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Fordsdale Horseback Adventures, Events & More

Home > Brisbane > Farms | Family | Fun Things To Do | Day Trips | Outdoor
by Roy Chambers (subscribe)
Lover of all things interesting and new
Published June 24th 2020
Lockyer Horse Riding, Camping, Farm Stays, Events & More
In the foothills of the Great Dividing Range, Fordsdale Horseback Adventures and Farmstays provide a great place for horseback riding, holding events, farm stays, camping and volunteer work. Escape the city for a farm adventure.

Sue and one her horses
Sue and one her horses


About Fordsdale

Fordsdale is a locality in the Lockyer Valley encompassing the rugged foothills of the Great Dividing Range. Gone are the flat plains and rolling foothills that characterise the rest of the valley. Instead, roads cut through steep gorges and hills rise up dotted with large granite boulders. This rugged yet picturesque landscape is often bypassed by many visitors to the area.

The rugged hills of Fordsdale
The rugged hills of Fordsdale


The Farm

Lying at the very far southeastern end of the Lockyer Valley, Sue Renfree's farm in Fordsdale is a great contrast to many of the farms around South East Queensland. The picturesquely rugged land features hills, ravines and creeks. It was first used for dairy farming though now it's focused on horses and tourism.

A creek on the farm
A creek on the farm


Horse Riding

The premium attraction, of course, is horse riding. You can book in for as little as an hour or ride all day. There are two ways to book into horse riding. These include forming your own group starting at $66 per person for an hour. Or you can wait for an event. Currently, scheduled events include Sunday Morning rides, Parent & Child Horse Riding Weekends, General Weekend Horsing Riding Adventures and All Day Rides. Check the website for dates.

Sue leading a horse riding tour
Sue leading a horse riding tour


Safety equipment is provided, including riding helmets with wide brims to keep the sun off you. The horses are specifically trained for this type of beginners ride. You don't need any experience with the horses, as they will happily follow the leader along the trail without any guidance from the rider. The only disconcerting part of this is that the horses will also grab any grass or edible treat that they see as they amble along the trail.

Horse riding at Fordsdale
Horse riding at Fordsdale


The farm provides a wealth of varied landscapes to explore. You can ride along and across the creek, head up to the tops of hills for great views and explore various other paths. Longer rides include picnic lunches and multi-day rides include barbecue dinners and country-style breakfasts.

Camping

You can also stay at the farm with one of the best options being camping. There is a dedicated open grassy campsite where you can pitch your tent. You can make a weekend of it by camping and joining a Sunday morning horse ride or, if you are coming with a group, then you can arrange a ride together with your friends. Of course, you can just explore the farm trails on foot.

Camping area on the farm
Camping area on the farm


Due to the nature of the farm, 4WDs are recommended though not essential. You would have a lot of trouble getting a caravan up to the campsite though.

Stays

Along with joining weekend horse riding events, you can also book accommodation. This includes double rooms, twin rooms and bunk rooms.

Stay or volunteer on the farm
Stay or volunteer on the farm


Events

Sue also is able to host a range of events. She works with local businesses, including Lockyer Jumping Castles and Ipswich Jukebox & Karaoke Hire to create the perfect event for you. She has hosted weddings, parties and family weekends. When I visited the farm, lunch was provided by the Stage Post Cafe in Gatton.

Enjoy an event under the tree on the farm
Enjoy an event under the tree on the farm


What I like about the venue is the natural beauty of the area. For weddings, there are rocks that are great for posing couples and of course, the creek with its steep rocky banks can also be a stunning photographic backdrop. People turn the camping area into a fun party ground. Some keep it simple with just a fire and a barbecue, while others hire more things to create the ideal social environment.

Lunch on the farm with catering by the Staging Post Cafe
Lunch on the farm with catering by the Staging Post Cafe


Volunteering

There are also volunteer opportunities on the farm. This includes Willing Workers On Organic Farms (WWOOFers). The program at Fordale lets you exchange 30 minutes of farm duties a day for free camping. There is also a 16 plus program aimed at high school students looking to gain some work experience during the school holidays.

Overall

The Lockyer Valley is just on Brisbane's doorstep with a wide range of activities for all interests. This farm in Fordsdale, on the southeastern end of the valley is a great place for a family adventure, day trip or weekend escape. It is the perfect place for people wanting to try horse riding for the first time in a stunning landscape.


The author visited the venue as a guest of Tourism & Events Queensland.
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Why? Escape the city for a Farm Adventure & Horse Riding
Phone: (07) 5462 6707
Where: 171 Wagners Rd, Fordsdale QLD 4343
Cost: Horse riding from $66, camping from $12
Your Comment
Thanks for the information. I have often considered doing one of their parent-child overnight retreats.
by Kerenza Korostovetz (score: 2|163) 6 days ago
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