After Noosa Heads, we took the bus followed by a 3 hour train ride to the little town of Bundaberg. The big attraction we heard about for Bundaberg was the Bundaberg distillery where they make the Bundaberg Rum. I honestly wasn’t sure of what else there was to see in the little town, but I can say we certainly did our fair share of walking through and around the town in our 2 days.
We stayed in a motel in town. It was actually our first hotel stay since Rotorua in New Zealand in January. While there were backpacker places, they were mostly booked with long staying backpackers who were doing farm work. Bundaberg seems to be the area for fruit picking and sugar cane farms.
After a night’s rest, we headed to the Rum Distillery around 9am. We didn’t have a car and decided to walk 45 minutes to the place, which made perfect timing for the 10am tour. The rum distillery is built next to a sugar cane factory. When sugar is made, one of the outputs is molasses and they do not use it. In the late 1800s, there was eventually so much molasses, that it was running down the streets. Well a few men decided to propose a rum distillery to use the molasses since rum is made from yeast, molasses and water. It was quickly approved and the distillery has been in use for just over 125 years. It has been rebuilt twice since it had a couple fires, but so far has been good since the 1930s.
At the end of the tour about how their rum is made, we got to taste a liqueur which is only at the factory and online, not sold in stores and one of their rums. Recently in 2016, Bundaberg Rum won an award for best rum, in a contest held in the UK. If you know me, you probably know I am not a big drinker. I decided on tasting the best rum and only took a tiny sip before handing that off to Brian. I then tasted the salted caramel liqueur which was really really sweet as liqueurs tend to be.
After the tour, it was time to find some food as we didn’t have much breakfast. We headed to a seafood market and restaurant and both got some fish, chips and salad. The meal was so filling!!
After eating, we headed back to the distillery because the tour also includes a little museum about the Bundaberg Rum history. After reading through all the information, we were quite tired and yet somehow still decided to walk back to the hotel, another 45 minute walk. We rested for a couple hours and cooled off in the AC before heading down the street to get some dinner. Since we were in a hotel and didn’t have a kitchen, we ate out for lunch and dinner. We checked out Red Rooster, a fast food chain and saw they had a whole chicken available on their menu. We ate about ¾ of the chicken and it was a perfect filling dinner before crawling into bed and watching tv to end the night.
The next day, we had to check out of our hotel by 10, but we didn’t have a bus until 5pm. We packed up in the morning and enjoyed the room until 10 and then left our big bags at reception. We stopped by a café for brunch (since it was almost 11). I had the most delicious and affordable pancakes.
Then we walked to the botanic gardens (about a 35 minute walk though it felt longer with our small backpacks on). We decided to go to the Hinkler Aviation museum, house and café. Then we walked to the other end of the garden.
The map made the gardens seem big but actually they were quite small comparatively to other cities we have walked gardens in. Apparently our feet weren’t dead enough and we headed to the library for a bit for some wifi. Then we decided to get an early dinner at the mall nearby.
After eating, we walked back to our hotel to pick up our bags and then headed to the bus stop. Luckily our bus ride was only 1.5 hours to the next destination, Agnes Water.
It was a nice 2 day visit in Bundaberg and I definitely recommend checking out the town if you are making your way up the East Coast.