Tallebudgera is a rural and rural/residential district in the Gold Coast hinterland. The village centre (primary school and Uniting church) is six km west of Currumbin, and the district extends four km south-west along the Tallebudgera Creek where it joins the rural area of Tallebudgera Valley. It is thought that the name is derived from an Aboriginal expression describing good fish.
The creek rises in the McPherson Range, just north of the New South Wales border. With numerous tributaries along its journey, the creek ends with a wide mouth immediately south of Burleigh Heads. Described as a river in 1840 by the maritime surveyor, Robert Dixon, it was named Perry River after the New South Wales Assistant Surveyor-General, Samuel Perry.
The Tallebudgera Creek valley was well watered and covered with dense scrub. Settlement by farm selection led to the opening of the school in 1877, a post office in Trees Road in 1878, and a Presbyterian church in 1888. During the 1890s settlement intensified as dairy holdings were formed. By the early 1920s there were three localities, Tallebudgera, Tallebudgera Creek and Tallebudgera Upper, with a combined population of just over 300 people. Better known to Brisbane holiday makers was Tallebudgera Beach, south of the creek mouth, together with swimming in the creek. The shorelines were protected, but a strong current out in the stream needed patrolling, for which two womens' life saving clubs (the Neptunes and the Dolphins) were needed. A surf life-saving club was formed in 1946.
In the early postwar years rural Tallebudgera consisted of dairy farmers, banana growers and the school. The demise of dairying yielded numerous holdings that have been subdivided for rural/residential living. Residents are protective of the rural environment, and some have participated in landscape conservation schemes. There is an active natural history association.
East of the primary school is the built-up suburb of Elanora, which provides part of the patronage for the Tallebudgera Park and Meadow Park golf courses. Burleigh Palms golf course on Tallebudgera Creek Road is the third such facility in Tallebudgera. In 2003 Tallebudgera was enlarged in a coastward direction, absorbing part of suburban Andrews which included a Lutheran school and aged care facility and another golf venue.
There is a store near the school and the Tallebudgera community hall some way inland on the way to Ingleside primary school (1892) on Tallebudgera Creek Road. The post office in Trees Road is one of the earliest surviving buildings on the Gold Coast and is listed on the Queensland heritage register.
The various Tallebudgera localities had combined census populations of:
|Tallebudgera localities combined||1891||63|
John A. Elliott, Tallebudgera, in the hinterland of the Albert Shire: a brief history of its school and the district, Gold Coast and Hinterland Historical Society, 1977