Splitters Farm will transform into a farm-stay camping and glamping location estimated to inject $6.5 million into the local economy after the proposed development was approved by Council.
Owners Ashley and Carly Clark said the development aimed to create 52 full-time jobs and work would start immediately.
Construction will include 40 powered camp sites, an amenities block, camp kitchen and eight glamping tents, which will see the tourist attraction officially open their camping options by June 2020.
Purchased by Ashley and Carly Clark in 2017, the 65-hectare Sharon property is just a 10-minute drive north of Bundaberg in an idyllic bush setting bordered by its namesake Splitters Creek.
Carly said the farm was home to native animals such as wallabies, platypus, barramundi, prehistoric lung fish and more than 150 documented species of Australian bird life.
“It’s a dream destination for hikers and kayakers,” Carly said.
“It’s also a favourite spot for local fisherman who come to catch and release bass.”
Purchasing the property to give their five children the benefit of a rural upbringing, Carly said a lot of blood, sweat and tears had gone into mending fences and getting the farm into shape.
“Once we had our fences repaired, we began taking in rescue animals from around the region,” she said.
“Many of these are victims of the drought or had been abused or neglected.
“Some have also had a change of circumstances because their owners had to sell their acreage and move into town.
“It’s been a tough few years for anyone on the land and we’re now supplement feeding and caring for over 180 rescue animals as a result.”
While plans to welcome overnight camping guests for Splitters Farm glamping won’t be in place until about June 2020, the farm is currently open weekends for their ‘Meet the Animals’ tours.
During weekend walking tours families can meet and feed the rescue animals. All proceeds from the tours are reinvested back into feeding the animals and to cover their ongoing veterinary costs.
In addition to receiving positive local reviews on Facebook and TripAdvisor, Carly said the farm tours were also attracting a lot of interest from overseas visitors.
“We’re getting visitors as far afield as Taiwan and Hong Kong and had guests recently from the Sunshine Coast who said they’d come to Bundaberg just to see Splitters Farm after following our story online.
“It made us sit back and think ‘hey, we’ve really created something special here’.”
Bundaberg Tourism chief executive Katherine Reid said the Splitters Farm glamping development would be a welcome addition to the Bundaberg Region tourism scene.
“The eight luxury safari tents will provide much-needed diversity in the region's accommodation offering,” Katherine said.
“Splitters Farm offers a family-friendly rural adventure in the real Aussie bush, only 10 minutes from the Bundaberg CBD and I congratulate the owners on their commitment demonstrated to the development of our destination.”