History preserved, pastoralists, Mary Poppins, Sporting greats, community vibe and beaut banana bread – the allure of Allora. Only 40 minutes from Toowoomba and 20 minutes to Warwick, it is a very timely spot for a break.
Long before European settlers came to raise sheep, the traditional Giabal Aboriginal custodians cared for the land known to them as gnarrallah – the waterhole or swampy place. These settlers saw good sheep rearing country and the big properties of Glengallan and Talgai prospered. Their grand homesteads are still open for tourist viewings today, and show the dedication of the volunteers and their many years of restoration and maintenance.
Attracted by the golden seasonal fields of sunflowers grown for their seeds, keen photographers flock to the roadsides to capture this amazing sight.
The 1300 strong community of Allora is definitely worth a detour off the highway on the way to Warwick or Toowoomba. It prides itself on the historic preservation of its 1800s heritage buildings and shows strong community spirit via its churches, schools and wide main street and shops.
Allora has many famous sportsmen and sportswomen and likes to remember their past and current achievements. Among them are Wayne Bennet, Laura Geitz, Shane Webcke and Matthew Denny.
The butcher’s shop and the Wild Sage Collective and Cafe @wildsagecollective1have reputations far beyond the community and I can vouch for the delicious banana bread.
Perhaps the most well-known building in the town is the old Bank building where a young P L Travers resided with her family for a short time. Later in life, she became world famous for her story Mary Poppins. It is certainly a proud place for Allora.
Allora is a quiet, well-kept rural town with a humble pride. That is its allure.