Longreach is a town in Central West Queensland named after the “long reach” of the Thomson River on which it is situated. The town is on the Tropic of Capricorn. A number of Queensland towns have their streets named to a theme. In Longreach, the streets are named after species of birds, with the streets running east-west named after water birds and those running north-south after land birds.
Longreach is the home of the Australian Stockman’s Hall Of Fame which was officially opened in 1988 by Queen Elizabeth II. The purpose of the centre is to showcase the history and the culture of life in rural Australia. Since its opening, over 1 million people have passed through its doors.
Longreach was one of the founding centres for Australia’s airline Qantas. One of the airline’s original hangars remains in use at the airport. The town is now the home of the Qantas Founders Outback Museum, which includes amongst its displays a decommissioned Qantas Boeing 747-200 and Qantas’s first jet aircraft, a Boeing 707. In recognition of the town’s place in company history, as well as a play on the airliner’s extended range, all of Qantas’s Boeing 747-400’s have “Longreach” printed on both sides of the first jetway entry/exit doors.
A couple of highlights from our visit to the Qantas museum – standing in a Boeing 747 engine and walking on the wing of the same jumbo jet.