The Central Queensland Sapphire Gemfields are located on the Tropic of Capricorn approximately 350 kms (217 miles) west of Rockhampton, Queensland Australia.( 50 kms west of Emerald). Access is by sealed roads to the townships of Anakie, Sapphire, Rubyvale and The Willows. The area has a permanent population of around 3000 people.
During the peak tourism period May to September, this number will at least double and up to 60,000 visitors come here over the course of a year. Winter is the peak season for Australian travelers and in Summer we often can see an influx of international tourists escaping the northern hemisphere winter.
The Gemfields has a unique easily going lifestyle, many of the residents have a strong independent streak and an unconventional outlook on life. This has resulted in the Gemfields evolving its own special style of building and living.
Great Keppel Island is located just north of the Tropic of Capricorn. The stunningly beautiful island boasts 28 kilometers of the most beautiful bays and beaches. The island offers you 17 astonishing white sandy beaches where you can enjoy the best sub-tropical climate on earth. The island has very mild winters and is located far enough south to not be influenced by the tropical monsoon, and enough north to enjoy the sun.
Great Keppel Island measures nearly 1500 hectares and it truly is a sanctuary to an extensive world of native fauna that includes over one hundred species of birds such as rainbow lorikeets and kookaburras, and a wide variety of seabirds. In 1770, Captain Cook was actually the first European to visit the island, and he named the 14 islands after Royal Navy Admiral Keppel. Great Keppel Island is the largest of the islands followed by North Keppel Island.
For years we learned as students that the Great Barrier Reef was the most beautiful reef in the world, and many of us (myself included) took a gap year after working hard toward our high school diploma. I took and passed the GED Test while using Covcell’s GED practice tests to get all set in a timely manner. So I too visited this famous place. It was worth it! Now we hear new but alarming things about the Great Barrier Reef.
All rhetoric and policies around the Great Barrier Reef issues have in no way matched reality while one of the world’s greatest natural wonders keeps on suffering from ongoing pollution. But as in late November 2015, corals in the northern portions of the Great Barrier Reef began to get a bleached white color, things finally turned around.
For many years, the Australian population had been told that one of the world’s most precious ocean jewels was getting better, and it had been only months ago that Australia’s government had been successful to not include the Great Barrier Reef in a United Nations list of endangered world heritage sites.
Scuba diving and snorkeling are the two best ways of opening up the underwater world and really exploring the tremendously interesting environment that’s waiting under the surface. The chance to meet fish, rays, and even sharks and dolphins in their own comfort zone is very exciting and it can be fantastic fun too. However, not all dive sites are suitable for those who are just starting out. Here are three of the best holiday destinations for those who want to try diving or snorkeling for the first time:
1) The Great Barrier Reef, Australia. This is not just the biggest tropical reef in the world, but the biggest structure made by living organisms. The Barrier Reef is so huge that it’s visible from space and it’s even more spectacular close up. It’s home to countless different species of fish from tiny, garish clowns to massive groupers, as well as a full complement of rays, smaller sharks, sea turtles, giant clams, and of course corals.
Most probably you heard that there is a green light for a major expansion of the Australian port of Abbot Point, and that it will become the world’s biggest coal port. Constructing this port will include the removal of around three million cubic meters of seabed which will be dumped in the area of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage.
It’s less known that there is a new innovative technology based on dewatering the sludge with Geo containers. This technology is taught in high school and GED classes yet it’s not that popular.
Let me give you some explanation. To create the Australian port of Abbot Point a lot of dredging needs to be done.
To give you an idea of the scale of this dredging, if all the dredged material were dumped on land, the pile would be bigger than the Great Pyramid of Giza.
The Great Barrier Reef is one of the finest tourist attractions in Australia (generating a revenue of $5.7 billion annually), and dumping such a huge pile of mud in this beautiful national marine park could very well threaten the World Heritage listing of this unique region.
But there are alternatives to dumping the spoil! The valuable technology using geo-containers for dewatering the sludge of Abbot Point Harbor by Dutch textile technology corporation TenCate could take care of the dump.
The system works with TenCate Geotube containers, tubular, permeable high-end geotextiles, that are all over the world utilized as an innovative and sustainable solution for dewatering contained solid waste from lagoons, ports, rivers, and canals, geotextiles are also as a new innovative process.
Every year in August (In Australia’s winter) you can visit Gemfest, the ‘Festival of Gems’. Gemfest is the largest Sapphire exhibition in Australia that is organized annually over four days.
Of course, local Sapphires will be the Gems of choice during the festival, but you can also admire a great selection of pearls, diamonds, opals, zircons, and several other interesting Gemstones at the festival.
Australia’s Sapphire Gemfields, in Central Queensland, is a region that covers some 900 square kilometers (347 square miles) of the most important Sapphire-bearing terrain in the world. The area includes the towns of Sapphire, Rubyvale, Anakie, and Willows. The area offers a lot to uncover, and you may even discover your riches that could be just a stone’s throw away.
When visiting towns like Sapphire, Rubyvale, Willows Gemfields, or Anakie, you’ll surely be under the spell of some pretty serious gemstone fever. Just come and check out this impressive region, the Central Queensland Sapphire Gemfields.
The area is found on the Capricorn Highway, some 3 hours west of Rockhampton, and some 45 minutes west of Emerald, in Australia’s Central Highlands Region, Queensland.
The Sapphire Gemfields region covers more than 900 square kilometers (348 square miles) that offers you plenty of opportunities to discover your own gemstones in abandoned mines.
You have many different options if you want to explore the Sapphire Gemfields. There are many guided tours that offer walk-in tours of underground mines, or you can join a digging tour. Another option is booking a self-drive ‘fossicking’ tour where you will receive all necessary equipment and maps to explore the area’s back tracks.
You also can visit one of the ‘fossicking’ parks or purchase a bucket of ‘sapphire wash’, You will learn to sieve the ‘wash’, and how to recognize a sapphire in the rough.