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We see your weekend plans and raise you a slice of countryside just an hour's drive from Brisbane, the Lockyer Valley, which stretches out in the foothills of the Great Dividing Range between Ipswich and Toowoomba.

This unassuming destination has much to shout loud and proud about. Did you know the Lockyer Valley is one of the top 10 most fertile farming regions in the world and grows more than 95% of all winter crops in Australia?

As a result, the Lockyer Valley promises travellers spectacular scenery, landscape and plenty of to sample the farm-fresh produce.

Considering this crop-country flourishes in winter, we think it’s high time you discovered why there’s lots to love in the Lockyer Valley with this guide.

Keep an Eye on the Horizon as you Take a Drive

The produce bowl of south-east Queensland is best explored by car with the windows down.

An esky and a basket for produce are the best packing essentials for a trip to the Lockyer Valley, as you make pitstops at roadside stalls and honesty boxes across the region.

Make tyre-tracks with this Gold Coast to Lockyer Valley itinerary.

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Awassi Cheesery

They say that when you do a job that you love, you’ll never work a day in your life and this is the exact philosophy that lead the owners of Awassi Cheesery, Di and David Piggott, to their Awassi sheep farm in the Helidon Hills.

Their sheep cheese is made, milked and processed on site in a purpose-built cheesery, with everything from halloumi to pecorino on offer.

More than just cheese, Di and David have branched into desserts launching Lockyer Valley Ice Cream, with flavours such as fig and ginger, coffee and liquorice allsorts.

Enjoy our serving suggestion to sample these under the shade of the avocado grove, watching the very same Awassi sheep graze in the paddocks around you.

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Enjoy a Diner Experience

It might only be an hour and 40 minute drive from Brisbane, but you’d be right to think there’s a time warp between Brisbane and the Lockyer Valley when you cross the threshold of Scotty’s Garage.

Every weekend, Scotty’s Garage swings open its barn doors to the classic car and automotive memorabilia museum, diner and rustic café.

The diner takes you back to the 1950s with an immaculate recreation including a Wurlitzer jukebox, pinball machines and even an original dodgem car from Luna Park. It’s not for dining in though .. the 50’s diner is just for show but you can get your fill in the café, inside or out on the deck overlooking the garden.

Open Friday to Sunday, you’ll be well located to then tick off these 10 things to do in the Lockyer Valley following your visit.

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Hoof it Around Mother Nature

Discover nature at hoof-pace with Fordsdale Farmstay who offer trail rides through the lush landscape of the Lockyer Valley.

To soak up more nature like this, stay the night with Fordsdale Camping, which is only suited to self-sufficient campers with their own 4WDs (read: no powered sites here, friends).

With over 100 acres of bushland, many of which have creek frontage to Ma Ma Creek, there’s plenty of room to set up without the risk of seeing your neighbours.

In fact, you’re more likely to have a different form of neigh-bour in the way of free roaming horses that like to pop over to your tent for a pat.

Psst - if you’d prefer to outsource the set up and pack down, Fordsdale now offer glamping tents too.

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Warm the Body, Nurture the Soul at These Homes Away From Home

Spend the night in the Lockyer Valley to afford an extra day’s exploration.

For those chasing a cosy check-in, Branell Homestead and Bed and Breakfast in Laidley is ideal for mid-week winter escapes, complete with a fireplace in the main homestead.

If you’d prefer more stars in the sky than the luxury-rating of your property, Murphy’s Creek Escape promises camping and glamping, both with the winter-essential - firepits. Those travelling with accessibility requirements, take note, there’s even an accessible glamping tent here.

If you’re more into absorbing the scenery than having all the trimmings of staying in a holiday park, pack the tent and make for Lake Dyer where you can set up on the lake’s foreshore.

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Fuel Your Country Drive with the Flavours of Country

One thing’s for certain – you won’t go hungry when the Lockyer Valley is taking care of the catering.

Aside from farm gates and honesty boxes whose produce changes with the seasons, there are plenty of opportunities to meet the makers and creators of the region year-round.

Take Native Oz Bushfoods for instance, which is a proudly Indigenous owned foodie experience in Ropeley with tasting tours available for you to touch and taste bush food.

If you’re wanting to sample paddock to plate cuisine without the hassle of cooking it up yourself, Tins and Trays in Gatton delivers, with locally sourced ingredients the main feature on the menu.

For the ultimate souvenir, take home your own slice of the Lockyer Valley with something handmade or locally grown gathered at one of the many markets held in the region. Try the Gatton Village Markets in Gatton on the first Sunday of every month, or the Laidley Friday Markets held ... you guessed it, each Friday.

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Immerse Yourself in Nature

Mild winter temperatures make for hiking season and good news, the Lockyer Valley has a big backyard to discover.

Tackle Lockyer Valley National Park on four wheels, two wheels or two feet, and explore the dedicated bushland routes.

Please note, only serious bushwalkers should attempt this national park, as its rugged terrain is hazardous.

For another walk on the wild side, visit Glen Rock State Forest for a taste of the Australian bush.

Glen Rock State Forest’s trails can be tackled as a hike, bike or by horse, and the onsite bush camping even includes dedicated horse yards if you’re travelling with oversized (read: your equine friend) luggage.

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Acknowledgement of Country

Southern Queensland Country Tourism acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the lands and waterways that run through these regions. We pay our respects to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past, present and emerging.