I wonder how many locals are aware of this little gem. Alex Forest Conservation Area is delightfully tucked away in Alexandra Headland, only two hundred and fifty metres from the beach. To be perfectly honest I always thought it was a through-road for residents, not realising it had so much more to offer. This well-hidden remnant of coast forest once extended from the Buderim hilltop all the way to the sea.
The one kilometre walking trail at Alex Forest Conservation Area meanders through 5.7 hectares of revegetated forest, providing an important wildlife reserve for more than one hundred species of identified fauna. Ringtail possums and microbats are amongst the nocturnal creatures using the numerous hollows and nesting boxes for shelter. During our daytime walk, we discovered a cute little rainbow lorikeet, sitting in the treetop, so quiet I was concerned it might be ill; and, of course, everybody's favourite, the bush turkeys were busily putting their mounds together, in preparation for Spring.
Benches have been placed throughout the forest, allowing one to sit and enjoy the enveloping sounds of nature, so very close to urban life. Look out for the interesting species identification plates - which may need a bit of TLC (tender loving care) - offering information about this coast forest's plant life. Why not add the Alex Forest Conservation Area to your to-do list of Sunshine Coast Wildflower Festival's self-guided walks, as Spring flowers were gorgeously peeking out every which way, on these trails.
Species identification plates can be found throughout this walk
Alex Forest Conservation Area's gravel/dirt trails have interspersed steps, which walkers will find easy to navigate but unfortunately, would prove a challenge for wheelchair users and prams. Doggies on a leash are also permitted.
Access is from Alexandra Parade, turning east into Mari Street near the Alex Surf Club. The start of the walk is clearly signposted at the top of Mari Street - for ease of reference, there is a gated community on the right of the parking area. Limited parking is available on Mari Street. Access to the Alex Forest Conservation Area is also available from Tranquil Place and Oloway Crescent in Alexandra Headlands.
Nelson Park is a fabulous add-on for a family day out
After enjoying the easy Alex Forest Conservation walk, why not amble or drive down to nearby Nelson Park, which stretches between Mari Street and Okinja Roads. This fabulous add-on for a family day out is a well-maintained park, that has been designed and planted with the intention of attracting an abundance of birdlife. The flowering shrubs and trees attract the honeyeaters and rainbow lorikeets, whilst the mirrored lake is magical for kingfishers, egrets and herons.
Nelson Park is an awesome add-on for a family day out!
Peek over the bridges into the water where water lilies provide cover for eels, barramundi, tadpoles and frogs. In 2018, the Josephine Wants To Dance Story Seat was installed providing mums, dads and littlies a colourful backdrop to enjoy a book and take in the views.
Josephine wants to dance Story Seat
For those outdoor enthusiasts who may be a tad time-poor, the Alex Forest Conservation Area and Nelson Park provide two perfect locations to beat the crowds, go bush and enjoy some quiet time.
This little Willie Wagtail was darting this way and that, catching insects!