The lovely seaside town of Yeppoon sits at the heart of Queensland’s Capricorn Coast and boasts all of the great weather and wonderful beaches you expect from this part of Australia.
Never having visited Yeppoon before our great budget 4wd trip around Australia, I was surprised and delighted by this quaint little community when we stopped here to visit friends and enjoy a night or 2 in a real bed!
With tons of stuff to do in and around Yeppoon, we easily occupied ourselves here for a couple of days and, had we not been pressed for time, would have stayed a few days longer!
Having born the brunt of a cyclone only just over a year ago, the town is well on the way to recovery, so here is our pick of the best free things to do in Yeppoon if you are looking for any encouragement to visit this lovely area of Queensland.
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#1 Relax at Picturesque Beaches
One of the things I like most about Yeppoon and the surrounding beaches was the peaceful and low key nature of the coastline here and the stunning views it affords.
Coming from the Sunshine Coast, it was delightful to spend a day at Yeppoon’s patrolled Main Beach without having to fight for towel space!
Add into this mix, the near-tropical blue waters and the stunning colour of the sand and it’s hard to deny that the beaches in this part of the state are some of Queensland’s best.
A day on the sand here is definitely one of the best free things to do in Yeppoon.
Budget Travel Tips for Yeppoon
Stay: There’s tons of great budget accommodation in and around Yeppoon. We stayed with friends when visiting, but if you’re not so lucky, then the Sail Inn looked fantastic and got some
Eat: There’s a large Coles in Yeppoon, perfect for buying picinic food. The free BBQs on the forshore are also worth trying out! We loved the growing cafe culture in Yeppoon too, so stop in one of them for a cuppa is a cheap way to enjoy this side of the town.
#2 Day Trip to Byfield National Park
The nearby town of Byfield is an easy 40 minute drive from Yeppoon, but what a different world.
Set at the edge of the national park, here it’s a rainforest landscape that predominates and the forest, surrounding mountains and pine plantations of the area really make it feel quite cut off.
We spent a great day out in Byfield, exploring the lovely café there as well some walks in the national park.
Had we not been staying with friends in Yeppoon, we definitely would have been tempted to camp in the park too – which you can easily book for $6 AUD pppn through Queensland National Parks – but as it was, we settled for enjoying one of the lovely walks in the area.
A popular favourite is the Stoney Creek Circuit, but the Death Valley Track also comes highly recommended despite the slightly foreboding name!
#3 Cool Down at the Foreshore
Having undergone a recent renovation, the lovely foreshore is a treat for families and friends alike and certainly one of the best free things to do in Yeppoon .
Enjoy a picnic at one of the free BBQ’s, take in the lovely views of Keppel Island or cool down at the free waterpark.
It’s easy to spend the best part of a day in this great area of the town, especially if the weather is putting on its usual show!
5 ESSENTIAL PACKING ITEMS FOR AUSTRALIA
#1 Good Camera – You will be pretty much snapping non-stop in Australia and will need a good camera to do this gorgeous country justice. I highly recommend the Sony A6000, which I use for all my travels and love, not least because it’s light, compact and robust!
#2 Good Walking Shoes – There will be a lot of walking in Australia – from cities to national park! Make sure your feet are comfortable therefore with a pair of New Balance Trainers. Perfect for stylish strollling, I love mine
#3 Good Guidebook – I’m still a massive fan of the Lonely Planet Guidebooks and do think their Australia edition is well put together
#4 Good Water Bottle – Travelling in hot old Australia can be thirsty work, so make sure you have a metal water bottle that you can refill as you go, because tap water is drinkable… and free!
#5 Good Sun Hat – And there’s no denying you’ll need a good sun hat for protection in Australia too. In my opinion you can’t go past this Hello Sunshine one, which is both gorgeous and ideal for keeping the rays off your face.
#4 Walk the Double Head Track
There are a number of great walks in the Yeppoon area that lead to some stunning lookouts, from where you can gain the best perspectives on this seaside area.
The Double Head Track is a favourite as it takes walkers up to 2 lookouts, passing grassland and volcanic cliff formations on the way.
The Bluff Point Track is another favourite for walkers, offering, as it does, the chance to spot turtles or even dolphins in the waters below. Now who can beat that when it comes to free things to do in Yeppoon?!
#5 Peruse the Mill Gallery
Just adjacent to Yeppoon’s main street, the wonderfully quirky Mill Gallery showcases an eclectic range of original work across different mediums including pottery and water colour.
Stop in to browse the gift shop or the latest piece from one of the 20 select contributing members.
#6 Practice Your Longest “Cooee”
The hamlet of Cooee Bay is a short drive from Yeppoon and boasts yet another gorgeous and almost deserted beach.
What really brings the crowds to this place however is the annual “Cooee” championship, which sees contestants open their vocal cords at the summit of the hill at Wreck Point.
Every August, new people come to try and gain the title of the longest “Cooee”, which they shout down at the town of the same name desperately looking for a place on the leader board!
#7 Shop at the Weekly Markets
Every Saturday from 6am until 10am the Yeppoon Markets, at the local showgrounds, displays the best of this great little community.
With tons of locally grown veggies, fruit, flowers and second-hand bargains, this is a feast for budget travellers.
Afterwards, why not continue the weekend feel and head out to one of Yeppoon’s lovely cafes for a delicious coffee.
Our pick of the bunch?
The wonderful Lure Café, located right near the foreshore with yummy acai bowls and excellent free wi-fi!
#8 Admire the Anzac Memorial at Emu Park
Not far from Yeppoon lies the smaller Capricorn Coast settlement of Emu Park.
This little township is well worth checking out as it boasts a great patrolled beach, above which sits the Singing Ship, a monument made famous by the musical tones it creates with the passing sea breeze.
Just next to this, is the start of the Centenary ANZAC Memorial Walk – a gorgeous short track that skirts the headland, giving wonderful views up and down the coast.
At the end of the walkway is a stunning monument, which has been created as a memorial to all the Australians who have served their country.
Designed by a local artist, the most impressive time of day to visit here is dawn, when the rising sun lights up the whole area. It’s gorgeous and definitely one of the best free things to do in Yeppoon.
#9 Enjoy a Day in Rockhampton
Inland from Yeppoon lies the city of Rockhampton, the commercial centre of this region and a historic, colonial settlement that was long famed for its nearby gold mines.
Nowadays, beef production largely supports the area, and spotting 1 of the 6 large bull statues around town clearly points to the fact that ‘Rocky’ is now the beef capital of Australia!
What I enjoyed most about Rocky however, were the gorgeous sandstone buildings, many of which are now heritage-listed and are both grand and striking against an otherwise modern city.
The Botanic Gardens, which are free to enter, are also well worth a stroll or an afternoon picnic.
Interestingly, the Tropic of Capricorn actually passes directly through Rockhampton and outside the Visitor Centre here is a spire, marking the latitude, which you can have your photo taken next to!
#10 Check out Mount Archer National Park
With 4 different walks, ranging between 14km – 500m, Mount Archer National Park, between Yeppoon and Rockhampton, is a great place to spend a morning or full day.
Enjoy the full length of the Zamia Walk, a 14km one way track that will take you from the top of Mount Archer to the lower entrance of the park, or stick to one of the more accessible and disabled-friendly boardwalks.
Whichever you choose, you’ll get some stunning lookouts that face both east and west and you may even spot some of the native wildlife including woodland owls, black cockatoos, rock wallabies.
PIN IT TO PINTEREST!
So that’s my list of the 10 best FREE things to do in Yeppoon in Central Queensland.
Have you visited this cute little town?
What did you enjoy doing there?