Coolum is the largest beach side resort on Queensland's southern
Sunshine Coast. The town is focused around the beach which is patrolled
by life savers and offers swimming and surfing, in its day it is known
as one of the best breaks in Queensland.
Location: 90 minutes (135 km) north of Brisbane and about 15 km south of Noosa.
The area is fast growing with a population of 18,000. The resort town
is renowned for its quality world-class golf courses and accommodation
and is home to a lively cafe and restaurant scene. Coolum Beach is a
popular day trip and holiday destination.
Mt Coolum is an isolated volcanic dome, 208 metres in height,
roughly circular in outline, covering a plan area of approximately 1
square kilometre. Long before the appearance of Europeans, the
Aborigines were also obviously affected by its aesthetic appeal; its
image of solidity; its stark, isolated bulk; almost every story, myth
or legend of these parts involves Mount Coolum in some way.
There is a walking track to the summit. It goes without saying that the
view from the top is truly magnificent; a 360 degree overview of the
Sunshine Coast can be had by simply turning around; coastline and
beaches extending from Moreton Island to Double Island Point, the cane
fields and wetland areas of the Maroochy River Valley, as well as the
main areas of the Coast, plus more.
Although the geology of Mount Coolum is in itself quite spectacular,
some of its most important aspects are not so immediately obvious.
Ecologically, Mount Coolum is one of the most important square
kilometres in Australia. The diversity of plant life within such a
confined area is unequalled. The site has been intensely studied and
over 700 plant types are now documented. This includes 590 flowering
plants, 49 ferns and over 100 species of the lesser plants such as
mosses, liverworts, lichens etc. By way of comparison, there are only
1400 species in all of Great Britain.
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The Coolum district was the traditional land of the Inabara or
Yinneburra clan of the Undanbi Tribe. In turn, they were part of the
larger group of the Kabi Kabi. In 1823, the first Europeans to pass
through Coolum were castaways and shipwrecked sailors. The first land
selection in Coolum was made in 1871 by Grainger Ward - a pastoral
lease of 255 hectares. Here, Ward ran upwards of 300 head of cattle.
The first permanent european settler of Coolum was William Perry-Keene
and his family in 1905. Cane farming provided the main source of
financial stability in the distruct until the advent of tourism in the
Origin of name: The origin of the name Coolum appears to be derived
from the Aboriginal word 'gulum' or 'kulum' meaning 'blunt' or
'headless'. This is assumed to refer to the shape of Mount Coolum,
which has no peak. According to Aboriginal legend, Ninderry knocked off
Coolum's head and it fell into the ocean and is now Mudjimba Island.