Population 5030

Blackwater is west of Rockhampton in the Capricorn region and is known as the coal capital of Queensland. The coal is transported directly from coalmines south of town to Gladstone by train. The name 'Blackwater' is not a reference to the effects of mining operations, however, but comes from the discolouration of local waterholes caused by tea trees.

Visitor Information

Central Highlands Regional Council, McKenzie St; (07) 4980 5555.

Nearby national parks

  • Carnarvon National Park

    Tucked away in this vast, rambling park in Queensland’s Central Highlands is the magnificent Carnarvon Gorge. Boasting towering white...more

  • Isla Gorge National Park

    Isla Gorge National Park, in Queensland’s Central Highlands, lies at the southern end of the Dawson Range and features rugged...more

  • Cania Gorge National Park

    Cania Gorge, a dramatic landscape of gullies, caves and spectacular 70-metre-high sandstone cliffs, is the centrepiece of this national park...more

Nearby towns

  • Emerald

    Shady Moreton Bay fig trees line the main street in Emerald, an attractive town at the hub of the Central Highlands. Emerald was established...more

  • Springsure

    Mount Zamia towers over Springsure, a small valley town in the Central Highlands, settled in the 1860s. Springsure's early history is...more

  • Clermont

    Clermont is in the central highlands south-west of Mackay. It was established over 130 years ago after the discovery of gold at Nelson's...more

In Town

Japanese Garden complex This ornate traditional Japanese garden was constructed over 8 months in 1998. It symbolises the relationship Blackwater shares with its sister town Fujisawa in Japan. The complex also houses the newly opened Blackwater International Coal Centre, which has interactive and interpretive touch-screen displays, a cinema screening films on coal mining and a cafe. There is also a craft shop and information centre that was once the town station. Capricorn Hwy.

Lions Park: displays the flags of 37 nations to commemorate the nationality of every worker on the coalmines. In terms of size and variety, the display is second only to that of the United Nations' building in New York; Capricorn Hwy to the west of town.

Helicopter flights over Blackwater Coal Mine: see the mine in action; details from visitor centre.


Blackdown Tableland National Park This national park offers spectacular scenery over mountains and lowlands, including some beautiful waterfalls. It is the traditional home of the Ghungalu people, whose stencil art can be seen on the 2.8 km Mimosa Culture Track. Walk through to Rainbow Falls Gorge and swim in rockpools. (07) 4986 1964; 30 km E to turnoff.

Bedford Weir: dam excellent for fishing; 20 km N.

Comet: in town is the Leichhardt Dig Tree, where the explorer buried letters and marked the tree 'dig'; 30 km W.

Eco-friendly activities around town

Emerald Botanic Garden 74 km

Pack a picnic and explore the 42-hectare Emerald Botanic Garden on the banks of the Nagoa River. It has 6 kilometres of walks, and gardens representing major plant communities in central Queensland (with 90 per cent of... Find out more

Campsites around town

Munall camping area 33 km

Also known as Mimosa Creek, this camping area is 8 km from the park entrance and can be reached with a conventional vehicle. There are 16 numbered sites with a maximum of 6 people per site, ideal for camping beside your... Find out more

Emerald Cabin and Caravan Village 73 km

Overlooking Emerald’s 18-hole golf course, this caravan park has a range of facilities including drive-through powered sites, a laundry and a camp kitchen with gas BBQ, microwave and fridge. The camping area offers... Find out more

Discovery Holiday Parks – Lake Maraboon 83 km

Said to be 3 times the size of Sydney Harbour, Lake Maraboon is a major destination for fishing and boating enthusiasts year-round. The caravan park has excellent facilities: swimming pool, cabins, licensed restaurant,... Find out more

Caravan parks around town

Discovery Holiday Parks – Lake Maraboon 82 km

This park is located 18 km south-west of Emerald on the shores of Lake Maraboon, a popular spot for watersports and fishing. Red-claw crayfish are a major attraction. Many visitors come specifically to stay at Lake... Find out more

What's on around town

May Day Festival: May.

World Dingo Trap Throwing Competition: July.

Rodeo: Oct.

Craft Fair and Art Exhibition: regional arts and crafts exhibit; Oct.

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