town in Queensland, Australia

Longreach is a visitor-friendly town in Central Outback Queensland. Longreach is a popular outback destination for many travelers, particularly those doing road trips around Australia. The town has focused on the visitor experience and despite its isolation has a number of attractions and experiences to engage visitors.

Understand edit

This small town of 3,000 people (2016) is named after the 'long reach' of the Thomson River upon which it sits. Unlike many other rivers in Outback Queensland this part of the Thomson River tends to retain water year round and doesn't often go dry. The town has a strong connection with Qantas and its airport was one of the first bases of the then 'Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Service' which later became the national carrier Qantas. The nearest large settlement is 687 kilometres away in Rockhampton.

Given the Outback setting the climate is particularly harsh in summer with the daily temperature often in excess of 40°C / 100°F. Visitor season runs in the cooler months from April to October, with Easter often marking the beginning of each season. During off-season the number of experiences available for visitors is reduced with tour offerings and dinner experiences in particular less available.

Along with many other areas of Queensland, Longreach is in the midst of a long standing drought resulting in difficult times for the town and surrounding areas. Tourism is a key contributor to the towns economy while the drought continues.

Visitor centre edit

Get in edit

By plane edit

  • 1 Longreach Airport (LRE IATA).    
    • QantasLink flies once a day from Brisbane, with a journey time of 3 hours. The flight timings differ throughout the week. Visitors looking to experience Longreach over a long weekend will find the Friday morning departure from Brisbane and Sunday afternoon departure from Longreach offers more time at the destination compared to flight timings on other days.
    • Rex flies twice a week from Townsville, with a journey time of 2½ hours.

By train edit

Longreach is the terminus for the Spirit of the Outback train from Brisbane via Rockhampton

Get around edit

Map of Longreach

There is no public transportation in Longreach. A car while not being essential to enjoy a trip to the town, may make the experience more pleasant.

A taxi service is available within the town. Tour operators will pick-up and drop off from your accommodation. Some accommodation providers offer bicycle hire and pick-up from the Airport.

Eagle St stretches southwest from the train station and all the shops are along here, along with several hotels and motels. Other motels stretch 2 km east along the highway to the airport, Qantas museum and Stockman's Hall of Fame - walkable if you can handle the heat.

Petrol costs 20c/litre more than on the east coast.

See edit

Do edit

Qantas Founders Museum

In addition to the Outback Museums, a sunset cruise of the Thomson River is one of the must do activities while in the area. Dinner elements are included in the cruises during peak season (April to October). The sunset cruise offers the opportunity to observe the wide variety of bird life and take in the glorious colors of the outback sunset.

Outback Aussie Tours - Drover's Sunset Cruise. Thompson River Cruise. November to March: Monday, Wednesday, Friday. Cruise and light refreshments served. April to October: 6 days a week, doesn't run Tuesday. Cruise, light refreshment and two-course dinner. Transfers from accommodation. Summer $75, winter $99.

Outback Pioneers Starlight's Cruise Experience. April-October season only. Monday-Saturday evening. Light refreshments and stockman's campfire dinner and entertainment. Transfers from accommodation. $99.

Other tours include:

Outback Pioneers Cobb & Co Stagecoach Experience. Visitor season only. Includes stagecoach ride on old mail route and Harry Redford Old Time Tent Show. $99

Outback Pioneers Nogo Station Experience. Visitor season only. Includes sheep shearing, station safari and morning tea. $99

Buy edit

  • Kinnon & Co's The Station Store (The Station Store), 26 Eagle Street, Longreach 4730, +61 7 4658 2006, . Monday to Friday 8:30AM – 5PM, Saturday 9AM – noon. The Station Store is the heritage heart of Longreach. It’s an amazing outback emporium you won’t want to miss.
    The impressive historic building, which dates back to 1880s, is stocked full of outback products, gifts and souvenirs. Leave time for your Old Time Photo portrait and pop next door for home-baked outback treats at The Welcome Home Café and Tearoom. These adjoining buildings have all the atmosphere of a by-gone era and you’ll find good-old-fashioned service too. The Outback Pioneers Cobb & Co Stagecoach experience leaves from behind the Station Store and the booking office is in the Welcome Home building.

Eat edit

The main street (Eagle St) has a few cafes, takeaways and bakeries, most of which are not open in the evenings. The pubs on Eagle St also offer meals.

Dinner options in visitor season include dinner packages available via the Thompson River Cruise Operators, at the Stockman's Hall of Fame Show and Dinner packages and on occasions dinner packages are available at the Qantas Founders Museum.

Drink edit

Several pubs offer drink and accommodation, including the Lyceum.

Sleep edit

  • 1 Albert Park Motor Inn (On the highway at the east edge of town, opposite the airport). Pleasant motel, convenient to the airport, Qantas museum and Stockman's Hall of Fame. $120.
  • 2 Abajaz Motor Inn.
  • 3 Jumbuck Motel (near the Albert Park).
  • 4 Longreach Motel, Eagle St. Right in the middle of town.
  • 5 Apex Riverside Park (Bush Camping), Off Landsborough Highway near Thompson River, +61 7 4658 4150. Popular self-sufficient camp site during the on-season. No Power, Potable Water or Showers. Toilets on site. Very busy over Easter Weekend. Fee Payable at Longreach Visitor Information Centre. $3 / night.
  • 6 Longreach Tourist Park, 12 Thrush Road, +61 7 4658 1781, . Villas, cabins, caravan and camp sites, and backpacker-style accommodation options
  • 7 Longreach Motor Inn, 84 Galah Street, +61 7 4658 2322.
  • 8 Saltbush Retreat, 63 Ilfracombe Road. Self-contained cabins. Pool, airport pickup available. Walking distance to Qantas Founders' Museum and Stockmans Hall of Fame. $125+.

Connect edit

Telstra and Optus have a good 4G and 3G coverage in town, but it starts to fade away about 10 kilometres from the town centre. However Vodafone does not have any coverage at all.

Go next edit

Winton is the next town on the highway (and quite a pleasant little town with a few attractions), about 2 hours' drive northwest.

This city travel guide to Longreach is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.