Great Barrier Reef Islands

Mission Beach, Cassowary Coast Area

Stretching more than 2,000 kilometres along the Queensland coastline and covering 35 million hectares, the Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef. It is home to an abundance of marine wildlife - including more than 1,500 brilliantly coloured species of tropical fish, 4000 species of molluscs, 400 species of sponge and 300 species of hard corals.

The Great Barrier Reef's islands and cays support bird species by the hundred, including reef herons, ospreys, frigate birds and sea eagles. The reef is also of cultural importance, containing many archaeological sites of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin. Some notable examples include Lizard and Hinchinbrook Islands with their spectacular galleries of rock paintings.

The many diving and snorkelling opportunities provide visitors with the best way of getting close to the Great Barrier Reef's many wonders. Tourism operators offer professional accredited dive courses, introductory reef dives and for the experienced, extended dive charters incorporating night dives or guided ecology dives. If delving into the deep blue is not for you - there are semi-submersible craft, glass bottom boats and a variety of land-based reef attractions.

Great Barrier Reef
Mission Beach, Cassowary Coast Area
Queensland
Australia

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Ex-HMAS Brisbane Conservation Park

Mudjimba, Sunshine Coast Area
From AU$15 - 25
Dive the Brisbane and experience this historical treasure and budding environmental wonder. The ex-HMAS Brisbane Conservation Park is an artificial reef and dive site off the Sunshine Coast, and is set to become one of Australia's premier dive attractions.

Buderim Falls

Buderim, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Buderim Falls is a 45 hectare haven of tranquillity less than a kilometre from the north side of Buderim village on the Sunshine Coast –just 15 minutes from the coast. With its towering trees, meandering tracks and stunning waterfall, this sub-tropical oasis is a paradise for nature lovers and photographers alike.

Mount Coolum National Park

Mount Coolum, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Mount Coolum National Park, especially the green-cloaked dome of Mount Coolum, dominates the skyline of the Sunshine Coast lowlands. After rain, waterfalls cascade down steep craggy cliffs to open eucalypt forest skirting the lower slopes.

Magic Mountain Dive Site

Mooloolaba, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Magic Mountain, a dive site on the Outer Gneerings Reef off Mooloolaba's coast, is a dive for more experienced divers due to its depth and the complex structures formed by rocky outcrops. The large group of outcrops extend from the sandy ocean floor to form numerous gullies, ravines, bommies, swim-throughs and pinnacles, all housing soft and hard coral colonies.

Mudjimba (Old Woman) Island Dive Site

Mooloolaba, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Mudjimba (Old Woman) Island can be found a short boat ride from Mooloolaba on the Sunshine Coast. The Island offers treats for both snorkellers and divers, with coral gardens starting at just two metres deep for brilliant dives.

HMAS Brisbane Dive Site

Mooloolaba, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Just a few kilometres from Mooloolaba on the Sunshine Coast, HMAS Brisbane is a retired Royal Australian Navy guided missile destroyer that is now one of Australia's top dive sites. The ship was scuttled in July 2005 - the 133 metre wreck is sitting upright on her keel, lodged in sand 27 metres below sea level.

Mudjimba Beach

Marcoola, Sunshine Coast Area
Free Entry
Mudjimba Beach is an unspoiled coastal haven just a stone’s throw from Maroochydore and 90 minutes from Brisbane. The endless, golden sands of this beach are bounded by the Maroochy River and the Pacific Ocean.

Marcoola Beach

Marcoola, Sunshine Coast Area
Marcoola Beach is located just north of Maroochy River and boasts quiet uncrowded beaches, which are best suited for serious surfers and walkers. Marcoola Beach is a great escape - unwind for a quiet barbecue or picnic with open grassy parkland, shady trees and children's park.

Bli Bli

Bli Bli, Sunshine Coast Area
The name Bli Bli means 'many swamp oak trees'. While in Bli Bli be sure to take a cruise through the Maroochy Wet Lands Sanctuary, or walk the boardwalks through swamps and mangroves. Wheelchair access is provided via the boardwalk for part of the way.

Mudjimba

Mudjimba, Sunshine Coast Area
If a laid-back beachside holiday is your idea of heaven, then beat a path to the best kept secret on the Sunshine Coast, Mudjimba. This secluded stretch of golden beach is surrounded on two sides by the clear, blue waters of the Pacific Ocean and Maroochy River and flanked by the Maroochy River Conservation Park.
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