In 1912, just a few kilometres from the Bundaberg satellite town of Bargara, Bert Hinkler flew a home-made glider to a height of 9m to foreshadow his magnificent achievement 12 years on when he became the first person to fly solo from England to Australia.
As coincidence will have it, today, behind that beach where Hinkler first took to the air, lies another of Bargara’s great prides - the most accessible turtle nesting grounds on the Australian mainland and one of the largest on the entire, Pacific rim. The giant reptiles come ashore in Mon Repos Environmental Park to lay their eggs from November to February. Visitors can only watch the breeding ritual in groups led by wildlife rangers.
Blessed with a mild, sub-tropical climate and fine swimming and fishing beaches, Bargara is a popular family holiday destination just 13km east of Bundaberg. The city, of course, is also home to Bundaberg rum. The Bundaberg Mill, which hosts daily public tours, is the only place in the regional cane fields where sugar is crushed, refined and distilled on the one site.