The Big Rum Bottle in Bundaberg

the big rum bottle sculpture of a bundaberg rum bottle
Big Rum bottle in Bundaberg, Queensland. (Source: Creative Commons

The Big Rum Bottle

The Big Rum Bottle is found in Bundaberg Haigslea, in the Somerset Region, South East Queensland. In 1988, a special six-month World Expo, dubbed World Expo 88, was organized and held in Brisbane, Australia. The Expo attracted almost 18 million visitors who were interested in technology and leisure. Bundaberg Distilling Company, famously known for its dark rum, also took part in the Expo, constructing the Big Rum Bottle as their pavilion.

The Big Rum Bottle is currently located at the company’s visitors centre, displaying the company’s logo on the bottle and the year Bundaberg Rum Company was founded.

A Brief History of Sugarcane Farming In Bundaberg

Sugarcane farming in Bundaberg dates back to the 1860s when the early settlers first occupied the region. Farmers quickly adopted sugarcane farming in the region after the construction of a sugarcane refinery called Millaquin Sugar Refinery, an investment made by a father and his sons in 1882. Two years later, a cane processing plant owned by two other brothers further propelled sugarcane farming in the region. 

Bundaberg opened shop in 1888 and took advantage of the availability of raw materials and the ready market. They rolled out 225,000 gallons in their first batch in 1889 and grew their market steadily to Sydney and Melbourne. 

It is no surprise that Bundaberg Distilling Company is best known for its dark rum, owing to the region’s richness in sugarcane production. The company has since grown into an internationally recognized brand, with their famous rum fondly referred to as “Bundy”. Some people even refer to the Big Bottle as the ‘Giant Bundy Rum Bottle’.

What to Expect From a Tour of the Bundaberg Distillery

One of the fascinating experiences while visiting the 7-metre-tall Big Rum Bottle is taking a tour of the distillery, including the museum, and being able to mix your own rum.

At the museum, you will learn more about the iconic Australian rum. The facility hold 75,000 litres of rum in oak vats, some of which are as old as the 1970s.

Other Big Bundaberg bottles have been constructed in different parts of Queensland, following the inspiration from the original one. You’ll find one of these gigantic bottles in front of a pub called The Sundowner Hotel in Haigslea in Queensland. 

The oversized bottle is an attraction for the hotel and pub. The hotel is among the oldest in the region; it was built in 1870 and is currently up for sale. There is no doubt that the new buyers will enjoy the value that the Big Bundy bottle will bring to their business. 

Australia’s obsession with Big Bottles is also portrayed by the Big Beer Can, one in Cobar, and the other in Ghan.

Speaking of beers and rum, you’ll also love visiting the Big Barrell in Bundaberg, Queensland. Launched in 2005 by former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia, Hon Mark Vaile, this 25m x 10m oversized barrel is located outside Bundaberg Brewed Drinks at 147 Bargara Road.

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