Did Toowomba just get cool? If you haven’t been on a road trip up the range lately, it’s time to be surprised.
Not only is T-ba killing it with fresh produce and fresh air, but somewhere along the line our country cousins starting nailing the art scene.
From gigs, to theatre, to an international graffiti festival and an epic line up of new cafes, boutique accommodation and wineries, Toowoomba just put its hand up as the place to be.
Here are the best things to do, places to eat and festivals to catch next time you take a long weekend West in Toowoomba.
You’ll never regret a weekend breakfast at one of Toowoomba’s best new cafes.
The Firefly Café
The Firefly Cafe is a gem on Russell Street that serves up interesting brekky treats like Eggs Benny with Citrus Hollandaise, as well as seasonal lunch specials in a cool, warehouse-style café. Insider tip: check out the braised brisket burger.
This new addition to the Toowoomba cafe scene serves up a killer brunch game with bacon and egg rolls and strong coffee alongside interesting salads and Vietnamese banh mi. Give The Finch the all rounder award already.
Wendland Fine Foods
In fancy East Toowoomba, chic café deli Wendland Fine Foods always attracts a crowd. The coffee is on point and with a deli stocked with cheese and great bread, a whole day’s worth of munching can be sourced at Wendland’s.
Ground Up Espresso
If you’re looking for all the Toowoomba hipsters, head straight to Ground Up Espresso. Situated down a graffiti-covered laneway just off Ruthven Street, Ground Up is the place to hang out with your posse and drink espresso after espresso.
Cafe Valetta, housed in one of Toowoomba’s grand old buildings, overlooks beautiful Queens Park. With a range of wines on offer it’s a great place to have a long, relaxing lunch or a celebratory high tea while soaking up all the greenery.
First Coat Graffiti Festival
Held each May, Toowoomba’s First Coat festival brings together some of the most amazing street artists from all around the globe. The best part? The council provides alleyways, walls and even whole buildings for the artists to do their thang, so everyone can see the art!
Carnival Of Flowers
Toowoomba’s iconic Carnival Of Flowers festival is 10 days of spring time fun. More than just beautiful flower displays, this festival attracts revellers from all over Oz for the incredible paddock-to-plate lunches, gigs and the inaugural Amateur Gardener Competition #lifegoals.
The Empire Theatre
Toowoomba’s Empire Theatre is the largest in regional Australia, so it’s no surprise that the arts scene is well and truly alive here. The Empire has become a bona fide stop on the metropolitan musical circuit, so you can catch Broadway shows - such as Legally Blonde and Mary Poppins - as well as local and Indigenous one-off performances in the heritage-listed precinct.
Table Top Mountain
Get some fresh air and knock over your daily cardio by hiking up Tabletop Mountain which offers 360 degree views over the range. It's hardcore but worth it.
Preston Peak Winery
Just 15 minutes from the centre of town, Preston Peak’s cellar door overlooks sloping olive groves, fragrant rose gardens and the majestic range. And didn’t you know? Queensland wines are the next big thing.
PCYC Sunday Markets
The PCYC Sunday morning markets in the centre of town are a mecca of freshly baked sourdough, fresh produce, good coffee and beautiful flowers.
What’s a grand country town without an epic pub? Fitzy’s On Church is the Toowoomba watering hole of choice for classic and craft ales and good old fashioned pub food. RM Williams optional.
Image credit: First Coat Festival, The Finch, Preston Peak Winery