Betoota is located 170 kilometres east of Birdsville and stands on a vast gibber plain. While Betoota is mainly a ghost town, it comes alive twice a year for two amazing outback adventure events! The annual Betoota Horse and Motorbike Gymkhana is held on the first weekend of the Queensland Easter School holidays and then during the last weekend in August this tiny ghost town explodes with all the colour and excitement of the Betoota Races, which are part of the fantastic Simpson Desert Racing Carnival.
Betoota is 70 metres above sea level and has an annual rainfall of just 300 millimetres. In 1885, the Queensland Government set up a customs post in Betoota to collect tolls for stock that were being moved to South Australia. The toll station operated up until Federation in 1901.
Betoota was also once a Cobb & Co change station. In the 1880s, Betoota supported three hotels, a police station, store and post office. Outback road trips and adventures were vastly different in the 1880's!
The last-standing hotel was a favourite spot for tourists until it closed in October 1997. The publican, Simon Remienko, was the sole resident of Betoota for many years, and was famous for once being stranded on the Birdsville Track for 18 weeks with his 8 tonne truckload of beer.
Points of interest in Betoota include Browns Creek – a popular camping area near the Betoota Hotel – and Deon's Lookout, the perfect place for travellers to take a break and admire the spectacular view. You can also visit The Dreamtime Serpent – a work of art representing a series of pathways travelled through Country to connect the river systems in the Channel Country of the Diamantina Shire.
To find out more about all the local attractions and events around Betoota including the Simpson Desert Racing Carnival, visit the Visitor Information Centres in Bedourie and Birdsville. Parking is never a problem in Betoota, so your caravan, 4WD, and RV will be most welcome! Grey nomads, back packers, and family travellers will all find something special do in The Diamantina during their outback Queensland travel adventure.