Our goal is for people to be better informed on how to manage their own safety at Gardners Falls. We asked the Sunshine Coast community to share their ideas on how to improve the effectiveness of signage here so visitors better understand the risks at this location.

Project overview

Located in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, Gardners falls, Maleny, is a very popular destination that attracts thousands of people each year.

Visitors can walk along a section of the Obi Obi Creek to a couple of small waterfalls and a swimming hole.

Council doesn’t actively encourage swimming or jumping at the falls. Swimming in a natural water body is always a risky activity, with variable water conditions and a range of unknowns. Unfortunately, there has been injuries and deaths there due to this.

We are looking into ways to communicate more effectively and get the balance right between helping people manage their own safety in this location and preserving the beauty visitors enjoy.

Have your say

Our goal is for visitors of Gardeners Falls to better understand the risks at this location and be informed on how to manage their own safety.

We sought input on signage options for this location to help encourage safe behaviours on the following:

  • two ‘must have’ warning signs
  • signage options to help encourage safe behaviours at this location
  • the location of the signage.

Drop in session

A drop in session was held at the Maleny Library on Monday September 25, 2023 from 3-6pm. This was so our community could to view the different signage design options and provide your feedback in person.

Online survey

We called for community views on the different signage design options and provide your feedback via the online survey. The survey closed at 5pm Friday October 13, 2023.

Next steps

Community input will help to finalise the design and location of signage at Gardeners Falls. Signage will be installed in 2024.


A landscape management plan for Gardners Falls guides our actions to improve safety in the reserve.

It includes:

  • new signage (underway)
  • planning and design of road and traffic upgrades (2024/25)
  • a crossing to the Maleny Community Precinct trail (2024/25)
  • minor amenity upgrades.

Council is working closely with local emergency services to identify access improvements during an emergency.

Disturbingly, visitors to the area have cut down warning signs numerous times. These have been replaced by Council and then cut down again. We implore visitors to stop this vandalism which increases risk to visitors. Therefore, council is seeking community input to achieve the balance right between safety messaging and preserving the natural beauty of the Falls.

This project is being done in partnership with Queensland Fire and Emergency Services, Queensland Police Service and Queensland Ambulance Service.


  • Timeline item 1 - complete

    Community engagement on signage concepts

    08 September to 13 October 2023

  • Timeline item 2 - complete

    Drop in session at Maleny Library

    25 September 2023, 3 - 6pm

    5 Coral Street, Maleny

    Library information

  • Timeline item 3 - active

    Reviewing the feedback

    Late 2023

  • Timeline item 4 - incomplete

    New signage installed


Contact Us

Have questions or want to learn more about a project, contact us below:

Name Recreation Trails Activation Officer
Email naturalareas@sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au