The Road Ahead : April May 2016
QUEENSLAND’S LARGEST CLUB 45 APR/MAY 2016 THE ROAD AHEAD TRAVEL QUEENSLAND Discover hidden treasures. The Stock Exchange brought to life. THERE IS PLENTY OF ‘GOLD’ LEFT TO BE DISCOVERED IN THIS GEM OF THE NORTH latest offering – gliding tours. The North Queensland Gliding Club conducts Air Experience Flights from Charters Towers Airport, and you don’t even need a pilot’s licence. For those who prefer land-based experiences, a visit to The Miner’s Cottage on Deane Street is a must. More than 20 years ago, Alan Silverwood arrived in Charters Towers with a plan to establish an antique shop. A combination of treasure hunting and public generosity resulted in a bounty of historical artefacts, which Alan realised should be on permanent display. The Miner’s Cottage Museum was born, giving people an insight into Charters Towers’ rich history. During peak season (May-September), Alan teaches visitors how to pan for gold, which they can keep as a memento if they’re lucky enough to find some. Be sure to ask Alan about the resident ghost, alleged to have made an appearance as a promotional video was being filmed inside the cottage. This is but one of many ghost stories to be making the rounds of the Towers – just ask Jack Sims. South-east Queenslanders might recognise Jack as the infamous ‘man in black’, whose passion for the dark side inspired a series of ghost and crime tours across Brisbane, including the popular Boggo Road Gaol Ghost Tours. Charters Towers might seem a long way from Boggo Road, but Jack has discovered a strong link between the two. Hours of research by Jack revealed a rich history of crime-related drama in Queensland’s gold city, and tales of ghostly sightings throughout the town, which he plans to reveal through a series of nightly ghost tours. Until this recent visit, I would never have used the term ‘action-packed’ to describe a weekend in Charters Towers. Yet it was exactly that and, teamed with a refreshing dose of country hospitality, proved there is plenty of ‘gold’ left to be discovered in this gem of the north. visitcharterstowers.com.au n The writer travelled courtesy of Tourism and Events Queensland. queenslandholidays.com.au TOP OF THE TOWN FOR THOSE WHO prefer a tour of the town by day, Charters Towers Historical Tours’ Erica Finlay is a good person to guide you. Erica conducts walking and bus tours of the town, telling the story of how Charters Towers came to be. The VIC also has audio driving tour CDs and maps available for hire or purchase. charterstowershistoricaltours.com.au DISCOVER GOLD CONSTRUCTED IN 1872, the Venus Gold Battery on the outskirts of Charters Towers was a public mill in its prime and became a state battery in 1919 to provide ore crushing facilities long after other mills had closed. The battery ceased commercial operations in 1973, and as the largest battery relic in Australia, offers an insight into the gold extraction processes of the time and the harsh working conditions suffered by many in the gold rush era. Guided tours are available daily all year round. Plan your road trip to Charters Towers using the RACQ Trip Planner at racq.com.
February March 2016
June July 2016