into the Injune Motor Inn.  From there its just a short walk to the pub where we had dinner.

Accommodation: Injune Motor Inn – $157 per night

Day 18: Injune to Brisbane / Home (Drive 6 hours / 556 km)

Today was the last day of our trip and after around 6 hours of driving, we arrived home.

Australian Dinosaur Trail Pass

Australian Age of Dinosaurs Winton

The Australian Dinosaur Trail officially includes the Australian Age of Dinosaur Museum and the Dinosaur Stampede National Monument in Winton, Kronosaurus Korner in Richmond and the Flinders Discovery Centre in Hughenden.  You’ll find more information about each of these attractions below.

You can purchase tickets to each attraction as you go – however, if the plan is to visit all attractions, then your best bet is to buy the Australian Dinosaur Trail Pass.  You can buy the pass online or at the first attraction you visit.  The pass is valid for a year from the date of purchase, so there is no hurry to visit all attractions in any specific time frame.

Prices for the pass are – Adult $110 | Child (5-16) $65 | Family (2A+4C) $275 | 4 and under free.  Click here to purchase online.

Compare the pass price to individual ticket prices (as listed below) to determine if the pass works out to be the best value for you.

Australian Age of Dinosaurs Winton

Perhaps the most popular attraction on the dinosaur outback Queensland trail is the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Winton Museum.  This Australian dinosaur museum is located just outside Winton, around 12km southeast of the town.

This is a working museum, which means as well as being a tourist attraction, it’s also a research and education facility. So as well as seeing the world’s largest collection of fossils from Australia’s largest dinosaurs, you can also see people working to preserve real life dinosaur fossils.

Sightseeing at the museum is via a range of guided tours split between the Fossil Preparation Laboratory, the Collection Room and Dinosaur Canyon.

It’s recommended to allow around 4 hours to see everything the museum offers.

Click here for our full guide on visiting the Australian Age of Dinosaurs and the Dinosaur Stampede.

Location: LOT 1 Dinosaur Dr, Corfield 

Opening Hours: April to October 8.30 am to 5 pm daily Apr | November to March 8 am to 5 pm Monday to Saturday

Ticket Prices: Adult $75 | Child (5-17) $45 | Family (2A+4C) $200 | 4 and under free.  Click here to purchase online.

If you’re wanting to visit the Dinosaur Stampede but not heading to Richmond or Hughenden, another way to save money is to buy the Winton Dinosaur Capital VIP pass, which includes both of the attractions in Winton.  Ticket prices for this pass are – Adult $100 | Child (5-17) $90 | Family (2A+4C) $260 | 4 and under free.  Click here to purchase online.

Dinosaur Stampede National Monument at Lark Quarry Conservation Park

The Dinosaur Stampede is also on the Winton dinosaur trail, located 110km southwest of Winton.  It does take around 1.5 hours to reach – however, the effort is well worthwhile – I mean, you drove all this way to begin with – what’s another 1.5 hours, right?  And while you can reach the park by conventional vehicle, it’s worth noting that some of the drive is along an unsealed road.

At the park, you will have the rare opportunity to see over 3,300 real life dinosaur footprints formed over 95 million years ago. With the clever detective work of many scientists, it is said that the footprints belong to some 150 small two legged dinosaurs who, while drinking at a lake, were terrified by the arrival of a large theropod.  This park is said to be the only place in the world where you can see a stampede forever immortalised in stone.  So it’s well worth the effort to get here.

Location: Lark Quarry Dinosaur Trackways, Opalton 

Opening Hours: 8.30 am to 5 pm daily except closed Sundays from December to March

Ticket Prices: Adult $30 | Child (5-17) $18 | Family (2A+4C) $70 | 4 and under free.  Click here to purchase online.

If you’re wanting to visit the Australian Age of Dinosaurs but not heading to Richmond or Hughenden, another way to save money is to buy the Winton Dinosaur Capital VIP pass, which includes both of the attractions in Winton.  Ticket prices for this pass are – Adult $100 | Child (5-17) $90 | Family (2A+4C) $260 | 4 and under free.  Click here to purchase online.

Kronosaurus Korner – Richmond Dinosaur Museum

The Kronosaurus Korner is said to be Australia’s premier marine fossil museum, with over 1500 fossils from the local area on display.  Here you’ll learn all about the fascinating Richmond dinosaurs that lived in the ancient Eromanga Sea around 100 million years ago and see Kronosaurus – who the museum was named after – which is a 10 metre long predatory pliosaur, complete with crocodile like jaws.

The Richmond dinosaur museum operates by way of a self guided tour, which starts in the theatrette.  To help you get the most out of your visit, you’re provided with handheld audio guides.

Location: 91-93 Goldring St, Richmond 

Opening Hours: 8.30 am to 4 pm daily – although on weekends from November to March the museum closes at 3 pm

Ticket Prices: Adult $30 | Child (5-17) $20 | Family (2A+4C) $80 | 4 and under free.  Click here to purchase online.

Flinders Discovery Centre – Hughenden Dinosaur Museum

Things to do in Hughenden

Various dinosaurs have been found in Hughenden dating back to 1865, including Muttaburrasurus, Sauropod, Ichthyosaur first discovered in 1865) and Pterosaur.  You’ll see some of these dinosaur fossils at the Flinders Discovery Centre and their extensive exhibition of fossils and gems from around the world.  Although the museum’s star attraction is the huge life size skeletal replica of “Hugie”.  Hughie is a 7m Muttaburrasurus a replica made from original bones said to be some 110 million years old.

Location: 37 Gray St, Hughenden 

Opening Hours: 9 am to 5 pm daily – although from October to March, the museum closes at 1 pm on Saturdays and is closed on Sundays

Ticket Prices: Adult $5.50 | Child (5-17) $2.50 | 4 and under free.

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Hopefully, you found our Australian dinosaur trail itinerary helpful.  For more detailed information about the various towns, don’t forget to click on the links throughout the above itinerary.  These links lead to articles with more detailed information about each town and tips on where to stay.

If you love outback Queensland, then another great outback itinerary I recommend for families is the Natural Sciences Loop – you can read all about it here. 

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