One of the most ‘picturesk’ towns in the Somerset region with its many Queenslander style houses, divided main street with a planter beds down the centre, numerous small shops and cafes, and the dramatic rocky backdrop of Glen Rock mountain, Esk is a great place to use as a base for your extended Brisbane Valley Rail Trail adventure as well as a good jumping off point for day trips both north and south.
Esk has plenty of accommodation including three motels, a pub, and a camping and caravan park with cabins and excellent facilities. Useful services for Rail Trailers also include a visitors centre and art
gallery, two pubs (one is currently closed for refurbishment), bakery, butcher, pharmacy fresh produce shop, post office, newsagent, vet service, servo, small supermarket, a large number of cafes and fast food outlets, and toilets. There is also a small rural hospital and GP services.
Esk Saturday Markets in Pipeliner Park on the Rail Trail are very popular.
Somerset Regional Council offices are located in Esk and the Somerset Civic Centre is a great venue for shows and exhibitions.
At the present time, none of the cafes are open in the evening but the pub, a Thai Restaurant, and a couple of the fast food outlets are open.
This area was originally recognised as the Esk Run and was purchased by Mary McConnel who subdivided the land into one-acre blocks and established the town of Gallanani in 1872. When the railway arrived in 1886 the town continued as Gallanani and the station was called Esk. Between 1905 and 1907 the town’s population doubled to six hundred, becoming the hub of the Valley’s cattle, dairying, agriculture and timber industries. The butter factory was established in 1906 providing increased economic prosperity for the town. Gallanani became known as the railway town of Esk in 1913.