"The Dream" at Paronella Park

Wow! Just where does one start when describing a place like Paronella Park. Well it is an amazing and fascinating place to visit. You must visit this once in a lifetime.

 

Fees

The entrance fee ($39 each for pensioners and $45 regular) is valid for a year and & free camping for one night is included with entry ticket too! We spent a wonderful day and night at Paroenella Park near Innifail, North Queensland, taking in all 3 tours. It is a magical place of waterfalls, mini castles and romantic history all come together in one magical package.


Do join the guided tours so you don't miss out on any of the history or the highlights of the park. There was a daytime tour, a hydro tour and an spectacularly lit evening tour. Most lasting between 45-60 minutes. It is mostly easy walking but the Hydro Tour does involve steep steps however you can go as slow as you need. Rob was glad he managed it, though he was quite exhausted afterwards but that also might have been the collective effects of 3 tours through out the day though we rested in our motorhome in between. Gosh I was tired myself and a bit bit foot sore too!


The Dream Continues Tour

This tour is mostly about the history of the place which is quite remarkable.  As with many migrants Jose Paronella came to Australia in the 1930's to build a future for himself and then went back 'home' to marry his wife and bring her out. (There's a romantic story you need to hear first hand from the tour guide.) Jose continued to build his fantasy castle always as a money making tourist attraction.


There's more than one Spanish style castle complete with a grand staircase down to the river and a various parks with varying vistas. Today the buildings are in ruins, but still retain a beauty, covered in moss and surrounded by stunning gardens with paths and tracks to follow.



The Tunnel of Love was closed to us, is now home to a colony of micro bats. You can feed the turtles which live in the lake.


There's also fresh water eels, bream, perch in the river. Jose created the beautiful gardens planting over 7000 trees. You can walk just about everywhere and noticing  the magnificent trees towering above you.


The Hydro Tour

Jose certainly was certainly a visionary ahead of his time. The entire park was powered by Hydro electricity from the falls through a system designed & partly built by Jose. This was the first private hydro scheme anywhere in Australia and years before the surrounding area had any electricity. It is still working and powers the whole park.


The Darkness Falls Tour

As darkness fell we all gathered in front of the castle. Music began and the castle was lit up with a magical light display. The tour concluded at the waterfall which was now lit up and looked stunning.



No wonder it has won so many prestigious tourism awards. I sort of feel sorry for Josef though. I will let you work out why when you go there, which you should at least once!It is an experience like none other.

1 comment:

  1. Paronella Park was definitely way ahead of its time making Jose a true Visionary. Unfortunately there is probably a sad ending to the story,
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

    ReplyDelete

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Michelle