Big Skies

Regional Tours

The Western Downs has a strong economic history steeped in agriculture and energy, and now Big Skies is giving travellers far and wide the unique opportunity to experience our local industries. Come along to one of our chartered regional tours from Saturday 2 May to Sunday 3 May to see why the Western Downs is the perfect place to live, work and play. With stunning views and food for all on these exclusive tours, travelling our region has never sounded better.


Agricultural Tour

Saturday 2 May and Sunday 3 May - 8am - 3.45pm

Gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for the work that makes the Western Downs prosper and join us on a tour across Chinchilla and Miles to explore our impressive agricultural businesses. Make sure to bring your hat and sunscreen and wear some closed in shoes for when you are exploring these local operators.

A fish farm is not the first thing you expect when you are driving through the delightful cocktail of state forest and quilted expanses of wheat, barley and cotton ready for harvest. Yet, the Western Downs is home to the unique Condabilla Fish Farm - our first stop on the tour. Condabilla Fish is based southwest of Chinchilla, obtaining its water from the floodwaters of the Condamine River. The farm was established in 2001 and currently runs as a growout facility for fingerlings to market size fish. The way Condabilla Fish grows fish is truly unique and the quality of the products speaks louder than these words. Condabilla Fish will be a visit set to impress. Morning tea will be provided.

After visiting Condabilla Fish, the tour will continue to the Teys Australia Feedlot in Condamine. The Western Downs is Queensland's largest producer of beef, with almost one-quarter of beef producing properties located in the region. The Teys Australia Feedlot in Condamine is one of the biggest feedlots in the region. General Manager Phil Lambert will describe the exciting daily operations that make for a successful feedlot, while ensuring animal welfare standards are upheld to the highest standard. Teys' feeding program delivers high quality beef and a perfect steak, which you will have the pleasure of trying on tour with a BBQ lunch.

The bus will return to Jimbour after this visit to ensure you are back in time for when the music kicks off!  

* Morning tea and lunch will be provided.


Energy Tour

Saturday 2 May and Sunday 3 May - 8am - 3.30pm

Get ready for an adventure as we invite you to join us on a unique tour around the Dalby district. The Western Downs is known as the Energy Capital of Australia and you will find out all the reasons why during this tour. Make sure you are wearing long sleeves, long pants and closed in shoes as we will experience the future of energy on the ground.

The Western Downs' geography and environmental conditions are fuelling the energy sector's growth. The region is a prime destination for renewable energy and has seen the development and construction of several solar farms. With stunning views out in the country, the APA Darling Downs Solar Farm will be an impressive first stop. The 110-megawatt solar farm near Dalby is a site to see on this tour, with approximately 430,000 solar panels covering 250 hectares. Come see the farm in action and experience the process of renewable energy production.

The tour will continue to CS Energy's Kogan Creek Power Station, one of Australia’s most efficient and technically advanced coal-fired power stations. Commissioned in 2007, it contains the largest single generating unit in Australia and has one of the lowest environmental impacts of any coal-fired power station nationwide. Kogan Creek Power Station is also very water efficient, because it uses dry cooling technology and sources the limited water it does require from bores. CS Energy also owns the neighbouring Kogan Creek Mine, which supplies black coal to the power station via a four kilometre overland conveyor belt. Kogan Creek Power Station can generate up to 750 megawatts of baseload electricity – that’s enough to power one million Australian homes.  Morning tea will be provided. 

Last but not least, we will visit Australia's first grain-to-ethanol facility, the Dalby Bio-Refinery. Commissioned in 2008, the facility is one of the largest consumers of sorghum in the Darling Downs region. See firsthand how this impressive company converts nearly 190,000 metric tonnes of sorghum into 76 million litres of fuel-grade bio-ethanol and high value animal feed products in this innovative refinery. You will be guaranteed to end the day understanding why Dalby leads the way in doing things different.

The bus will return to Jimbour after this visit to ensure you are back in time for when the music kicks off!  

*Morning tea and lunch will be provided on the bus.