Australia’s fascination with colossal roadside attractions has given rise to an assortment of eye-catching landmarks scattered across the country. From towering fruit sculptures to oversized animals, these iconic structures capture the imagination and curiosity of visitors from all over. In the land of “big things” size and quirkiness reign supreme!
Across the entire country, there are too many of these “big things” to list, so we have narrowed it down to the Sunshine State. Many locals and international travellers stop by as many of these landmarks as possible. You can pick up a car or a campervan hire Brisbane or Cairns and head on the quirkiest road trip ever!
Queensland’s big things have stories, charm, and larger-than-life spirit that make them an integral part of Australia’s cultural fabric. Here is a list of the best “big things” attractions in Queensland, Australia.
The Big Mango
This well-known landmark in Bowen, a town in Tropical North Queensland, is a giant fiberglass sculpture in the shape of a mango fruit. It’s an impressive 33 feet high and weighs approximately SEVEN TONS! The Big Mango was unveiled in 2002 as a tribute to the local mango industry, which plays a massive role in the region’s economy.
The sculpture is located at the Bowen Visitor Information Centre, strategically placed at the entrance to the town, making it a perfect spot for tourists to stop and take photos.
In 2014, the Big Mango gained international attention when it was mysteriously stolen. The news of its disappearance made headlines, sparked a widespread search, but was later discovered that the theft was a publicity stunt by a local radio station.
Since these shenanigans took place, the Big Mango became even more popular, attracting tourists from around the world. It is an excellent example of Australia’s tradition of creating oversized and quirky structures as landmarks.
The Big Golden Gumboot
The Big Golden Gumboot is located in Tully, a small town in the Cassowary Coast Region of North Queensland. It is known for its agricultural industry, in particular, its sugar cane farming.
The massive fiberglass gumboot sculpture stands at about 23 feet tall. It was built in 2003 and is a popular tourist attraction in the area. The gumboot serves as a representation of the significant rainfall that Tully receives, as the region is one of the wettest in Australia. Tully experiences heavy rainfall and is famous for its annual rainfall competition with nearby Babinda, with both towns vying for the title of Australia’s wettest town.
The Big Golden Gumboot is a quirky and fun photo opportunity for visitors passing through Tully. It has become an iconic symbol of the town and is often featured in travel guides and promotional material for the region.
Additionally, Tully is also known for its proximity to the stunning natural beauty of the nearby Tully Gorge National Park and the Tully River, which is popular for white-water rafting. The town offers a range of outdoor activities and is a gateway to exploring the rainforests and waterfalls of the region.
The Big Macadamia Nut
The Big Macadamia Nut, also located in Nambour, is another oversized sculpture in Queensland. It is designed to resemble a macadamia nut, which is native to Australia – and is a significant crop in the Sunshine Coast region. The Big Macadamia Nut is a fitting representation of the local industry.
The Big Pelican
The Big Pelican is a large sculpture of the water-loving bird, standing at a height of approximately 13 feet tall. It’s situated near the Noosa River foreshore, making it a prominent and easily accessible landmark for visitors and their obligatory happy snap!
The sculpture represents the significance of pelicans in the area, as Noosaville is known for its abundant birdlife, which includes a large population of pelicans. The Noosa River, which flows through the region, provides a habitat for these majestic birds. You can often spot them gracefully gliding over the water or perching on the riverbanks. The sculpture has become an iconic feature of the town, adding to the overall charm and character of the area.
The Big Dugong
The Big Dugong is another “big things” sculpture that represents Rockhampton’s connection to the Great Barrier Reef. It showcases the dugong, which is a large marine mammal native to the region. The sculpture serves as a tribute to the marine life and natural wonders of the area.
As the Great Barrier Reef is a world-renowned UNESCO World Heritage Site and a significant natural feature in Queensland, the Big Dugong highlights Rockhampton’s proximity to this iconic ecosystem and its ecological importance.
The Big Ned Kelly
The Big Ned Kelly is a large statue depicting the infamous Australian bushranger Ned Kelly, who is a significant figure in Australian history. The statue features Ned Kelly wearing his distinctive armour and helmet.
Ned Kelly was an outlaw in the late 1800s, known for his confrontations with law enforcement and his gang’s criminal activities. He has become a cultural icon in Australia, and the Big Ned Kelly statue in Maryborough pays tribute to his historical significance.
The statue stands as a popular tourist attraction and symbolizes the connection between Ned Kelly and the region. Maryborough, a town located in central Victoria, has historical ties to Ned Kelly, as he was born in the nearby town of Beveridge.
The Big Cassowary
The Big Cassowary celebrates the large flightless bird, which is native to the rainforests of north eastern Australia, including the Mission Beach region where the statue is located. It is known for its vibrant plumage, distinctive dinosaur-like helmet, and important role in the ecosystem.
The sculpture of The Big Cassowary stands as a tribute to the unique and precious biodiversity of the Gondwanan region. It aims to raise awareness about the importance of conserving and protecting the cassowary population, as well as the broader rainforest habitat.
The Big Rum Bottle
The Big Rum Bottle is a giant replica of a Bundaberg Rum bottle, paying homage to the famous Australian rum brand. Bundaberg Rum is well-known both locally and internationally, and Bundaberg itself is often associated with this iconic alcohol brand.
The sculpture of the Big Rum Bottle is a fun and quirky attraction in Bundaberg. It also provides a unique must-do photo opportunity for visitors, especially rum enthusiasts! The oversized replica showcases the brand’s distinct bottle shape and label, creating an instantly recognizable landmark in the area.
The Big Pineapple
The Big Pineapple is a 52 foot fiberglass pineapple located in Woombye, Queensland. It was built in 1971 as part of the Sunshine Plantation, an early example of agricultural tourism. The plantation was also a working farm, and visitors could learn about the cultivation of pineapples and other tropical fruits.
The Big Pineapple is now a popular tourist attraction and offers a variety of activities for visitors of all ages. You can take a tour of the pineapple, learn about its history, and even climb to the top for stunning views of the Sunshine Coast. There is also a restaurant on site that serves delicious food made with fresh, local produce.