BROODING BEAUTY: Eerie cloud cover over Mt Barney.
BROODING BEAUTY: Eerie cloud cover over Mt Barney. SHARYN ONEILL

On the rim of relaxation

DO you ever feel like you need to get away from it all for your next holiday to truly relax and unwind?

A taste of the countryside could be just what you need, and there is plenty to taste in the Scenic Rim, a region just over an hour’s drive from Brisbane or two from the Sunshine Coast.

The region hosted A World Apart in May – a weekend to showcase the unique local food and wine in their spectacular mountain setting, in the Tastes of Mount Barney Festival.

But you don’t need a special weekend to get a taste of what Mount Barney has to offer. Just go out and sample it for yourself.

Lillydale Farmstay

LILLYDALE Farmstay offers cabin or room accommodation as well as old-fashioned country hospitality.

Guests can enjoy a wide variety of farming activities, wander through the maze or just enjoy the views while sitting back with an organic DiBella barista-prepared coffee from the cafe.

The property is run by Doug and Pam Hardgrave, and their grandson Toby Baillie, 11, was a wonderful host, escorting visitors around and showing them the sights during the open weekend.

Classi di Cucina

FOR those seeking a MasterChef experience, visiting Classi di Cucina is a must to learn the art of making authentic pizza and pasta.

Desley and Pietro Agnoletto offer Italian cooking classes in their hideaway in Rathdowney, surrounded by camels, alpacas, peacocks and other wildlife.

With a variety of classes on offer, in-house or even at your place, they will soon have you whipping up some of the most famous of Italian cuisine like an expert.

Barney Creek Vineyard Cottages

BARNEY Creek Vineyard

Cottages was another popular spot over the weekend offering tastes of their in-house wines.

More than just a vineyard, with the theme Beds and Reds, three different cottages offer self-contained

accommodation amid the 16- hectare property.

With one cottage already offering accommodation, hosts Barry Marshall and Jennifer Seale turned an old feed shed into another one and converted an old railway station to the third.

They also have started to make their own wines, which is an added bonus for guests who like to enjoy a region to its utmost, eating and drinking the local produce.

“The wine definitely is a point of difference,” Barry said.

Rathdowney Alpaca Farm

RATHDOWNEY Alpaca Farm owner Sheila Woolf knows all about getting away from it all.

Sheila had trained as a nurse and midwife, before heading to the countryside 18 years ago.

“Now I am a trained nurse and midwife for alpacas,”she said.

Rathdowney Alpaca Farm offers farm visits where guests can come and get among the alpacas, or take a tour of the garden, visit the shop and enjoy a BYO picnic in the grounds.

Mt Barney Lodge

MT BARNEY Lodge is an eco-tourism retreat offering a wide range of accommodation.

Self-contained accommodation (with optional meals) is available in Queenslander homesteads, rustic cabins, deluxe camper trailers, or you can try camping on the grounds.

Innes and Tracey Larkin have created the full eco-experience.

Guests can enjoy a guided tour of the garden which explains bush tucker and its uses.

“My wife is the expert. I am just the digger of the hole, ” Innes laughed, as he discussed the many uses of bush lemons and other garden-grown items.

He also explained they often had visiting school groups and had activities for kids and adults including rock climbing, abseiling, kids’ night adventures, with guided and self-guided bushwalking tracks.

No matter what your taste in food, wine, accommodation or activity, the different operators in Mt Barney offer it all, with old-fashioned country hospitality to boot.



Lillydale Farmstay

(07) 5544 3131 or Lillydale.

Classi di Cucina 

(07) 5544 1008 e-mail

Barney Creek Vineyard Cottages

(07) 5544 3285 or Barney Creet Cottages.

Rathdowney Alpaca Farm

(07) 5544 3272 or Aus Alpaca.

Mt Barney Lodge

(07) 5544 3233 Mt Barney Lodge.


About Mt Barney

Mt Barney is located within the Scenic Rim in South-East Queensland.

The Scenic Rim is just 80km from Brisbane and the Gold Coast, across the border from northern New South Wales.

The Scenic Rim was named to describe the semi-circle chain of mountains between Brisbane and Tamborine Mountain, some of which were once active volcanoes.

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