Mitchell, the eastern gateway to outback Queensland, is loved by visitors for its artesian spa where people can soak away their aches and pains in ancient underground water that comes to the surface piping hot and laden with minerals.
Great Artesian Spa
Across the world and throughout the ages people have travelled great distances to seek natural mineral waters. For a unique experience, visit the Great Artesian Spa, one of Mitchell’s treasures. Here you can relax tired, aching muscles and revitalise both body and mind. With billabong-inspired shaping and native Australian flora in the landscaped surroundings, the complex has two large pools—one is naturally heated and the other is cool. The water is renewed
regularly and comes from the Great Artesian Basin, one of the largest artesian basins in the world and underlying about one-fifth of Australia. It covers a total area of more than 1,711,000 square kilometres. The Mitchell bore brings water
to the surface from about 3km under the ground.
Designed for easy access and staffed with qualified lifeguards, the spa includes a hydro chair for those who have restricted mobility. Refurbishments, including new pool decking and ablution blocks, have recently been completed.
Located at Mitchell’s eastern entrance and incorporated into the historic Town Hall, the Great Artesian Spa is truly focused on client wellness. Relax your mind and tone your body at the Yoga and Zoomba classes which are each conducted twice weekly. For those who prefer a more rigorous workout, the gym is open every day and is free for everyone, so no membership is needed. All the necessary equipment for a full-body workout is provided, including a multi gym utility fitness machine.
Café on the Deck has become the eatery of choice for those who enjoy delicious, fresh, healthy food all prepared on site. The cafe caters for all tastes and requirements with gluten free, vegetarian and vegan options featured on its lunch
and all-day menus. Of course, no meal or visit is complete without enjoying a freshly brewed cup of Merlo coffee. For regulars and visitors alike, High Tea is held at the spa every Friday morning from 9:30am and breakfast is served on the
deck every Sunday morning from 9:00am.
A beauty practitioner also operates from the complex, so you can always make sure you are looking your best! Jess is also a relaxation massage therapist, it’s not just face and nails here!
For a touch out of the ordinary, why not see what your future holds with a psychic reading at Starlight Dreaming?
Discover other places of interest in the area at the visitor information centre, which is located within the complex. Open seven days a week, the Great Artesian Spa is the place to visit regardless of whether you want to dine out, work out
or simply chill out.
For further details and times, visit www.greatartesianspa.com.
Maranoa River Walk
See local flora and fauna on the Maranoa River Walk, which is a local initiative to restore the riverbank environment between Fisherman’s Rest and the Neil Turner Weir. Both these areas are tranquil spots to take some time out from your travelling schedule and just relax. Throw in a line or do some birdwatching. Throughout the different seasons, bush tucker can be located along the trail.
Major Mitchell Caravan Park
The Major Mitchell Caravan Park, situated on the banks of the Maranoa River, is a picturesque place for caravanners. The park is named after the explorer Sir Thomas Livingstone Mitchell. It features large en suite powered sites, self-contained cabins with air conditioning and tv, budget accommodation with fridge, air conditioning and tv, and powered and unpowered grassy campsites. Park facilities include a fully equipped camp kitchen, barbecues, modern amenities with disabled access, laundry and you also get free Wi-Fi! The park also has a fire pit, which is a popular place for campers to gather at night. The park is pet friendly, but conditions do apply. During the cooler winter months there are camp oven dinners along with outback entertainment. For those staying three nights or more, you will receive a discounted voucher to the Great Artesian Spa.
While on the subject of all things Major Mitchell, see a campsite that the explorer established in 1846 during a mapping expedition. It was Mitchell’s fourth trip for the huge project of mapping an overland route between Sydney and Darwin. If history is your thing, also visit the local heritage museum.
Visit the Mitchell on Maranoa Gallery and Library. Displays range from local artworks to visiting exhibitions. The gallery was originally a picture theatre and you can browse the Maranoa Theatre Display to see the original projection room. Mitchell also has a range of art out in the open air.
The Mitchell Post Office, along with banking facilities, is also the local laundromat, with the laundromat open seven days a week from 6am to 6pm.
If you’re in town on May 14 and 15, join the locals at their annual show. A bit later in the year is the Mitchell Camel and Pig Races. It’s the weekend before the Birdsville Races, so if you’re travelling to that iconic event, make your travel arrangements accordingly.
Learn the story of Australia’s last bushrangers Patrick and James Kenniff at the Kenniff Courthouse (open weekdays). Also see the Arrest Creek Monuments, situated where the brothers were captured 7km south of town in 1902.
To truly feel as though you have been introduced to the country, stay at one of the very special properties in the region. Bonus Downs, built in 1911 by one of the nation’s most famous early landholders Sir Samuel McCaughey, features a historical homestead and a species of rainforest trees, oolines, dating back 1.6 million years. Accommodation includes a rustic jackaroo’s cottage, camping over at the shearers’ quarters or powered and unpowered sites.
Claravale is a natural wilderness experience with spectacular sandstone formations, wildlife and panoramic views. Gill and Eunice Campbell have received several awards in recognition of their dedication to nature conservation. Tour with them and experience nature at its best. The property has powered sites, barbecues, picnic tables, toilets, showers and water.
Roma Visitor Information Centre
Phone (within Australia) 07 4622 8676