We made a slow start on Saturday, sleeping in and then lingering over our BBQed brekkie.
Once on the road, our first stop was to taste some specialty apple juices and a rather fine apple syrup (which we're scheming to drizzle over pikelets)!
Our intended destination was Donnellys Castle - a rock formation and picnic area that we could explore with Bandit. (Stanthorpe is know for huge boulders in nearby Girraween National Park but that was off-limits for us).
We spotted a cheese factory en route to the castle, so called in to sample some excellent offerings - and bought a couple of favourites. (We highly recommend Jersey Cow Feta and Brass Monkey Blue)!
It wasn't all that far from the cheese factory to the picnic area and we saw several groups enjoying cheese platter lunches!
Donnellys Castle had quite mixed reviews on some of the sites I checked.
We thought it was brilliant! So many rocks to scramble over, around and between. We easily spent several hours there - feasting on cheese and soaking up the sunshine, in between bouts of squeezing through the rock maze. We outlasted many of the other visitors.
The area is said to be one of Captain Thunderbolt's hideouts. He was obviously another slim individual, like Captain Melville, who had a hideout at Melville Caves, which we visited while in Victoria!
Donnellys Castle is Crown Recreation Reserve named after Ned Donnelly, an original settler of the area. In 1973 the local Lions Club began to develop the facilities and still maintains them for public enjoyment.
It's quite likely we'll visit Stanthorpe and Donnellys Castle another time.
We may even travel a little further afield to fossick for topaz in the Passchendaele State Forest. Fingers crossed for success!