New Year’s Eve Flower Power.

Gunalda Queensland

December 31, 2022 at Gunna Park. A New Year’s Eve celebration to remember!

Australia is legendary for spectacular New Year’s Eve celebrations. As one of the first countries in the world chronologically to celebrate midnight on the 31 December each year, Australian New Year’s Eve festivities are world renown, and perhaps none more so than those on Sydney Harbour where the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Opera House and harbour foreshore are lit up by an awe-inspiring fireworks display. This celebration is seen all over the world and indeed, is a major enticement for international visitors to Australia each year.

But there is another side to NYE in this country, one that is even more Aussie than Sydney Harbour. New Year’s Eve in the Australian bush. Far from the glitz and glamour of one of the world’s great harbours, the Aussie bush provides a natural and iconic setting for ushering in the new year. Since the beginning of time, the bush in all its beauty has quietly witnessed the progression of the years, its tall timbers and starry skies providing the perfect setting for this annual celebration.

So it was in 2022 as my wife and me, along with our son and his wife enjoyed New Year’s Eve in the remote serenity of Gunna Park, a beautiful bushland property about 30 kilometres north of the historic town of Gympie in Southern Queensland. This is a beautiful area of the world with the added bonus of being just 1.5 hours from our home on the Sunshine Coast.

Gunna Park is a camper’s paradise, a bush camp on a 40 acre property in Gunalda, Queensland. It is a hobby farm that has been in the one family for decades, a family that now wants their piece of paradise with other campers and RVers to share. Gunna Park offers beautiful clean camping sites for tents, caravans and camper trailers, bush kitchens, firepits and firewood, animal feeding for the kids, and hammock/day beds strung from shady trees throughout the property. There is a magnificent dam that is perfect for cooling off on a hot day and there are kayaks to paddle as well. There is no power or water available onsite, and no wi-fi so you will need to be self-sufficient and live “off-grid”. There are, however, a number of portaloo toilets strategically located around the property for when nature calls.

This is a great location for natural bush camping any time of year, with plenty for all the family to do in safe surrounds. If you are planning to camp in winter, bring something warm for the Aussie bush can turn chilly in the evening.

Gunna Park is located at 433 Neerdie Road, Gunalda, about 30 kilometres north of Gympie, just off the Bruce Highway heading north. Watch out for the ‘Pie Face’ service centre on your right. The turnoff is about a kilometre north of the service centre. Check out Gunna Park at: Sites start at $15.00 and remember, this place is extremely popular in summer, so it is always best to book early.

New year’s Eve – sans fireworks

Other than official sites and displays (such as capital city displays), fireworks are illegal in most parts of Australia, and it certainly makes sense not to let them off in the bush for risk of starting a fire, not to mention scaring the life out of dogs – who are permitted on a lead at Gunna Park. So, for us, no fireworks. Rather, a family evening celebration around a raging (and contained) log fire. All around us, families were enjoying similar festivities, with champagne corks popping to welcome in the new year on the stroke of midnight. And as for the fireworks, we can watch the replays on television when we get home!

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