By Gemma Donahoe and Cameron Brooks.
Once known for its old heritage, wonky roads and unused tram lines, it’s all changing for the better.
Wherever your starting location is, Nambour is easy to travel to by car or public transport. If taking the bus, the 636 route from most major Sunshine Coast stations will arrive at the main Nambour bus station, next to the train station.
Nambour is the Coast’s next hipster holiday destination. If you’re into music, beers and burgers, you can find it all happening here.
A quick walk across the road leads through C-Square which has a little coffee shop, with interesting décor called Switch Espresso. After enjoying a refreshing drink, head to the busy and bustling main street. This is the largest business district street in Nambour and offers a variety of interesting and unique places.
Or you can start your day off with a morning coffee at Husk and Honey. Husk and Honey is a gluten and grain-free café, filled with natural, good-tasting treats.
Across the road from Husk and Honey are funky artworks where an old coffee shop Villain Espresso used to be. The stairs outside are lined with artwork and climbing plants and lead to The Time Machine.
The store hosts band nights downstairs about once a month. Time Machine assistant Daniel Stuth says between three and five bands play for $10 on the door, and it’s BYO so anyone over 18 can bring their own alcohol.
“We usually get about anywhere between 30 and 60 payers, and you’ve got the bands on top of that. Joint packs out,” Stuth says.
“The shows are kind of loud, punky shows. Well, punk ethos, but kind of alternative genres, not your blues and roots and anything too middle of the road. We don’t like middle of the road. We like balls to the wall.”
Local woman Maddison Mulvany says Nambour has a great underground music scene. “It’s the starting spot for shows for a lot of local up-and-coming artists. Walking down main street at night time has a warm feeling,” she says.
If you’re one for rock or alternative music, and you have a record player Time Machine is for you. Lining the walls are hundreds of records from A-Z, rock to pop. You can spend hours searching through the records and they range from preloved to brand new. The Time Machine also sells vintage goods such as PCs, Gameboys, cassettes, CDs, old comics, posters, newspapers and patches.
After you’ve spent enough time in there, head on next door to DownTown Burgers. This is by far the best burger joint in town. It follows the style of funky and creative through the benches, retro ceiling lights, plants and graffiti on the walls. DownTown has been around for almost two years, and chef Vanessa it’s definitely brought the zing back into Nambour.
“It’s just a really nice, chilled atmosphere. It’s great for young people and families and parties, because we are a licensed bar,” she says.
The chef’s favourite burger on the menu is the tropical paradise burger, although she does enjoy the blue cheese burger to switch it up. However, you can never go wrong with the classic burger and crinkle cut hot chips. DownTown regularly changes the menu and has a “surprise burger” each day.
The Basement is another quirky find along the backstreets of Nambour. As its name suggests, it’s quite well hidden. Inside is groovy and cosy, and you instantly want a refreshing afternoon beer and to sit back and enjoy some tunes. The Basement also has live entertainment and hosts events and shows. You can check them out on their Facebook page for more info of upcoming gigs.
One knowledge centre is The Book Exchange, next door to The Time Machine, a staple for 32 years in the region. The tiny, quaint entrance leads downstairs, stirring wonder about what awaits, and then reveals a large space filled with books for the whole family. Take a seat on any of the many chairs around or ask Darren at the front counter your local questions.
If you’re feeling outdoorsy, then the beautiful Petrie Park might be the place for you. If you’ve brought your pooch then let them loose at the dog leash-off area, conveniently located next to an outdoor gym so everyone can get exercising. A bridge walkway over a river surrounded by big, beautiful trees reveals the second area containing a skate park, Olympic swimming pool, and a genealogy centre. The park also has outdoor tables to sit and enjoy the beautiful surrounding rivers and trees while the kids go for a skate at the decent-sized skate park.
Learn some local history at Genealogy Sunshine Coast. It doesn’t look like much from the outside, but inside the entire world awaits. Their mission is digitally archiving recorded history, with a focus on local. Discover your family heritage with a free visit, but a day’s assistance will cost $10. This is a great place to spend some time while the people you’re with are at the skate park and you want to go somewhere quiet.
Now that you’re recharged, if you’re thinking of trying something new, then hit up the unique Broken Arrow, an indoor archery centre on Main Street. Shoot arrows with up to six others for an hour. Make sure to hit a bullseye before you leave!
The Nambour area is a lively place, built as Daniel Stuth says “on the backs of hardworking small business owners.”
With its new face with groovy cafes, funky op-shops, record stores and hidden bars, it’s reminiscent of a Melbourne of old.
“There’s a lot of positive in town. I think the proof is in the pudding with places like Downtown, and The Basement, what’s happening over in C-Square at the moment with the Bison Bar, the Majestic Theatre, there’s a gaming lounge, there’s a comic book shop, there’s two record stores in town,” Stuth says.
“There’s a lot going on. I just wish there was more young people trying to follow their dreams like we did.”