For a small country town, Toogoolawah has a lot going for it from the newly opened Toogoolawah Condensery Art Gallery and the St. Andrew’s Anglican Church built entirely of wood in 1912, to the Skydiving Drop Zone that hosts thousands of national and international skydivers and features the biennial Equinox skydive and music festival each alternate October.
Toogoolawah currently marks the northernmost end of the southern section of the officially completed Brisbane Valley Rail Trail. Supporters of the Brisbane Valley Rail have been campaigning to get the 30 km section from Toogoolawah to Moore completed. We’re hoping for an announcement early in 2016, but in the meantime there is a very pleasant back route via a mixture of paved and unpaved country roads and a road reserve along the Tarong pipeline that avoids main roads (click here to view Garmin GPS map).
Whilst it’s not officially open, it is possible to continue northwards on the BVRT as far as the heritage listed Yimbun tunnel just south of Harlin, but this is very much an out and back trip. Please do not venture beyond the locked gate at the north end of the tunnel as we don’t want local landowners to be upset at this delicate stage of negotiations.
Toogoolawah has plenty of accommodation for Rail Trailers including B&B at the three pubs, a motel, camping in the showgrounds (showers and toilets, facilities for horses), and free camping directly on the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail in Polly Crandall Park south of the town and in the centre of town just opposite the old Toogoolawah Station (vehicle access from Gardner St).
Useful services for Rail Trailers also include an IGA supermarket, two cafes, three pubs, pharmacy, post office, newsagent, GP practice, a vet service, and servo.
The new Toogoolawah Condensery Art Gallery in the former packing building of the old Nestles Condensed Milk Factory in Factory Lane is a great reason to visit Toogoolawah all by itself.
Toogoolawah Railway Markets are held on the second Saturday of every month near Toogoolawah Station on the Rail Trail.
For over a hundred years, Saturday night has been movie night in the old Alexandra Hall and the tradition still continues on most Saturday nights – watching a movie in the old community hall is a memorable experience.
The first official settlement in the Brisbane Valley was in 1841 when the McConnel family established Cressbrook Station. A portion of their land was later divided to create the town of Toogoolawah as a service town supporting the dairy industry and Nestle canning factory (more info).