There’s nothing like a good start to your day and they don’t start better that they do at Cape Hillsborough National Park in the Mackay region of Queensland.
Alarm set for 5.30am. Why? Because sunrise is when they hit the beach for breakfast.
Cape Hillsborough National Park is probably more famous for its morning ‘drop-ins’ than it is for being one of the most picturesque parts of the country. That’s because these ‘drop-ins’ are a couple of Eastern Grey Kangaroos and a bunch of wallabies.
For years they have been thrilling local, as well as Australian and international tourists, popping up at sunrise each day on the beach for breakfast outside the Cape Hillsborough Nature Park before ducking back into the cover of the surrounding rainforest for the day.
Park visitors can walk down to the beach any day of the week and are greeted by this hoppy bunch. The roos and wallabies hang around for around 45 minutes to an hour, then disappear, leaving behind them footprints and one of the most amazing sites in the southern hemisphere to spy the sunrise.
After you catch this morning matinee, you can wander along one of the many easy walks around the park. I’m told the St Andrew’s point walk is the pick of the bunch, but instead, I’m choosing to mosey on off to the Old Station Tea House for breakfast.
About 10 minutes back from the park is one of the most stunning properties owned by one of the coolest couples in Queensland who, for 15 years, have been running a café out of an old railway station house.
You can sit down to classic bacon and eggs from biodynamic farms, sample the Station’s signature scones with homemade jam (the scones are fresh each morning and the jam is made inhouse) or sit with a book and a coffee in a dreamy garden setting.
Then you can visit the resident rescue birds, give Daisy the friendliest dog on the planet a pat, or have a chat with owners Michelle or Dwayne about the colourful history of the station and the property. And if you stick around a while longer (which you’ll no doubt want to), you can try one of their woodfired pizzas for lunch. Oh, and high teas are on the menu, so long as you book ahead.
It’s the perfect start to the day, I say!
Leon is travelling as a guest of Mackay Region and Tourism Whitsundays and was graciously hosted by The Old Station Tea House.