Leatherwood Lodge is luxury Brisbane accommodation uniquely situated on acreage just a 20 minute drive from the city center in the beautiful rural Brookfield valley. The award winning, architect designed Lodge is sited on a high ridge with stunning city and valley views. The four luxurious guest rooms are named after Australian artists and are individually furnished in the Biedermeier style with French and English fabrics.
If you're into local history and traditional craftsmanship then put a visit to Ipswich's historic Cooneana Homestead on your itinerary. Home to the Ipswich Historical Society and Spinners and Weavers, Cooneana Heritage Centre houses historical photographs, memorabilia, artefacts and mining displays that showcase the rich and diverse history of Ipswich - Queensland's oldest provincial city.
Explore Jim Donald House - a fine example of a Workers Cottage - which has been faithfully restored and furnished to reflect the period - 1890s to early 1900s - when this architectural style was popular. In the classroom area of the museum. children can experience an olden time classroom complete with "engraved" wooden desks and slate boards - a great experience for school groups. Ipswich's important mining history is also represented with indoor and outdoor exhibits and the traditional crafts of spinning and weaving can be seen on Thursdays.
Cooneana Heritage Centre is open every second and fourth Sunday of the month from March until November inclusive, from 10am to 2pm. Regular trading hours include Thursday and Saturday from 10am to 2pm....
To cool off during a long hot Ipswich summer, you can't go past Orion Lagoon at Springfield, just a 30-minute drive from Brisbane Central Business District. Situated within Orion Springfield Central and the newest stage of the huge Robelle Domain parklands, Orion Lagoon has a vast expanse of shallow pools and water features.
The interconnected pools cater for all age groups, from the toddler-friendly 0.3 metres up to 1.5 metres for more proficient swimmers. Some are gently graded from the edge to give a beach-like effect, with one section offering aquativity features such as squirting spouts and stepping-stones. Lifeguards are on duty from 8am - 4pm from 1 April to 31 August and 5am - 9pm from 1 September to 31 March, but children under 13 must be actively supervised at all times.
Shade is provided by colourful sails and some trees over the grassed areas, while there's also a covered barbecue pavilion with picnic tables. Bring your own picnic or take advantage of the Lagoon Café and other nearby eating places. There are onsite lockers, and flotation devices, swimwear and pool accessories are for sale.
Every first Sunday afternoon of the month from 2pm to 5pm they have their acoustic Didgeridoo Jam in the Park at Didgeridoo Festivals HQ in Bellbird Park. Come in and have a jam or bring a blanket and relax, kick back and listen to a mix of instruments combined with the Didgeridoo. They are a didgeridoo community with a unique gathering of instruments surrounded by gum trees and friendly wild life. This is a free non alcohol community event that is child friendly....
If you're in or near Ipswich, the kids don't have to drive you wild jumping all over the furniture when Just Jump Trampoline Park and Play Centre gives them hours of fun.
Located at Ipswich suburb, Redbank, an easy half-hour drive from the Brisbane Central Business District, Just Jump offers one hour sessions for a small cost. The good news for mums and dads is that there's a cafe on-site so you can sit back, relax and watch the youngsters burn off the energy.
All you have to do for a bouncing good time is bring your socks and you're off! For the admission price, you have an hour of Trampolining and unlimited Indoor Play, which includes Jumping Castles, Imagination Play, Slacklining and Ballsports. If a child is two or under, an adult can join in the jumping fun and pay just for the child.
Just Jump Trampoline Park and Play Centre is a popular spot for fully catered birthday parties, and they also offer hot food platters. There's a discount for group bookings, group fitness classes and upstairs is a gym, Just Sports n Fitness.
One of Australia's best known sculptors, Daphne Mayo, is believed to have created the Booval WWI memorial while apprenticed to Ipswich monumental mason Frank Williams. The memorial, a slightly smaller than life-sized soldier standing on a plinth, was unveiled on 15 February 1919 by Governor Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams.
The marble and granite memorial honours the 221 local men who served during WWI.
A committee representing the Ipswich suburbs of Booval, Silkstone, Newtown and Raceview had raised £499 through entertainment and public subscriptions during the previous year. A voluntary 'working bee' had prepared the foundations.
War had delayed Daphne Mayo from taking up a travelling scholarship and she bided her time learning the art of carving with Williams. The Booval statue is attributed to her because of timing and the strong resemblance it bears to a model she made. Its style echoes Williams'.
Mayo's work includes the Brisbane City Hall tympanum and the Queensland Women's War Memorial in Brisbane's ANZAC Square.
Plaques honouring 16 local men who died in WWII as well as tributes to later conflicts have since been added....
The Robelle Domain parklands, in Springfield Central, are a jewel in the crown of the city of Ipswich. Just half an hour from Brisbane's Central Business District, the parklands offer visitors a rainforest walk, waterfalls, water play areas, bike tracks, the country's first Icon on Galaxy interactive play equipment in an all-abilities playground, and more.
The largest park precinct built in Queensland since Brisbane's Roma Street Parklands, Robelle Domain has an 11 kilometre pathway network for family fun during the day and also at night when the 9-metre high light tower installations give off a spectacular light and sound show. Large shaded sections offer a pleasant relief from summer sun, as does the zero-depth water play area complete with a huge tipping bucket and water jets. Across a footbridge is Orion Lagoon - an amazing oasis of interconnected pools of varying depth.
A 5,000 capacity amphitheatre ensures plenty of people can come along to enjoy the public events held at Robelle Domain, including live jazz afternoons and markets. So, bring your own picnic or barbecue treats to cook, or take advantage of the delicious offerings in Robelle Café which is fully licensed and open 7 days.
In the Ipswich suburb of Ebbw Vale, the memory of young men cut down in their prime in WWI lingers by a football field. The AL Petrie soldier statue memorial was originally unveiled near Ebbw Vale railway station on 14 May 1918. It was relocated in 1969 to Ebbw Vale Memorial Park, once known as the Whitwood grounds, named after a local colliery which had fielded two soccer teams since the 1890s.
Among the 22 names of those who enlisted in WWI are soccer team members William Jeffrey, Peter Jeffrey, H Mills and LW Breslin.
Unlike other states which favoured more architectural monuments, many Queensland communities chose the soldier statue for its traits of youth, masculinity, loyalty, bravery and innocence.
Soccer is still played on the grounds, along with cricket, softball and touch football and major community gatherings....
Locals in nearby Brisbane know that Greater Springfield in Ipswich has much to offer, and visitors would do well to check out its numerous drawcards. Tee off on the ‘must play’ Greg Norman-designed golf course at Brookwater Golf and Country Club; have a picnic, rainforest walk and a dip in the Orion Lagoon at the huge parklands of Robelle Domain; or head to the various shopping precincts.
The Greater Springfield area includes the Ipswich suburbs of Springfield Central, Springfield Lakes, Brookwater, Augustine Heights, Spring Mountain and Springfield.
Greater Springfield is the only fully master-planned city in Australia other than Canberra. As well as having a growing reputation for exciting business, retail and leisure developments, it’s attracting many new residents each year. It is home to prestigious private schools, the University of Southern Queensland, and has precincts centred around health, wellness and information technology.
You can stay centrally in the Springfield Lakes Hotel to explore the rapidly growing area over more than a day, and it’s just a 20-minute drive to Ipswich Central and about half an hour to the Brisbane Central Business District....