The Curtis Falls track at Mt Tamborine National Park is accessible via a lush waterfall hike along the Lower Creek Circuit walk.
The Curtis Falls track at Mt Tamborine National Park is one of the most beautiful waterfalls that I visited in the Gold Coast Hinterland. Visitors will have the option of taking the short 500-metre walk to the falls or continuing on an enjoyable creek loop known as Lower Creek Circuit.
I’ve visited this waterfall a few times while living in Brisbane and I recommend the main event, Curtis Falls, as a must-see for anyone making the trip up to Tamborine Mountain.
- Where is Curtis Falls in Mt Tamborine?
- How to Get to Curtis Falls
- About Curtis Falls and Lower Creek Circuit
- Hiking the Curtis Falls Track
- What to Expect at Curtis Falls Mt Tamborine
- Can You Swim at Curtis Falls?
- Lower Creek Circuit
- Best Time to Visit Curtis Falls
- FAQ About Visiting Curtis Falls
- More Epic Travel & Adventure Guides For Queensland
By Olly Gaspar, traveler, travel blogger & photographer for 5+ years with 600+ published travel guides. I visit every place I write about & share real tips from what I learn.
Where is Curtis Falls in Mt Tamborine?
The Curtis Falls track is located in the township of Tamborine Mountain in the Gold Coast hinterland. This region is approximately 40 km from Surfer's Paradise (50 minutes). The trailhead includes a decent-sized carpark and toilet facilities.
How to Get to Curtis Falls
Any trip up to Mt Tamborine involves climbing one of the three steep and winding roads up the ancient volcano.
You'll need your own car, so if you don't have one, consider renting one in the Gold Coast or Brisbane. If you're coming from the Gold Coast, I'd recommend taking Henri Robert Drive as it's one of the most scenic roads I've witnessed in the region.
I'd recommend using Google Maps to navigate to the pin above, which will lead you to the walking track car park. There are about 20 car spots here and you can park on the street adjacent to the car park too if you need to.
Keep in mind that Curtis Falls is one of the most popular falls in Mt Tamborine, so you can expect it to get a little busy on weekends.
Rental Cars in Queensland
Tip: To explore Queensland independently, rent a vehicle in advance for better rates– especially during the busy summer months.
I always use DiscoverCars to compare prices across different companies across the state.
Tip: Book a Tour to Curtis Falls Instead
If you don't have your own car, then you can always book a guided tour up to Mt Tamborine from the Gold Coast or Brisbane. Below are the top-rated tours you'll find.
About Curtis Falls and Lower Creek Circuit
- Hiking Distance: 3.5 km loop (550 m to Curtis Falls)
- Duration: 1-hour return (10 minutes to Curtis Falls)
- Difficulty: Easy
Curtis Falls at Mt Tamborine features two tracks, the Curtis Falls Track and the Lower Creek Circuit. Both are accessible from the same trailhead. However, the Lower Creek Circuit begins as an additional creek loop that finishes back near the waterfall.
Walkers continue back on the same track from the waterfall to the car park whether you decide to take the extra circuit loop or not.
Both tracks are very easy to navigate, with only a few sections of climbing man-made steps. However, the end of the Lower Creek Circuit loop involves a shallow creek crossing. Don't worry though, you can hop over the rocks if you don't want to get your feet wet.
The tracks feature rich wet eucalypt forests and dense ferns surrounding the creek. Keep an eye out for basking turtles on the rocks on a sunny day.
On one visit, we were lucky to spot the elusive platypus who are known to live in the creek. In addition, some of the giant gum trees that shoot up on the track are some of the tallest I've ever seen and made the walk for me.
Walking the Curtis Falls track is a great way to soak in a slice of the unique rainforest environment of Mt Tamborine National Park. Huge flooded gums erupt skywards from the narrow trail as you hear the tranquil sounds of rainforest birds and clean flowing water.
Hiking the Curtis Falls Track
The Curtis Falls Track trailhead is easy to spot from the car park. There are also arrow markers with distance estimates along the track. So it's impossible to get lost. Although the track can get muddy following rain, you can easily walk to the waterfalls in your thongs.
Following a short distance into the walk, the path splits in a fork with a signpost. Turn left here and continue for 105 metres to the falls or turn right to continue on the 1.6 km Lower Creek Circuit Loop.
Also Nearby: Twin Falls Waterfall in Springbrook National Park
What to Expect at Curtis Falls Mt Tamborine
Curtis Falls is a very scenic little waterfall with a decent freshwater pool underneath. There is a large decked viewing platform in front of the falls. Here you can snap some photos and enjoy the view. Curtis Falls is about 12 metres tall and can vary from a gushing torrent to a gentle trickle, depending on the season.
It's also possible to walk around this platform to the left to get behind Curtis Falls. However, there is a sign asking visitors to stay on the platform so as to not impact platypus and glowworm habitats.
Can You Swim at Curtis Falls?
Curtis Falls was known as a great spot to swim at Mt Tamborine since there is an approximately 1-metre-deep pool below it. However, there are now signs asking visitors to refrain from swimming at the falls.
Lower Creek Circuit
Return back to the fork 105 m from the waterfall. Here, you'll have the option to continue on the loop or return on the same track to the car park. The Lower Creek Circuit is a scenic walk following the rocky banks along the winding creek for about 1.5 kilometres.
If you're chasing some rainforest photo opportunities, there are some scenic bridges and incredible towering gums on the track that make it worthwhile to continue on.
Best Time to Visit Curtis Falls
The best time to experience the natural beauty of Curtis Falls at Mt Tamborine is during Queensland's spring and autumn seasons.
In spring, from September to November, the rainforest bursts with vibrant foliage and blooming flowers, creating a picturesque backdrop for your hike to the waterfall. Additionally, the weather is mild, making it more enjoyable to spend time on the trail and in the forst.
Autumn, from March to May, offers pleasant temperatures and a quieter atmosphere, as crowds tend to thin out compared to the summer months. However, Curtis Falls is an epic waterfall to visit year-round, so consider your preferences for weather and crowd levels when planning your visit to this Gold Coast Hinterland gem.
Travel tip: This is one of the most popular waterfalls in South East Queensland. I recommend avoiding weekends and public holidays if you don't like crowds.
FAQ About Visiting Curtis Falls
Can I swim at Curtis Falls?
Sorry, swimming at Curtis Falls is no longer allowed. While it used to be a popular spot for a refreshing dip, there are now signs asking visitors to keep out of the water beneath the falls. This change is to protect the habitat and wildlife in the area.
Can I bring my dog to Curtis Falls?
No, much like all other National Parks in Queensland, pets are not allowed in the national park, including at Curtis Falls.
Is there parking available at Curtis Falls?
Yes, there is a decent-sized car park near the Curtis Falls trailhead. It can get busy on weekends, so arrive early to secure a parking spot.
Is there an entry fee to visit Curtis Falls?
No, this is what I love about how Australia approaches its natural attractions. Visiting Curtis Falls is free. There are no entry fees.
More Epic Travel & Adventure Guides For Queensland
I hope you enjoyed this quick guide to visiting Curtis Falls Mt Tamborine. For more epic travel and adventure guides from Australia featuring lookouts, waterfalls, hikes and more, head to the blog or check out one of the links below.
Also, if you have any questions or updates about Curtis Falls or the Lower Creek Circuit walk, please let me know in the comments!
- 60+ Things to do in Cairns - my ultimate Cairns and FNQ travel resource covering the best activities, hidden gems, and unmissable experiences.
- Cairns Hiking Guide - a huge list of epic rainforest, waterfall, and lookout hikes in Cairns.
- Cairns Waterfalls - a huge list of epic waterfalls that I've visited in Cairns and the surrounding tropics.
- Cairns Islands - discover my favorite Great Barrier Reef islands near Cairns and Port Douglas.
- Cairns Tours - my roundup of the best tours you can book in Cairns and FNQ, from the Great Barrier Reef to the Daintree Rainforest.
- Cairns Packing List - tips on what to pack for a trip to Far North Queensland.
- Top Things to Do in Port Douglas - a comprehensive guide to the sleepy Far North Queensland town of Port Douglas.
- Epic 5-Day Cairns Itinerary - my suggested adventure itinerary if you only have 5 days to spend in Cairns.
- Cape Tribulation Travel Guide - discover where the rainforest meets the reef at one of my favourite places in Australia.
- Magnetic Island Travel Guide - your ultimate resource for visiting "Maggie" near Townsville.
- Best Things to do in the Atherton Tablelands - my guide to one of Far North Queensland's most underrated adventure destinations.
- Accommodation Resources: Discover where to stay in Cairns, the best hotels in Port Douglas and my Cape Tribulation accommodation guide.