A township in the Blackall Range that has been developed on the
lines of an European mountain village complete with Swiss and Bavarian
chalets, mills and Tudor cottages, which were built to promote
Montville as a kind of European mountain village. The village also home
to a remarkable proliferation of arts and crafts galleries, gift and
specialty shops, tea rooms, restaurants and cafes.
Location: 60 km north of Brisbane.
Natural features: Blackall Range; Obi Obi Creek; Senses Trail/Razorback
Lookout; Lake Baroon; Kondalilla National Park (incorporates 327
hectares of lush subtropical rainforest; Kondalilla Falls, 90 metres
high; Skene Creek; Picnic Creek).
Built features: various galleries, craft and glass blowing studios; Settlers Rise Vineyard and Winery
Kondalilla National Park
Kondalilla National Park incorporates 327 hectares of lush
subtropical rainforest and tall open forest on the western edge of the
range. The most popular attraction therein is Kondalilla Falls which
drops 90 metres from Skene Creek into some picturesque water pools
below. The latter make for some ideal swimming in the summer.
Picnicking is popular. There is no fresh water available in the park
but facilities include a parking area, picnic facilities, barbecues,
shelter sheds, toilets, a lookout and three walking trails which start
in the picnic area west of the car park.
There is a 400-metre walk (one way) through open forest to Picnic
Creek, the Picnic Creek Circuit (2.1 km) which takes in a lookout over
a rainforest valley from the top of Kondalilla Falls, and the
Kondalilla Falls Circuit Walk which winds down from the aforementioned
lookout to the base of the falls. The latter walk is 2.7 km from the
top of the falls or a strenuous 4.8-km return trip from the picnic area.
The Park is home to the Bunya Pine, which drops cones weighing up to
10 kg, containing large nuts on which the local Gubbi Gubbi people once
fed. Fauna includes the rare spotted tailed quoll, the peregrine
falcon, the red goshawk and many reptiles and frogs.
A Senses Trail commences at the amenities block in front of the
Village Hall. It leads across the pedestrian bridge and around
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Baroon Pocket Dam, completed in 1989, covers 380 ha. It is the
principal source of water for Caloundra and Maroochydore. It is a
popular scenic location used for recreational purposes such as
swimming, fishing, sailing and canoeing. Near the spillway are a
viewing platform, barbecues and toilets. From the car park below the
spillway, visitors can join a 2.4-km walking circuit through cool
rainforest environs and Obi Obi Gorge. Obi Obi Creek eventually flows
into the Mary River near Kenilworth. Lake Baroon is surrounded by Obi
Obi National Park. Reflections on Lake Baroon hire canoes, paddle skis,
aqua bikes, catamarans, sailboats, small yachts and fishing boats.
The Blackall Range was home to members of the Kabi tribe who
gathered every two or three years on the banks of the Obi Obi Creek at
Baroon Pocket to feast on the fruit of the Bunya Pine (Bonyi Bonyi).
White timber getters entered the area in the 1850s but another 30 years
would pass before the land was subdivided and opened to dairy farmers.
Within a short time, the cultivation of tropical fruits was commenced.
Origin of name: originally called Razorback, the local residents led by
storekeeper Henry Smith requested Montville, an artificial name from
mont, meaning mountain, and ville, meaning town. It was changed
officially to Montville in November 1897. It has been said that Smith's
sister, Emma Irons, lived in Montville, Connecticut, USA. The first two
suggestions -Razorback and Vermont - were rejected because those names
had already been used.