Known as the Beef Capital of Australia, few realise just how much this city and its immediate surrounds have to offer. But it's hard to go past the fact that beef is a big part of Rockhampton's economy and existence. There are reminders to be found on the Bruce Highway at the city's exit and entrance and within the city where there are statues of Santa Gertrudis, Brahman, Braford and Droughtmaster bulls.

One of the best ways to re-live the Rockhampton of yesteryear is to discover it via the Heritage Route. The route takes in the grand old architecture, lovingly preserved or restored, which graces many areas of Rockhampton.

The city's lifeline in the easy days of its settlement was the Fitzroy River. Quay Street, which runs by the river and is easily accessible as part of the Central Business District, is part of the Heritage Route.

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If history is a particular passion of yours, why not visit the headquarters of the Rockhampton Historical Society at Old Borough Chambers? Here you will discover a cornucopia of delights associated with the establishment of the Capricorn region.

And the Fitzroy. As it makes its lazy way from its source to the sea it provides pleasure for hundreds of people every day, and for many more that come on the weekend. Rockhampton House Boats are a great way to spend a holiday on the water or you can do any number of activities including water skiing, boating, trying your luck with a rod or just reading a book as the river travels by.

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Rockhampton is the birth place of many fine artists, performers and musicians. It is through the city's appreciation of the arts that it has developed a nurturing approach to young people who decide on the arts as their path in life.

Because of this, the city has a world class theatre venue in the Pilbeam Theatre and associated theatres, many art galleries such as the Rockhampton City Art Gallery stocked with works from well-known national and international artists, and the Walter Reid Art Centre which houses actors, weavers, sewers, musicians and artists.

Visitors to the city make comment on the high standard and excellent quality of the arts and crafts stocked by the local galleries.

From culture to horticulture - the city's botanic gardens have been lauded for containing some of the most extensive examples of indigenous flora and fauna in Australia.

The zoo, located in the South Rockhampton Botanic Gardens' grounds, has chimpanzees, koalas, several bird species, and much, much more.

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The Cliff Kershaw Gardens has an impressive waterfall, lit at night, on the main road through Rockhampton. The waterfall is complemented by scented gardens and native flora.

Still on the nature hunt, the Mount Archer Lookout not only gives you the chance to test your bush-walking skills on some easy and not-so-easy tracks, but also to l00k over Rockhampton from its lofty heights.

Intensive work has turned the lookout into a terrific place for a day out. Picnic tables, barbeques and walk-ways have been constructed to make it yet another great place to visit during your time in Rockhampton.

From the look-out you'll be able to see the Rockhampton airport which is but a stone's throw from St Aubin's Village.

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